Gender Based Violence

The recognition of gender based violence is something that is typically shut down by people with ego’s that can’t take a progressive movement and it’s recognition seriously, without — for some reason feeling attacked. This is the most prevalent issue women commonly suffer from, along with men. While women are most likely to be victims of abuse, I think it’s important to bring awareness to the statistics of domestic violence. As a little subsequent to what domestic violence used to be, and continues to be – the romanticism of women being gentle, and the need for dominance commonly amongst men, this stigma alone can be deadly for both genders.

When I talk about important subjects, and females are found to be more likely victims to said topic, I cringe everytime I hear the statement “not ALL MEN, ASHLEY!” made by men with sensitive egos. I never said all men. I said we need to address issues we face in society, and most of them are directed at women. “But, but, but, men are victims to violence too.” You’re right. With the societal standards, toxic masculinity, and expectations, men have been held to standards which say they are strong, dominant, powerful, muscular men who couldn’t possibly be hurt. Which, in turn results in men who suffer from domestic violence significantly less likely to come forward. Women didn’t create that standard, but some of them reinforce it.

But, my point is that trying to override the validity of women’s equality, and a movement with intentions to bring awareness to all genders, and toxic standards is stupid. Using the “men are victims too,” token just to silence a movement trying to reinforce healthy, and destroy the patriarchy is only a reminder to feminists that we need the movement even more. Nobody is pointing the finger at all men when trying to discuss these issues.

Let’s be honest, we’ve all read the news about a very unhappy ex-boyfriend/husband and wife/ex-girlfriend who has either gone on a spree of killings, or violence. Most typically resulting in the partner being harmed. 76% of women are targeted for physical/sexual violence. I will not be discussing sexual violence today, as I already have on this blog.

In addition, just yesterday we had a man go on Facebook live to document his killing of an innocent old man, and before doing so, he made the man repeat his ex-girlfriends name, while blaming him for the horrific killing after. Another example is the man traveling on a transportation system who killed a woman for not wanting to “have his babies.”

Every 9 seconds a woman is beaten, and 70% of the perpetrators are married to said women. One in three women have been attacked by their partner, while one in four men have as well. One in five women have been severely abused by an intimate partner. While only a small 34% seek care for their injuries.  These statistics are chilling. On a typical day, hotlines are filled with roughly 20,000+ reports on abuse. Physical abuse is commonly accompanied by emotional abuse, which is directly a  result of systematic attempts for dominance, and control. These usually all end in psychological trauma.

So, you’re probably wondering just why these women, and men are not leaving their relationships. Certainly, you would like to think that would be the best, and knowledgeable decisions. Common reasons for this are:

-thinking the abuser will change,

-having a child with said abuser,

-low self esteem,

-being fearful for their life/someone else’s life,

-believing the abuse is “normal,”

-religious beliefs preventing the decision,

-the victim is embarrassed,

-fear of retribution.

Blaming the victim is pretty common, because again, most people who have never experienced abuse, or have normalized the abuse have varying opinions which both involve what they consider “easy” options. Which is not even relatively close to being true. Staying in a relationship as a victim has a lot of dynamics, all of which are meant to be taken seriously and brought awareness to. Domestic violence is the leading cause of death for women from age 15-44. 

We consistently have the media reporting to us on women being attacked for saying no, while asking her why she didn’t just say no. Well, here’s your answer. As a female, it’s terribly hard to not be fearful of the repercussions of saying no. It’s not an over dramatic statement, and it’s nothing to be taken lightly.

We have men who are killed in toxic relationships, and people making their way into the comment section talking about how cute the wife was. Our victims are never taken seriously.

In conclusion, women are significantly more likely to be victims to violence, and addressing that issue is not pointing the finger at men. It’s simply trying to discuss the issues, where they are. Men are also victims of violence, but it’s hardly taken seriously. The patriarchy hurts everyone, and sometimes it can be lethal. The patriarchy shapes men into superhero figures who are ever mighty, with emotional boundaries that forget about sadness, hurt, and guilt. Patriarchy is not supposed to only be associated with the liberation of women, but rather the liberation of all. It’s not irrelevant to males existence.

I will be addressing the patriarchy, and it’s harmful consequences in a post later on.

 

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