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2010-08-02

Kuimba’e Aty fights for men’s rights in Paraguay

By Hugo Barrios for Infosurhoy.com—02/08/2010

NGO offers psychological counseling and legal aid to male victims of domestic violence.

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Christian Paniagua is one of the founders of Kuimba’e Aty, an organization that supports men’s rights in Paraguay. (Marta Escurra for Infosurhoy.com)

Christian Paniagua is one of the founders of Kuimba’e Aty, an organization that supports men’s rights in Paraguay. (Marta Escurra for Infosurhoy.com)

ASUNCIÓN, Paraguay – Gregorio Zárate was ready to jump to his death.

Three months ago, he was ready to jump off a 10-story building because he felt he had been betrayed. Months earlier he learned that his wife had been cheating on him with his best friend and that they both had fled the country, taking his daughter with them.

But Christian Paniagua crossed Zárate’s path and saved his life.

“I went up to the terrace [of the building] and told him that I knew what he was feeling, because the same thing had happened to me, my wife had also been unfaithful,” said Paniagua, founder and president of the nonprofit organization Kuimba’e Aty (group of men in Guaraní), dedicated to defending men’s rights. “They took his daughter and the other [man] claimed her as his own. He was ready to jump off the building and it took more than six hours to convince him not to do it.”

Paniagua founded the organization in Luque in 2007 after finding out about his wife’s adultery. From then on, he decided he needed to create an institution, a “union of men that fights for the equality of men’s rights before women.”

Kuimba’e Aty is not an organization based on sexist principles. It’s a group of “men united against abuse by women,” Paniagua said.

“My former wife travelled to Argentina and I kept my three children,” said Paniagua. “In the beginning she went there to work and help the family, but she entered into a relationship with another man and left us.”

“At that moment I felt hopeless, I found myself in a country that had no public or private institutions that could help me, since I had been left alone with three children,” Paniagua said. “There was no place to assist men in these cases, but there was for women. I was looking for at least psychological help, but I didn’t find it anywhere.”

Kuimba’e Aty has been helping approximately 3,000 men who have reported being victims of adultery, physical abuse, psychological torture and abandonment.

“Those who seek help at Kuimba’e Aty find spiritual and psychological help and legal aid, in the case of wives intending to illegitimately remove or hide the children from the male,” Paniagua said.

In the beginning, the group was the target of jokes by other men, Paniagua said.

“What started out as a target of jokes by some men soon turned into a serious, nationwide matter, [involving] cases from every region of the country,” he said.

Delio Peralta, an entrepreneur in the restaurant industry, is one of the thousands of men who sought help at Kuimba’e Aty after feeling hopeless because of his wife’s infidelity.

“If I hadn’t sought help at Kuimba’e Aty, I would have done something crazy,” said Peralta. “I found out my wife had been unfaithful to me, I found her [with her lover]. After that, they kept our two children.”

Peralta said that after that moment he and his wife waged a legal battle.

“A restraining order determined that I could not go near the house or see my children,” Peralta said. “She reported that I supposedly mistreated her, which is not true.”

Thanks to Kuimba’e Aty, Peralta found emotional support and legal help to face the situation.

“I needed psychological help, all of this affected me quite a lot, I went through some terrible times,” Peralta said. “I had, and I still have, to put up with her living with him and with my children. Now, with the help of Kuimba’e Aty, we are in litigation so that I can get my children back.”

Peralta said that after adultery is committed and the separation begins, there is no reason to grieve alone now that Paraguayan men have an organization where they can find the support they need to move on.

“I would suggest to those who are going through a situation such as mine to go to Kuimba’e Aty,” Peralta said. “I am not embarrassed for having gone to them. On the contrary, I am proud of it.”

Marino López, one of the six attorneys who offer legal advice at Kuimba’e Aty, said they are now drafting a bill to establish a legal basis for men’s rights with respect to women.

“There are many men who are mistreated both physically and emotionally in our society, there is no reason to hide it or to be ashamed,” López said. “My job is to act as a mediator between the two parties, to try to find a solution.”

López maintains that what they hope to do is to defend men’s rights, and with the bill they are drafting they want to “level the field” in the current Law 1600, which stipulates penal sanctions in cases of domestic violence in which the male is seen as the perpetrator.

“The Law 1600 that exists in Paraguay referring to cases of domestic violence and the rights of the family is meant to help … women,” López said. “But there is no specific law that defends the rights of men. That is what we hope to achieve if the bill we want to introduce in Congress is approved.”

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29 Comments

  1. Jorge Amado 07/20/2014

    Hi, I need help urgently. I can't deal with this situation anymore. My name is Jorge

  2. victor 09/11/2013

    I need a number to get in touch with them I have been evicted 0961856527

  3. cristian 01/29/2013

    I need to know the telephone number for Kuimba´e aty or its email address if you could help me

  4. Juan Manuel 01/01/2013

    Why is it that the justice system favours women with regard to providing food and the custody of children? Men who are separated live under the threat of being sued and threats of not seeing their children because of such favouritism toward women by the justice system! Is it true that a father must cover 100% of a child’s support even though the mother also works?

