Why Does He Do That? Book Summary - Why Does He Do That? Book explained in key points
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Why Does He Do That? summary

Lundy Bancroft

Inside the Minds of Angry and Controlling Men

4.5 (226 ratings)
28 mins

Brief summary

Why Does He Do That by Lundy Bancroft is an insightful examination of abusive behavior in relationships and offers guidance for recognizing and addressing it.
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    Why Does He Do That?
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    Men can exhibit abusive behavior in multiple ways.

    When Kristen first met Maury, he seemed like the man of her dreams. He was charming, funny, smart, and, best of all, he was crazy about her.

    But after they moved in together, things started to change. Maury began to accuse Kristen of being self-centered, overweight, and lazy. He also seemed to want to have sex less often.

    Things got worse when they had a baby together. Maury’s moods would change in a flash. One moment, he’d be kind and loving; the next, he’d be cruel and unforgiving. 

    The worst part of it all? Kristen blamed herself for not living up to what Maury needed.

    The key message here is: Men can exhibit abusive behavior in multiple ways.

    Male abusers exhibit a spectrum of behaviors. Some abusers are what the author calls physical batterers. These men seek to inflict physical damage on their partner.

    This style of abuse is more common than you might think: The American Medical Association has reported that one in three women will be a victim of violence by a husband or boyfriend in her lifetime. In the United States, statistics show that two to four million women are assaulted by their partner each year.

    Then there’s emotional abuse. This includes verbal assaults, humiliation, sexual coercion, and psychological manipulation. These behaviors can be just as damaging as physical violence. In fact, many abuse survivors that the author has worked with have told him that emotional abuse caused them the greatest harm. 

    Just think of Maury. He never physically harmed Kristen. But his anger, his unstable behavior, and his cruel insults were enough to inflict real psychological damage. 

    And the damage can be substantial. Statistics show that the emotional effects of partner violence contribute to a quarter of female suicide attempts in the US. Partner abuse is also the primary cause of substance abuse in adult women. 

    Of course, the categories of physical abuse and emotional abuse aren’t entirely clean-cut. For example, physically abusive men are usually also verbally abusive to their partners. And manipulative and controlling men tend to use physical intimidation, too. 

    As a counselor, the author has worked with many abusive men. According to him, abusive behaviors often stem from the same source. Abusive men seek power; they desire control. They delight in making themselves seem superior to their partners. 

    In the following blinks, we’ll take a deeper look at how abusive thinking works. And we’ll explore the reasons why some men grow up to be abusers. 

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    What is Why Does He Do That? about?

    Why Does He Do That? (2003) reveals the psychology behind abusive men. Drawing on his experience as a counselor to male abusers, author Lundy Bancroft explains the nature of abusive thinking, the early warning signs of abuse, and the steps women can take to free themselves from an abusive relationship.

    Why Does He Do That? Review

    Why Does He Do That (2002) is an eye-opening exploration of abusive dynamics in relationships. Here's what makes this book essential:

    • It provides in-depth understanding of the mindset and behaviors of abusive partners.
    • The book offers practical advice for recognizing and addressing abusive behavior.
    • Its empowering message encourages readers to prioritize their safety and well-being.

    Equip yourself with the knowledge to identify and confront abuse by reading Why Does He Do That.

    Best quote from Why Does He Do That?

    The scars from mental cruelty are as deep as punches and slaps.

    —Lundy Bancroft
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    Who should read Why Does He Do That??

    • Anyone who feels trapped in an abusive relationship
    • Mothers considering leaving their abusive partner
    • People who suspect a friend or family member is being abused

    About the Author

    Lundy Bancroft has worked in the fields of abuse, trauma, and recovery for over 25 years. In addition to working with abusive men as a counselor, Bancroft has served as a custody evaluator and child abuse investigator. He’s also the author of five books, including When Dad Hurts Mom (2005) and The Batterer as Parent (2013), which examine the impact of domestic violence on families. 

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    Why Does He Do That? FAQs 

    What is the main message of Why Does He Do That?

    The main message of Why Does He Do That is to understand abusive behavior and learn how to recognize and address it in relationships.

    How long does it take to read Why Does He Do That?

    It takes approximately 9-11 hours to read Why Does He Do That, while the Blinkist summary can be read in just 15 minutes.

    Is Why Does He Do That a good book? Is it worth reading?

    Why Does He Do That is a valuable resource for understanding and addressing abusive behavior in relationships.

    Who is the author of Why Does He Do That?

    The author of Why Does He Do That is Lundy Bancroft.

    How many chapters are in Why Does He Do That?

    Why Does He Do That by Lundy Bancroft has 16 chapters, each focusing on different aspects of abusive behavior, its causes, and how to address it.

    How many pages are in Why Does He Do That?

    There are 432 pages in Why Does He Do That.

    When was Why Does He Do That published?

    Why Does He Do That was published in 2002.

    What to read after Why Does He Do That??

    If you're wondering what to read next after Why Does He Do That?, here are some recommendations we suggest:
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