If you know me or have read any of my earlier blog posts than you already know domestic violence has affected my life. I lost both parents to a domestic violence situation that has never been officially comprehended. But this not solely about me - lets look a layer deeper into domestic violence in this society.
For hundreds of years in western culture; most cities/states and law makers refused to properly acknowledge domestic violence. You could start as recent as 1920 through the 1960s and domestic violence didn’t have a real face or movement. Though there has always been assault & battery laws; how a man conducted his business with his wife in his household was largely considered “his business.” I remember Chris Gardner’s “The Pursuit of Happyness” biography (the book the Will Smith movie was based off of). He wrote in detail how his step-father beat his mother, and would chase her around town beating her all the way back home. No one called police, a social worker, or reached out to her; it just wasn’t in the culture back then. A lot of us have elder family members who grew up in these types of environments.
I’m not bringing this up to justify anything. I’m bringing this up to get people to understand that domestic violence is not “new.” It’s something that’s been stitched into the dna of our culture many times over. It’s not solely about reversing the actions of a few men or women with anger management issues. It’s not about being “Bipolar.” It’s about defining and redefining our roles as men and women, our labels as husbands and wives. It’s more to do with the expectations and perspective society has created for us versus the expectations and introspection that we can find within ourselves. It’s about some of us who have a need for power and a desire to control. And some of us who don’t understand or can’t find a way to break out from being overpowered or mentally controlled.
We are all made up like a huge beautiful lawn full of potential. We have areas that need new sod, areas that need more water, areas that need more sun, and areas that can get by with a little grass patch. But if you never acknowledge who you are, what you are, what can make you better, and what you want to become - than you will never grow. And without growth – you will stay being defined by your weakest link. Whether you are a perpetrator of violence (domestic or otherwise) or a victim.
You have to rise above.