Effects of domestic violence are many. They range from economic, to social and health problems. Socially, families experience divorce, separation, and the break up. Violence is the reason stated for divorce in 22% of middle-class marriages according to the finings of EAP Digest November/December 1991. When these happen and are increasing at an alarming rate, the main victims are the children. ‘Children who have witnessed domestic violence or have themselves been abused exhibit health and behavioral problems including problems with weight, their eating and sleeping’ (Jaffe, Wolfe and Wilson 1990).
At the same time there is high rate of deaths all over the world instigated by domestic violence. ‘Murders of female intimate partners by men have dropped, but not nearly as dramatically’ (circa 1998). Homicides rob people of family members in the times they least expect to lose them. Being known as a victim of Domestic violence is shameful to the victim because of the stigma associated with it and process of going to court is a very stressful and expensive for the poor and in most cases they are bound to lose. Health costs of domestic violence are great.
They range physical injury to transmission of diseases and unwanted pregnancies. ‘Every year, domestic violence results in almost 100,000 days of hospitalizations, almost 30,000 emergency department visits, and almost 40,000 visits to a physician’ according to the American Medical Association in the 5 issues American Health, Chicago 1991. ‘Girls who have been sexually abused in their childhood are more likely to engage in risky behaviors such as early sexual intercourse and are at risk of unwanted and early pregnancies’ (Heise 1994).
Other effects include medical complications of FGMs and the high costs of treating these effects. There is also stress and depression which may lead to victim becoming prone to several other diseases. ‘Women in violent situations are less able to use contraception or negotiate safer sex, and therefore run a risk of contracting sexually transmitted diseases and HIV/AIDS’ (Ibid) These can also lead death. Those who have been raped may contract diseases such as aids besides dealing with unwanted pregnancies.
In societies where male are valued than female, women carry out female infanticide so that they can be accepted in the society. Others are forced to leave if they are unable to bear male children in order to create room for the husbands to remarry. Abused people are less likely to be given access to their basic or fundamental rights if the perpetrator is the person they depend from. This is because after the abuse the culprits tend to be aggressive towards the victim as a mechanism of avoiding them.
At the same time the relationship is spoiled and therefore rights denied. There is no country that will boast of being developed if it’s poor, the marginalized and those abused can not be considered and helped . in order to achieve the millennium development goals all domestic violence must be addressed as long as the are abuses in the family cycles, national development will be delayed and consequently the millennium development goals.