Whenever we think gender based violence, the first thing that comes to our mind is sexual violence. However, for violence, that is not the only gender based violence we should be aware of.
There are indeed a few myths associated with violence. Some of them are:
- The female population is the only one suffering from gender based violence.
- Conflicts in a household which lead to such violence are normal.
- You cannot consider battering as a gender based violence. Sometimes, a man needs to control their wife/partner and vice versa.
- Individuals with anger issues can do or say things in a conflict that they do not mean. Their act of violence during this time shouldn’t be considered as gender based violence.
- It is the victim’s fault. They have probably done something.
These said myths about gender based violence not only downplay its seriousness but prevent many from speaking up when dealing with one.
In this excerpt below, we will go into detail about the different GBVs and how to detect them in a household.
What Is Gender-Based Violence
Violent activities one gender faces from either the opposite or the same gender for being born to that sex.
This is a deep-seated problem in our society, and people often disregard this as a stereotypes. Normalizing them as something that will happen in due time. This heavily affects its prevention.
Especially when the majority of the criminals behind these acts are repeat offenders, not getting stopped by someone simply increases their chances of committing it again.
Afterall, for any type of violence doesn’t have x punishable circumstances, they will do it again. According to the latest data, more than 640 females are subjects of GBV. The age bracket is 15 and older.
The perpetrators who commit such a crime against this woman are likely to do it again to the same woman.
Types Of Gender-Based Violence
Unfortunately, gender based violence doesn’t limit itself to one act. It is in every sphere, every sector, and every household if you look carefully.
Every year, thousands face discomfort and feel unsafe in their own house. Maybe you didn’t think that some act was gender based violence.
Psychological Abuse – Not Every Abuse Is Physical
Not all violence leaves a physical mark. Some leave even a deeper fissure in our minds. Some methods of psychological coercion between intimate partners are as follows:
- Most of the abuse is carried out by an intimate partner or a family member.
- Inserting fear and intimidation which prevents the individual from raising their voice.
- Threatening them with physical violence, isolation from children, and public humiliation.
- Manipulation is done by isolating the person from their closest friends and families. All in all, people who really care about them. This makes the person feel trapped, thinking the abuser is the only person there for them.
- Both sexes can be the victim of psychological abuse. However, women are the majority of victims and survivors.
- Frequent and continuous psychological abuse can cause serious mental health issues like clinical depression and bipolar disorder caused by the anxious highs and lows you feel. In some extreme cases, it might lead to PTSD (Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder).
Economic Or Financial Abuse – Some People Do Not Have A Choice
Not many talk about this form of abuse. But the facts and figures of a 2022 report show us one thing. How abusive having no control over one’s financial situation is.
- Yes, even a stay-at-home wife taking care of their children has every right to have control over her own financial matters.
- Unfortunately, according to the latest report, 81% of women in Liberia have no control over their own money.
- In Malawi, 28% of women suffer from economic abuse on a daily basis. This includes their partner taking their money without consent. Forced work to earn for the family even if their health is in a poor state.
- In 50% of Bangladesh families, it is common to hand over your income to your husband. Any form of protest can lead to verbal or physical abuse.
- Not allowing the woman to be financially independent is also a form of gender based violence. There have been instances where family members have shown up to their workplaces and harassed them.
Sexual Harassment In the Workplace – Not All Harassment Is Overt
Sexual harassment in workplaces is so covert and hidden behind the shadows that many do not agree it is a reality.
It is not limited to women. In fact, this is a form of violence that almost everyone is afraid to speak about because of the imbalance in power.
According to the census, 63% of women did not file a complaint, and 79% of men kept issues to themselves.
Their harassment being seen as a joke or a means to tamper someone’s reputation also plays as a fear factor.
Verbal Abuse – The Worst Form Of Domestic Manipulation
Verbal abuse in a domestic or external environment can be worse for someone’s self-respect. Hearing disrespectful verses, slurs, and demanding comments every day can fill anyone with a fog of negativity.
At one point, anyone would start believing these words, especially if the majority of the family members are saying so.
This is indeed a reality for many. In fact, it is the most common form of abuse. In almost 50% of every household, someone is suffering from verbal abuse.
It is so common that many do not even think of such cruel words as abuse.
Other Forms Of GDV
Here are some forms of GDV you might not know or consider as violence to one’s fundamental human rights.
Stalking – Both Online and offline
Excessive stalking, relentless following to the point that an individual feels unsafe. This includes sending unwelcome gifts, standing out in their residential areas, or keeping in track of their location through social media.
FGM – Female Genital Mutilation
This is still a reality in places like Somalia, where cultural biases make females go through such horror.
This is the act of removing a female genital organ externally for no medical reason. Often done by a traditional healer without the right medical knowledge.
Adding the psychological effect with physical distress can cause lifetime anxiety and even health issues. These include but aren’t limited to excessive bleeding, HIV, infection, and cysts.
Lack Of Body Autonomy – Government Deciding What We Should Do
To keep in mind what is happening in some of the states right now, it is safe to say this is the height of human rights abuse.
Women can go through health complications, they could be a victim of sexual abuse, and they might not be economically or mentally ready to be a parent. Yet, they should go through the trauma and horrors of childbirth because abortion is illegal.
Not having autonomy over their own body is one of the worst cases of gender based violence.
Corrective Rape – The Worst Form Of Conversion Therapy
We have all heard about the horrors of conversion therapy. However, when it comes to the worst one, we do have a pick.
Corrective rape is when someone with a different sexuality in sexual activity with the opposite sex for conversion. Th
This is to make the person conform to the heterosexual ideologies of the society.Horrific cases of such corrective rape have come to light over the years. (Source)