Viewing 40 posts - 1 through 40 (of 260 total)
  • Violence against women – solutions?
  • MoreCashThanDash
    Full Member

    We have a thread on the protest but can’t see we’ve tried to discuss the underlying problem.

    I’m not going to try and pretend my middle aged white male perspective is valid or makes me understand any of it.

    Violence and abuse is clearly unacceptable. I was brought up in the 70s and 80s, remember female friends being catcalled. Why has it persisted so long? My daughter shouldn’t have to put up with it, from background “nudge nudge” comments to full blown abuse, and my son knows it’s unacceptable.

    Is it a separate issue to wider violent attitudes? Statistics suggest my son is twice as likely to be murdered than my daughter but I worry about her far more.

    How do we address it? Will it be made worse by lack of social contact over this last year? I have a lot of questions, no answers and little knowledge

    Tom-B
    Free Member

    Your last sentence is where I’m at with it too. I dunno really…..we just need to listen I think?!

    Really sad that ashat had to take herself away from the other thread within a handful of posts. We need to listen to what women are saying on the subject and really try to emphasize/listen and learn I suppose.

    nickc
    Full Member

    I’m not going to try and pretend my middle aged white male perspective is valid or makes me understand any of it.

    When you see it, call it out. Take steps to understand what you personally can do to help prevent it Teach the men (and specifically young men) around you that it’s unacceptable behaviour.

    ahsat
    Full Member

    I’m not going to try and pretend my middle aged white male perspective is valid or makes me understand any of it.

    MoreCash this is 100% not at you, as my interactions with you on this forum have always been positive (and you have raised the Q). But this is exactly the demographic that might be able understand it and explain (though not just white and middle aged). I’ve been cat called (even whistled at in trail center car parks!), groped in pubs and walking down Oxford Street, had inappropriate comments made to me, had to claim my boss was my boyfriend to get a guy to leave me alone, shouted at from van windows, had my bum slapped while cycling home etc etc!

    I don’t ‘dress’ in the way often stereotyped – I hang out here as a bit of a ‘tomboy’ and often found in mountain bike and outdoor kit so that usually used ‘excuse’ doesn’t apply! Why do some blokes (and please god believe me that I know it’s not all blokes!) behave in this way?

    As a result I do modify my behaviour when I’m out and about of my own – especially after dark. I don’t expect to be killed (this is incredibly unlikely), but given all my experiences over the past 18 years as an adult woman I unfortunately am very aware of experiencing something unpleasant.

    theotherjonv
    Full Member

    Good topic

    As Dad to a 17yo daughter who will go off to Uni (aiming for London) next year, and also a TG son who will in due course face threats and possibly violence for other reasons, I’m also deeply concerned by this. As a 50-something white male I often wonder what i can do as an individual to not create threat. I try not to walk behind women – will call and and ask if I can overtake, or I’ll cross the road so i don’t walk past others.

    I was riding in the Surrey Hills yesterday and there was a lady cycling about 50 yards in front, who came past the side road I was waiting to turn out of, and I agonised about how fast to go in case overtaking on a country lane is unnerving (frankly, humble brag aside being overtaken by me uphill right now is unnerving just because of the imminent risk of needing to give CPR to a stranger)

    As men we need to understand and do more. I’ve been scared a few times on mean streets at night, and been robbed once. I have no idea what it’s like to feel like that every time I go out, or for a run or a cycle.

    [and apologies to Ahsat if Tom-B’s comments are aimed at me]

    ahsat
    Full Member

    When you see it, call it out. Take steps to understand what you personally can do to help prevent it Teach the men (and specifically young men) around you that it’s unacceptable behaviour.

    100% this. And thank you to those that do.

    tjagain
    Full Member

    When you see it, call it out. Take steps to understand what you personally can do to help prevent it Teach the men (and specifically young men) around you that it’s unacceptable behaviour.

    must be a large part of the answer IMO

    I have read / listened to a few things from various friends on this topic and this is the thing I have taken away. Don’t be passive – its not just enough to be “one of the good men” but be active – call out unacceptable behaviour ” how would you like it if that was your mum/ sister/ daughter”

    cheekymonkey888
    Free Member

    I kind of think its goes further back from that to how men / society portray and view women. Objectification that fuels mens views of women and hence leading to a distorted perceptive. Looking at the language used and imagary used in videos shows a clear divide. If the message gets repeated enough people seem to accept it. I look forward to a world where there is equality for all.

    anagallis_arvensis
    Full Member

    I’m at a loss really, and lets not forget 75% of violent crime is against men, men should be far more worried walking the streets at night. Look at knife crime, many young men carry knives because they are scared too. Almost all violent crime is commited by men so we sure sure as shit are part of the problem and answer.

