According to an article at Mint Press News, an incident of domestic violence occurs every 15 seconds against women in the United States.
In comparison, the same article shares that an incident of domestic violence occurs every 37.8 seconds against men.
(Let’s not forget that part of both those statistics is same gender violence.)
That’s not much of a difference. We must never forget that domestic violence is not just a woman’s issue.
In addition, we must also remember that violence against women does not justify violence by women.
There are far too many instances when a woman strikes out against her abuser in defense to discover she is arrested on assault charges instead of him. Or, worse, when a woman decides she has had enough and strikes out in vengeance and retribution instead of leaving.
It is far, far better to walk away, to end the relationship and start fresh than it is to become violent. We need to never stoop to the abusers level, no matter how tempting, how angry, how frustrated we get. Acting in self-defense is a completely different matter, but be sure the consequences are worth the action.
I once knew a lady who became as abusive towards her ex and her children as he was towards her. There are many such situations, many relationships that have disintegrated into a battle ground where both parties are abusive toward each other.
Somewhere along the way we have been conditioned to believe that retreat is not an option, that returning violence for violence is a reasonable alternative, a better escape. I’ve heard many people say that “he’d only hit me once and I’d flatten him”. An abuser will lie, will twist the truth, will deny their assault and blame you for all of the violence… and they will be believed because they speak falsehood as if it is truth.
Counter assault, counter accusations… these are part of an abusers defense. It helps protect them from the consequences of their actions. It helps maintain their illusion of blamelessness.
It also means that the statistics are skewed, probably in both directions.
We must be the change we want to see in the world. We must hold ourselves to a higher standard. We must maintain our own integrity and honor. Otherwise, we allow the world to continue to disintegrate into unchecked violence and evil.
Don’t let abuse change you. Don’t let the actions of people who hurt you cause you to hurt others. Find healing. Seek it out! Work hard for it, fight for yourself.
Your story is not finished being written.