Case Studies

We have worked with many men. These case studies feature real clients although their names have been changed.

JACK

Jack is clear that he is entirely responsible for his past behaviour. But you do not have to look very hard to see some of the factors that resulted in him sitting in this room.

“I watched it all when I was a child, my mum getting battered and stuff like that,” he says. Then there is the drug-dealer father who brought his son up to be a macho man who would never run away from a fight; best friends who were addicts; and stints in jail for beatings and stabbings that only fuelled the violence, as he battled to stand up for himself inside.

“My criminal record is as long as my arm, I’ve done some bad stuff,” says the 30-year-old. “But no one’s ever come in and helped me, they’ve just left me. All the anger was going on to my girlfriend.

“I felt like she wouldn’t listen, like no one was listening. I now notice myself getting angry, whereas before I didn’t understand it.”

The father-of-one, who says he “never cared about anything or felt for anybody”, describes the programme as “the best thing I’ve ever done in my life, to be honest”.

He laments: “It’s a shame you don’t get taught these things when you’re younger”.

GARY

“We had a real happy little family home, growing up. I don’t know where it came from. I’m still trying to pinpoint the exact thing today,” Gary says.

But he is disarmingly frank about his past behaviour towards the mother of his two children, whom he is still with.

“I headbutted her, spat at her, strangled her, threats to kill, threatened her family, putting her down – just making her feel like something you stood in.”

Social services intervened and removed the children from their care before they both resolved to end the violence. But talking about it to others was daunting.

“I felt ashamed about what I’d done to be here. And I found it difficult having a woman staff member in the group – talking to a woman about being violent towards another woman. But it made it easier for me to go and speak to my partner.”

“Two years ago, I couldn’t have imagined talking about my relationship to random men, do you know what I mean?” he says. “It’s just normal for us now.”

TIM

Tim was unable to accept he had a problem – until he realised he would be denied access to his children.

It was only then that he desperately looked around for help to change his abusive behaviour, but none was forthcoming. “I came close a few times to doing myself in, because I was getting no help from nowhere,” he says.

The father-of-six admits that he used to earn £2,000 a week or more “illegally”, while having countless affairs and being engaged in constant violence inside and outside the home.

But, he adds: “I know for a fact I would have killed myself, because if I wasn’t allowed to see my kids, I wouldn’t have had anything else to live for.

“My anger cost me everything. My violent behaviour destroyed my kids – they were scared to death of me. Only recently, I found out my daughter used to lock herself in the bedroom and cry. Now she says she doesn’t want me to give up the anger management because she’s seen how much I’ve changed.”

The above are extracts taken from an article on domestic violence in the Independent newspaper. To read the full article http://goo.gl/k01wvx

 

If you are reading this as a man and want to talk to someone, you can call the Respect Phoneline which is  a freephone 0808 802 4040 or go to their website www.respectphoneline.org.uk