  5. sandra caceres 11/07/2012

    Good day, I urgently need a number to get in contact with you, my brother has problems with his daughter's mother, I need your help please, I hope for a response as soon as possible thank you

  6. Ricardo 10/13/2012

    I am not locating you to make my report, I need you if you really exist! I have a very serious problem, I hope you contact me!!!

  7. concepcion 09/11/2012

    What I wonder is that eight years ago I was with a woman, and supposedly we have a daughter she disappeared and came back when I entered into a relationship and my wife was pregnant but lost the baby, the little girl was 4 years old when she reappeared, and now there's lots of trouble my wife is pregnant again I have been with her now for 7 years and we have a 2 year old son this is going to be our second child, and I want to know what I can do to find out if she is my daughter because I don't have any money now I don't have work and the other woman is pressuring me for my unemployment... what can I do???

  8. cristian benitez 09/05/2012

    I have a very special case !!! And I need the number to the organization!! To be able to get in touch

  9. Ernesto Talavera Rivas 06/29/2012

    I need assistance because of my wife's accusation of domestic violence... where I state that I am innocent

  10. Eugenio Gonzalez 05/31/2012

    I got married when I was 18 years old, I was studying Medicine, three months later we had a baby girl, she only liked to party, she didn't let me study, I had to give up my career, my father was helping us but we split and the baby stayed with her. I bring her over every weekend, now I do need to separate from her because my current partner has been with me for 6 years and if I don't fix things soon, she'll leave and I couldn't bear that. Please I would be grateful for any suggestions from you and I am at great risk of falling deeply under which could lead me to killing myself. I am most grateful to you, please send me a telephone number or address. Eugenio Gonzalez.

  11. Celestino sosa 02/27/2012

    Hi, I would like to know whether you can help me. A few years ago, I lived with someone and we had a child together. Then a little while ago my live-in girlfriend traveled to a city in Argentina "supposedly" to "help her little brother", who had to have heart surgery. She would go down and come back, that's how things went on for a long time, and then one day she called me saying that she didn't love me anymore and that she was involved with someone else, my son has been with me for the past year, since she called me, and she never called again. I want to know if you can help me because they don't pay too much attention to me in CODENI, and all I did was abandon the house, and I don't know if that is enough to protect me and my son?

  12. María Raquelina Insaurralde de Girett 02/23/2012

    WHAT CAN BE DONE IN A CASE WHERE WOMAN HAS LEFT HER HUSBAND, AND THEY HAVE A 2 YEAR OLD CHILD. THE FATHER HAD VISITATION RIGHTS AT HIS HOUSE... BUT NOW THAT HE'S SHOWING SYMPTOMS OF STUTTERING, THE JUDGE HAS RESTRICTED VISITATION. THE FATHER CAN VISIT HIM ON SUNDAYS FOR ONE HOUR, ALONE, WITHOUT THE CHILD'S PATERNAL GRANDMOTHER, WHO HAS TAKEN CARE OF THE CHILD SINCE HE WAS BORN...THIS IS WHAT HAS HAPPENED TO MY NEPHEW... WHAT CAN BE DONE?

  13. paniagua 02/09/2012

    Hi what do I do when a woman has made me sacrifice almost all of my life when I met her I was 16 years old and she was 24 since she met me she has never gone back to work because she was a house maid and earned very little the years went by I brought up her daughter she was a single mother her daughter is now 24 years old we had children ourselves we lived well I bought a house the comforts I owed a lot I suffered a lot to pay for all the comforts for the poor one thank God we drank I don't deny one day because I didn't buy her a beer because I didn't have any more money she was already drunk we fought the next day I couldn't get in there was already a order by the Secretariat of Women and I was left with nothing when she wants I see my children and many more problems...it's unfair isn't it...I need help SOS...

  14. christian paniagua 02/05/2012

    To contact Kuimba'e Aty, please call 0982963768

  15. omar 01/11/2012

    Hi, first you have to live in reality and then... look for help I'm married, I had a son two years ago, one day I discovered that my wife had been unfaithful to me since our wedding day, with her ex boyfriend, a guy who's married, that's not the worst of it, now she's expecting HIS child. I would like file suit against my wife to keep my son with the divorce in hand and start a new life. Your help and comments will be very welcome thank you...

  16. celia segovia 09/05/2011

    I am in my fourth year of Social Worker studies at the Universidad Nacional del Pilar. My point is that I have to start preparing my thesis and I chose the subject of interfamily violence against men they asked me to support my subject well so they could accept it I would like to contact members of the Kuimba'e Aty group for them to provide me with information important what are important on my subject and the names of books that discuss about violence against men.

  17. pablo rosano 08/22/2011

    I want to know whether you have a contacts where I can get a paternity (D.N.A.) test done. Thank you very much, sorry to bother you.

