Violence in families is a common problem that has not been taken seriously. The effects of growing up in violent homes affect the children physiologically and physically. The effects are both short term and long term, prompting a need to take a keen look at this issue. In the U.S,family or domestic violence is the most common type of violence. Gerdes reports that one in every six families experience violencein the U.S. This means that over 16% of the population experiences violence. There are many issues involved with violence in homes with alcohol being the main causative agent. It is worth noting that the family set up is affected when there is violence as one partner affects how the other family members react or act during and after the violence. Violence in most homes is physical with children and mothers being the most affected. According to Haugen, abuse against women is more common than abuse against children, but the most affected psychologically and emotionally are the children (Haugen 90).
Haugen also notes that children who undergo such situations have numerous problems like low self-esteem, depression, poor control of impulses, and are highly powerless. As a result, they are more prone to drug abuse or adapting violent behaviors as they grow up as compared to children who grow upon in peaceful families, (Huagen, 67). Cases of children whose mothers were battered are high and they are more likely to be battered once they are grown up. The other effect of this problem that shows its seriousness is in the rates of drug abuse among women and children who suffer from violence. Most of them turn to drugs as a coping mechanism. It is also common for children to have survivor’s guilt because they could not do anything to save their mothers when they were being abused. Therefore, the problem not only affects the mother in the end but the children and the whole society. This is because children learn the behavior and once they grow up, especially in their teenage years, they may become violent, abuse drugs and join criminal gangs who terrorize the community. Gerdes proves that recent statistics show that of the 10% of women seeking divorce over 75% come from abusive marriages. It is therefore necessary to get the women out of these relationships to safety homes (Gerdes 65).
There are many problems being encountered in the quest to solve this problem. The main problem is battery even after the women and their children leave their homes. It is difficult to help them get into safety where they are not under constant threat from their violent partners. The other problem encountered is the willingness of some women to leave their families for fear of murder. According to Kenney, their partners always threaten women that life would be even harsher if they leave them in this case, it is difficult to convince them otherwise, (Kenney, 56).There are also cases where the children and women are not willing to talk about the violence with anyone because they will be battered if they do.
According to Kenney, the causes of violence in homes vary with alcohol being a common cause in most families, (Kenney, 74). Kennedy notes that spouses who drink alcohol or abuse any other drugs tend to be violent to their families. Other cause of this problem includes traumatic childhoods whereby children who witnessed their father’s beating up their mothers become violent. This is common for boys who had violent fathers. If this problem is not solved it will be recurrent and future generations will be drug addictive, violent and uncontrollable. Children may become alcoholics and mothers will leave in fear.
There is a need to come up with solutions to this problem. Numerous efforts are being made by local agencies that seek to solve this problem. According to Haugen, some of the solutions underway for solving this problem include working with shelters set for abused children and women for them to have a place to go to when they leave violent relationships, (Haugen 89). This will ensure they are safe and are not under threat by violent partners. The risks of these women being killed once they leave abusive marriages increase dramatically as most of them report being battered fourteen times as compared to those who decide to stay in the abusive and violent marriages. This solution is best for those who are willing to leave the marriages. Gerdes also thinks that the other solution to this problem is working with local agencies to identify different ways in which children can cope with the psychological effects of the violence witnessed when their mothers were battered and abused by their fathers, (Gerdes, 34).. In this case, the solution seeks to address thelong-term effects that violence in homes have on these young minds. It also aims at reducing the risks of these children adapting the violent behaviors or turning to drugs as a coping mechanism. Local agencies and women groups seek to help these women and children to come out and leave the violent homes. Haugen also provides an alternative solution to the problem as identifying and reaching the children and women in such violent families, (Haugen 156). It is always very difficult for children and mothers in violent homes to come out and seek help on their own. This makes it hard to identify them and help them out of their predicament. It is only possible if one is able to maintain a trusting relationship with them in order to have them speak out and have the courage to face their issues. Kenney provides that there is a need to improve the legal systems to give more power or local agencies in order to help protect the women and their families. This will give women confidence to go to them and seek assistance, (Kenney 90).
The National Coalition against Domestic Violence provides that women and children who undergo violence need to have someone they can trust so they can open up about the violence they go through, Haugen, 123). Haugen states that will help them come out and leave the violent relationships. They claim that working with these families and getting them to safe homes is the best way to get them to safety and ensure their partners do not threaten them.
The best solution to this problem is coming up with a trusting relationship where children and mothers can come to local agencies and confide in the agents about what is happening in their marriages. This will help them know alternative solutions to their problems. The women will also have confidence to leave the marriages if they know for sure that their lives are not under threat. Kenney also notes that others might question why women may decide to go to the agencies (Kenney 78). The women need people they can trust and open up to without fear of reprimanding them. It is therefore fit to have a trusting relationship with them. This will prompt them to go and seek for help when they see things are turning violent hence prevent extreme violence and ensure children do not suffer from the different consequences of violence in homes.
Gerdes, Louise I. Domestic violence. Detroit: Greenhaven Press, 2012. Print.
Haugen, David M. Domestic violence: opposing viewpoints. Detroit: Greenhaven Press, 2005. Print.
Kenney, Karen Latchana. Domestic violence. Edina, Minn.: ABDO Pub., 2012. Print.