Some researchers believe the actual number of male victims is likely to be greater than law enforcement statistics suggest due to the high number of men who do not report their abuse.IPV against men is a controversial area of research, with terms such as gender symmetry, battered husband syndrome and bidirectional IPV provoking a great deal of debate.The term domestic violence is commonly defined as a behavior, or pattern of behaviors, that occurs between intimate partners with the aim of one partner exerting control over the other.Domestic violence may include psychological threats, emotional abuse, sexual abuse, and/or physical violence.
It should be noted that, although the most familiar constellation for partner violence is one in which the (current or ex-) husband or boyfriend is the perpetrator and the wife or girlfriend is the victim, partner abuse also occurs in homosexual relationships and in heterosexual relationships in which men are the victims.
Interpersonal violence and abuse, especially between relatives and domestic partners, are leading causes of morbidity and mortality.
Family physicians and other professionals who provide primary care health services must deal with acute presentations and chronic sequelae of this epidemic.
One of the main tools used to find statistical evidence of male victims of IPV (as well as female victims of IPV), the conflict tactics scale, has been heavily criticized, and heavily defended.
The lines of the debate tend to fall between two basic polemics.