• Sweden edition
 

Boyfriend blames ADHD for genital tattoo abuse

Published: 05 May 2009 10:43 GMT+02:00
Updated: 05 May 2009 10:43 GMT+02:00

The 25-year-old man from Umeå in northern Sweden is accused of assaulting his girlfriend over a period of five years and has been charged on 17 counts of aggravated assault.

There is substantial witness testimony against the man who has admitted in part to the allegations against him, according to local newspaper Västerbottens Folkblad.

In his defence the 25-year-old has claimed that suffering from the condition ADHD - attention deficit/hyperactivity disorder - resulted in him becoming angry at minor incidents which in turn caused him to turn violent.

The man is accused of punching his girlfriend on several occasions between 2004 until February 2009 when the woman left him.

He is also accused of assaulting her with a fork and re-opening the head wound as it began to heal.

The scale of his abuse even extended to forcing her to submit to a tattoo on her sexual organs - of his name and personal identification number.

He is also accused of forcing her to consume his medicine to ensure that she kept him company during the time that he was awake.

The woman finally decided to leave the man in mid-February 2009 when she suffered nerve and muscle damage in her legs after having been attacked with an axe.

The Local (news@thelocal.se)

Your comments about this article

13:16 May 5, 2009 by peropaco
Modern day branding. They are both equally demented.
14:08 May 5, 2009 by Inletwatcher
Umm the tatoo did not make her leave? Guess it took the axe to get it across to her. Shame on her buddies for not helping more, IF she would have let them.
15:16 May 5, 2009 by dtes
shame on everyone involved but particularly this scumbag who apparently wants to blame other things for his actions as is so common with swedes, and the courts will probably fine him and send him on his way to do it again.
15:34 May 5, 2009 by Harding00
I don't even think he'll get a fine, let a lone jail time. Because of course, the Swedish courts won't be able to "prove" that she didn't want the tattoo, or of course being hit with an axe. I'll be surprised if her testimony and the physical evidence is enough. As far as her staying with him through it all, well, to an outsider it seems obvious to leave, but when someone is in that situation, mentally and physically abused, it is hard to leave. Threats of more violence, death, or the simple thing called Stockholm Syndrome (when a captor, or in this case here psychotic boyfriend, basically brainwashes her), can keep a person from leaving their abuser.
16:22 May 5, 2009 by powerofknowledge
ok allways women pays much in western countries, this is because of the women rights and liberation, this is , i think, the women imprisonment, no marriage no ethical commitments towards women, no respection for women, probably we should see again at what we do and what we think and believe, who respect women much we in the west or others,,??

probabley the court will say that she made the tatto very long time ago and by her will coz they will ask the shop for instance she made, and may be he will pay something or not, but he will be FREE to do anything ,

and

SHE will pay (ok she already paid much and suffered for years) for the rest of her life making her afraid of everything called MAN and everytime see at the tatoo.
16:42 May 5, 2009 by Kieruk
Maybe I am being a bit obtuse...but if he has ADHD how did he have the patience to sit there and tatoo all of this on her? Surely that would have taken massive amounts of concentration and attention to detail?
17:21 May 5, 2009 by Miss Kitten
It's a very typical reaction from an abuser.

Of course it's never ever their fault, and they always seem come up with excuses to explain or justify their behavior. It's not that he's a self-absorbed, controlling, abusive prick. It's just that he's hungry / had too much to drink / not enough protein / not gotten enough sleep / slept too much / not showered / watched too much TV / obeying the mind-control ray the government is shooting into his brain, etc. etc.
17:27 May 5, 2009 by Princess P
Or the age old chestnut, it's her fault because she knew which buttons to push to wind him up.
17:44 May 5, 2009 by High Priestess Kang - Slut
:shakes head in disgust:

Is it just me or are some the comments blaming the poor woman/vicitm?
17:50 May 5, 2009 by Paulo +fab muscular than Jonnhy
Not yet, until there's more solid evidences she was also raped, physically assaulted and victim of domestic violence.
18:12 May 5, 2009 by freethinker
I also would like to know how he can use the ADHD defense since it obviously takes concentration to tatoo someone let alone on their genitals.

