According to the National Coalition Against Domestic Violence (NCADV), an estimated 1.3 million women are victims of domestic violence each year in the United States.
Despite the overwhelming number of victims, their stories are rarely ever told.
When high profile reports of intimate partner abuse within the NFL hit the media earlier this year, the victims were essentially ignored, while the plights of the abusers and the fate of their player status was shamelessly spotlighted.
Although abusers should be held accountable for their crimes, abusing their wives, girlfriends, and children should not be glamorized.
Unfortunately, our society handles sensitive issues, like abuse, rather poorly.
Instead of supporting the victim by highlighting his or her story and recovery after abuse, we hyper-focus on the abuser and how his crimes will affect his reputation, career, and marital status. Who cares?
The fact of the matter is, being a survivor of domestic violence is an incredible feat.
According to the American Psychology Association, on average, “three or more women are murdered by their boyfriends or husbands” each day.
If the media focused on the survivors of domestic abuse, current and potential victims could be educated on the cyclical pattern of domestic violence, warning signs of an abuser, and how to seek help.
However, if our society continues to be dazzled by the dramatic tabloid-esque reporting of domestic violence, we will only hear the abuser’s side of the story.
All we learn from this is that with a minor slap on the wrist, abusers can hurt their loved ones and continue on with their lives the same as before.
We need to rethink how we handle domestic violence. Surviving abuse is not glamorous, but neither is the quandary of the abuser.