I Think I Messed Up! What Would You Do?

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DaveC426913

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Conclusion and advice: Throw the watch in the trash can on your way out, and forget about the whole thing. We aren't going to waste our time on paperwork just in case the other guy makes a complaint. If he doesn't know who you are, that's his problem not ours...
In Neo's defense - or in my own - I am not suggesting that because the police won't do anything means it's futile to report it. I am not suggesting that at all. A crime should be reported, and you did the right thing.

What I am suggesting in LisaB's case is that there is no crime to report. The police can't do anything.
 
In Neo's defense - or in my own - I am not suggesting that because the police won't do anything means it's futile to report it. I am not suggesting that at all. A crime should be reported, and you did the right thing.

What I am suggesting in LisaB's case is that there is no crime to report. The police can't do anything.
I am not sure about Canada, but here in the US if you shout at someone and attempt to strike them that is a crime that the police can definitely do something about. The "victim" may decide to not press charges but that does not mean that there was no crime or that the police could not have potentially done something about it. Your hypothetical exchange between the man and the police is pretty common of abused women as well. They are often afraid, embarrassed, and/or ashamed. Why do you think that a man is more capable of cowing his partner than a woman? Do you think that women never try to ignore abuse or pretend like it is not happening/has not happened?

If you saw a man shouting at a woman and watched as she side stepped attempts to kick her and just kept walking and acting like it was no big deal would you seriously not call the police? Would her gender perhaps make you more inclined to believe that she was just putting on an act and was in fact bothered by the situation? Even if she did seem to genuinely think that it was no big deal do you think that you would have still perceived it as being no big deal? or do you think you might decide that she is being stupid and not paying attention to the real threat of abuse from her partner and that maybe she needs someone to call the police to help her protect herself and try to show her how wrong that situation is?


And I forgot about you Lisab, sorry. If it was just a few moments that they were there as this was going on there was not really anything you could do. All the gender perceptions and such aside there usually isn't much you can do about such things. Nearly every time I have called the police regarding domestic abuse situations the fight was over or the people were gone by the time the officers arrived.
 

Drakkith

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The likelihood of physical harm is irrelevant. Why does everyone discount the psychological harm that comes from verbal abuse? To both the man and the child, in this situation.
The likelihood of physical harm is entirely relevant. You simply don't call the police in this situation because it is pointless. You don't know what their personal life is like from one incident. You may think you know, but you do not.
 
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What I am suggesting in LisaB's case is that there is no crime to report. The police can't do anything.
As TheStatutoryApe pointed out, there certainly was a crime to report. Attempting to strike another person is illegal in both Canada and the US. Screaming at someone may or may not be illegal, probably depends on the situation, location, etc.

The reasons for reporting abuse don't stop at immediate police action. Having a report filed may help the abused party in future, whether through making it easier to get a restraining order, making it easier to gain custody of children, or making it easier to successfully press assault charges in the future.

Ask yourself honestly: If the situation had been reversed, and a man was observed shouting and attempting to kick/hit a woman (in front of their child!), would you recommend reporting it? If the answer is yes, then the difference in response to that situation and this one is just plain sexism.
 
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All you know is that you observed her assault him without any apparent provocation.
Just to correct my earlier post. According to some quick research online (and therefore possibly not entirely accurate), what you observed was an attempted battery, rather than assault. Assault appears to require credible threat, which was not necessarily present in this situation, while battery covers any offensive contact (and therefore trying to kick him is attempted battery).

I am not a lawyer nor a police officer of any sort, and this was found with 10 seconds of Googling, so take it with a grain of salt. I just thought I would add it, so that we have a clearer idea of what crime was actually committed.
 

DaveC426913

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Do you also report littering and jaywalking?

A crime that could be reported is not the same as a crime that must be reported - and to what level not reporting it is considered ... what was the word ... oh yeah:

...disgusting...
 
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Do you also report littering and jaywalking?

A crime that could be reported is not the same as a crime that must be reported - and to what level not reporting it is considered ... what was the word ... oh yeah:
And the question still remains: Do you consider it less "disgusting" to not report female on male abuse than to not report male on female abuse? I know you have already said that you feel it was not necessary since Lisa reports that the male did not seem bothered or perturbed by the incident, but as I asked already: would you still not consider it necessary if a female did not appear bothered or perturbed by seeming abuse from a male?
 

