Health Family Work

Why is violence against women such a problem?

Every day, women are slapped, kicked, beaten, humiliated, threatened, sexually abused, and even murdered by their partners. But often we do not hear about this violence, because the women who are abused may feel ashamed, alone, and afraid to speak out. Many doctors, nurses, and health workers do not recognize violence as the serious health problem it is.

This chapter is about different types of violence that occur to women and girls. It can help you understand why violence happens, what you can do about it, and how you can work for change in your community.

Although this chapter talks about violence between a woman and a man, violence can happen in any close relationship: for example, between a mother-in-law and her son’s new wife, between parents and their children, between an older and younger child, between family members and an older person living in the home, and between partners of the same sex.