Domestic violence is a problem that needs to be solved in the world today. It causes the suicide death rate increases because of domestic violence. In the USA, domestic violence is a huge issue. In The Georgia Domestic Violence Fatality Review Project said that the death rate because of domestic violence between 2004 – 2018 caused by firearms in Georgia is 59%. According to the Childhood Domestic Violence Association (also known as CDV) said: “Those who grow up with domestic violence are 6 times more likely to commit suicide and 50% more likely to abuse drugs and alcohol”. Compare to the USA, domestic violence in Asia is also a huge issue too. According to VNExpress International, said that: “58 percent of women who have ever been married experienced at least one of physical, mental or sexual violence at the hands of their husbands, reported the National Study on Domestic Violence Against Women by the Vietnamese government and the United Nations.”. But what is domestic violence? Why and how it can happen? And the main and most important thing I will discuss, is why does domestic violence affect children’s learning and psychology? Domestic violence is violent behavior toward the victim in a family.
Domestic violence can be physical, emotional, sexual, digital, and verbal. It happens only in a family (long-term relationship), so that’s why it is so confusing to many people because many people think that domestic violence is harmful, physical violence between men and women. Domestic violence can happen anywhere, at any time, and even at any age. The abuser can make the victim stressed, hopeless, depressed, and have a high chance of thinking about committing suicide. According to Roxanne Dryden-Edward, a former Chair of the Committee on Developmental Disabilities for the American Psychiatric Association, she said that: “About 25% of gay, lesbian, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) individuals are victims of intimate partner abuse, just as often as are heterosexual women.” Most domestic violence victims are women because men have more power, uniqueness, and rights than women. This “Sexist” issue happens a lot in Vietnam. According to the Suffolk Voice News, said: “Vietnamese women, in general, are considered as less intelligent than men, so she is often looked down on, and must obey her husband no matter what he asks of her.” Domestic violence can happen depending on the environment. The abuser starts to abuse could because of a lack of financial resources, or the abuser could have a psychological issue, mental health, or even alcohol. The abuser could have stress and anxiety due to work, jealousy of someone, thinking he/she has a better, wonderful life, or even being sexist. According to Lisa Firestone, a clinical psychologist and a co-author of “Conquer Your Critical Inner Voice”, said: “There are two emotional dynamics that contribute greatly to domestic violence. One involves a destructive thought process (or ‘critical inner voice’) that abusers experience both toward themselves and their partners, thoughts like ‘You’re not a man if you don’t control her or ‘She is making a fool out of you.’
The other factor involves a harmful illusion of a connection between a couple, what my father, psychologist Robert Firestone, has referred to as a *fantasy bond*.” Well, in my opinion, domestic violence can happen in 4 patterns. The first pattern is to charm the victim. This is when the victim knows that the abuser loves him/her so much, always be together for the rest of their lifetime. The second pattern is to isolate the victim, this is when everything goes insane. Of course, the victim didn’t tell that he/she going to another place and abusing their partner, obviously. Instead, the abuse will go slow and stealthy. The abuser will tell the victim that he/she will move to another place because there are better jobs, a better environment, or any other excuses. For the reason of the abuser moving to another place, the victim has to go with him/her because the victim wants to live with the abuser. Leslie Morgan Steiner, an author, and a domestic survivor said that in the second pattern the victim has fallen into the “Crazy Love” zone (which means that the victim is now “trapped in a cage”).
The third pattern is introducing the threat of violence, this is when the victim realizes that he/she is in danger every day, minute, and second of their life. In this pattern, the abuser now shows the threat and violence to the victim like showing weapons (mostly guns or knives), and verbal violence, making the victim suffer and have nowhere to run. Sadly, the last pattern is the abused have to torture, or even murder the victim. The abuser could get very mad or get drunk, can’t control him/herself victim, and then kill the victim. According to the Thanh Nien News, said: “Nearly 60 percent of married women in Vietnam have suffered physical or sexual abuse at least once in their life, according to figures released by a new campaign to stop violence against women.” The victim cannot even leave the abuser because once they leave, the abuser will be stalking the victim every day and weeks, even for years. The abuser knows where the victim is and kills or hired someone to kill the victim. In Vietnam (Asia in general), leaving a husband, known as divorce, is a very big issue because it could ruin a family’s reputation. According to the Prevalence and Characteristics of Sexual Violence, Stalking, and Intimate Partner Violence Victimization from the United State, said: “61 percent of female victims and 44 percent of male victims were stalked by a current or former intimate partner”. Yes! Domestic violence can affect a lot on children’s learning and psychology.
In the U.S, more than 3 million children had witnessed domestic violence at home every year, which is terrible. Children need to have love and care from someone to understand their feeling, like their loved ones. But because of domestic violence, children will find themselves hopeless, and anxious and they will get depression. They will also get anxiety, not just for one day or 5 days, but for a whole lifetime. According to the Women’s aid organization said: “Children can experience both short and long term cognitive, behavioral and emotional effects as a result of witnessing domestic abuse.” Domestic violence can give mental health issues in children. According to the National Child Traumatic Stress Network Organization (also known as NCTSN Organization), said: “Children may also experience longer-term problems with health, behavior, school, and emotions, especially when domestic violence goes on for a long time.” Domestic violence not just affects children’s psychology, but also affect children’s learning too. Because of domestic violence, children could have some problems at school like socializing or having a hard time asking the teacher, being an introvert, or even using drugs. They also can’t trust themself and others while learning, studying as a team, or alone. Although domestic violence may give a lot of impact on children’s psychology and learning, it could spread by generation, which means that children who experienced domestic violence in the past could possibly turn into an abuser in the future. According to the Women’s aid organization said that: “The cycle of violence otherwise known as the intergenerational theory is often referred to when considering the effects of domestic abuse on children; however, research findings are inconsistent, and there is no automatic cause and effect relationship.” But still, children who experienced domestic violence in the past don’t have to be an abuser in the future, as long as they have a good education, have friends and teachers to help with the problems, and always be positive.
A lot of schools these days have applied education about mental health, bullying, online predator, domestic violence, and a lot more great psychology lessons. These lessons could impact a lot of children’s future, help them understand more about the impact of those issues, and help them how to handle (or stop) them. If domestic violence is so hard to deal with, we should end this domestic violence cycle. Well for a student like me, we should educate students, teachers, family, and others about how domestic violence is a big impact on the world. Also, I think the government needs to make strict laws about human rights, especially women’s rights. Victims always can contact the police or the local domestic violence agency if they got beaten or got abused by the abuser. We should support the victim of domestic violence, and let the victim make a decision so that the victim can be confident with his/her life. According to Lisa Firestone, said: “To break this cycle and to reduce the cases of domestic violence in the generations to come, we have to implement programs that are effective and help violent perpetrators get the knowledge and help they need to not create the next generation of violent individuals in their children.” In conclusion, domestic violence is a huge problem in our world. According to the Parliament of Australia, said: “Of those who were sexually assaulted in the 12 months prior to the survey, 21 percent of women (21 500) reported that the perpetrator was a previous partner; eight percent (7 800) reported that the perpetrator was a current partner. No males reported sexual assault by a current or previous partner”. For me, domestic violence has gone way too far, so I think we should act quickly. We should speak out, and tell everyone how bad is domestic violence in school, the workplace, or even with family, friends, and neighbors. And for the abusers, don’t just assume that words are not a bad, harmful thing, words can hurt the victim inside their souls. Domestic violence is also making divorces happen more quickly, which for me is not so great. Aisha Mirza once said: “It is not the bruises on the body that hurt. It is the wounds of the heart and the scars on the mind.”