Domestic violence: Are men to blame?

Domestic violence is growing at an alarming rate in our society, but the real question in such situation is, who is to blame? Is it the man or the woman? Circumstances have placed women on the receiving end of domestic violence but the truth is some women abuse their husbands too. From the psychological perspective, when a man or woman displays characteristics of domestic abuse, his or her background tends to have a lot to do with it.

It could be that their parent used to be abusive and because they despised the character they started to behave that way. It is no news that we humans mirror the things we despise without even realising it; this is what makes us regret some of our actions immediately after doing it. There is a theory called the aggressive cue theory which suggests that an individual does not get purged of his aggression by watching violent things rather, it tends to add to the aggression already in that individual. This is the case with some humans.

In other situations, the mothers contribute to issues in marriage as they make themselves a third-wheel in every major family conversation. Mothers support their sons or daughters by dictating the decisions they make in their marriage. They are in the background using their child as puppets to do as their heart’s desires. They do not like it when their offspring is experiencing something they’ve never experienced in their own marriage, thus jealousy sets in.

If their child is shown or showing affection, the parent thinks it’s a charm.
In Nigeria, once a man starts showing love to his wife we believe that it’s a charm while some will say it’s “kayan mata”. I hope that we discard this mentality and start believing that affection can be shown without the use of any tool.

I have seen some men being violent to their wives while their relatives are supporting them especially the women and it is disheartening. What if it is them or their daughters doing this same thing, will they still be in support? I have seen situations where a woman will be told to remain in an abusive home because it is her responsibility to.

I am pleading with our society as we are teaching our daughters how to become good wives, we should also spend time teaching our sons how to become good men and husbands who should never raise their hand on their wives, no matter what.

Isah Balikisu,
Department of Mass Communication,
Ahmadu Bello University,
Zaria, Kaduna state