DaveC426913

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And the question still remains: Do you consider it less "disgusting" to not report female on male abuse than to not report male on female abuse? I know you have already said that you feel it was not necessary since Lisa reports that the male did not seem bothered or perturbed by the incident, but as I asked already: would you still not consider it necessary if a female did not appear bothered or perturbed by seeming abuse from a male?
It is certainly a good point. But what it highlights is that fact the sexism works both ways (It biases an otherwise objective viewpoint). If we see a woman easily dodging the aggressions of a man, obviously unperturbed and unthreatened by it, why would we assume we know better than her, whether she is threatened?
 
I certainly hope if I was in that situation that someone wouldn't call the police and say my wife/girlfriend was attacking me. I would never live it down with the guy friends who will interpret that as "got beaten up".

It's probably a good thing you didn't call. Whilst domestic abuse goes both ways, I think in most cases, a woman attacking a man is not as grievous as the other way around. Although they both are equally wrong in principle. Unless there were weapons involved, the general kicking and punching isn't really going to do much to most males, and judging by what you said about his evasive action, it confirms it was really not much. Contrast this with him being attacked by another male, it's likely that evasive action there would have ended in him being knocked out.

It's just how things are.
 
Do you also report littering and jaywalking?

A crime that could be reported is not the same as a crime that must be reported - and to what level not reporting it is considered ... what was the word ... oh yeah:
Good point.
 

mathwonk

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those who doubt a woman can be a threat to a man have not seen some of the women around here. besides a weapon changes all that in an instant, even a club, certainly a knife, and even more a gun. here in georgia there are laws that allow people to carry concealed weapons, and as everyone knows, in states like florida they can shoot anyone who makes them feel threatened.

so the "only women should feel threatened" argument seems logically to allow the conclusion that any woman can shoot any man in any argument situation. interesting...

the only validity to any of these gender distinctions I can imagine is a possible biological link whereby males may be wired (by testosterone) to be more aggressive. I think it has less to do with size or strength.

I am also guilty of these biases in behavior since I have also neglected to report cases of women abusing men, whereas I would probably not ignore the other way around. The reason may be that the news usually reports the male eventually harming the woman fatally more often than the other way around, but it may just be chauvinism.


I also think there is a flaw in the principle that a physically weaker person should be allowed to abuse a stronger one. If you have two children and you allow the younger smaller one to beat on the older one without allowing the older one to retaliate, you may well cause more trouble than you prevent. A feisty small person can often defend him/herself quite effectively against a larger one. Abuse is about psychological dominance.
 
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DaveC426913

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those who doubt a woman can be a threat to a man ...
Surely no one actually thinks this.

The only issue that should be on the table is whether in the defender's opinion (whether male or female) they feel the situation is out their control.
 
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She was having a complete meltdown, a world-class temper tantrum. Her shrieking escalated, but the young man did nothing but stand there.

I kept watching, feeling guilty about it, but it was like watching a train wreck. This woman was nuts!
I personally might well have called the cops based on the fact she seemed crazy. What you describe sounds like a manic episode, or possibly the result of a drug. The domestic abuse aspect would probably not have occurred to me. I'd be wondering if she was a bipolar person off her meds, or on crack, and I'd call to report her crazy behavior mostly because her shrieking was bothering me.
 

Pengwuino

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The reasons for reporting abuse don't stop at immediate police action. Having a report filed may help the abused party in future, whether through making it easier to get a restraining order, making it easier to gain custody of children, or making it easier to successfully press assault charges in the future.
I think this is one of the most important reasons why you should report abuse like this. The courts are very much biased against guys and there certainly are guys who are abused by their spouse/gfs. It doesn't matter whether or not the guy could easily defend or shrug off this abuse, all that matters is that there is abuse. If they were married and did happen to get a divorce, regardless of the physical danger, this would be a clear example of the woman's possible mental instability that could be brought to a judge.

As far as whether or not the physical abuse need be reported solely because of the physical characteristic, I agree with mathwonk. If you saw a man screaming at a woman on the street, I believe a vast majority of us would report it because I think everyone here knows that there's a chance it could escalate to physical violence quickly and that's not something we're okay with leaving to chance. If you see a woman attacking (even unsuccessfully) a man, people should realize that that could escalate as well. You don't need to be a man to hit someone on the head with something and put them in the hospital.

