We’ve got your back
We’ve got your back
Parent24 Editor, Scott Dunlop
sure how much time you have to keep up with the news, but you’ve probably been
as shocked as me at the death of Reeva Steenkamp. I’m horrified by the stats
being thrown around about domestic violence- including one which says that over
2 000 women in SA die annually at the hands of their intimate partners.
There are way too many incidents of entire families being killed, usually by a male
that have to do with parenting, you may be wondering. Well, there’s a chance
that someone you know may be dealing with abuse, and keeping quiet: a victim of
it is just as likely to stay with an abuser, and you could be friends with
someone who is living that horror daily.
be the person who has made too many excuses for an abusive partner, or had to
lie to your kids or lock their bedroom doors in order to shield them from it.
You might be concealing bruises with makeup or avoiding your friends. There are
no quick fixes for damaged relationships, but if you, a friend or neighbour is
trapped in this cycle, please consider the following:
a lawyer: There are lawyers who provide a service for abused women and children
for free. If your situation means that your financial status could be affected
if you leave your partner, there are NPOs which provide short-term places of
a court order: This can include provisions which would protect any vulnerable
children- you don’t have to abandon them to an environment which may present
someone whom you trust: Children should not be asked to keep quiet about
threats to their safety or the safety of a parent.
you suspect that a firearm in the home presents a threat as it could be used
against you, insist that it is removed from the home or hand it in at a local
charges: As difficult as this may be, it could save your life. Consult an
organisation with experience in this to find out the safest way to do it. Do
this as soon as possible, especially after an incident involving violence.
accept excuses from or make them for an abusive partner.
One of the
reasons women stay with an abuser is in order to protect their children, but
children exposed to domestic violence may experience trauma as well as develop
life-long emotional difficulties. Taking responsibility for them is a priority,
so it is better to remove the child from the situation rather than try and
protect them from within it.
the right to a safe domestic environment for yourself and your children.
For all of
you in happy, loving families, that’s wonderful! I hope that your children
learn from your relationships and grow to become loving adults, too.
looking out for each other.
gentler note: Why not tell us your most loving family moment- Just drop as an email at firstname.lastname@example.org and you could win a R250 kalahari.com voucher.