Are Swedish Courts really that bad as to let someone go if the Court feels it can't prove someone the victem did not want the tatoo?

Hmmm.. there are sometmes situations kind of simular to this in the U.S. There are women who will not call the police, and if they do will not press charges. Women ...anyone subjected to abuse would be wise to press charges, so an official paper trail documenting everything created. Once there's a patern of behavior on record it'll make it alot easier, also at 1st sign of abuse it's best to get a restraining order. Hmm... Does Sweden have restraining orders or an equivalent?
18:15 May 5, 2009 by Princess P
I find it a bit odd that The Local has focused on the tattooing part. Isn't the being attacked with an axe a slighty bigger issue?
18:25 May 5, 2009 by freethinker
Hmmm... then again I can see a Court's dilema. Is it right to convict someone on just one persons testamony? Lets say he did not confess, I know this is an emotional issue as well, and I detest abusers, rapists, and what not. Still there should be evidence that a crime was indeed commited.I was not there, and can't say I definatively know what happened, I stress that people who are being abused, or have been to please inform the needed authoorities right a.s.a.p. get a restraining order, and do whatever is needed to get a paper trail started. By doing so you not only protect yourselves; you'll also be helping to protect someone else.

By the way, he did confess. From reading other posts here I infer that Sedeish Courts are inclined to let people walk. He confessed, so how could they think of just letting that animal go? Are things really that bad in Sweden?
18:29 May 5, 2009 by freethinker
oops mispelled Swedish....I appologize for that. Does this forem have an edit feature that can be used after I post? I'm not the best of typists, and often hit the wrong key, or forget one.
18:38 May 5, 2009 by High Priestess Kang - Slut
I think you can make edits for only a few minutes after you post something. Dictator Bob took the luxury of the, "edit" button away from us.
18:39 May 5, 2009 by Miss Kitten
Right after you post you should be able to see an 'edit' button right underneath your post, right next to the 'quote' button. It's there for a limited amount of time, though.
18:49 May 5, 2009 by freethinker
Thanks for the info.
19:03 May 5, 2009 by DidiE
RE reporting abuse immediately to police. While this suggestion sounds more or less like common sense, if you live with someone who is in complete control of your finances and resources, and you know dang well this person is going to hurt not only you but your kids as soon as the cops leave, then it certainly makes sense NOT to report.

There is a Swedish word I like very much- civilkurage. It's about having the responsibility to confront behaviour that is abusive and or illegal, about have the nachos to pick up the phone and call the police if a law is being broke, or someone victimized. I have never seen an example of overtly abusive behaviour ocurring here in front of my eyes, but I have no doubt that if it were to happen, a million cell phones would be dialled right away. (Swedes are all issued cells at birth.) Wow- now that I think about it, I have seen zillions and zillions of really inebriated people on the streets here, but I have NEVER seen anyone hit anyone else, and it is rare to be present in a large crowd situation and hear anyone raise their voices in a threatening manner.
19:38 May 5, 2009 by freethinker
Didi E in that case does Sweden make allowances for self defense? A baseball bat can do wonders. here in the States we have a saying....better to be judged by 12 than carried by 6.

Civilkurage, an interesting word. I like it.

Well then once the Cops arrive will they not arrest the abuser if physical evidence is present indicating an asualt has taken place?

From what've I've read Sweden has alot of social programns. Is there anything in place to help someone trying to get out from an abusive enviroment to get situated elsewhere? Also to not report abuse only will encourage the abuser. Such people will take it as having been given permission to abuse if nothing is done.
19:48 May 5, 2009 by freethinker
Powerofknowledge, wonmen in the West have it better than woman in other parts of the World. In Oriental Societies women have fewer rights, and in the Arabian Countries fewer still.

