AUGUSTA, Ga (WJBF) – “A lot of men, they’re embarrassed by it. They don’t want to reach out. They don’t want people to know. From their careers to their friends,” says Michael Shane McDaniel.
Rescuing greyhounds has become a passion for Michael Shane McDaniel.
But a few years ago, he had to rescue himself from an abusive marriage.
“I didn’t even realize it myself until some Attorneys brought it to my attention. I was like “oh, oh okay. Why would you say that? What is putting me in this category of being a victim? They were like it’s the mental aspect. You’re being mentally abused.”
For more than 30 years, he has worked in law enforcement protecting and saving lives.
Shane says he never imagined having to do the same for himself at home.
“I had somewhat of a nervous breakdown over it. I just got tired of it and it kind of blew up. Luckily for me, my children were there and they were there with me and they were like ‘ok.’ They were the blanket. The comfort there. They supported me in my decisions.”
Shane admits during his career he has seen many men in the same situation.
“I’ve answered more calls, almost more calls, dealing with men being abused as opposed to women. I’m not downplaying what happens to women cause there’s absolutely no way you could do that. But, the public does need to know that men can be held as victims as well,” he explains.
He says with men, often, the wounds are not physical.
“It’s a lot of breaking the spirit. It’s a lot of belittling and after so many years of hearing the constant belittlement or the belittling comments, the negativity, a person could start to believe that and you don’t realize it at that time. But, you start to beat your own self up.”
According to the national violence against women survey, more than 830-thousand men fall victim to domestic violence every year.
The survey shows every 37.8 seconds, somewhere in America, a man is battered.
SafeHomes Domestic Violence Center Executive Director Aimee Hall says the problem is seen locally.
“About 13 percent of the victims that we serve are males. So, all of our services that are offered to women are offered to men as well. We can shelter them,” says Hall.
Shane encourages men who are victims of domestic violence to seek help.
For him, that came in the form of family and his four legged friends.
Now that he’s healed that hurt is being used to help others.
“There’s avenues out there. The thing is that male victim has to overcome that feeling of embarrassment. Once they overcome that feeling of embarrassment that’s when they’ll be able to start the healing process,” he concludes.
Shane says he’s now experiencing the happiest time of his life that includes being in a loving and caring relationship.
There are many avenues of help for victims of domestic violence.
This includes shelter, counseling, support groups and even child care.
For confidential support and help contact Safehomes Domestic Violence Center’s 24 HR Crisis Hotline – 706-736-2499 1-800-799-SAFE.
Or, call the Cumbee Center to Assist Abused Persons at 803-649-0480.