Monday, October 19, 2009

Domestic Violence Awareness Month

I haven't heard this mentioned much so far. It's halfway through the month. Part of me hopes it's just because I visit more writing blogs, many of which avoid "political" talk, or maybe I fall behind and scroll over/miss the posts on this topic.

But today I was on LJ, reading my friends list, and Jim Hines (author of Goblin Quest and the recently released Mermaid's Madness), had a post addressing abusive relationships. Specifically, he looked at the question, "Why Doesn't She Leave?"

No relationship is perfect, but I've never known any of my friends to fall into a physically abusive relationship. When they' have problems, I try to be there as a comfort, and a willing ear, strong shoulder.

But this is one of those things where, even if I don't have a personal experience to point to, I'm still drawn to articles about it, I want to understand it, and hope fervently that the justice system can be improved for the men and women who are abused.

I don't feel I'm in a place to give an opinion on it, though, because I know it on an intellectual level and empathically through others' stories. I did want to point those who are curious and concerned to Hines' post, though. He occasionally posts about the subject, having experience in counseling people in abusove relationships from a past career (apologies if my details are off about that, but he did work with them). This post examines the question, "Why doesn't she (the abused) leave the abuser?" He points to why people ask that question, and offers some explanation (economics, emotionally controlling, cut off from friends and family, etc.) while putting it out there that the question itself should change, because it still places the blame on the victim.

It's an interesting read, as are the comments, and it breaks my heart, judging from people's comments, the justice system isn't doing nearly enough, in many cases, to help the men and women being abused.

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