Economic Reasons

Economically women depend on men while children depend own their parents. Women are most dependent on the spouse for economic well being. Having children to take care of, should she leave the marriage, increases the financial burden and makes it all the more difficult for women to leave. ‘Dependency means that women have fewer options and few resources to help them cope with or change their spouse’s behavior’ (Kalmuss and Straus). Most victims of violence have limited access to education and subsequently awareness. They lack knowledge of their rights and where they can report to when abused.

They also fail to report in fear of losing the economic gains they get from these perpetrators. They are successful at concealing these acts of violence because they are able to economically stand in the way of their victims. SOCIAL STRESS Stress may be increased when a person is living in a family situation, with increased pressures. Social stresses, due to inadequate finances or other such problems in a family may further increase tensions. Violence is not always caused by stress, but may be one way that some (but not all) people respond to stress ( Kalmuss and Seltzer 1998).

According to Rachel (April 20 2002), ‘other factors associated with domestic violence include heavy alcohol consumption. Research has shown that alcohol-related violence is related to higher levels of cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) testosterone (and therefore could theoretically benefit from treatment with anti-androgenic agents). ’ On the other hand, non-alcohol related domestic violence is related to significantly reduced levels of spinal 5-HIAA – a serotonin metabolite’(George and Umahau 2001).

This according to Sanchez and Meier (1997) suggesting that ‘non-alcohol related domestic violence may benefit from treatment with medications like selective serotonin re-uptake inhibitors (SSRIs). Consumption of alcohol and other drugs make people to be aggressive and stressed. This causes them to turn on others violently. SEX AND GENDER Modes of abuse are thought by some to be gendered, females tending to use more psychological and men more physical forms. The visibility of these differs markedly.

However, experts who work with victims of domestic violence have noted that physical abuse is almost invariably preceded by psychological abuse. Men use power to force women to have sex with them because they are stronger physically. On the other hand women will use seductive means to have sex with adolescents. The majority of victims of domestic assault were female and the majority of offenders were male. Women are capable of (and do carry out) violent acts, but the majority of assaults are still by men.