I just wanted to share this with you all.
Mother’s who are in the midst of a domestic violence relationship are caught between a rock and a hard place. They are doomed in a sense as they are victimized and blamed no matter what action or inaction they take, knowingly or unknowingly. For example, behaviors that authorities might label as “failure to protect one’s child” may actually be motivated by the desire to protect. In this case a mother may not flee because of financial needs, as is typical where the abuser is the primary provider for the family. The mother may also choose not to flee because she believes that her children need their father and/or she fears loosing her children to the abuser. Adversely, if the mother does in fact leave with her children, the court system may critique her actions as a way of interfering with the father’s relationship with his children. Here in Washington State both parents have equal rights. In all honesty, if you beat your wife, but you don’t beat your children, you’re still a horrible father!
Also, when you are dealing with survivors of assault it’s important not to make them feel isolated. You can avoid doing that by NOT making statements such as “I can’t believe he did that to you” or “I can’t even imagine”. The truth is, is that you can believe and you can imagine because this happens to women every single day. I had to explain this to a coworker after we received a Domestic Violence call. It was from a woman who has called in the past and the comment was made, “Why doesn’t she just leave? Why stay with the guy?” It’s not about why she stays, it’s about why he hits her. Stop focusing on the victim and start focusing on the abuser!!!