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Exploring Help Seeking Experiences of Male Victims of Female Perpetrators of IPV


Intimate partner violence (IPV) is a common phenomenon worldwide. However, there is a relative dearth of qualitative research exploring IPV in which men are the victims of their female partners. The present study used a qualitative approach to explore how Portuguese men experience IPV. Ten male victims (aged 35–75) who had sought help from domestic violence agencies or from the police were interviewed. Transcripts were analyzed using QSR NVivo10 and coded following thematic analysis. The results enhance our understanding of both the nature and dynamics of the violence that men experience as well as the negative impact of violence on their lives. This study revealed the difficulties that men face in the process of seeking help, namely differences in treatment of men versus women victims. It also highlights that help seeking had a negative emotional impact for most of these men. Finally, this study has important implications for practitioners and underlines macro-level social recommendations for raising awareness about this phenomenon, including the need for changes in victims’ services and advocacy for gender-inclusive campaigns and responses.

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Correspondence to Andreia Machado.

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Machado, A., Santos, A., Graham-Kevan, N. et al. Exploring Help Seeking Experiences of Male Victims of Female Perpetrators of IPV. J Fam Viol 32, 513–523 (2017).

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  • Men
  • Victims
  • Intimate partner violence
  • Experiences