No one should ever be allowed to hurt you ~ Stop violence against women and children!   Leave a comment

This morning, the radio show hosts were discussing violence against women and children.

– On average, every six days a woman in Canada is killed by her intimate partner.*
– Each year, over 40,000 arrests result from domestic violence—that’s about 12% of all violent crime in Canada. Since only 22% of all incidents are reported to the police, the real number is much higher.*

This is not a problem that goes away with time.

My father once shared a painful memory from his youth with me. His eldest sister had been violently abused by her husband, who also had a severe drinking problem. However, coming from a very traditional family, his own father (my grandfather), the patriarch of the family, refused to let my father intercede, on the basis that my aunt was married and now belonged to another man’s family.  That was over seventy years ago.  My father was only a teenager back then, but he lives with regret until today, wishing he had done something to help her, to save her.

My aunt never left her husband.  She stayed for her family, took the abuse, raised her three children.  She died in her forties of heart failure.

Times are different now.  We can all do something about it.

  • If someone is in immediate danger, call 911 or the emergency number in your community.*
  • Put her safety first. Never talk to anyone about abuse in front of their suspected abuser. Unless she specifically asks for it, never give her materials about domestic abuse or leave information through voice messages or emails that might be discovered by her abuser. However, abuse thrives in secrecy, so speak up if you can do so safely.*
  • If she wants to talk, listen. If she doesn’t, simply tell her she does not deserve to be harmed and that you are concerned for her safety. Ask her if there is anything you can do to help, but don’t offer to do anything that makes you uncomfortable or feels unsafe.*
  • If she decides to stay in the relationship, try not to judge her. Remember, leaving an abuser can be extremely dangerous. Sometimes, the most valuable thing you can offer a woman who is being abused is your respect.*
  • Learn about emergency services in your community, such as your local women’s shelter or sexual assault centre. Search on-line, or consult the front pages of your telephone directory.*

“When a woman who has experienced violence knows she’s not alone, when we give her, and her children, a safe place to stay, and the right kind of help, we give her hope. Together, we can give women hope to rebuild.” http://rogersmediatv.ca/citytv/morningforchange/

*Source: http://www.canadianwomen.org/facts-about-violence

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