A man who subjected his ex girlfriend to months of harassment, including sending suicide threats, bombarding her with unwanted calls and hacking her emails and social media accounts, was ordered to stay away from the town his ex girlfriend lives in and do 160 hours of unpaid work.

The media immediately labelled him “lovestruck” and “spurned lover” (more than once) because of course we should feel sympathy for a man who stalks a woman to the point where she says she “crumbles” when she gets home at night.

He was “hurt” in the headline. She was the “ex girlfriend” and thereby implicitly the cause of his hurt. There’s a strong smell of victim blaming in it and another reinforcement of the notion that stalking is an expression of love. It isn’t. It is a serious and frightening criminal act.

FixedIt is an ongoing project to push back against the media’s constant erasure of violent men and blaming of innocent victims. If you would like to help fund it – even $5 a month makes a big difference – please consider becoming a Patron

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