I stress responicibility. If abused whether someone is male of female call the authorities. Use every legal tool they suggest to deal with an abuser. Call friends and relatives because they may be able to help with a place to stay while someone is trying to restart from having been in an abusive situation
20:24 May 5, 2009 by DidiE
I am an American. Born with a shotgun in one hand, and a porno mag in the other, and a bag of greasy french fries on my lap. Just kidding about that- I really am American, but felt like playing up the stereotypes for a bit, only because most people's thinking around the issues of male priviledge and abuse are usually stereotyped, as well. As I've tried to explain, and have obviously not done very well, the dynamics of a family situation where males feel free to conduct ongoing patterns of victimisation and abuse are far too complex to expect that victims will be able to just make a phone call. I am not in the least knowledgable about Swedish law regarding self-defence, but can assure you that in most cases of Intimate Partner Violence, there is a clear pattern where the abuser is far more likely to escalate his or her behaviour, rather than the victim doing so. So suggesting that someone swing a baseball bat in her or his abuser's face is probably not the best solution.
21:09 May 5, 2009 by Braderunner Rennuredarb
Is this woman to blame for getting tattooed or beaten? No.

Should she have left him the moment he laid a hand on her? Yes.

Should this guy be punished severely? Yes, ADHD is not an excuse.
21:32 May 5, 2009 by Greg in Canada
It says he assaulted her 17 times over a five year period - and she still stayed with this guy. WTF?? Why didn't she leave him a long time ago - and stay far away from the creep?

It was obviously some sort of a sado-masochistic relationship between them.
21:33 May 5, 2009 by Harding00
As far as him confessing, if I understand Swedish law, then the confession is only enough in court (as evidence), there is no such thing as plea-bargaining like in the States. So basically even if he confesses he still goes to court and can be found not guilty (often times on a technicality that might not exist if they could plea bargain). And even if he is found guilty what kind of sentence will he get. A few months in a mental institution, or will the punishment just be a prescription for his ADHD?

But going back to the technicality part of the law, back in January there was a case of a guy filming his 14 year old stepdaughter in the shower and he was found guilty, but the Supreme Court found him not guilty because videotaping someone without their consent is not a crime in Sweden. The case is supposedly going to the European Court of Human Rights, but I have not heard anything about it since. Here is a link to that article:

http://www.thelocal.se/17124/20090123/
21:35 May 5, 2009 by Harding00
A few months in a mental institution, or will the punishment just be a prescription for his ADHD?

But going back to the technicality part of the law, back in January there was a case of a guy filming his 14 year old stepdaughter in the shower and he was found guilty, but the Supreme Court found him not guilty because videotaping someone without their consent is not a crime in Sweden. The case is supposedly going to the European Court of Human Rights, but I have not heard anything about it since. Here is a link to that article:

http://www.thelocal.se/17124/20090123/
22:27 May 5, 2009 by DidiE
I'm curious. Where exactly should a woman who has just been beaten go? Particularly if she is undereducated, barely making enough money to support herself, and has kids to boot? Or if she's been raised to believe that male privilege, and beating, is an expected part of marriage?

I know the easy answer here- well, I would never put up with it, the first time he back handed me I'd get a gun and let him know who's boss, she should just call the cops, bla bla bla. If you're not the one getting back handed, it is really easy to pass judgement. The feelings of love, dependancy and fear are so complex for most victims that they end up truly believing it's THEIR fault he hits. Simply saying, well, make a phone call, is not adequate unless there is a complete support system in place that will continue to shield the victim from her abuser indefinitely.

