psychological-consulting.com by Karl PEYTON
Violence is making a woman's voice invisible or silencing just because it is. It is harassing, insulting or denigrating physically or also through social networks. These types of aggressions occur every day, but we do not always see them.
Gender violence is like an iceberg. We only intuit a small part, the rest remains in the depths of invisibility, in the daily silence and the face that chooses to look away. We do not see, for example, that 15-year-old girl controlled by her 16-year-old partner, a teenager who thinks he has the full right to monitor his girlfriend's cell phone and tell her who she should or shouldn't talk to.
Nor do we know anything about that prepared and competent worker whom her boss ignores and humiliates and denies her to be promoted in the company. Likewise, infinite anonymous names of women who suffer harassment through social networks escape us . We could give a thousand examples, describe hundreds of situations that are happening right now and that we do not perceive.
Violence against women in any of its forms is a scourge and a form of involution as human beings. Let's be clear, we are facing a learned behavior and culturally established in our society. Proceeding to its definitive eradication is everyone's responsibility.
On this path, banners and good words are not worth it; we need action, policy changes, better ways to educate and reshape mindsets .
An advanced digital society that does not know what gender violence is
We live in a society that sadly and on average still does not know what gender violence is. Digital natives, for example, the younger population and that generation of the future are the sector where the weight of this type of reality is most evident in recent years. Some of the adolescents consider it normal for their partners to control them.
The erroneous models of romantic love and early access to pornography are having a serious impact on young people. All this causes them to develop a clearly distorted concept about gender roles in sexual relationships. Hence, the rate of aggression among adolescents is increasing dramatically.
On the other hand, the data that the WHO offers us on gender-based violence at the global level is also not very encouraging. More than 700 million women were married as children. About 35% have suffered physical or sexual violence at some point.
The rate of femicides continues to rise every year, especially in Latin America. The Nordic countries, for example, which have been fighting for equality for years, nevertheless have the highest rate of sexist violence in Europe.
Eliminating all these realities is slow and complex. It is in the first place because we need to reformulate policies, mentalities and even old values. The essential thing is to become aware that gender violence exists, is there and appears in multiple ways.
Gender violence is ...
Gender violence is exercised on women for the simple fact of being it . It is applied both in the private and public spheres through aggression, discrimination, the deprivation of basic rights such as freedom, respect or the ability to make decisions. Also, the WHO (World Health Organization) points out something important in this regard.
This type of phenomenon is more complex than we can think. It forces us to have to constantly review our values and social norms. We are doing it now, for example, in the advertising aspect. Marketing and advertising models have changed a lot in recent years; the woman is no longer relegated to the domestic sphere, nor is she that merely sexual object.
Factors that perpetuate this type of violence
There is an aspect in which it is convenient to reflect: nobody is born being a macho, machismo is learned and is part of a large part of our societies. Men (and also women) end up integrating gender schemes and models that completely distort the position and rights of each one in society. We do it in different ways:
At a cultural level, defining the sexual roles of each gender and making explicit what is and what is not suitable for each one.
At the economic level: allowing labor gaps between men and women, limiting in many countries access to education for girls.
Legally. To this day, there are still laws that subordinate women and girls to men, allowing abuse, rape, discrimination ...
At the political level: underrepresentation of the figure of women in the field of science, medicine, jurisprudence. In many countries there is still the subordination of women to family law and not to a legal body that defends their rights.
How is gender violence exercised?
We pointed out at the beginning, gender violence is not just an aggression, a blow, a violation ... This type of harmful behavior towards women is exercised in different ways:
Devaluation : treat her as someone inferior, criticize her, insult her, misrepresent her words, make fun of her, humiliate her, compare her ...
- Isolation and social abuse: reduce it to the private sphere, preventing it from having contact with friends or family.
- Control what you do, what you say or how you dress.
- Emotional blackmail.
- Physical violence
- Sexual abuse
- Economic abuse.
Violence in social networks and the digital world. Social networks and technology have created new forms of violence and control in which women are often the victims in many cases.
To conclude, it is clear that we have a long way to go. But in this journey, arduous and complicated in many cases, we need the participation of each individual, each social agent .
This type of violence will not disappear until we clear up many old patterns that, almost without realizing it, continue to cling to younger minds. The effects can be lethal.
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