    When you see it, call it out. Take steps to understand what you personally can do to help prevent it Teach the men (and specifically young men) around you that it’s unacceptable behaviour.

    When you see it call it out, just was said by someone on any questions as I half listened too on the way to Tesco yesterday. Problem is the type of knuckle dragging moron who treats women badly in public will think nothing of attacking me if I step in and will likely be far more practised at it than me. Now I’ve stepped in to things on occasion but at that moment you know full well “what the **** you going to do is coming” and then it will get physical if you don’t back down.

    Violence in society is a society problem, the way men are bought up to be emotionally repressed violent bread winners and the way society and media reflects this in movies, music and media in general doesn’t help. I don’t know what the answer is but it’s more complex than just, men need to change and other men need to call it out. It runs much deeper.

    LAP13
    Free Member

    Be aware.
    For instance, you’re walking down the road, alone, at night. It may not (it may however) be a big deal.

    A woman is walking toward you, or worse in front of you, also alone.

    She is likely thinking about whether you are a threat, does she cross the road?, is she gripping onto her keys in her pocket?, maybe she’ll get her phone out and call someone, maybe she’ll walk a little taller, head up, look confident, she may change direction so you don’t know where shes going. Her heart rate is likely increased, all sorts of scenarios running through her head, she perhaps can’t breathe, and all because you’re ‘there’ – you’ve done nothing wrong, just being, just your presence is enough. You are probably not even aware.

    What can you do? Take ‘evasive’ action, be the one that crosses the road, hang back and give her some space, turn and look in a shop window.

    You’ve not done wrong. It’s not your fault that there are the bad ones out there. Noone is saying all men are the same, that all women feel the same way or indeed that it is only women.

    Be aware, just know how your presence is having an effect.

    ahsat
    Full Member

    anagallis. You raise very valid points that I totally respect. There has been instances where I have told my OH/brother to just leave an issue for fear of them getting beaten up.

    It is a lot deeper and more complex.

    anagallis_arvensis
    Full Member

    Be aware, just know how your presence is having an effect.

    That’s all very well but but it doesn’t get to the core of the problem, why is she scared when you are the one much more at risk? Not saying she is wrong, far from it or indeed that what you suggest is the wrong thing to do but society has got this all **** up.

    grahamt1980
    Full Member

    For me the point about 75% of violence being against men is an issue with statistics.
    I suspect that the majority of that violence would be a a result of male gangs, drinking etc.
    The violence against women i would think is from a different source where their actions have no relation to the violence occurring.

    Like others i have been wondering what i could do, and have come down to intervene where i see it (trying not to get my head kicked in), but def call the police too.
    A-a you are right that the vast majority of women are able to walk around in safety but i don’t blame them for feeling worried in a lot of situations, and honestly i have been shocked at some of the stories being published after this, the reporter in the guardian where someone just walked past them started shouting and hassling her even with her kids was mad

    LAP13
    Free Member

    why is she scared when you are the one much more at risk?

    In the scenario I gave, the woman is more at risk. (usually)

    Also it is perceived risk.
    It is perceived that you as a man are more of a threat.
    Is it irrational fear? Perhaps.
    As women, or girls, we are perhaps conditioned to watch out for the big bad man. Is that wrong and unfair? Maybe. It’s also unfair that the majority of women that you speak to have that fear and feel that way but it’s true.
    Is it irrational? It may be, because you’re the good guy, right?
    How does she/I know that?
    I would have thought a Met police officer was a safe bet, surely?!

    BillMC
    Full Member

    I resent women having to modify their behaviour or clothes to go out. Wolf-whistles are about exercising power not about getting friendly with you, the most unequal societies tend to be the most sexist, religious, monarchist, impoverished and governed by the right wing.

    anagallis_arvensis
    Full Member

    For me the point about 75% of violence being against men is an issue with statistics.

    For sure lots of it goes unreported. I just think we need to look past superficial easy looking solutions and think of the whys more.