By the way, many of you are probably familiar with the often quoted statistic that the most dangerous period for women, in terms of risk of murder or serious physical harm, is in the period immediately after they leave an abuser. I really admire Sweden's policy of moving women and children at risk for such harm to new places, with new identities. I'm sure it has saved many lives.
22:35 May 5, 2009 by Inletwatcher
Its hard to get away. Its scary to pack all your things in 30 minutes and bug out whial he is at work, for you know if he comes home early and catches you, you are wishing you were dead. Worse even by 10,000% is worrying for your children if the threats against them will be carried out if you don't do as you are told. You lie to protect him as you love him, perhaps for you never really were shown unconditional love, or had the gift of love from Daddy/father-figure. Its impossible to really take in love, if you can't love yourself. I believe that anyways.

I am happy she did get out, sorry for her scars on the outside, but I know the ones on the inside that no one can see are far deeper and infected than can be imagined. Hopefully she will search out for herself find others who survived perhaps and talk, scream, cry, laugh, hug and heal.

Inletwatcher
00:11 May 6, 2009 by Greg in Canada
What do you mean where should a woman who has been beaten go? How about to the police for a start?

Here in Canada we have a lot of social services, both government and private for this sort of thing.

In Afghanistan it must different, but I'm sure in Sweden you must have similar resources available for abused women.
00:27 May 6, 2009 by 7
did you read DidiE's post? your questions are addressed rather well in it.
00:46 May 6, 2009 by Miss Kitten
If only "just" leaving were that easy. Abusers always heap more mental and psychological abuse on their victims than actual physical abuse. This shreds any remaining self-esteem they have. They lose hope and believe that this is just the way their life is, and this is the best they deserve and can ever hope to get.

In the ten years I lived with my ex, he physically assaulted on two or three occasions. He pushed me across the room because he was angry that I was out with friends when he got home from work, and he once threw a glass of beer in my face as "punishment" for saying no to sex. Most of the time however, he was "merely" psychologically abusive. My entire life revolved around his emotions. If I didn't behave the way he wanted, dress the way he wanted, do what he wanted, etc., etc., then I'd be subjected to a stream of abuse. I had no self esteem at all, was depressed, and my family and friends wouldn't come to visit me because they hated him so much.

I kept telling myself that eventually he'd change, that if I were patient enough and good enough, that eventually he'd become a good person and realize how truly important I was to him. He'd finally give me his unconditional love and devotion. It never happened though, and it took years for me to get pissed off enough and build my self esteem up enough in order to leave him.

What I learned from that experience is that abusers never ever change. If they don't love and respect you now then they never will. And yeah, even smart women can be stupid.
01:31 May 6, 2009 by Greg in Canada
Miss Kitten, I realize it's not that easy to simply leave a bad realtionship for women who have been abused. I've seen this first hand as part of my old job that was related to social services. And I agree that psychological abuse is harder on them than physical abuse. It's even tougher for women in rural areas or from some new immigrant ethnic groups.

Our rural areas in Canada are really "rural" and very isolated compared to Sweden due to a our population/land mass ratio. It's tough to provide social services for abused women in these areas. We also do have new immigrants coming from cultures that are very male dominated. There was a Muslim "honour killing" in Toronto last year where a father murdered his daughter because he thought she was becoming too westernized.

Unfortunately, there are no simple answers, but in this case where she was abused for five years and stayed, you have to wonder what's wrong with her..
06:14 May 6, 2009 by freethinker
This'll probably never happen, yet one solution would be to take abusers, rapists, child molestors, hmmm...I'll even add murderers to this one, and simply have them castrated that way they'll never have the balls to do that ever again. Then let them sit in a prison cell for a few months, so it sinks in they are no longer a man, and then they get executed. It may not end all such crime, but will severely reduce it. Another option is simply to exile people who cannot live in civilized society. Personally I would prefer the exiling. Just in case someone is actually proven inocent later. The 1st option is a rather final one.
07:14 May 6, 2009 by Princess P
Quite frankly I'm gobsmacked that anyone would apportion blame to an abused woman, and that coming from someone who claims to have seen it first hand while working for social services. With attitudes like that it's easy to see why women don't come forward and why they try to hide it.

