The Realities of Domestic Violence
Although we have grown leaps and bounds since the 1964 TIME article we definitely have a long way to go. Thankfully no more do we think that it is a man's right to abuse his wife, nor that being assertive means being aggressive. Thirty years ago the Federal Government enacted FVPSA (Family Violence Prevention and Services Act), which created funding to help people get out of domestic violence situations. This was definitely a huge step in the right direction.
What I can tell you though is despite funding, laws being put in place and the numerous places you can contact with about this issue; the system is still tragically broken. If local authorities are not supported when there are violations of restraining orders or domestic situations take place; the laws become virtually useless.
As a survivor of Domestic Violence, I want to see these issues changed. I have found though that I ultimately go unheard. So many women feel this way and therefore fear leaving, or end up going back to their abuser; only to be harmed again. This has to stop, and we have to show women that this is not a "dirty little secret" that they will be supported and guided with kindness and compassion.
There is so little understanding about domestic violence on a whole, unless you have lived through it, or know of someone who has. I remember when I first left and joined a domestic violence group on Facebook and started learning that there were psychological terms for what had taken place. I have spent many days reading articles or other peoples stories, seeing finally that I am "NORMAL".
I have a philosophy on domestic violence; it is the ugly step-sister to cancer. Now don't get me wrong, I am empathetic about cancer. When comparing the two, regarding acknowledgement of the two; cancer wins hands down. People will sign up for walks, donate, wear pink and discuss it on their social media. Cancer is easier to rally around; you can support the person throughout their fight, should they not win the fight you support the family and grieve with them. Domestic violence is still held in a light of shame. People will say "Well why didn't she leave? There must be something wrong with her!" Not realizing that this person has undergone some very slow transitioning into being abused, no one would stay with an abuser if they started it within the first days or weeks and probably months.
I know when my ex and I got together there were things that I noticed that seemed odd, but I couldn't put my finger on. A year into the relationship I saw him act out, but it wasn't directed at me. There were little digs along the way that hurt; I could put it off to he was mad/hurt about something and write it off to we all say things when we are mad/hurt. I was young and didn't fully understand abuse or what it entailed. I didn't realize that I was being groomed for a lifetime of abuse. By the time, I realized what had happened I was in so deep and had created a life that was bigger than I had ever imagined possible with this man. We had children and business' and I had no clue how I could leave. I was terrified of what would take place if I did leave. All I could do was hope and pray.
Nowadays, if you were to put me in that same situation; I would RUN like HELL!!!! I now notice other people and how they treat one another. I had an employee who I suspected there was some domestic violence stuff going on; turns out I was right. It wasn't physical but verbal; turns out your intuition becomes far greater after your own experience.
I am hoping in light of everything that has taken place with the NFL that this discussion stays at the forefront and doesn't fall out of the limelight. That we can make a change for future generations.
- Domestic Violence: 50 Years Ago, Doctors Called It 'Therapy'
In light of recent news about domestic violence, looking back at a 1964 study that extols its benefits
Seeing It For What It Is
Domestic Violence will affect 1 in 4 women in their lifetime. According to the Duluth Model the reason domestic violence happens more often to women and children is because they "are vulnerable to violence because of their unequal social, economic, and political status in society."
How many of you have directly or indirectly been affected by domestic violence?
Thankfully It's Decreasing
Keep It Kind
We can all have our opinions. Please keep it kind and respectful. If we are going to change anything it has to begin NOW.
© 2014 Angela Levens