    Why are men programmed to be macho, to not go to Dr’s when I’ll, to believe violence is the answer, to be the protectors and providers. Address these issues and we improve women’s rights, reduce the pay gap and maybe reduce violence. How it is done I don’t know and for sure some is biological but changing views on gender roles in society is much needed.

    anagallis_arvensis
    Full Member

    Is it irrational fear? Perhaps.

    No, to be very clear this isn’t what I’m saying, the fear is rational.

    Riksbar
    Full Member

    That’s all very well but but it doesn’t get to the core of the problem, why is she scared when you are the one much more at risk?

    I’m not sure I agree with your reading of the statistics. From the woman’s point of view, whilst it’s true that you resemble a lot of the victims of street crime, you resemble almost all of the perpetrators in one key respect.

    I’d just go back to the advice given earlier, cross the road, change direction or hang back if needed, and call out wrong behaviour when you see it.

    anagallis_arvensis
    Full Member

    It’s also unfair that the majority of women that you speak to have that fear

    And many men do too, its just they hide it or carry a knife.

    stumpyjon
    Full Member

    Its a bigger issue than just this, behaviour from some sections of society is just appalling, whether it’s this, violence, racism, general ignoring of the law right through to fly tipping and lockdown breaking at the other end of the scale.

    Do we start to have a zero tolerance approach of all infringements of the law (we have plenty of legislation we don’t use) or is there another approach. Do we want a police state with mandatory re-education camps like China? I dont know, as a white middle class male I could say yes please, my behaviour generally doesn’t match the above and it drives me nuts people think they can choose which laws to break (including last night) and think it’s acceptable to be anti-social. However would that have the desired effect? Probably not, our political leaders have no moral compass and it should start with them.
    I’m not sure what last night’s vigil achieved, got us talking about the issues I suppose, unlikely to yield any answers.

    Final point, it’s not just a woman thing either, I’d think twice about walking on my own through Manchester at night or even during the day in places. Appreciate woman have a greater fear of being attacked and the low level abuse is much greater but the stats don’t bear out that woman are more at risk. Mind you although males are more likely to killed by a stranger that’s much higher in specific age and demographic groups as well.

    supernova
    Full Member

    I agree with the posters above who say the most useful thing you can do is call it out when you hear or see it. That takes courage and probably some risk but it is necessary as a man to put yourself on the line to slowly make changes to our culture for the benefit for all. Follow the phrase the cops use about Covid- engage, educate and enforce.

    yoshimi
    Full Member

    As a 40ish white man I have no real solution either – but simply put, I just try and treat / act in a way that you’d hope other men would around your wife / daughter

    anagallis_arvensis
    Full Member

    Men were more likely to be victims of CSEW violent crime than women (2.3% of men compared with 1.2% of women1, Appendix table 1). This was true for all types of violence, with the exception of domestic violence, which showed no significant difference.

    https://www.ons.gov.uk/peoplepopulationandcommunity/crimeandjustice/articles/thenatureofviolentcrimeinenglandandwales/yearendingmarch2018#which-groups-of-people-are-most-likely-to-be-victims-of-violent-crime

    anagallis_arvensis
    Full Member

    That takes courage and probably some risk but it is necessary as a man to put yourself on the line to slowly make changes to our culture for the benefit for all

    So as a man taking actions that may likely lead to violence will reduce violence? Not saying you are wrong but at the root of your statement is the seed of the problem. People need to call out this behaviour, people need to act, society needs to drop gender roles.

    supernova
    Full Member

    I’m pretty sure that what I said.

    The element of risk comes when you have the courage to call out sexist threatening behaviour is circumstances where the perpetrator may retaliate violently, eg in the pub etc.

    Are you saying it should be called out but only when there’s no risk?

    anagallis_arvensis
    Full Member

    Are you saying it should be called out but only when there’s no risk?

    No.
    I’m saying, your ideas of what “as a man” involves reflect part of the problem if you look beyond the superficial. Courage, risk taking etc.

    avdave2
    Full Member

    Here’s the thing, if you want to know the answer you probably need to talk to men who have been violent towards women. They are the only people who are going to give you any idea of where to start. And to do that you probably have to do something that feels abhorrent and make it acceptable for them to come forward with their problem rather than hide and deny it. I’m not sure many men actually want to be like that, they’ll always be the psychopaths who’ll always be dangerous of course but I expect that’s a small part of the problem.

