Domestic Abuse: Terrifying Influence from Social Media


Morgan Fuerstenberg graphic

Warning: Strong topics including domestic abuse and sexual assault are included in the following.

Children are exposed to social media at a young age. With the amount of information that they absorb, there are troubling and influencing accounts that promote living a toxic lifestyle.

This toxic lifestyle includes content creators who defend domestic abuse and mask it by defining the position as an “alpha male” role. Teachers from across the country have gone to social media platforms to express their concerns about this way of thinking because they are seeing this negative behavior directed toward their students.

Andrew Tate, a social media influencer, took a hold on all social media platforms during the summer this year. Tate has been shown on every platform in two-minute clips, from podcasts to his own YouTube videos, expressing his controversial views. 

His main veiwers are young boys who are starting to show their obsession with Tate’s lifestyle, and are especially interested in his “traditional” thinking and “alpha male” lifestyle. The “alpha male” consists of being the “man of the house” and other traditional male-centric ideas.   

According to article on by Rodlyn-mae Banting, teachers around the world have been pleading with parents to look at their children’s watch history, because they are starting to see negative behavior in their classrooms. “One teacher posted on TikTok about her male sixth grader fat-shaming a female classmate and telling her, ‘She’s like every other girl in the world, and that she uses men to get money, and at least he’s a hard-working man, and that he works for his money,’” reported Banting.

Tate is also known for justifying his actions in a viral video of him beating his past girlfriend with a belt, explaining it was consensual. Tate defending this behavior shows young viewers that domestic abuse is acceptable.

According to the National Domestic Violence Hotline, “On average, more than one in three women and one in four men in the U.S. will experience rape, physical violence and/or stalking by an intimate partner … One in ten high school students has experienced physical violence from a partner in the last year alone.”

Following the COVID-19 pandemic, there has been an increase in domestic violence nationwide.

In Wisconsin, there is no law that explicitly talks about domestic abuse. This is because the term “domestic” is only referring to the relationship between the offender and the victim. The offense is classified as a battery, sexual assault, etc. Depending on the relationship between the parties, it is labeled as domestic abuse or violence.  

Children are easily influenced by what they see on social media. They are more likely to listen to and believe a person like Tate, who has an “ideal” lifestyle of fast cars and a big house.

Recently, multiple social media platforms have removed  Tate for breaking their policies. Tate has claimed his videos were taken out of context and that it is a breach of free speech.  

It benefits the new generation when social media restricts this behavior, in order to create a safer community.