Domestic Violence And Marriage Essay, Research Paper
Marriage and Domestic Violence
Family violence has existed since the conception of the family unit. Women for hundreds of years were viewed as less than human, property, in place to serve at the pleasure of their husband. Woman who grew up in homes where their mothers were beaten or hit accepted it as their role as wife and most often married men who also abused them. Women in the early nineteen hundreds believed that being abused or used as a punching bag was just one of their duties as a wife. Many women believed that they deserved to be hit, they did something wrong and they needed physical punishment. Men who grew up in homes where their fathers beat their mothers continued the abuse in their own marriages and in most cases also abused their children.
The history of spousal abuse dates back hundreds of years and has just recently been recognized as a serious problem. There are many reasons why men abuse their wives and why wives allow themselves to be abused. One contributing factor among men in domestic violence cases is alcohol and/or substance abuse. A man may come home from work after stopping at the bar for a few drinks and think that the house is not clean enough or the kids are too loud, his only solution in his drunken stooper is to beat his wife.
Women who may have grown up in this type of environment, marry into it and accept it from their own husbands. They believe that it s their husband s way of showing he loves them. Women such as these suffer from low self-esteem, no job, and no friends. Up until recently, the descriptions above were socially accepted as the man s way of keeping his wife in line.
Today, with women s newly found independence, higher education and employment opportunities; domestic abuse has decreased dramatically because it is not considered socially acceptable. Women are encouraged to speak out and report domestic assault. There are support groups in place, advocates against domestic violence and even safe havens for battered women and their children.
Although domestic abuse has decreased dramatically in the past 20 years, cases of domestic abuse have become more serious. When men do beat their wives today and the wives collect enough courage to leave, the end result occasionally is much worse than the beating. Murder or murder suicide has become more common today in cases where women leave abusive relationships. O.J. Simpson who had a history of beating his wife Nicole ended up murdering her when he discovered her with another man after they divorced. The ruling in the O.J. case sent domestic abuse back 20 years for abused women (and yes, he was guilty!).
Police historically took little or no action against the man when called to domestic arguments by women being abused. One case in particular, which took place in Connecticut, involved a woman who left her husband because of abuse. The husband continued to stalk her and sit outside of her house, she called the police almost daily to the point where they didn t even respond to her calls, it was a joke. One-day she called and told the police he came to her house and was going to kill her, they ignored her call and he ended up stabbing her to death. This case and cases similar, which involved police failing to intervene, have resulted in million-dollar lawsuits against police departments. Today, police are required to remove one or both parties from the scene when responding to domestic violence calls.
Last year, a supervisor at the Office of Employee Services went into work, walked into his ex-girlfriends cubicle who also worked at OBES, shot her in the head and turned the gun on himself. Prior to her murder, she went through the proper channels to report the harassment to her supervisors and no action was taken.
Although the cases above may seem extreme, the fact is that women often times have more to fear by leaving an abusive relationship than remaining in one. A strong support system and a plan of protection are the most recommendable ways to leave an abusive relationship. Despite the fact that abuse still occurs, women today have come a long way as compared to 20 years ago.