The woman doesn't need to be send to jail, but police do need to step in to show that this is unacceptable behavior in our society.
 
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There seems to be a few people suggesting that a man can leave a relationship any time he wants and therefore cannot be abused in the same way a woman can. The fact is that a huge percentage of abused women stay with their partner and not only through the physical threat of what would happen if they left. Although it is true that victims of domestic abuse should leave the situation, it is not a valid reason to dismiss any abuse that they are subjected to.

And contrary to what certain people are saying, a man cannot easily defend himself in these situations unless he wants to end up in court for domestic abuse.
 
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I wouldn't report them, simply because I don't report much stuff. I should do, but I don't.
 

PAllen

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If I see a woman who hits her male partner, I think that he's in no danger and if he became sick of the "abuse" he could just leave the relationship.

If I see a man who hits his female partner, I think her mental and physical health are in danger, and she could possibly be intimidated and scared to leave the relationship.

Men can take care of themselves.
Does the name Bobbitt ring any bells?

If there are kids, why would it be easier for the man to leave?
 

Evo

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If there are kids, why would it be easier for the man to leave?
If he wants custody of his children. If his wife exhibited signs of violence, emotional, or mental instabilty, a judge would be more inclined to give the father custody.
 

PAllen

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If he wants custody of his children. If his wife exhibited signs of violence, emotional, or mental instabilty, a judge would be more inclined to give the father custody.
Still, no one looks forward to being a single parent. It could lead to feeling trapped equally for the man or the woman. For either, the overarching concern should be the harm of a poisonous environment on the kids, but I do not see any reason the men are more likely than women to balance conflicting interests and emotions and make the objectively best decision.
 

Evo

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Still, no one looks forward to being a single parent. It could lead to feeling trapped equally for the man or the woman. For either, the overarching concern should be the harm of a poisonous environment on the kids, but I do not see any reason the men are more likely than women to balance conflicting interests and emotions and make the objectively best decision.
If the woman is the danger or potential danger, the children should go to the father.
 

PAllen

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If the woman is the danger or potential danger, the children should go to the father.
Obviously, but my point is that I disagree with an earlier claim that men would be unlikely to feel trapped in an abusive relationship. If there are kids, it seems easy to imagine. Fear of how the legal process would go, fear of single parenthood, denial, all seem nearly equally likely to affect a man in this situation as they would a woman.
 

Evo

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Obviously, but my point is that I disagree with an earlier claim that men would be unlikely to feel trapped in an abusive relationship. If there are kids, it seems easy to imagine. Fear of how the legal process would go, fear of single parenthood, denial, all seem nearly equally likely to affect a man in this situation as they would a woman.
So, if there was a record of abuse by the wife, it would help the man.

There is no fear of single parenthood if you love your children and want what's best for them.

I was a single parent for years after my divorce, so I don't get what you are saying. Sometimes the father is the right choice.
 

Office_Shredder

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He's simply saying that many of the reasons for why women have trouble leaving abusive relationships apply to men as well.

Do you think that everybody considering divorce in these situations is thinking ' I'll just get a divorce and get custody no big deal' after years of being a doormat for their spouse? Probably not. What the reality is doesn't matter, it's people's fears and perceptions, wrong though they may be, which can trap them in a relationship they should leave
 

Evo

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He's simply saying that many of the reasons for why women have trouble leaving abusive relationships apply to men as well.

Do you think that everybody considering divorce in these situations is thinking ' I'll just get a divorce and get custody no big deal' after years of being a doormat for their spouse? Probably not. What the reality is doesn't matter, it's people's fears and perceptions, wrong though they may be, which can trap them in a relationship they should leave
Now *that* makes sense.
 

lisab

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So, if there was a record of abuse by the wife, it would help the man.

There is no fear of single parenthood if you love your children and want what's best for them.

I was a single parent for years after my divorce, so I don't get what you are saying. Sometimes the father is the right choice.
There's a perception that women have the advantage in child custody cases. If a man is married to an abusive woman but there is no proof or documentation of it, I can understand if he's hesitant to get a divorce. It could be worse for the kids, if they end up in her custody.
 

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