Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Gaining control: Domestic violence is a bigger problem than some believe

Posted by Hannah at 11:15 AM

Gaining control: Domestic violence is a bigger problem than some believe, and I hear all the time about how this is such a small problem.

Victims are female and male -- but females are more commonly abused. However, the level of violence inflicted on a male victim is likely to be much more severe and more often fatal when they come from females perpetrators, according to Caryn Burton, training director for the Indiana Coalition Against Domestic Violence.

She mentions in the video that due to women having less physical strength if they are going to attack they are going to use weopons. They need the woepons as a tool to overcome the fact that men are stronger.

This video she speaks about men being victims as well, and then goes on to speak about the dynamics of these relationships.

Here is a link that speak about her presentation on domestic abuse.

Daily World

It's also a crime that is commonly repeated over and over again without intervention.

"Domestic violence is about gaining and maintaining power and control. You'll hear people say he was angry. He was drunk. He was high. He was having an affair. No, domestic violence is about gaining the power in a relationship and maintaining control over that partner so what happens, what's said, what's done, what is expected, all of that comes back to that power partner and that is the person who is in control. It is a crime of power and control and nothing else."

Caryn Burton, training director for the Indiana Coalition Against Domestic Violence, Inc

The second video speaks about the most common profession group among domestic violence perpetrators are member of clergy.

The most common profession group among domestic violence perpetrators are members of the religious clergy, according to Burton.

"Clergy, faith leaders, lay ministers, ministers, who has more authority than God? There are all sorts of passages in the Bible and in scripture, Koran or whatever your holy book may be is that fully support domestic violence.

Burton in her job as a domestic violence counselor said numerous times she's been told by victims that they had talked with their pastors and was encouraged to be a better wife, and endure and this (abuse) would stop. They were told to pray harder.

Second most common career group abusers are members of law enforcement.

She said YES domestic violence is a bigger program that some believe!

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The Real Gal on 6:17 AM said...

Hannah, thank you for posting these videos. Needs to be brought to light! Blessings!

www.wanetadawn.com on 7:34 PM said...

On the first video, I question that female abusers do more harm than male abusers. First, the number of deaths is 85% female, and only 15% male. 2nd, I have seen and heard some very severe injuries on women. 3rd, The statistics I've read do not indicate a higher degree of destruction from females than from males. Just because females use tools, does not necessarily make the injury worse than what a man could do with his fists. I wonder if what the speaker is referring to is that when a woman does abuse with a tool, it is so shocking. Like cutting off a man's penis. Is that worse than bashing a woman's face in with a hammer? Both need reconstructive surgery. I'd have to hear more details about how the research was compiled and what the criteria was, before I will believe that statement.

The rest of what she said, in the first video, though, agrees with what I have seen and heard. I am glad you have it on your blog, Hannah! She is right that most people think domestic abuse is physical violence.

www.wanetadawn.com on 9:38 PM said...

The second video about clergy being the profession where domestic abuse is the most common, I can believe. It seems at least half, if not more, of the women/voices I hear/read are wives and ex-wives of the clergy. It is so sad. But power does corrupt. We see it again and again. When males give themselves power over their wives that is power enough. clergy add to that by having power over their congregations, too.

How are the clergy to keep themselves in check? How to double-check their thinking to make sure they are not going off on a power trip? As "Don" said on my website "Submissiontyranny" "A question EVERYONE should ask themselves is: "'How can I be assured that I have not deceived myself when I get my way?' The best way I know to mitigate this is to submit yourself to others. That is, I refuse to accept the "trump card" that some non-egals teachers claim I have by God's choice simply because I am male."

Don is right, and what he said agrees with the Bible--"submit one to another out of reverence for Christ."

The story of the woman who brought in a 6 figure income and still had to account to her husband for every penny makes it so obvious that there are major forces at play to keep a woman chained to such a man. It is no wonder I look at dating with such caution.

The question to me is how can we see the pattern of abuse before we get into the relationship? Especially considering how abusers tend to be charmers and deceivers and so wonderful at the beginning of relationships? And if a woman is dating such a man, how can she get herself, her family, things and her bank account safely out of the relationship without dealing with stalking, vandalism to her property, or a lawsuit against her? I ask because I am looking at dating--checking some online sites, and I don't even trust enough to allow the first tiny communication. Although I think surely there must be excellent men out there, what they write sounds so self-centered, I am convinced their previous wives divorced them because of it--or even because of abuse. I am the most suspicious of men who say they are so wonderful and devoted, etc. I know women are not perfect, but there is too much contradictory info when a wonderful man is divorced.

