Domestic violence (DV) and its accompanying problems have become crucial discussion topics for a long now. Thanks to feminists, the dangers of the act are discovered and it is, hence, being rejected by many societies now. Before, DV was not frowned at, especially when women are the victims. It was believed that women cause whatever leads to violence against them and so should enjoy the show. It was also believed that men have the right to discipline their wives. However, the world today no longer accepts DV and has, therefore, criminalized every form of violence meted out on spouses, irrespective of the offender’s and victim’s gender.
Since DV is no longer seen as a norm, people have started calling out and condemning those that engage in it. Victims have also begun to come out to seek justice for wrongs done to them. Once they present the physical injuries caused by their spouses, the public supports them and chastises their offenders. However, not all DV victims can seek justice because not all injuries are physical. This is to say that there are many forms of DV, most of which offenders have resorted to because they are hard to prove.
Forms of Domestic Violence
- Physical Abuse: This is the type most people know about. It comes in the form of physically abusing the victims. This can come in the form of slapping, kicking, pulling or twisting the arms and hairs, shaking, shoving, and hitting. This type is easy to detect because it causes sudden pains which makes victims cry out and alert neighbours. It is also easier to detect physical abuse because of traces of abuse left on the body of the victim.
- Financial Abuse: Perpetrators of this form of abuse deny their spouses the right to financial freedom. They make their victims financially dependent on them because that is the easiest way to control and hurt them. These offenders are those that deny their spouses money for feeding and providing for other family essentials when they want to “discipline” them. They also frustrate their spouses’ efforts to run businesses or maintain their jobs.
- Psychological Abuse: The offenders here manipulate their victims’ mental well-being. They instil fear into them even without physically abusing them. Here is where you find offenders that intimidate and threaten their spouses into submission. They make them afraid to object to decisions that are unfavourable to them or even to demand for those that favour them. The painful thing here is that people passing through this may be unable to speak out because they are afraid of what will happen to them afterwards. Besides, they know people won’t believe them because they have no physical injuries to show for it.
- Emotional Abuse: Offenders here derive joy in seeing their spouses unhappy. They manipulate their emotions to make them cry all the time. They may do this through making them feel guilty unnecessarily, denying them things they need, using physical force, or humiliating them in the public.
- Sexual Abuse: Many people still don’t believe that sexual abuse happens among married couples. Well, if someone is forced into sexual contact without his or her consent, that is sexual abuse.
- Social Abuse: Those that do this prevent their spouses from having any form of social contacts or activities. Offenders here do not allow their spouses to connect and relate with friends and family members. Their victims are not allowed to subscribe to any social media platforms or even own a phone. Some monitor their victims’ activities on social media and use every minute reason to accuse them of misbehaving or being negatively influenced. They want their spouses locked away from the world.
- Verbal Abuse: This is another common form of DV even though people are seeing it as a norm. Here, offenders use hurtful words on their victims. They resort to insults, body-shaming, recalling their victims’ past mistakes, reminding them of their weaknesses, and so on. This type of DV attacks victims’ self-confidence.
As can be seen, DV does not only happen when there is a physical attack. Every form of DV is dangerous. None should be preferred and none should be regarded as better than the others. DV, no matter how it is meted out, is evil.