Which harmful beliefs can cause family conflicts?
Unfortunately, in many countries, gender inequality and unequal power relations between men and women still exist. This inequality is often rooted in harmful wrong beliefs, such as:
- Men are superior to women.
- Women are worthless and a burden to their families.
- Men have proprietary rights over women.
- What happens behind closed doors in the family setting is a private matter.
In many communities, a woman cannot own or inherit property, earn money, or get credit. If she gets divorced, she may not be allowed to keep her children or her belongings. Even if a woman has legal rights, her community’s traditions may allow her little control over her life. Often a woman cannot decide how the family’s money is spent or when to get health care, and cannot travel or participate in community decisions without her husband’s permission.
When women are denied the power in these ways they must depend on men to survive. As a result, they cannot easily demand things that contribute to a good life, they often lack power in their relationships with their husbands, often have little or no control over when and how many children to have, or over their husband’s relationships with other women.