Domestic Violence Questions and Answers is a featured blog post in honor of domestic violence awareness month October 2018.
I was reading a post on the topic of domestic violence, and in the comments section, a gentleman named Brad posted four domestic violence questions.
Domestic Violence Questions
- How do we repair this situation?
- Is there a recovery for domestic violence or should we brand offenders for life?
- What are some ideas to rehabilitate offenders and how to educate our children?
- Having been through domestic violence what are some ideas from the front lines to make a difference?
I replied with a few short answers, based on personal experiences, and noted his questions for a future blog post. Here is a revised copy of the original blog post that first appeared on a former blog (The Full Light).
Often times we ask questions, genuinely wanting a valid answer to solve our problems, however, most of the time, we don’t acknowledge the truth.
This quote by Bernard M. Baruch says it best.
Approach each new problem, not with a view of finding what you hope will be there, but to get the truth, the realities that must be grappled with. You may not like what you find. In that case, you are entitled to try to change it. But do not deceive yourself as to what you do find to be the facts of the situation.
The First Domestic Violence Question
How do we repair this situation?
I don’t believe we will repair domestic violence or other forms of abuse until we thoroughly comprehend why it occurs and how people become a victim of such atrocities.
The first step to repairing this situation is to acknowledge past events that occurred in the abuser and the victim’s life. You must seek to understand what brought each person to this point in life.
Our childhood upbringing and experiences guide future actions in adult life. They govern our mental thoughts, personal behavior, and the overall conduct towards others. And dictate the personal choices we make in life.
When children are raised in a dysfunctional home environment, they “will lack” the proper abilities, guidance, and direction in life.
When a child suffers traumas during childhood, such as child abuse, neglect, and sexual abuse or experiences domestic violence in the home, it “will have” devastating long-term consequences in their adult life. And, unless the child receives adequate long-term counseling, past afflictions will be carried on into the future.
The Long-Term Damage
Our childhood experiences “are” carried over into adulthood, and some adults have experienced a very dark and dysfunctional childhood. And oftentimes children grow into adults without fully understanding the real long-term damage that has been done.
They hide their afflictions and pain, even from themselves, and frequently fail to even acknowledge what happened to them on a mental and emotional level.
I did for over twenty years!
It took me twenty years, “twenty years” to understand the long-term damage that had been done to me growing up in a dysfunctional home with child abuse and child sexual abuse.
Twenty years for me to understand, that growing up in this type of environment paved the way for me to get married at the age of eighteen and endure domestic violence for over three years.
The Final Solution
I feel the most essential solution to repairing this situation is to understand what is hidden in the darkness with sin. When you seek to acknowledge and comprehend the long-term damage we humans do to one another out of dysfunction, we will begin to grasp the need for the Lord, Jesus in our lives.
In the darkness with sin, the truth is hidden, even from ourselves, we cause others pain and anguish, and are unable to show love and compassion towards our fellow man.
To fully repair this situation we need to step out of the darkness, and into the light, and walk by faith with the Lord, Jesus Christ. I know you may have been looking for a better answer, a man-made solution to this problem, however, Jesus is the only one I recommend for real results.
When you fail to acknowledge the Lord, you will continue living in bad conditions like child abuse, domestic violence, and violence.
The Second Domestic Violence Question
Is there a recovery for domestic violence or should we brand offenders for life?
YES! Recovery is possible.
I know for a fact recovery is possible. And branding offenders for life is wrong.
My husband and former abuser of three years sent me a message over twenty years later. In his letter, he said, “I’m not that person anymore.”
Did you get that?
He is “not that person” anymore.
That says it all!
We had both come from a dysfunctional upbringing and brokenness as children. And had problems and issues, hidden in the darkness within ourselves. Never understanding or acknowledging them until many years later, after coming to the Lord, Jesus by faith.
The Lord can transform your life when you accept him by faith.
It really is that simple.
Forgiveness is our weakness, but it’s the Lord’s specialty.
The Third Domestic Violence Question
What are some ideas to rehabilitate offenders and how to educate our children?
It’s possible to rehabilitate some offenders. Offenders must be willing to acknowledge and understand the past so they can learn from it and grow in a different direction.
It’s not good to hold a person in jail for months or years on end only to let them back out in a more severe condition mentally and emotionally. This just enables them for further acts of violence.
They need a light of hope to shine in the dark where sin abounds.
Sending non-violent offenders to long-term counseling centers instead of jail is a better option. Counseling should not be out of the price range for those who need it the most.
If an offender sought out spiritual counseling it would be more beneficial. They need to deal with past issues they most likely don’t even know about. The bottom line here is the person needs to want things to change for themselves.
I learned the hard way, you can’t save someone else only God can. And that person can accept the Lord by faith or reject him entirely.
Real Change Begins With The Children
We need” to educate children about abuse and violence prevention from an early age. This is unfortunate, but necessary given the condition of the world we live in today.
Leaving children in the dark about such issues is very dangerous. And educating them in public schools can save a child from an abusive home. It can give them the information necessary to take action and speak up.
We need to teach children about self-respect, self-love, and what is right and wrong regarding relationships. To show children that men and woman experience and express love for one another differently.
I don’t mean sexual relations. I’m talking about the vast difference between how men and woman operate in general. And we must show our children how to have personal boundaries.
Failing to teach children how to deal with abusive situations is “not wise.” It leaves them in the dark without this important information.
We must set a solid moral foundation for our children’s future. And this starts from the day the child is born and continues until they reach adulthood. The foundation we set for our child’s future is the most important job we as parents have.
Children need a foundation in Christ.
Don’t take it lightly!
The Forth Domestic Violence Question
Having been through domestic violence what are some ideas from the front lines to make a difference?
I lived through domestic violence for three and one-half years. And recognize both parties involved in the violent situation need a separation from one another. ASAP…
Neither one (abuser or victim) will heal in mind or overcome this destructive behavior unless someone steps in to remove them from one another.
Most victims will go back to their abuser out of fear. Their mind is not in a healthy state to make a conscious decision. Conditioned by abuse, victims need time to recondition to a healthy way of life.
We must treat this situation as such. We must step in to take action on their behalf and get them real help in the form of in-house counseling.
Abusers will go back to the victim, and the victim will go back or end up dead. If the victim manages to get away, as I did, they will most likely fall victim again to someone else down the road.
Healing Domestic Violence
The mental state of mind and heartfelt behaviors need to change. This is possible if you recognize why it occurred in the first place.
Abuse of any sort is a state of mind (reprobate) and condition of the heart (sinful) an abuser is in at that time. If we can treat the situation as such, perhaps we can help that person overcome their internal struggles.
We can help bring those who are struggling in the darkness into the light of Christ. Or, we can throw them in jail and let them remain in the dark.
In Christ, you find true healing and become transformed by the grace of God. And the inner spirit of man will find hope, compassion and everlasting love that quenches their very soul.
In the darkness, there is no light of hope to guide your way. Falling victim to abuse or abusing others, you lose your sense of direction in life.
Your inner light that once shined brightly has diminished by fear, and you become afflicted with pain and suffering. And inner strength controlled by the darkness of sin.
In the darkness, your thoughts become filled with uncontrollable emotions such as guilt and shame. Anger takes over your mind, and you act out in a rage at any given moment. Even for those, you love the most.
It becomes a vicious cycle until you acknowledge the source of the problem (sin) and choose to seek out true healing (Jesus).