Experiences Of Women Victimized By Domestic Violence

Project and Seminar Material for Nursing (Science)

Experiences Of Women Victimized By Domestic Violence


Abstract


This study was carried out to assess the experiences of women victimized by domestic violence using Owerri North Local Government Area Imo State as a case study. The study was carried out to ascertain the prevalence of domestic violence against women in Owerri North Local Government, Imo State, identify the forms of domestic violence encountered by women living in Owerri North Local Government, Imo State, find out the factors that promote domestic violence abuse against women Owerri North Local Government, Imo State, and determine the effect of domestic violence on women living in Owerri North Local Government, Imo State. The survey design was adopted and the simple random sampling techniques were employed in this study. The population size comprised of women residents in Owerri North Local Government, Imo State. In determining the sample size, the researcher purposefully selected 160 respondents and 141 were validated. Self-constructed and validated questionnaire was used for data collection. The collected and validated questionnaires were analyzed using frequency tables, and mean scores. While the hypotheses was tested Chi-square statistical tool. The result of the findings reveals that the forms of domestic violence encountered by women living in Owerri North Local Government, Imo State includes: rape and sexual assault, female genital mutilation, commercial sexual exploitation, and forced marriage. The study also revealed that the effect of domestic violence on women living in Owerri North Local Government, Imo State includes: physical injuries, sexually transmitted diseases, trauma, depression, and anxiety. Therefore, it is recommended that the government should establish and fund counselling centres at the community, and Local Government levels and employ professional counsellors to help victims and perpetrators of domestic violence. To mention but a few.


Table of Content


  • Title Page
  • Certification
  • Dedication
  • Acknowledgement
  • Table of Content
  • List of Tables
  • Abstract

Chapter One:

Introduction

  • 1.1 Background of the Study
  • 1.2 Statement of the Problem
  • 1.3 Objective of the Study
  • 1.4 Research Questions
  • 1.5 Research Hypothesis
  • 1.6 Significance of the Study
  • 1.7 Scope of the Study
  • 1.8 Limitation of the Study
  • 1.9 Definition of Terms
  • 1.10 Organisations of the Study

Chapter Two:

Review of Literature

  • 2.1 Conceptual Framework
  • 2.2 Theoretical Framework
  • 2.3 Empirical Review

Chapter Three:

Research Methodology

  • 3.1 Research Design
  • 3.2 Population of the Study
  • 3.3 Sample Size Determination
  • 3.4 Sample Size Selection Technique and Procedure
  • 3.5 Research Instrument and Administration
  • 3.6 Method of Data Collection
  • 3.7 Method of Data Analysis
  • 3.8 Validity of the Study
  • 3.9 Reliability of the Study
  • 3.10 Ethical Consideration

Chapter Four:

Data Presentation and Analysis

  • 4.1 Data Presentation
  • 4.2 Analysis of Data
  • 4.3 Answering Research Questions
  • 4.4 Test of Hypotheses

Chapter Five:

Summary, Conclusion and Recommendation

  • 5.1 Summary
  • 5.2 Conclusion
  • 5.3 Recommendation
  • References
  • APPENDIX
  • QUESTIONNAIRE

Chapter One


Introduction

1.1 Background to the Study

Domestic abuse is a problem that is entrenched in many societies across the globe and Nigeria is not an exception. Research in this area such as the one done by Eneh, et al. (2005) has shown that this type of violence has traumatised many Nigerian couples. The crime of domestic violence remains a persistent problem because of the power and control held by the abuser; the fear, intimidation and humiliation suffered by the victim of this crime (Okere, 2000).

The oldest and most prevalent institution in the world today is the marriage institution. In all cultures, there is a particular sanctity attached to this institution, so much that it is particularly considered to be a building block of any society. The pivotal position of marriage has made domestic violence a subject of interest to various disciplines, government, religious sects and professional associations (Arldine, 1994).

American Psychological Association (APA) (1996) defined domestic violence as a pattern of abusive behaviour including a wide range of physical, sexual, and psychological maltreatment used by a person in an intimate relationship against another to gain power unfairly or to maintain the misuse of power, control and authority.

The role of spouse in family relationship is significant, such that some people have acclaimed it to be a surviving family adjustment. However, this role has its own problems. Some spouses have been found to be abused in various forms, ranging from sexual to financial abuse and communicative abuse. All these have implication on family relationship (Ayo, 2001).

