Any act that threatens the well-being of an individual is termed as abuse, while domestic violence is the systematic method in which one partner gains power and control by instilling fear and forcing subservience. Violence is not only physical abuse, but emotional, economic, verbal, and sexual. The social stigma of public dishonor is the greatest cause for a woman to become trapped in this atrocious environment, and another important reason is economic dependence on her perpetrator.
Many times a woman feels that the abuse she goes through is her fault, that she has made a mistake. This deduction is false; abusing is the abuser’s fault not the victim’s. In the beginning of this horrifying journey the victim may feel the reasons for being abused are justified, as time goes on and she keeps changing herself for the abuser, she then realizes that there is no escaping from his wrath, he will be violent for any reason and no reason at all. An abuser feels entitled over the victim’s body and her mind, she is not allowed to have individuality, for the abuser she is his commodity.
The famous ‘Bell Bajao’ campaign encouraged residents to stop domestic violence by ringing the doorbell whenever violence was suspected. The problem is that even though we are aware of a neighbor whose shouts are heard due to pain, we tend to mind my own business and walk away. It’s not that we don’t feel bad; it’s that the ‘bystander effect’, a concept of social psychology comes into play. We believe that someone else will help that individual, someone braver, stronger, and more experienced in handling this situation.