I stayed in an extremely violent and abusive relationship for 4 years, which must make you wonder what was wrong with me. Funny that. I thought he was the one who was in the wrong.
07:32 May 6, 2009 by freethinker
Pricess P, he was totally in the wrong. The cold hard fact is that you were lucky to survive. Many people get killed by their abusers. It's about life and death, and I would prefer victems of abuse survive. The only way to end abuse is to do something about it. Get help from authorites, or self defense. Doing nothing and just taking it will probably result in a victems death. Glossing over abuse will do no good. Ignoring it is not going to help. This is a serious issue and is no game.

I'm glad you got out. However you did I salute you.
07:52 May 6, 2009 by freethinker
Also I think we've gotten off track abit. The topic here is about that creature who abused and tatoed the woman. he marked her in a most vicious way . It had absolutlely no regard for her. If Swedish Laws do not offer punishment appropriate to these crimes I would hope that all citizens of Sweden would think about this and demand that justice fit the nature of the crime.

I called that thing a creature because I can't call it an animal. Even animals know better. Animals are benificial to us. they act as eyes for the blind. They help resue workers all over the world. I also refered to the creature as an it, because no person worthy of the term "man" would do such a thing.
08:27 May 6, 2009 by DidiE
But it's not really off-track, is it? Many posters wondered what was wrong with HER. No matter how horrific abuse is, the question always comes up- what did SHE do to promote this? Why didn't SHE call the cops, etc.

People who have been in abusive relationships, and I can tell from the responses here that it's been more than three of us, have it drilled into their heads by the perpetrator from the first assault that it is the woman's fault. When you combine that ongoing brainwashing with societal attitudes like the ones posted here---what took her so long, I'd have called immediately, etc.--you can understand why victims are reluctant to say anything at all.

Anyway, if you want a site that stays on track, FT, check out this link

Swedish Railroad

That's about as linear as you'll get in this orbit.
08:32 May 6, 2009 by Princess P
I also don't think people who have never experienced it realise that it is seldom a case of a beating out of nowhere. It's a very slow, gradual build up, sometimes over years, which whittles away your ability to see what is really going on. I liken it to the frog experiment.

Apparantly, if you drop a frog into a pan of boiling water it will immediately jump out. If you put a frog in a pan of cold water and gradually raise the temperature it will stay there till it dies.
08:38 May 6, 2009 by freethinker
lol Swedish Railroad..lol that's a good one DiDi E.
09:01 May 6, 2009 by freethinker
Princess P that's an interesting analogy, and probably an accurate one. It still does not change that an abuser will only escalate and not stop. They remind me of a law of motion...an object will remain in motion until opposed by an equal opposable force. I in no way intend to sound unsympathetic. It's just that unless stopped an abuser will sooner or later kill their victem, and that is my concern here. I worry about those people who are now being victemized, and those who may be in the future.

Hmmm... I was thinking, yes a dangerous thing I know lol Can't that moron be tried for a crime against humanity? I wonder if the woman can get justice through the EU court? If Sweden can't give justice perhaps the EU courts can try that creature for crimes against humanity? I read in a previous article that a couple had thier sat. dish taken by a Swedish housing authority, and they later went to the EU Court and received a ruling in their favor? It may be worth a shot.
09:12 May 6, 2009 by DidiE
Not to be the Voice for all Oppressed Women Everywhere today, but it's not true that violence by a perpetrator will simply escalate. Many many perpetrators have a carefully chosen system by which they establish their domínance in a relationship. A system of giving and withholding affection and material goods, interspersed with sporadic assaults, will break down the strongest person. It's the way we are all hard wired, unfortunately. It's not necessary to kill someone- in fact,it's counter intuitive. Then the perp has to start building up another abusive relationship, which takes time and deprives him of the benefits of the first one.