Am I being too picky? If a man wrote other-centered comments, would he be believeable? I guess what I'm saying is that I don't trust myself to be able to extract myself from a relationship if the man turns out to be abusive. I think too much of my focus is still to not hurt the other person. Is that the same thing that our young girls are dealing with? Why do we humans tend to either be focused on making sure no one runs over us, or making sure the other person isn't hurt? Why not be more balanced between the two extremes?

Anonymous said...

Waneta: Once I decided to actually OWN what was going on in my life - which was a HUGE step...denial was very strong! Learning to spot healthy people, and not so healthy people was a next step for me. I'm not saying perfect here, because we all have warts!

I had to work on getting my voice back. I had to go OUTSIDE of my comfort zone, and be able to state things I wasn't comfortable with. I had to learn its time to walk away, and learn NOT to be friends with others that came that were not healthy for me. I could be nice to them, but I had to learn to be picky.

I know women that have left after years of abuse, and due to their history once they got out their anger took over. They became really nasty. They start attacking the world as if they are owned something - I'm talking attitude here! I had a lady in my DV group counseling that literally attacked me one day in counseling over something totally irrational. She was removed from our group, and placed in something else to help her with those issues. They saw she needed more than what the group could hand her. I remember the next week they had two staff members come to our group to make sure I was okay. I was reeling afterwards, but I felt good about standing up to her. I felt good being firm, and I felt good walking away and NOT willing to be contact with her anymore. I was going there to confront her. Why? I knew I had to. It was part of my growth.

They (the staff) validated me about how I handled it, and how I stood up for myself. They were concerned for me. They questioned one thing I said to her, and told them WHY I said it..lol they thought about it and said - YOU have a point!

Recently, a lady I am friends with ran into her. It was years ago that this happened. She gave my friend her phone number, and told her to apologize for her. Told her that she was so off base, and just wanted to tell me personally. I told my friend to keep the number. I didn't need it. That was HUGE for me.

How do we teach broken people HOW to step up, and not take things they way we were taught? I'm not sure. I think its a journey. Heck I'm still on it! I feel stronger with each step, and I'm learning to be okay with what I feel is right...even if others disagree. That's HUGE for me! All my life I was encouraged to hush. I don't think I will ever be hushed totally again.

Anonymous said...

I think the mention of tools is because of our strength compared to men. Tools make some people feel they are in control, and without them they may not be. The fists are a good tool for men, because we aren't strong enough to stop them from using them. I don't have that. If I had to face a man I would be looking for a tool. I would need something to give me the upper hand. It would give others a sense of control that they may not have without it.

Rhia on 2:55 AM said...

Great article Hannah. I wanted to quickly make a few comments. There is often a mistaken thought that all men are "bigger" or "stronger" when compared to all women. This is of course not true.

As for the damage and severity comment she may have gotten her information from the book Abused Men which said:

Apparently at the time of this writing the most recent large scale study (11,000 men and women) is one conducted primarily by Harvard researchers and published in the American Journal of Public Health in 2007:

Almost 25% of the people surveyed — 28% of women and 19% of men — said there was some violence in their relationship. Women admitted perpetrating more violence (25% versus 11%) as well as being victimized more by violence (19% versus 16%) than men did. According to both men and women, 50% of this violence was reciprocal, that is, involved both parties, and in those cases the woman was more likely to have been the first to strike.

Violence was more frequent when both partners were invo lved, and so was injury — to either partner. In these relationships, men were more likely than women to inflict injury (29% versus 19%). When the violence was one-sided, both women and men said that women were the perpetrators about 70% of the time. Men were more likely to be injured in reciprocally violent relationships (25%) than were women when the violence was one-sided (20%).

I found that according to the Centers for Disease Control, men comprise over 35% of all domestic violence victims. A meta-analytic review of 552 domestic violence studies published in the Psychological Bulletin found that 38% of the physical injuries in heterosexual domestic assaults are suffered by men.

The National Institute of Mental Health funded and oversaw two of the largest studies of domestic violence ever conducted, both of which found equal rates of abuse between husbands and wives. California State Long Beach University professor Martin Fiebert maintains an online bibliography summarizing 247 scholarly investigations, with an aggregate sample size exceeding 240,200, which conclude "women are as physically aggressive, or more aggressive, than men in their relationships with their spouses or male partners."

Ultimately one person abused is one to many. People are people regardless of their gender. Just like many people put clergy on a pedestal and see no evil the same happens with gender as well.

Hannah on 11:58 AM said...

As one abused person to another abused person...lol tell me you never owed fault that wasn't yours to own! We have all done that - men and women!

