Rise of Domestic Violence Against Educated, Professional Women
There is a prevalent belief that women who face domestic violence or are exploited are from the lower rungs of society. This is just a myth. Women across society face domestic violence. When you look at a professionally successful woman who seems to be climbing up the professional ladder at a break neck speed, you don’t expect her to be a victim of domestic violence. But that’s the catch.
It’s a huge stigma in the upper classes to be a victim of domestic violence. Coming out is difficult and everyone eyes you with suspicion. Leave apart the fact that your personal and professional life can go for a toss.
Before we enumerate on the causes of this dangerous social phenomena, let us look at some startling statistics on abuse of women.
- 85% of domestic violence victims are women, whereas only 15% are men.
- The number of American troops killed in Afghanistan and Iraq between 2001 and 2012 were 6,488 whereas the number of American women murdered by current or ex male partners during this time was 11,766.
- 4,774,000 US women experience physical violence by an intimate partner every year.
- 1 in 4 women in America will be a victim of severe violence by an intimate partner.
These statistics are chilling and point out towards the trend of increasing violence and abuse against women. Economic conditions have played a major part in domination and suppression of women.
In the 2014 #whyistayed and #whyileft Twitter campaigns, it was revealed that educated and working women also faced threat and violence at the hands of their intimate partners or significant others, and went on to say that finding a way out of an abusive relation can be a tumultuous experience.
Physical Violence is an Assertion of Power
Violence is not just a way of causing harm. It is also a threat, a mechanism to suppress another human being’s voice. When the woman in the house starts having a voice, an opinion of their own, that is different from what the man endorses, he raises his voice and hands to shut her up. Being assaulted rids you of the confidence you possess and mostly makes you weak and scared of your own survival.
More than one-quarter of women in America experience physical assault and violence from an intimate partner. This could be current spouse, ex-spouse or significant others. 72% of rapes are perpetrated by an intimate partner. Just like power hierarchies, revenge too becomes an important motive in domestic violence cases.
Ex- partners often end up intimidating the previously significant women in their life, and coerce them to come back to them. When that does not happen, in rage and anger they often resort to violence.
In current partners, too, suspicion of an extra marital affair, or many other factors can lead to domestic violence induced by the thought of revenge. It has also been found that, many a times partner resorts to violence and physical assault when the wife or girlfriend wants to leave the relationship.
Domestic Violence is Cathartic for Some
This is an immensely scary but true face of domestic violence. In many cases we see that when the woman is more successful than the man, humiliation creeps into the man. Add that to prolonged periods of unemployment, and the man becomes extremely prone to jealousy, envy and ultimately anger.
The man begins to perceive himself as a failure, and takes out his feelings of insecurity, desperation, humiliation and fear by being violent with his partner. If the partner turns out to be a submissive one, the case only becomes worst. Once an individual realizes that anger and violence can be used to exert control and solve problems temporarily, he will use violence on the significant other as a cathartic process, and cope with his perceived failures and fears through this process.
Domestic Violence as Acceptable Is Often Internalized
There are many individuals who have grown up witnessing physical and emotional violence in their homes. In such cases they often internalize this violence and believe that if this has worked for their parents in the past, it should work for them too.
Domestic violence often become a genetic and generational legacy. People who witness domestic violence become insecure and hostile people, and succumb to tendencies where they are not able to control their anger and hurt. They often manifest these emotions through hurting and assaulting women close to them, as this is what they have seen all their lives.
These tendencies of domestic violence must be nipped at the bud, and such people need to be put in rehabilitation to relearn cognitive and emotive process and acquire better control over their emotions.
Physical Violence is Not Limited to Home Only
Though the term is coined domestic violence, violence on women is not just limited to households. America has witnessed a sharp rise in violence against women at work as well. From unwanted sexual comments and advances to occupational violence, women have been subjected to threats, sexual harassment, robbery, assault and murder from co-workers, superiors and juniors.
“Women should be made aware that just like domestic violence legal implications, workplace violence too carries legal implications like state law guides and court order of protection.” Says renowned DuPage county domestic violence attorney.
The Final Word
Women are a primary pillar of society. It needs to be emphasized and reasserted repeatedly that they are to be treated as equals and not inferior. Violence against women is not acceptable. Domestic violence if not contained at the right moment can become a terrible monster. So if you or any woman you know is facing domestic violence, raise your voice against it, and consult an expert domestic violence attorney who will free you from the shackles of domestic violence, fight for your rights and let you have a life of dignity, happiness and security.