16 Days of Activism – Day 14: Domestic Violence

Today we draw attention to the issue of violence enacted on women and girls in the home. Domestic violence can occur against women and men, boys and girls. It is a huge problem and is often unreported and never adequately addressed. It can often have devastating effects on the children in the home, especially. During the 16 Days of Activism against Gender-Based Violence, here are a few alarming statistics facing women and girls who experience domestic violence:

More than 60% of all women in the Pacific Islands have faced domestic violence or sexual assault. Violence against Women and Girls affects all aspects of life, from health and safety to economics and education. (icaad.ngo)
79% of young women between 15-24 in Jordan think a husband is justified to hit is wife. (NCFA 2008)
Women exposed to intimate partner violence are twice as likely to experience depression. (WHO)
Children exposed to intimate partner violence in the home are more likely to be abused themselves, not receive healthcare, have behavioral, emotional, and schooling problems.
As adolescents, they are more likely to use alcohol and drugs in harmful ways, smoke, have unsafe sex.
Adults who grew up with violence in the home are more likely to perpetrate or experience intimate partner violence.

These stats begin to illustrate the widespread and complex systems of domestic violence against women. It happens at an alarming rate and has multigenerational effects. Because of this, it is vital to find ways of preventing and addressing the cyclical nature of domestic violence. For adults, this destructive behavior can stem from their parents’ behavior, which has been modeled for them during childhood. Hence, one way to address this behavior is to work with the children impacted by domestic violence in ways that establish healthier habits and patterns.

Would you join me in praying for women and girls who have been impacted by the many effects of domestic violence? The first step is creating a safe place where people can talk about it without fear of the repercussions. It can happen to anyone and could be happening to our closest friends and loved ones.

Learn more about Presbyterians at work to stop sexual violence and domestic violence.

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