Bringing Awareness to Domestic Abuse

Photo+Credit%3A+Alecska+via+Pixabay

Photo Credit: Alecska via Pixabay

Araceli De La Torre Marin, OwlFeed News Reporter

Domestic abuse is deliberate intimidation, physical attack, battery, sexual assault, and/or other violent conduct as part of a systemic process of dominance and influence by one domestic partner against another. However, with such a horrible crime, comes little regard. This is why we need to bring awareness to domestic abuse and help empower those harmed from it!

On Feb 10, 2021, a woman was murdered by her significant other trying to protect her 10-month baby from getting kidnapped. Or on March 1, 2020, when a woman was beaten with a high chair by her husband until she lost sensation of one of her legs and the 2 of the metal legs from the high chair while having her 11-month old baby still in her arms. 

One in three women and one in four men experience some sort of physical abuse by an intimate partner. This includes a variety of behaviors (slapping, shoving, pushing) and may not be considered “domestic violence” in some cases. One in 7 women and one in 25 men get injured by an intimate partner. Intimate partner violence affects more than 12 million people every year.

During the pandemic, domestic violence hotlines had prepared for an increase in demand for services but it turned out to be quite the opposite. More than 50% of calls dropped in some regions. Experts in the profession understood that the rates of intimate partner violence, or IPV, had not decreased, but rather that the victims were unable to communicate with the programs in a safe manner. 

It is necessary to note that IPV can reach past physical injury and lead to death. Data from U.S. News statistics show that 16% (about 1 in 6) of murder victims are murdered by an intimate partner. 

1 in 15 children was subjected to intimate partner abuse every year, and 90 percent of these children are eyewitnesses to this violence.

Photo Credit: Alecska via Pixabay

Abusers are not easy to find. In public, they can appear clever, trustworthy, and charismatic with a personality that pulls people into, but in private, they are a waking nightmare. Some offenders learn aggression from their families and replicate toxic behaviors with their own spouses or children. They are much more likely to have trouble with drug and alcohol abuse.

It can take time for victims of domestic abuse to accept their circumstance for what it is. Violence also causes physical traces, from fractured limbs to shortness of breath to accidental trembling. 

Looking more susceptible to “accidents” than a normal person can be a warning sign that someone is being harmed. Abuse victims may also have short- to long-term mental and psychological consequences, including feelings of confusion or hopelessness, sadness, anxiety, panic attacks, and post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD).

Society should empower — rather than dehumanize — victims by leading them to support services, ensuring mental health treatment is available and effective, and designing and reviewing preventive initiatives. Since the financial burden is a key factor, employers will benefit by implementing strategies to shield and assist workers who are victims of intimate partner abuse.