And nobody sleeps
In the house where love lies dying
And the shadows creep
A little girl hides, shaking,
With her hands on her ears
Pushing back the tears, 'til the pain disappears
Mama says some ugly words
Daddy pounds the wall
They can fight about their little girl later
Right now they don't care at all
No matter what they say...
No matter what they say...
--Everyday Glory, Neil Peart (Rush)
It's time once again for Fatherhood Friday. Fatherhood Friday is hip place at Dad-Blogs.com for dads and moms to share stories, ideas, photos and movies with one topic in mind – fatherhood.
As I read and watch the sad stories of struggling families losing their jobs and homes, I know the violence has escalated. One of the number one reasons couples fight is over finances, and even sadder, the children are part of that monetary equation – all to be used as punitive control by the abuser over the abused.
I know from my own experience growing up that my birth father was the sole breadwinner, which he pointed out many times before and after beating her, and it was painfully clear to my mom that we had no other means by which to flee – at least not until she found the strength and courage to do so without much economic means.
I found an article from AOL's BlackVoices titled Domestic Violence & Economic Abuse Increase as Economy Goes South that pulled some examples and stats together on this subject. Sadly the media isn't highlighting this enough.
The National Domestic Violence Hotline conducted a survey from November 12 to December 31 last year, asking nearly 8,000 callers about the connection between financial issues and the level of violence in their household:
"54% answered yes to the question, 'Has there been a change in your household's financial situation in the last year?'; and 64% also answered the second question affirmatively, which was, 'Do you believe the abusive behavior has increased in the past year?'," reports the survey.
The Allstate Foundation Domestic Violence Program says that economic abuse is a tactic used to control relationships and maintain power by preventing access to money and/or other financial resources. To combat economic abuse, the Allstate Foundation Domestic Violence Program has set up a website to provide resources, knowledge and skills to help victims.
Here are some economic abuse examples, via BlackVoices:
- Controlling victims' paychecks and bank accounts, and determining how they spend money, where they work and what property they buy;
- Using victims' credit cards without permission and destroying their credit rating;
- Putting all financial contracts (lease, credit cards, utilities, etc) in a victim's name and then failing to make payments, destroying the victim's credit rating;
- Forcing low-income victims or victims with disabilities to turn over government benefit payments;
- Undermining victim's opportunities to become economically independent by not allowing the to work, forcing them to work in family businesses for little or no pay, or calling and harassing them in the workplace to such an extent that they lose their jobs;
- Refusing to pay spousal or child support to a survivor who has left an abusive partner; and
- Forcing a victim to cash in, sell, or sign over any financial assets or inheritance (e.g., bonds, stocks or property).
Not only did my birth father do some of these things, my abusive first step-father did some of this crap as well. It sickens me that men behave this way – that fathers behave this way.
Mothers are abused, maimed and killed all over the world by their spouses/mates. We should be outraged; this madness has to stop. I broke the cycle of violence in my family and my daughter will not grow up it that hell as my sister and I did.
I'm running The Human Race this year in support of a local Women's Crisis Support center. The Human Race is a nationwide community fundraising event for nonprofit organizations.
Annually, WCS~DdM provides approximately 1,300 crisis intervention services to victims of domestic violence and sexual assault. Individual counseling services are provided to approximately 600 women, and support group sessions for over 200 women. Legal assistance is provided for over 450 women, over 100 restraining order applications are filed, and about 125 women are accompanied to court proceedings. The confidential emergency shelter provides nearly 2,000 shelter bed nights to women and children in imminent danger from domestic violence or sexual assault. Children's individual counseling sessions are provided for over 100 children, and an average of 25 children and youth attend group sessions each week. Prevention programs provide educational services, information and referrals to approximately 150 families.
Help me support Women's Crisis Support whose mission is to end domestic violence and sexual assault - http://bit.ly/dvadS. Help those who need safe harbor and a new beginning.
Shot down in flames
Another every story
Rise from the ashes--
A blaze of everyday glory