This is actually a very well known technique. There are a number of new research articles describing the conscious use of 'just enough' violence to maintain male privilege in abusive relationships. You sound like a nice guy, FT, so I hope you don't mind if I suggest that you may not know as much about the dynamics of Intimate Partner Violence as you need to, if this is truly a subject you're interested in. If so, you might want to review some of the recent abstracts published in PubMed or Medline.
09:17 May 6, 2009 by Princess P
I think the problem is that the system is often set up so that the opposing force has to be the woman involved. This will not work as the victim is way too vulnerable. More advanced systems have recognised this and are taking steps to even it out. For example, some places have the state as the accuser not the victim.

For myself the change came with a change of town and a change of police station. Same force, different officers and very different attitude. The first was of a 'here we go again, domestic, she'll just go back, can't be bothered to waste our time' school of thought. The second lot went to the 'this is not acceptable, we will do everything we can, no matter how many times we get called' school.

The result being that they won my trust, which meant I could get out. How could I leave before when I knew he would come after me? I would be on my own and in a far worse situation. The new guys however turned up every single time, within seconds of me putting the phone down. Funny how a raging bully, trying to kick a door down to get to a cowering woman, can instantly turn it off when faced with 2 policemen build like brick s***houses.
10:51 May 6, 2009 by Miss Kitten
Part of the abuser's strategy of maintaining exclusive control over his victim is isolating her from her support network. He dictates who she can and cannot friends with, and insists she break off friendships with anyone he believes could be a threat to the relationship. If she refuses then he'll do whatever it takes: lie, manipulate, threaten, etc., to sabotage the friendship. I'm still dealing with the repercussions of some of the things my ex did behind my back.
12:59 May 6, 2009 by dtes
im glad to see a happy little lynch mob has formed, how about us having a meet up and taking it over to this morons house and giving him the boot, maybe tattoo our names on his pussy?
13:02 May 6, 2009 by Princess P
How did you manage to draw that conclusion?
13:02 May 6, 2009 by DidiE
Wow. That has to be the only logical solution on the planet, obviously, dtes.

Just wanted to respond before you get deleted. Does anyone else object to the firm hand of editorial discretion in this one specific instance?
13:04 May 6, 2009 by Kieruk
Not one bit..EB, do your thang! (but don't make my body sing please...)
13:09 May 6, 2009 by Inletwatcher
Oh! I missed this one. Hummm mighty interesting. Bet he moves out of his town after he gets off scott free. I want to change my name to have more characters.

Inletwatcher
13:24 May 6, 2009 by ameribrit
For Greg in Canada.

I have worked in Emergency Medicine both in Canada and the US. I am now working to do the same here in Sweden.

#1 Greg, you are a tool!

#2 The same problems are prevalent in Canada, the US and obviously here in Sweden.

The "why didn't she just leave" argument has been explained for decades now. We know why abused people don't leave their abusers.

As for your claim that you worked in a job "related" to social services, I can only assume that you were a cleaner of toilets in the local welfare office or something because it sure as hell wasn't in any casework related field.
15:32 May 6, 2009 by thevarmet
Wow, Seems like a pretty harsh comment to Greg. Not sure what he said to deserve such a fine response from " ameribrit".

It will be interesting to see how this case develops. The sad truth is there is more then likely many cases of similar nature that are not even known about.
21:54 May 6, 2009 by Englishteacher
I agree with thevarment, that was a pretty harsh comment from ameribrit for Greg. By the way, there's nothing wrong with 'cleaning toilets' or garbage collecting. Both are honest work and should never be used to denigrate others.
22:14 May 6, 2009 by Greg in Canada
Well thanks for the kind words ameribrit. You sure are classy (not).

My original background was also in healthcare, but I now have my own business in an unrelated field.

I'm well aware of the psychology theory behind abusers and the abused, but there is a certain point when you do have to wonder why they don't leave. I have seen women leave abusive relationships and then what do they do - find another boyfriend who is just as abusive.

It's a strange world we live in.
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