  18. Luis Lauro Gonzalez 07/21/2011

    I am a victim of domestic violence and I need, please, for someone to tell me how to contact this organization, where can I go or a telephone number with which I can communicate, I am from the interior of the country but right now I am in the capital. Thank you Cell phone contact number: 0981685862

  19. oscar 07/07/2011

    Hello, gentlemen I have a small problem you might be able to help me solve what I need is how to personally restrict their telephones the address of the place I will be very grateful if you can respond to me by email which is the same Oscar Medina

  20. Luis Roman 06/28/2011

    I completely support the foundation since it defends the rights of men One reaps what one sows that is my philosophy of life now, because as a 36 year old I am aware of all my mistakes and I have decided to make amends first I ask forgiveness from all the women keeping in mind my mother, sister and my daughters. I have not known how to be either a partner or a father and that conflict has led me to be an unstable person. I was married young I had a son I got separated and out of fear of loneliness and selfishness I soon got involved again with whom I have a 9 year old daughter the relationship didn't last very long, because of incompatibility of personalities. Which drove me to another separation. I acknowledge that I behaved poorly with that woman by not being sincere. That is why I decided to leave the business and everything she is entitled to have to my daughter since I was unable to offer her a home. Since then she has made my life miserable She sued me I have an arrest warrant on me for noncompliance. Every single time I had work I gave her what I had but now that I don't have i.d. because it expired I couldn't renew it because I have that arrest warrant on me I need a lawyer but my financial situation keeps me from paying because she constantly threatens me and punishes me by not allowing me to see my daughter I said to her if she doesn't help me to resolve this arrest warrant I will not be able to comply that way with the loan since it has risen to four million and she demands that I give her 300 a month. I wonder how one can be a good father if the law is unjust to both sexes that is why I request help I am not irresponsible to the contrary I will carry them out I have a new trial on June 13 and I hope deep in my heart that you will help me.

  21. nancy coronel 05/26/2011

    Hello to all, I would like to know how to get help for a cousin of mine who out of desperation left home he didn't file for abandonment of domicile when he came to Argentina, since he was suffering from psychological and sometimes physical violence, what are his rights what does she have against him or what is his responsibility now that his wife has filed against him in Cuña Aty or CODENI, even though he sends her money every week and is constantly in contact with his family and even so he is threatened by the woman if he refuses to get back together with her... Could you help me please, it is urgent... this is my email address, thank you in advance!

  22. Cynthia 02/14/2011

    Hi! I would like to know if Kuimba´e Aty knows of any organization for parents who are separated. It's for a research project and up until now here in Paraguay I haven't found any groups...I would be very grateful if you could inform me! Regards!

  23. Javier Alfonso 01/10/2011

    My regards to all, to thank you for creating this initiative, since all of the rights of the "family" in every case tend toward the women, which is not very justifiable. I was a victim of my wife's infidelity, which didn't affect me very much, but what did affect me was her attempt at using my children as a shield to manipulate me psychologically and emotionally.

  24. H.M.G 12/14/2010

    The "famous" CRISTIAN PANIAGUA is a liar... he hits his wife and uses his young children...a minor should not work...his ex wife left him because of domestic abuse and not because of what he said....

  25. José Afonso 12/14/2010

    Congratulations for this brilliant work developed for the victims of this kind of oppression, tyranny, known as Social Justice widespread in all nations. Hopefully such work will be developed here in Brazil too. Unfortunately here this same type of paternalism from the Government and hidden interests related to the exaggerated and unilateral protection of women while the men and indirectly their sons are left to their own devices. And consequently, women are suffering from its collateral effect, because they end up suffering also. Read this text from the Sacred Scriptures: (Ecclesiastes 4.1)\"Then I returned and saw all the oppressions that are done under the sun, and behold, the tears of such as were oppressed, and they had no comforter, and on the side of their oppressors there was power, but they had no comforter.\"

  26. VICTOR 12/01/2010

    PLEASE WRITE THE TELEPHONE NUMBER WE CAN USE TO REACH KUIBA'E ATY AND THE ADDRESS TO THE OFFICE TOO!!! IF YOU DON'T WE'LL BE BACK AT SQUARE ONE!!! We men suffer for our children!!!

  27. carlos rojas 11/03/2010

    I am desperate because about 2 months ago they took my daughter away from me and her mother won't let me see her and I don't know where to turn for help, could you help me?

  28. patxo 08/27/2010

    I send encouragement from Spain. This is a battle raging in many countries, including mine. At the moment I am happily married but I understand this could happen to anyone.

  29. Gerardo Moreno 08/02/2010

    This shows something real, which is not talked about in Latin countries, because of a supposed male chauvinistic superiority in Latin societies. It is good to bring out that hidden face of society, in the experience of people who suffer from this situation, which is definitely another kind of violence and intolerance. And it is to be stressed, that these fathers deserve every possible consideration and respect. Excellent.

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