Abuse and Domestic Violence

26 Aug

Did you know that incest is the most common form of child abuse in the Maldives?

Contrary to the dominant view that a pedophile is a stranger lurking among the crowd to hunt a child for sexual gratification, most pedophiles live with the children. And victims include girls and boys. Pedophiles are either related to the child by blood or marriage. Most of them are their own fathers, brothers, uncles, cousins, grandfathers and sometimes even mothers and female relatives, though their numbers are rather small.

More children are harmed by the very people who are entrusted to protect them. Sadly, incest hardly gets reported. Those that are reported are just the tip of the iceberg. The denial and attempts by family members to protect the family honor enable the abuse to continue and entangles the child in a vicious cycle of trauma, guilt and manipulation. It’s easier for a well-wisher or a parent / guardian to report abuse committed by the non-related person.

Incest is further compounded by the powerlessness of women in the family. A woman’s financial dependency on her father or husband makes it the commonest factor that prevents her from asserting her responsibilities towards protecting her child. More often than not, she herself is a victim of violence by her own husband or legal guardian. She needs help before she can help her children.
Abuse and domestic violence should be understood in the context of power in the family. However, we seldom think about this. The more egalitarian a family is, the lesser is the likelihood of victimization in the family. Therefore, empowerment of women and children cannot be stressed enough to create healthy families.

contributed by “maasin”.
1 Comment

Posted by on August 26, 2007 in Attitude to Abuse


One response to “Abuse and Domestic Violence

  1. Anonymous

    August 26, 2007 at 9:31 pm

    keke..nice dawud be even better, if u cud bak it up wit som data dho!…but all in all a discussion of paramount importance..n one that cannot be swept under the carpet ne morecheers

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