Feb 19, 2009

Domestic Violence

Pssst,read this first: I have been thinking of writing this for a very long time. Just some thoughts. Move on to some fun posts, if this is not your cup of tea :)
This is a topic that’s very dear to my heart. And before you start saying, “Well men get abused too by woman” (Somehow I hear this every time I talk to someone about domestic violence against woman), let me just say I know that men get abused physically by woman and this topic is close because I know men in my personal life who were abused by their wives. So please, back off with that point of yours.

Few years ago I took a 12 week training program organized by a NJ coalition of battered woman to volunteer for them. It was very eye-opening to say the least. To talk to the lawyers that take up these domestic abuse cases, to listen to the women who went through the violence cycle and who are out and to see how the kids caught in this feel. One thing that stayed with me was something they mentioned in the first class. “You don’t tell a woman who was hit by her partner to leave”. Everyone in the training class was taken aback by that sentence. Then it made sense to us all. If you tell her to leave, that means you are telling her what to do which gives you the control of the situation. Then how are you helping her and you are no different than the abuser because it was all about being in control to begin with. You need to help her by giving choices and she should be the one to make that final decision whatever it is.

It’s hard to just leave the abuser for most women. It’s easy for me to sit in my couch with a margarita in my hand and say the women who was just hit by her husband should leave him without even thinking where is going to go with her kids, what’s next for her and what happens if he comes after her and her kids. Then it will hit you, you cannot judge them. Yes, it’s hard to watch you see woman staying in those kind of relationships but there are million reasons why they stay. Unless you are in her brain and know the reason, again, don’t judge.

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