    The calling it out, I don’t agree with this behaviour, you need to change approach often seems more about making yourself feel good and virtuous.

    oakleymuppet
    Free Member

    That’s all very well but but it doesn’t get to the core of the problem, why is she scared when you are the one much more at risk? Not saying she is wrong, far from it or indeed that what you suggest is the wrong thing to do but society has got this all **** up.

    Evolutionary biology.

    She’s hardwired not to want some randoms baby.

    We’re hardwired to kill each other and compete for resources to get women.

    And thus the whole human race is a clown car of absurd competing interests barrelling through space.

    RustyNissanPrairie
    Full Member

    I try not to walk behind women – will call and and ask if I can overtake

    This +1, I’m always out walking/running with my dog all over the place and occasionally catch up to lone women which then makes me feel uncomfortable as I know they are probably feeling uncomfortable/nervous etc with me being behind so I always ask to pass and then disappear off into the distance.

    dantsw13
    Free Member

    Having lived in London for a while, I’m certainly scared of confronting abusive men. This week has made me consider my role and overcoming this fear.

    Education of our young in the long term has to be the answer. In the short term I’m happy to listen to any suggestions of what I can do.

    RustyNissanPrairie
    Full Member

    That takes courage and probably some risk but it is necessary as a man to put yourself on the line to slowly make changes to our culture for the benefit for all

    I think in this day and age I would be reluctant to get involved – work colleague lost an eye after intervening in an altercation between a woman and bloke. Bloke turned on colleague glassed him and then intimidated him and his family to not persue it. He now has a glass eye.

    maccruiskeen
    Full Member

    I have a lot of questions, no answers and little knowledge

    For a long time women have lead the conversation (that’s perhaps even an understatement – men seem to have absented themselves from the conversation)  – even the idea that this is an issue for men to tackle has come from women really. The ‘its not all men’ thing seeks to reassure – it  overlooks the point that it pretty much is an issue for all women – as a man you can be sure that the women and girls you know, love, live with and work with inhabit this world – its not a shared topic its a shared experience.

    Whenever stories like this current case emerge they are shocking in their own right but for half the population they’re also an unpleasant reminder. My GF has had to fight off and flee two attempted abductions – one crossing Clapham Common in pretty much exactly the same circumstances as Sarah Everard – doing the the right thing, taking the well lit route, just going home from work.

    We don’t put the issue to the fore because we don’t have to asses every situation for danger in the way women do – its not a factor in our journey to work, or our workplace, or our social life – we don’t even have to think about whether enjoying the countryside comes with threat and requires a plan.

    While the problem isn’t ‘all men’ the solution requires all men because we – the nice guys – are the cover. The problem lurks amongst us and it means ‘being a good person’ in itself isn’t enough if all we’re dong is giving the bad person somewhere to hide and the space to operate.

    It is a lot deeper and more complex.

    I think the starting point perhaps needs to be the bigger picture – we tend to focus on single issues – debate around the media, sexualisation in marketing, porn, debate around dress, and so on. I think we need to zoom right out. Is this issue universal? – is it part of all cultures and communities? within our own culture is it changing over time? We have to look at where outcomes are different to be able to know how and where to make a change – Thats the only way we can know if anything we attempt to change will achieve anything. Where in the world is the experience of women better than here? Where is it worse? Are we heading in either of those directions?

    We need to get to grips with whether this is something that is particular to men, individually and socially, but given that its ‘not all men’ is it something particular in the way men ‘break’. I don’t think being a violent sexual predator is something men hope to be – so what has gone wrong when they are? The prevalent culture is the same for all of us so theres the risk to all of us that we can become broken in the same way. Surely its in all our interest to try and prevent that.

    supernova
    Full Member

    Education of our young in the long term has to be the answer.

    This is the only answer that will work. It has to become culturally unacceptable, like we did over time with drink driving or wearing a seat belt.

    Longer term, we need to address how brutal a society we have become. Before Covid I spent my life photographing different societies around the world and am always shocked at how we’ve come to accept the level of violence and crime in our own society as normal. Personally I blame the hard Neo-liberalism individualism we’ve lived under since the late 70s, but others will disagree.

    oakleymuppet
    Free Member

    I think the whole of society needs to have a conversation about violence and the way in which we justify violence in general to be honest and how we were seemingly okay with turning places like Iraq into an apocalyptic nightmare.

    Violence against women is apparently okay, when it’s a 2000lb JDAM that you’re dropping on a woman’s wedding party.

