1 in 3 women (30%) of women worldwide have been subjected to either physical and/or sexual abuse in their lifetime. The majority of this abuse is intimate partner violence. Have you wondered why domestic abuse victims stay? It necessary to understand when to move on from a relationship.
You can’t help someone to remove themselves from an abusive environment if you do not understand what they are going through and why they stay in the first place.
What is domestic abuse?
Domestic abuse can be defined as a pattern of behaviour in any relationship that is used to gain or maintain power and control over an intimate partner. Abuse can be physical, sexual, emotional, economic or psychological threats of actions that influence another person. Anyone can be a victim of domestic abuse. Domestic can happen to a woman of any age, race, or calibre.
Domestic abuse is a rampant occurrence in our society today. Domestic abuse is not a trivial situation and it should be dealt with using strong sanctions and punishment because domestic abuse could cost a life; it could cause emotional breakdown together with physical and psychological breakdown.
Why is domestic abuse bad?
Domestic abuse is an unfortunate occurrence for the victim. Domestic abuse is bad because it causes the victim to suffer a lot, the victim suffers physically and emotionally depending on the type of abuse.
Secondly, domestic abuse violates human rights which are essential for citizens of every country and humanity at wide.
Why does domestic abuse occur?
Domestic abuse happens when people don’t agree on a particular thing be it sex or just a random conversation. Domestic abuse could occur as a result of inferiority or superiority complex.
In the case of inferiority complex, the person inflicting the suffering or abuse on the victim feels less to the victim and if it were superiority complex the inflicter feels superior to the victim. Remember everyone is equal before the law.
Women have been taken as lesser beings in our society but that is a mediocre’s stereotype, women are just the same as men. Also, a lot of men feel above women mostly above women mostly their partners because they have a misunderstanding of what the bible says. The bible does not support domestic abuse. When the bible regards a woman as a help meet for the man, an help meet is either on par or better than the person she is rendering the help to not less than.
In addition, religion supports that wives submit to their husbands but perfect submission isn’t easy for every human because it is in every human to be on top, lead and have dominion. However, because of the physicality of a man, a slight disagreement from his wife on an issue might lead to either sexual, physical and mental abuse through insults or assaults. This is agonizingly sad.
Why do domestic abuse victims stay?
The reason why domestic abuse victims stay is not far fetched from why domestic abuse goes unreported. About 25% of the world population suffers domestic abuse but only 2.5% to 15% get reported. Why? You are about to find out.
Domestic abuse goes an unreported number of reasons and are fearful of continual abuse, embarrassment, not wanting to desert a partner, and also when there is a hope of change in the partner.
1. Fear of continual abuse
Sighting an instance, when a woman reports that she is being abused by her inflicter, the domestic abuse victim is prone to more abuse from her inflicter if she doesn’t abscond from the inflicter. This situation is psychologically damning that the victim might just decide to put up with the abuse in the long run.
2. The fear of increased intensity in the abuse
The presence of a weapon like a gun or an axe might make a victim not want to report abuse because if the abuser decides to use the weapon it could become a murder case and the victim might just console herself with the saying ”when there is life there is hope” and decide not to report.
3. Embarrassment to self and family
Embarrassment can also be a reason why domestic abuse victim stay. A domestic abuse victim might find it hard to tell her story because of emotional responses like crying, wailing or PTSD (Post Traumatic Stress Disorder), as we know we humans are characterized and swayed by emotions.
In the case of domestic abuse in the marriage, the woman might not want to report or desert her partner as this might stir up controversy between the two families in wedlock. There is also a belief that whatever happens at home stays at home this should not be the case when it is domestic abuse because domestic abuse is dangerous as it can claim lives.
4. Protecting the abuser
Some people believe that is maturity not to report abuse from their partner that is not maturity it is rather stupidity!!!. A domestic abuse victim might also be trying to protect her abuser if she sees a glimmer of hope that he might change. However, it is better to stay away until you see the expected change.
5. It seems normal
Another reason why domestic abuse victims condone the act is that domestic abuse is casual and seems normal in their marriages and society at large. According to UNICEF, “the percentage of women between the age of 15-and 49 who think that taking abused by their partner under certain circumstances is 90% in Afghanistan, 87% in Mali and 86% in Guinea”.
These numbers are unbelievable and they show you that domestic seem normal and acceptable to some people. I hope domestic abuse isn’t acceptable to you.
How domestic abuse affect victims
Domestic abuse affects victims in almost every way you could imagine. Victims can be affected physically, sexually, emotionally and psychologically. After an abuse, the victim might experience a drop in self-confidence and esteem. Domestic abuse leads people to do illegal things or take hard drugs since they feel helpless and forsaken.
A physical indentation will most likely be delivered through physical abuse. The victim might become paralysed or become a handicapped and therefore start to experience difficulty in living and carrying out day to day activities.
Sexual abuse such as rape, spousal rape, and sexual coercion might lead to the victim contracting STDs(Sexually Transmitted Diseases) or unwanted pregnancy. An unwanted pregnancy might cause a victim to perform an abortion and this can lead to loss of the womb or death in the worst-case scenario. These is unfavourable and despairing situation for any victim.
PTSD is real. Suffering an abuse can make a person start acting inhumane or become extroverted, this is the psychological effect of domestic abuse. A victim might just being to age suddenly and develop all sorts of illnesses as a result of the bad incidents she has experienced.
Response to domestic abuse
Domestic abuse has been tagged as a worldwide social vice and people are becoming more aware of it and its negative effects on society. The WHO has taken a “global plan of action to strengthen the role of the health system within a national multisectoral response to address interpersonal violence, in particular against women and girls, and against children”.
Some NGOs(Non-Governmental Agencies) are also working hard to make the world a better place by eradicating domestic abuse. Activists for women and children also embark on awareness campaigns to enlighten women about domestic abuse and why they must speak out.
Pivotally, it is important for you to know that domestic abuse can be stopped by you by reporting every case either being a victim or a witness, also playing down claims of gender inequality, we women should not feel inferior to men, abstain from an abuser, learn self-defence skills and try to know domestic abuse help hotlines for city, region or country.