- What is the first thing that comes to your mind when you think of domestic violence and child abuse?
That it is a blight on our society. Every child that is abused is a child we have failed. Every time a woman is hit we have failed. It is a failure. Not to mention every time a child dies where social services have been involved (there have been several cases in the UK in the last few years, and some here), we have failed. Every time a woman is murdered by her partner, we have failed.
But perhaps right now what I think about is Frida Stenberg’s children, who lost their mother and are now about to lose the rest of their family. A double tragedy.
- What does domestic violence and child abuse mean to you personally?
For me personally? It makes my heart hurt. I have been incredibly fortunate in my life to not have been touched by abuse, but that doesn’t mean that my heart doesn’t hurt. That it makes me incredibly angry.
- What is your current knowledge of domestic violence and child abuse?
That it is far far far to prevalent in our society today. And that as a society we are far to concerned with not putting our nose in other peoples business to protect those abused.
- Are you aware of the resources available for men, women and children who find themselves in domestic violence and child abuse situations?
I am aware of resources for women and children but probably less so about the resources for men. In Sweden we have Kvinnojouren for women who are victims of abuse. We also have BRIS which offers services (confidential hotlines) for children who are abused. We also have Tjejjouren which offers support to girls who are victims of abuse, but also other support for girls. A friend of mine volunteers with them.
- Have you chosen a book or resource to read for this month?
I will be reading a book called Mias systrar (Mia’s sisters) by Maria Eriksson and Kerstin Weigl which is a non-fiction book about domestic violence in Sweden. I was given it a few years ago and leafing through it really upset me so I put it to the side. Now I want to read it. If I have time I will also read Good Night, Mr. Tom by Michelle Magorian (if I can find my copy) and I have A Thousand Splendid Suns by Khaled Hosseini on audio book that I might listen too.
- Take some time and think about what potential action steps you could take. (I’ll have a post dedicated to this shortly).
I will be donating to BRIS which is an organisation that looks after children’s rights in society. One of the things they do is work with children who are victims of abuse. This is however just one of the many things they do.
The images in this post are there to remind me of the beauty in the the world. I have a tendency to get worked up on this subject (rightfully so I believe) and sometimes I need to be reminded to take a deep breath and think because running off and acting might not be the best choice. Getting upset is okay. Acting on that upset is okay. But think first. Act second. Your actions will make more of an impact that way.