I personally don't hold those studies and stats in high regard. There are people all over this earth that are being abused, and their condition can be shown as worse or better depending all kinds of issues with those studies.

It seems this world can't identify abusers no matter what the gender, etc. Human nature tends to make excuses for them. When that changes I might look at studies in a different light. I think they hinder the issue more than help it.

We as the world have a very hard time calling abuse for what it is. I have known, spoken to, what have you many men and women that have been abused - and they will own anything if you pushed them hard enough. I will admit I'm guilty as charged there as well! They need to get a study together of survivors that are in a healthy place. I'm NOT talking people that escaped, and did nothing to help themselves...and call themselves survivors either!

I know my habit patterns in life made me a prime target for abusers, and I honestly didn't even know that. Didn't own it for years either once I owned I was being abused. Took me YEARS to admit to myself that 'I' wasn't at fault, and MADE someone abuse me due to some SIN I had done or what have you. Is that saying I take no responsibility for what happened? I'm not saying that at all.

There is a healthy form of owning things, and then there is the guilt driven version that you see WAY to often! I didn't have the tools to truly deal with intimidate relationships. I could do business, casual, friendships, etc. People saw me as outgoing, but don't mess with her too much. lol she will be nice, but she will call you out as well. I didn't have to be nasty, or send along silent digs. When you look at the marriage? I didn't do those types of relationships well, because I didn't have the tools for proper boundaries..enough self worth..allowing myself to own things and NOT own things. WELL lets just say I wasn't qualified period. The intimacy came in, and all my people skills that the rest of the world saw JUST plain wasn't there!

I worked for years to help myself in those areas. At the beginning I couldn't tell you what I was responsible for, and what I wasn't truly. lol I thought I knew, but then again I thought I could survive also! What I'm saying is my headspace wasn't there to give stats an accurate picture of what they were truly after in that study. Does that make sense? lol I hope so! Its okay for others to NOT view this the same, but this is where I'm coming from! I don't think those studies do much value to victims, survivors, perps - no one!

Let me tell you of a story of when "I" was guilty of smacking first! lol! I don't remember what he was raging about - it was over 20 years ago when I was young! I do remember feeling scared, trapped, and I knew I couldn't escape. I never had that type of experience before, and I was completely flustered on HOW to handle it also! I saw the sink in the kitchen, and I made a beeline there. I decided I would hand wash things as he screamed as a way to cope. I had already been chewed up one side and down the other! I plain just wanted him to shut up and leave me alone! I couldn't control that though! I had NO power over that at all. We are talking my mindset at the time here!

I didn't know what was going to happen. I didn't know how to stop him. Heck I didn't know what I should do or how to react. I know I was scared and angry at the same time. I walked to the sink out of my version of 'walk away'. You know the statement you hear alot? That was my version of it at the time.

He suddenly grabbed my arm to swing me around. He started to scream again, and just like that I snapped! I grabbed his hair, and pulled him to the floor. I said as calm as I could, "Don't you EVER lay a hand on ME again!" I let go...and he land there stunned I think. At that point I fled the house. I saw my opening and I took it.

In some circles I would be guilty as charged. The point they ignore is I would have fled if I felt I could get out safely. I would have RAN is more like it! I felt like a trapped animal, and SURE I pulled his hair...I never would have done that under healthier circumstances. To me honest - God must have been there with me because he could have really hurt me! I still don't know WHY he didn't! Was it a dumb thing to do? I guess it could be seen as that, but overall I look at the circumstances and I did the best I could. I don't consider myself one of those 50% that hit first women though.

lol if they surveyed me at the time - or even years later I would have owned that lock, stock and barrel! Doesn't give you a clear picture of what happened does it? I will own part of that, but being responsible for starting it? I just can't do that. I don't think I could have used other boundaries or whatever people want to say at the time. I was a scared, naive, young woman that had never experiencing ANYTHING like that before! Heck I will go further..lol didn't think people acted like that either! I had no life lessons or anything to bring to the table to show me HOW I should have handled things differently.

Are there cruel, evil women out there? OH YES! Just like me years ago I bet those men would own doing something first if asked the right way. lol doesn't mean its true! They could have been talked into it just like I could have been years ago. That makes for lousy studies! I don't have any answers on HOW to do them better. You ask victims, survivors, abusers, etc things for studies when their headspace isn't right...you don't get the clear picture.

Why do I say that? When they stop asking the victims "What did you do to cause them to get so mad?" they might show me they have begun to 'get it'. lol until that time those studies mean nothing to me. They harm victims and abusers at the same time, because they don't take the time to truly understand us.


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