7 Ways to Prevent Violence Against Women
It's up to us to prevent violence against women. We need to know how to recognize any type of harmful or dangerous situation. And once we do, we need to put a stop to it before it's too late.
For many women who find themselves in violent situations, it’s very difficult to take a stand. For that reason, many choose to endure the violence with the hopes that one day it will stop happening.
But what we need to understand is that when a person is violent, the behavior isn’t likely to stop. This is true when it comes to any type of abuse – physical, psychological, sexual, etc.
What are the different types of violence against women?
As we pointed out above, there isn’t just one type of violence against women. Violence and abuse occur in a variety of situations and environments. When we speak about the different ways in which women suffer violence, we refer to the following categories:
This is often the first type of violence that comes to mind when we think about violence against women. It’s also the most evident, because of the visible external marks. Physical violence refers to any type of injury or physical suffering that someone inflicts on a woman. It’s often noticeable because of bruises, burns, cuts and other physical wounds.
Psychological violence refers mainly to the psychological humiliation and manipulation of women, usually on behalf of their partners. This type of abuse is harder for outsiders to detect because there is no physical evidence.
And for that same reason, many women who suffer psychological abuse tend to remain silent. They may have a hard time admitting that what they’re experiencing is abuse. At the same time, they may also be afraid no one will believe them or take the abuse seriously.
While psychological abuse leaves no physical scars, it has detrimental effects on a woman’s self-esteem and psychological health.
Violence against women isn’t only something that occurs in the home. Women are subject to violence in a number of different spheres or environments:
There are a great number of decisions that women have a right to make on their own when it comes to pregnancy and labor. However, quite unfortunately, medical personnel often make decisions regarding medical interventions without consulting their patients.
What’s more, they may act directly in conflict with the mother’s requests. This type of violence also includes inhumane treatment of women by medical staff.
This type of violence refers, of course, to aggressive sexual acts and those that go against women’s consent. However, sexual abuse also refers to the events that lead up to the sexual act. Furthermore, not allowing women to make decisions about their own sexuality is another form of sexual violence. A women has the right to decide with whom, when and how.
This is a type of violence that anyone can observe on a day-to-day basis. It refers to messages, jokes, icons, publicity, song lyrics, etc. that depreciate and/or objectify women. For example, it includes song lyrics that treat women as weak or fragile.
Violence in the workplace
It’s very common for women to experience violence in the workplace. Very often, this type of violence and discrimination remains hidden below infinite excuses and justifications. As women, it’s important that we defend our abilities, qualifications and equality to keep this from happening.
“Jealousy, the invasion of privacy and isolation from friends and family are all types of violence against women”
Steps you can take to prevent violence against women
If you suspect any type of violence, it’s important to follow a series of steps to identify and stop it. Violence against women is something that can happen at any time, and all women are at risk. Therefore, we all need to be aware and take action when needed.
- Identify the act of violence. If you suspect that someone close to you is violent, you should carefully analyze how the person treats you. If you still aren’t sure if this treatment constitutes violence, discuss the issue with a trusted friend or family member.
- Don’t treat acts of violence as normal. When someone makes destructive comparisons about us, pushes us, controls our actions, etc., this is violence. If you experience or witness this type of behavior, it’s time to take action. Justifying or minimizing abuse will only allow it to continue and quite possibly get worse.
- Look for support. When women suffer from violence of any sort, it’s important that we look for support in the right place. This means turning to people who will listen to us and take our situation seriously, without judgement. Having support plays a major part in finding the courage and tools to face the situation.
- Be a strong woman. This is often easier said than done, but it’s not impossible. The key is finding the strength to make the decision to break free. We need to recognize and admit when we’re suffering violence and find the way out.
- Seek psychological help. When someone endures a violent situation, it’s normal for this to take its toll on their self-esteem. Women who suffer violence often feel insecure and downtrodden. Psychological treatment can help us recover the self-confidence we lost.
- Research all you can about violence against women. We have a better chance of putting a stop to violence against women if we’re informed. This not only helps us protect ourselves, but also friends and family members that may also be suffering violence.
- If you witness any type of violence, report it. This is one of the most important ways to prevent violence against women. If you notice any sort of violent attitude, don’t remain silent.
- Educate your children about how they should treat others and be treated. It’s important that we also take steps to give our children a better future. Both girls and boys need to learn to treat others with dignity and respect – and demand the same.
In the face of any violent or harmful situation, we need to find the determination to get out. As women, we’re all at risk of suffering violence, but being informed is vital in putting an end to it. Preventing violence against women is possible.