Saturday, 15 June 2013

Tope Aigba: Do You Love Me to Hurt Me?

On Friday 14th June, my brother Ayobami Sholola @ayosholola and I were chatting when he said something about “life issues & perspectives” and it struck a chord in me and the word “Women Battering” flashed through my mind. On getting back to my office, I began to think and ruminate on the thought. I consulted a friend @ameh_arome that have an ongoing advocacy against every form of domestic violence & rape and he was of great help.

Studying and researching revealed that writing on “Women battering” is narrowing the issue down to just an aspect of the matter whereas the wider and more encompassing matter is on DOMESTIC VIOLENCE.

Domestic violence, also known as domestic abuse, spousal abuse, battering, family violence, dating abuse, and Intimate Partner Violence (IPV), is a pattern of behavior which involves the abuse by one partner against another in an intimate relationship such as marriage, cohabitation, dating or within the family.
Domestic violence can take many forms, including physical aggression or assault (hitting, kicking, biting, shoving, restraining, slapping, throwing objects, battery), or threats thereof; sexual abuse; emotional abuse; controlling or domineering; intimidation; stalking; passive/covert abuse (e.g., neglect); and economic deprivation.

Domestic violence and abuse is not limited to obvious physical violence. Domestic violence can also mean endangerment, criminal coercion, kidnapping, unlawful imprisonment, trespassing, harassment, and stalking.

 According to the Merriam-Webster dictionary definition, domestic violence is: "the inflicting of physical injury by one family or household member on another; also: a repeated / habitual pattern of such behavior."

The term "intimate partner violence" (IPV) is often used synonymously with domestic abuse/domestic violence. Family violence is a broader definition, often used to include child abuse, elder abuse, and other violent acts between family members. Wife abuse, wife beating, and battering are descriptive terms that have lost popularity recently for several reasons:

·         There is acknowledgement that many victims are not actually married to the abuser, but rather cohabiting or in other arrangements.
·         Abuse can take other forms than physical abuse. Other forms of abuse may be constantly occurring, while physical abuse happens occasionally.
·         Males as well as females may be victims of domestic violence, and females as well as males can be the perpetrators.

These other forms of abuse have the potential to lead to mental illness, self-harm, and even attempts at suicide.

The US Office on Violence Against Women (OVW) defines domestic violence as a "pattern of abusive behavior in any relationship that is used by one partner to gain or maintain power and control over another intimate partner". The definition adds that domestic violence "can happen to anyone regardless of race, age, sexual orientation, religion, or gender", and can take many forms, including physical abuse, sexual abuse, emotional, economic, and psychological abuse.
From the afore-mentioned, it is necessary to explain these forms of abuses highlighted above:

1.   Physical abuse: is abuse involving contact intended to cause feelings of intimidation,  pain, injury, or other physical suffering or bodily harm. Physical abuse includes hitting, slapping, punching, choking, pushing, burning and other types of contact that result in physical injury to the victim. Physical abuse can also include behaviors such as denying the victim of medical care when needed, depriving the victim of sleep or other functions necessary to live, or forcing the victim to engage in drug/alcohol use against his/her will. If a person is suffering from any physical harm then they are experiencing physical abuse.

2.   Sexual abuse: is any situation in which force or threat is used to obtain participation in unwanted sexual activity. Coercing a person to engage in sexual activity against their will, even if that person is a spouse or intimate partner with whom consensual sex has occurred, is an act of aggression and violence.

Worthy of mention here is Marital Rape. Marital rape, also known as spousal rape, is non-consensual sex in which the perpetrator is the victim's spouse. It is a form of partner rape, of domestic violence, and of sexual abuse. Once widely condoned or ignored by law, spousal rape is now repudiated by international conventions and increasingly criminalized. Still, in many countries, spousal rape either remains legal, or is illegal but widely tolerated and accepted as a husband's prerogative.

3.           Emotional abuse (also called psychological abuse or mental abuse) can include humiliating the victim privately or publicly, controlling what the victim can and cannot do, withholding information from the victim, deliberately doing something to make the victim feel diminished or embarrassed, isolating the victim from friends and family, implicitly blackmailing the victim by harming others when the victim expresses independence or happiness, or denying the victim access to money or other basic resources and necessities. Degradation in any form can be considered psychological abuse. Verbal abuse is a form of emotionally abusive behavior involving the use of language. Verbal abuse can also be referred to as the act of threatening. Through threatening a person can blatantly say they will harm you in any way and will also be considered as abuse. It may include profanity but can occur with or without the use of expletives.

4.           Economic abuse is a form of abuse when one intimate partner has control over the other partner's access to economic resources. Economic abuse may involve preventing a spouse from resource acquisition, limiting the amount of resources to use by the victim, or by exploiting economic resources of the victim. The motive behind preventing a spouse from acquiring resources is to diminish victim's capacity to support him/herself, thus forcing him/her to depend on the perpetrator financially, which includes preventing the victim from obtaining education, finding employment, maintaining or advancing their careers, and acquiring assets.

The effects vary from physical (deformed body parts) to psychological (fear, stress, anxiety) to economic (financial incapacitation) on the abused. Domestic violence can trigger many different responses in victims, all of which are very relevant for any professional working with a victim. Major consequences of domestic violence/victimization includes psychological/mental health issues and chronic physical health problems. A victim’s overwhelming lack of resources can lead to homelessness and poverty.

My question now is this:




We need to look inward and work on ourselves and if there be any area we are found wanting, we amend our ways and make our society a love-filled place to live in.


Pls visit for more on domestic violence & rape.

I'm on twitter as @Topsyken


  1. Its a real theme in marriages today. Efforts must be made to help women come out more to reveal this abuse

    1. Tanx Seun for reading. Im encouraged.

  2. @Bimbethy
    The desperation of most ladies to be married at all cost is one of the opportunities that is being used to commit atrocities against them.
    I am not casting blame because its not easy to be alone. But if single women can get adequate counseling and support from people around them. They will be strong enough to avoid/leave such disastrous relationships.
    Thanks for this article aunty @Topsyken.

    1. Bims,
      nothing can and should be an excuse for committing atrocities against a fellow being.
      U av raised a very pertinent point that must be addressed asap.
      Thank u so much my Sista.

  3. Its now a trend in marriages and relationships today. The suffering and smiling thing which boils down to one major act called "selfishness".Hoping and praying dt it will stop soonest. Tnx for d profound writeup.

    1. Tanx Twinny for reading and the comment.
      I believe God that through this medium and other avenues we will venture through,this issue if not totally eradicated will be reduced to the barest minimum.

  4. This is really very timelya. Thanks for the write-up, your Majesty!