“I know you will feel shameful, guilty, in denial and embarrassed about attending meetings. If you can just sit with those feelings and make yourself go the first night. You will find it easier and interesting the more it goes on, and eye opening.”
“I believe that the MEND programme can be a difference in your life. I found support, understanding and the truth as to why I used abuse and violence towards loved ones in my life. It will not be an easy path to discover your reasoning for domestic abuse/violence. If you stay with the programme and learn from it, you can achieve your goal to become a better person.”
“It is the best thing you could ever do and in the end it will become the most important thing you will ever have done in your life. I can’t speak highy enough of the MEND programme. You certainly get out of it what you put in.”
“MEND has changed my life and has made me see things in a totally different way and understand things so much better. From the MEND programme I have become a better, more positive person who can deal with testing situations in the correct way and manner. I have a more enjoyable, trusting and rewarding relationship with my partner and am an all-round happier person.”
MEND (Men Ending Domestic Abuse) is a programme for men, who have been violent or abusive within their intimate partner relationships.
The primary aim of the programme is the safety and wellbeing of women and children.
MEND deliver the National Choices Programme to support men to end their violent or abusive behaviour and become non-violent and respectful within their intimate partner relationships.
The Programme involves one-to-one assessment and pre-group sessions followed by 25 group sessions.
MEND also provides an integrated Partner Support Service for the partners or ex-partners or the men on the programme.
Help is available and can be found from the following MEND programmes:
Apart from the physical impact of violent behaviour on your partner, the psychological and emotional impact or abuse can be as damaging or even more damaging. Your partner may feel that she is “walking on eggshells” around you.
Adults often dismiss the impact of domestic violence or abuse on children. The truth is the impact is significant and the younger the child, the greater the impact.
Have you noticed that your children have begun to display any of the following behaviours?
Violent/abusive behaviour towards your partner will also take its toll on you and may well lead to depression, anxiety and high levels of stress. So your short-term need to be in control or vent your anger or rage will have long-term repercussions for you as well as your partner and children.
A whole new generation of children, including your own sons and daughters will benefit from the choices you make now.
The primary aim of the MEND (Men Ending Domestic Violence) Programme is the safety and welfare of women and children.
However, the behaviour change programme offered to men who have been violent or abusive in their intimate partner relationships not only increases the safety of women and children but increases men’s capacity and willingness to behave in respectful and non-violent ways in their relationships.
Participation in the programme also has an impact on mental health, e.g., lessening feelings of depression, anxiety, suicidal ideation.
The programmes begin with an assessment process where a man is assessed for his suitability for the programme. If a man is accepted onto the programme he will then complete a maximum of 10 one-to-one pre-group sessions before beginning the weekly group programme.
Meetings will be held once a week and there is no cost to attend this service; however, donations are always welcome.
This service is for men who want to change their abusive behaviour and to learn how to have relationships that are based on love and trust. Meetings will be held in a non-judgmental setting for men who want to change their behaviour and improve their relationships.
Men will be encouraged to be self-aware, self-reflective and will be appropriately and constructively challenged about their abusive behaviour and supported to make changes that will keep their partners or ex-partners, their children and themselves safe.
Carlow/Kilkenny, Laois/Offaly & Kildare MEND
Wexford, Waterford & South Tipperary MEND
When you have acknowledged what is happening and although you probably feel bad about your behaviour, there is often a resistance to taking steps to get support to change this behaviour.
It is normal to feel nervous or anxious about disclosing to another person behaviour we are not proud of and would rather keep hidden.
You will probably begin to place the blame on your partner or your children because you will need to find some way to feel better about yourself.
You will find yourself thinking: “If only she didn’t nag me so much, I wouldn’t lose the head”; “she’s always pushing my buttons”; “if only the place wasn’t such a mess and the children so loud,” etc.
You will probably begin to justify your actions: “I have a short fuse”; “I just pop when the pressure gets too much”; “If I didn’t have money worries, this would never happen.”
You may promise yourself and others that it will never happen again but if you haven’t taken responsibility for your behaviour and taken steps to change that behaviour then it will happen again.
The choice is yours. Take action.
The MEND Programme offers a parallel one-to-one support service to partners or ex-partners of the men on the programme. If you are or have been in a violent/abusive relationship, here are some useful contacts:
In this two-part documentary series 'UPFRONT: Domestic Abuse' from 2017, journalist Della Kilroy looks at the situation faced by young domestic abuse survivors in Ireland and meets a young male perpetrator of abuse.