Thursday, October 28, 2010

Domestic Violence is Never The Answer

As a younger mommy I try to stay in tune with other young mommies. But, when I heard about all these shows on MTV like Teen Mom and 16 & Pregnant, I honestly didn’t care. I think I’ve maybe watched 10 minutes of each of these shows and turned the channel, it’s a “reality” show that I just wasn’t able to connect with.

There seems to be a lot of positive and negative support regarding these shows and the younger moms portrayed in them. I’ve recently seen them cover magazines, but the latest buzz around these shows is extremely unfortunate.

It started when I was over visiting Tara at The Young Mommy Life, she wrote a post Is domestic violence ever entertaining? Apparently one of the teen moms has been engaging in violence with her boyfriend/daughter’s father Gary. And to answer Tara’s question: NO, domestic violence is NEVER entertaining. EVER.

Then today I came across an article written by Tracy Clark-Flory titled Domestic abuse on "Teen Mom," Again. Apparently, the violence between Amber and Gary has continued and from what I read has escalated, with their innocent daughter often having to witness their parent’s fights. Now, Tracy brought up an EXCELLENT point when she said,

“I can't help wondering what the public reaction would be if the direction of the violence in their relationship was reversed. It's hard to imagine comparable male-on-female violence continuing to air, season after season, without major outcry or intervention.”

When I hear and think of domestic violence it is always a man engaging in violence against a woman. As a society, men are (generally) taught that you should never lay your hands on a woman! But, are we women taught to keep our hands off of men? I honestly feel that it is more socially acceptable for a woman to beat up a man than for a man to beat up a woman. Maybe it’s because women are categorized as weak and dainty and men are thought of to be strong and aggressive. But I can guarantee you that if Amber’s daughter’s father was the attacker and aggressor (maybe he is, but from what I have read he’s not) than MTV would.not.air.those.episodes. And that makes me question society’s value system.

According to A Hidden Crime: Domestic Violence Against Men Is a Growing Problem violence against men is a widely growing problem, but there is a lack of research on this growing trend. Yet, “half of all domestic violence cases involve an exchange of blows and the remaining 50% is evenly split between men and women who are brutalized by their partners.” Hmmm, funny how we, the public are usually only told or outraged over a man victimizing a woman.

What is also interesting to note is that when domestic violence against a man is brought to light, “as in the case of actor Phil Hartman -- the focus tends to shift to mental illness.” Whattttt!!!!

Violence against women is wrong.
Violence against men is wrong.
Violence is never the answer.

We as a society have to stop viewing domestic violence as an act solely aimed at abusing and hurting women. Violence happens everywhere in all types of interpersonal relationships, and each should be treated seriously.

What are your thoughts? Why do you think society has an easier time showing violence towards men but not towards women?

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