Monday, April 11, 2022 8:40 pm
By Funmi Peter-Omale
Unfortunately, some of them people decrying domestic violence and/or abuse on social media, are themselves DV perpetrators or DV victims.
DV is more than physically beating up or attacking a defenceless person.
DV is not only between married people; it can be a mother or father against their child. It can also be a child perpetuating abuse against his or her helpless or disabled parent.
Domestic violence takes different forms; it can be a simple coercive control of the other person; seemingly psychological and emotional blackmailing and controlling.
Like persistently body shaming the other person, condemning and controlling how they dress, where they can or can’t go and what they can and can not do.
Forcing a wife or husband to have conjugal relations when they are not “in the mood”, “sick” or “tired” are all abuse. The operational word here is “force”. In some societies, a wife can report her husband for rape if he forcefully had his way with her!
Grown up children yelling at aged parents, pushing them to give up their hard earned money, land or other possessions are all abuse.
DV can stealthily creep into anyone’s day to day life, without meaning for it to happen that way. It can be so subtle, you’d think you’re just helping the person to be a better person.
But in the eyes of the law, you’re coercing them, forcing them, blackmailing them against their wish. You’re twisting them to be or do what YOU want them to.
It is an abuse when you constantly beat that child for misbehaving, or “punish” a child for being wayward.
Abuse is when you are eating good succulent food, and your stepchildren are denied food or given garri to eat.
Domestic abuse is when you allow your children eat good food, and your house help and other domestic staff are made to eat left overs from the previous day!
Abuse is when you treat your children like kings and queens, and your nanny or house help that take care of them, live and sleep in filthy rags. Your children sleep on beds, your helpers sleep on the floor.
Abuse is when you make your house help to be cleaning, washing and scrubbing at 10pm while you, your children and husband are watching TV or sleeping.
The bottomline is, there’s a bit domestic abuse persuasion in all of us, albeit unintentionally.
So, we must not only strive to see the specks in others but also search for the logs within ourselves where we are lacking.
Domestic abuse is rife in many homes! Before you start casting the domestic abuse stones, check yourself. Check your home.
*Funmi Peter-Omale writes from London