Domestic violence occurs in traditional heterosexual marriages, as well as in some sexual partnership. The abuse may occur during a relationship or after the relationship has ended. The key elements of domestic violence are: intimidation, humiliation and physical injury. Going by the definition of domestic violence, couples engage in it to control the other partner and keep him/her from departing or quitting the relationship. A critical look at the definition of domestic violence will reveal that they assume the dimension of portraying women as the victims bearing the brunt, while men are seen as perpetrators.

This could be as a result of the widely held beliefs that women are the weaker sex while men are by right, the head of the family that must be obeyed. Nigeria as a country has her own fair share of domestic violence, which could be seen in the rate of divorce, separation and marital dishonesty in the country. According to Ajila (2000) in his study on wife beating in western Nigeria, it was found that 32% of women indicated that they have experienced abuse, 21% believe strongly that wives should be beaten while 72% believe that wives should be beaten once in a while. Bakare (1986) identified marital conflict to exist along a particular continuum which are: occasional verbal quarrels, frequent verbal quarrels, occasional physiological quarrel, frequent physical quarrel, psychological separation, physical separation, and divorce, etc. A close look at this shows that a particular couple is expected to go through the whole stages, but it is not necessarily so in all situations. Some couples get to the divorce stage without going through physical quarrels and physical separation, while some resolve the conflict completely before it gets to divorce stage (Anyanwu, 2004).

Researchers such Rhodes, Adamson and Arnolds (2000) indicated the crime of domestic violence prevalent in Nigeria is still largely under reported, if reported at all. The causes of domestic violence can be seen in two broad categories. The traditional causes such as culture, ethnicity and religion are those factors that are commonly seen and discussed as leading to fighting among couples. They are immediate causes that can be pin pointed as leading to violence in the home. These include, among others, sex role, sexual dissatisfaction and infidelity, ego massage, income disparity, religion differences, alcohol consumption, money matters, childlessness, influence of inlaws etc (Adekoya, 2005).

Secondly, contemporary causes of domestic violence are those underlying remote factors such as frequent verbal quarrels, occasional physiological quarrel, frequent physical quarrel and psychological separation that are not easily seen or implicated, yet they influence violence behaviour in marital relationship. Domestic violence has now become a common phenomenon. It should be noted here that as husbands abuse their wives so also wives abuse their husbands (Steinmetz, 2007). It is only the degree that varies. Base on the above picture, the study is to assess the experiences of women victimized by domestic violence.


1.2 Statement of the Problem

Data from several Demographic and Health Surveys show that a high percentage of women have been beaten by a spouse or partner in the following countries: Cambodia (18%), Colombia (44%), Dominican Republic (22%), Egypt (34%), Haiti (29%), India (19%), Nicaragua (30%), Peru (42%), and Zambia (48%). According to these polls, women who were victims of violence did not seek assistance for a number of reasons, including humiliation and shame; the assumption that seeking help would be pointless; and the notion that violence perpetrated by one’s spouse is unavoidable, a weight that must be suffered. Poor women were more likely than other women in several nations to have suffered violence at the hands of their husbands or boyfriends. Strong correlations have discovered between spousal alcohol addiction and intimate-partner violence when the relationship may be studied. According to Kishor and Johnson (2019), males in a slum neighbourhood north of Mumbai who were severely upset by a lack of job had a high prevalence of drunkenness and often beat and verbally harassed their spouses.

This is particularly true in nations such as Ghana, which passed a domestic violence legislation in February 2007. This agreement is reflected in the more than a decade-old Convention on the Rights of the Child, as well as the Platform for Action approved at the Fourth International Conference on Women in Beijing in 1995. However, change has been gradual due to firmly established views and, to some degree, the lack of effective domestic violence prevention initiatives. As a consequence, women over the globe continue to suffer, with estimates ranging from 20% to 50% depending on the nation. The condition of women, who are disproportionately victims of this destiny, is worse, particularly in rural regions. Rural communities are typically portrayed as conservative and peaceful, yet these appearances hide community variety and the severe effects of those considered to oppose the prevailing rural worldview.

Aside from the culture of secrecy that characterises the issue, women who are brave enough to disclose crimes find it very aggravating. Due to overcrowding, a lack of resources, and judicial attitudes towards domestic violence, the courts frequently allow and even encourage settlement when a third party intervenes, denying victims the right to seek criminal punishment for the harms they have suffered. Victims of domestic abuse and other similar issues must now launch multiple separate and sometimes long judicial actions. A woman who was physically assaulted and denied maintenance by her husband, for example, would have to file one action to punish the attack and another to collect maintenance. Because the existing system is ineffective in addressing the concerns of victimised women, victims are vulnerable to increased violence and other kinds of control by their abusers while their legal processes are underway.

