DANGERS OF DOMESTIC VIOLENCE and THE IMPORTANCE of PREVENTION
Victims of violence or abuse can suffer serious health consequences. This can result in adverse health consequences such as chronic pain, increased chance of stroke, heart disease and lung disease, diabetes, cancer, and gynecological issues. You may also have behavioral health concerns such as depression, substance abuse, and high-risk sexual behaviors. Domestic violence can also be linked to absenteeism or poor performance at work, leading to social isolation, financial and housing concerns, and additional health risks for victims and their families.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, one in four women and nine men have experienced domestic violence. Children will witness at least half of domestic violence if their parents are being attacked. They have a chance of catching child abuse at 45-60 percent.
What is domestic violence, and why does it occur?
Domestic violence is any form of abuse used to control or harm others. There are many types of abuse: financial, digital, physical, emotional, sexual, and reproductive. Domestic abuse victims can be of any age, gender, gender, or sexual orientation. However, violence is more common among women aged 18 to 34 and those who are bisexual, gay, or lesbian.
Domestic abuse is when one partner seeks to have control over the other, cause physical harm or exercise power over them. A history of domestic violence, exposure to abuse, emotional isolation, lack of healthy role models, relationships, and a deficiency in nonviolent and emotional social skills can accompany a desire to control.
Although it seems impossible to prevent violent behavior, many effective strategies exist.
The CDC created a social-ecological model to show the interaction of four factors that can influence domestic abuse: individual and relationship, community, and societal.
- Individual Factors include income, age, education, and history of abuse.
- Relationship Factors include family members, domestic partners, and peers from a social group.
- Community Factors include schools, neighborhoods, and workplaces.
- Societal Factors include social, economic, and educational policies that promote social inequity.
This framework suggests that each factor should be addressed separately and together through education, life skill training, prevention programs, policy changes, and other means to reduce domestic violence. For example, changing individual factors can lead to better attitudes, beliefs, and behaviors that can help prevent domestic violence. Participating in family-focused prevention programs or parent meetings can strengthen relationships and decrease conflict that could lead to violent behavior. It can strengthen community relationships and reduce violence by making changes in policy and processes. Social inequality can be achieved through social, economic, educational, and social policy changes. This can help lower violence rates.
The CDC also created six strategies to stop intimate partner violence.
- Teaching healthy and safe relationships skills
- Encourage your peers and adults to be influential
- Block the development pathways to partner violence
- Create protective environments;
- Increase economic support for families;
- Help survivors improve safety and reduce harms
The Prevention Institute (PI), a non-profit organization, recommends a different approach to preventing domestic violence. This involves creating health equity and improving community environments that promote safe relationships. The principle of health equity is that every person deserves safety in their relationships. PI suggests that improving community health equity and the community environment requires advocacy, increased accessibility to affordable housing, community support, and healthcare delivery and other services. For example, emergency food, child care, safe shelter, and prevention programs.