The two biggest arguments that women use when staying in an abusive relationship are:”I still love him,” and “He is a good father.”
If we could get through the message to people who are abused that it takes both people to show and express love and that love does not hurt then perhaps the abused would look at their relationships more realistically. I’m not sure how we do that,myself, as many times the abused have been told so many times “how worthless they are.” many are convinced that they and their children can not survive if they do leave the marriage. All I do know for certain is that telling women that they do have a duty and obligation to go back to the marriage bed and to try harder to work with their husbands and to pray does not work and often leads to tragedy to the entire family.
All the favorite meals,mood lightening, and following detail to the explicit demands of an abuser does nothing towards stopping the abuse, either. One of the other problems of abuse is many times when women do say, “I don’t have time to do what he wants today,” and he does come home and beats her,she will think it is her fault because she did not follow orders. The abused do start believing that they are as dumb,fat, and ugly as they are being told they are by the abuser. They all forgive and promise they will never do it again,of course,but it never last. During the forgiveness period many are that sweet loveable person the women fell in love with and they become convinced they are deeply in love and could never leave, all over again. Living in fear becomes a rush and if it does not become comfortable then it becomes normal for them, the longer it goes on. It becomes easier all the time to deny all of the rest.
Of course, a parent who is thinking clearly, would never say,”He mistreats me but he is a good father.” We all understand that children cannot watch turmoil between their parents and come out with anything but psychological damage as a result of it.We know that whether children are watching abuse take place on others or it being inflicted on themselves, it alters the personality of the person they were meant to be as early as 3 years of age. To cause this kind of damage to a child does not make any of us a good parent when we realize that this type of harm or damage will affect the entire life of our children. They will grow up totally confused as to how to effectively deal with a relationship and many times will abuse themselves.
Other times the children come out just as demoralized as the battered women because just as she has no self-esteem or identity beyond him neither do the children. The sons will often repeat the same disgusting names to both their mother or sisters as are coming out of the mouth of the abuser.Many times he learns that the only value women have is to wait on and look after a man. The sons learn to bully and the daughters learn to withdraw, other times sons will become intimidated and withdraw while daughters become more aggressive and tend to become more sexually active when incest, many times becomes part of the abuse as well. This is typical behavior patterns when the abused are saying.”He is a good father.” no differently than when the children are being beaten as well.
Policemen can pick up the mentally ill and have them hospitalized without family approval in cases of discovery according to the Baker law. The problem is that putting women into shelters under the same circumstances will often times jeopardize the safety of the other abused women who are in hiding. If the victims do not want to go or be there, which is often the case, they will get ahold of their abusers and let them know where they are and once the secret address of the shelter becomes known then the safety it offers for other abused victims no longer exists.
Like all of the problems that do seem unsolvable there are solutions once an entire community of experts put their heads together to come up with different ideas. Sadly that all costs money and time and too many do not have one or the other to offer to the group. I am the first to admit that I do not have much to offer in way of solution,myself. I just understand that as long as we ourselves go into denial when our friends tell us they ran into something that gave them the black eye,because we do not want to embarrass our friend,we do the abused a disservice by not discussing it. Too many are ashamed to talk about it but once confronted by understanding instead of accusations, when the relationship is a close one,many times they will want to talk.
If we educate ourselves on the knowledge available to them like going to see their Doctor or the police and enquire about getting into a shelter or they will only repeat the behavior until it becomes worse, we can help empower them. Offering sympathy will only make them feel better temporary and they will go back to the abuse. Other times they will rely on us for their courage and do nothing else, Many times when the abuser finds out the abused are relying on a confidant they will end the relationship. I repeat, we need to empower them to get help so they do not rely on our hand holding but instead rely on their own ability to seek help.
Currently in some of the States when police are being called to domestic calls, both the abuser and the victim are being arrested and spend the night in jail or at least a couple of hours until things cool down a little. I do not think putting abused victims in jail is right but if we did pass laws that made protecting abuse and abusers illegal in our State, perhaps the abused could be hospitalized and at least kept long enough to try to work with the mental damage that is often done to the entire family by an abuser. I can already see the problems that could come out of that as well, and that is why abuse is such a difficult problem to work with and to solve.
Like everything else that is preventive, we simply need to learn and educate ourselves while we are dating and making lifetime choices for a mate. If he or she strikes or hits us or throws things at us, while dating, he or she will become much worse after marriage. Dating is the time that we are on the best of behavior and any names being thrown at us while dating will go from being cute to vindictive after marriage. Anger that is not part of the grieving process very rarely subsides without being able to release it. Healthy people will talk to someone or get professional help in order to either let go or to work more effectively around it. Others hide it behind alcohol and drugs. If we are doing both with the abusers while dating then we need to understand the hell we will put our children through if we marry them and continue the same recreational behavior.
All parents need to know and understand just how important an education beyond highschool is to all of our children. Both boys and girls. Too many times the number one reason that our children do stay in an abusive situation is because of the fear that they could not financially support their children alone,as well as, they can by staying in the abusive situation. Education does not only give them the out to do that but it also establishes the confidence in our children that often leads to their knowing they deserve better and to get out before any more damage is done to their children or our grandchildren. None of the expensive birthday parties or clothes that we are currently buying them will lead to the success of their lives as an education will. Even though abuse does also exist in the educated, it is considerably less, and nothing empowers our children like an education does.
Whatever lays ahead for abuse I feel it needs to be dealt with,as it lies at the root cause of what Americans should be most ashamed of, as well as, is twin to crime, in America today. To just wash our hands and give up or worse yet to blame the victims and do nothing, when we are so much better as a Nation than that,shows poorly against us all.At the same time I applaud all of you who have dedicated their years and time working towards finding solutions only to find out that the root problem towards solutions does lie in the victims themselves, who have been so deeply brainwashed in fear or have learned to adapt to it,to the point they do refuse help offered to them,too many times.Somewhere there is a bridge that will join the gap that does lead to successful treatment and my faith is in the fact that we will find it. Thanks to all of you who are looking.