    It’s so ingrained, I don’t see how it can be untangled without having a much broader conversation about it.

    dero
    Free Member

    For me the point about 75% of violence being against men is an issue with statistics.
    I suspect that the majority of that violence would be a a result of male gangs, drinking etc.
    The violence against women i would think is from a different source where their actions have no relation to the violence occurring.

    This is the point The comparison between violence against men and women showing men have a higher risk is not the issue.

    The issue is that so many women are fearful of all sorts of behaviour – not just physical violence – from some men towards them. This is stuff that men just don’t experience. It’s endemic and has been for a long time. There’s a mumsnet thread if any men want to take a look at what women are on the receiving end of. It’s sobering reading. The stuff that I thought had perhaps been left behind in the 70s and 80s is still going on – a lot.

    oakleymuppet
    Free Member

    https://files.eric.ed.gov/fulltext/ED261949.pdf

    This is kind of what I mean, we need as a society to get a broad understanding and awareness of what drives our behaviour.

    But we’re humans, so good luck with that.

    BillMC
    Full Member

    If it were down to ‘evolutionary biology’ all societies would be the same and all people within them. Clearly a load of endogamy. It also fits with that tory territorial hobbit mentality, ‘I just couldn’t resist my human nature’.
    People can change, talk of biology gives them an excuse not to.

    oakleymuppet
    Free Member

    Of course they can, but certain societies are more aware of human fallibility than others.

    The key is awareness. There are fairly basic instincts and emotional triggers that can be exploited that drive violence and human conflict.

    jamj1974
    Full Member

    When you see it, call it out. Take steps to understand what you personally can do to help prevent it Teach the men (and specifically young men) around you that it’s unacceptable behaviour.

    This.

    ThePilot
    Free Member

    It’s a difficult one. I was out riding one day, coming up a hill, and there was a small group of men waiting to come down. As I passed, one man asked: “Are you on your own?”
    I shat myself. Until I realised they were asking are we safe to go.

    Then another time, I was coming home. I was breathing not heavily but deeply. It was getting dark. I was on a narrow path and I caught up with a woman and her dog. I couldn’t pass so I just stayed behind not wanting to ask her to move out of the way. She heard me take a breath, spun round, gasped and with real fear in her face. I felt terrible. I’m female, 5ft 6 and was about 8 stone at the time. So I do understand how difficult it can be.

    I think one place we can start at trying to make society more equal is to look at sport. I watched the rugby yesterday. Wales vs Italy. I didn’t realise those countries only contained men. Women’s rugby, not having been aired ever really, now occasionally gets a slot at 11pm on BBC2 or something like that.
    Similarly watched Match of the Day this morning. Again only men’s matches covered.
    It may be a small example where things could be changed but I think it’s an important one.

    I’ve been mistaken for a man on here. It is after all a sports forum I guess.
    It doesn’t worry me and not something I felt I needed to correct but it’s just people assume that people in sport are men. I guess my name might have something to do with it. I wonder if that mistake would have been made if I’d been called TheNurse or something similar.
    My name comes from some Scott Pilot bar/stem combo that I had to sell when I first joined btw.

    As for walking home in London at night, I’ve done it a million times. I’ve had the same experiences that most women have had I would guess. I once saw a man hide in a doorway waiting for me to pass. I managed to go the other way and give him the slip. Can’t be 100% sure what he was doing of course but I didn’t want to find out.
    Luckily, I’m quite tomboy-ish so could run, if I’d been in heels and a skirt, I might not have got away.
    I’ve been followed from Tube carriage to Tube carriage by a man who sat opposite me and stared at me. He was carrying a hold all.
    I’ve been followed by men a couple of times.
    I once put myself in a very vulnerable situation and later suspected the questions the man was asking me were designed to see if anybody would look for me and, if not, I may have ended up as a sex slave. Luckily I am in a privileged position and people would have looked for me – not least the bank.
    I was coming home once, it would have been in the early hours. I used to have quite an androgynous look I guess and a group of men shouted: “Is that a boy or a girl?” They had to shout because they were walking on the pavement and I was walking in the middle of the road where there’s fewer places for people to hide. Then they shouted the question directly at me. Why it should matter in the least what the gender of the person is who is passing you on the street is, I don’t know, but it felt very intimidating. I got to my front door, unlocked it, shut it behind me, locked it, and breathed a big sigh of relief. That’s just part of many a night out for women sadly.

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