Due to the multifaceted character of domestic violence against women, victims frequently choose not to pursue criminal charges against their assailants. Victims frequently fear that pursuing criminal prosecution will increase the risk to their safety and frequently do not want their abuser to be imprisoned; they simply want the abuse to cease. Due to the fact that criminal prosecution is the only way for a victim to obtain legal relief from abuse under the current system, many victims are deterred from requesting state assistance in stopping abuse.
As a result, The Domestic Violence Bill (2017) gives domestic violence victims the right to petition for civil protection orders and interim protection orders, which address the causes and consequences of domestic violence and provide immediate and longer-term relief from abuse without requiring criminal prosecution, thereby bringing hope for a remedy to the deficiencies of the current system. Protection orders deter the commission or threat of additional acts of domestic violence by prohibiting the perpetrator from engaging in conduct such as abusing, harassing, or contacting the victim and mandating that the perpetrator remain away from the victim.

In addition, protection orders prohibit a variety of behaviours that are not presently prohibited by law, such as “any act (of the perpetrator) that the court determines is not in the victim’s best interest.” But the query is how many Nigerian women who have been victimised will or are willing to report their partners. Protection orders can also address contributing factors and secondary effects of domestic violence by imposing conditions on respondents, such as: requirements to exercise good behaviour, seek counselling, move out of a shared home, pay maintenance, relinquish property to the victim, and compensate the victim for damages. However, these measures appear to threaten the stability of relationships and marriages, which are regarded as socially prestigious for every woman. Based on the above picture, this study is therefore meant to assess the experiences of women victimized by domestic violence.


1.3 Objectives of the Study

Generally, this study will examine the experiences of women victimized by domestic violence.

The study will be guided by the specific objectives outlined below;

  1. Ascertain the prevalence of domestic violence against women in Owerri North Local Government, Imo State.
  2. Identify the forms of domestic violence encountered by women living in Owerri North Local Government, Imo State.
  3. Find out the factors that promote domestic violence abuse against women Owerri North Local Government, Imo State.
  4. Determine the effect of domestic violence on women living in Owerri North Local Government, Imo State.

1.4 Research Questions

The following research questions will guild the study

  1. What is the prevalence of domestic violence against women in Owerri North Local Government, Imo State?
  2. What are the forms of domestic violence encountered by women living in Owerri North Local Government, Imo State?
  3. What are the factors that promote domestic violence abuse against women Owerri North Local Government, Imo State?
  4. What are the effect of domestic violence on women living in Owerri North Local Government, Imo State?

1.5 Research Hypotheses

  • Ho: Domestic violence has no negative effect on women living in Owerri North Local Government, Imo State.
  • Ha: Domestic violence has a negative effect on women in living Owerri North Local Government, Imo State.

1.6 Significance of the Study

In Nigeria, violence against women is influenced by attitudes and values.It is the right and responsibility of men to control the behaviour of women due to the social attitudes and values prevalent in the country, which lead many to view men as inherently superior to women. Surprisingly, the structures that are intended to pursue and defend the rights of women indirectly contribute to domestic violence. In order to gain a comprehensive understanding of the effects of domestic violence on women, the research focuses on this particular aspect. If we are committed to achieving a society devoid of violence, we must address all forms of violence in an admirable fashion.

The significance of the study lies in its ability to enlighten actors and gender activists in their efforts to implement and strengthen the domestic violence act. Males who take the law into their own hands and commit acts of violence against women will be warned by the study to consider the consequences of their actions on their companions’ lives.

In addition, the study will raise awareness among influential individuals, opinion leaders, and educational authorities regarding the effects of domestic violence on women and its implications for Nigerian society. It will also provide valuable insight into the essence, forms, and varying degrees of domestic violence against women. The study will also be of great assistance to policymakers in their efforts to enact laws that will prevent such atrocities against women and provide harsh punishments for those who abuse women. Since it will serve as a source of documentation, it will once more contribute to the existing body of knowledge regarding domestic violence and domestic dispute resolution.

When the study is completed and its recommendations and suggestions are implemented by opinion leaders and other interested parties, it will assist in reducing the high rate of domestic violence against women.


1.6 Scope of the Study

Generally, this study will examine the experiences of women victimized by domestic violence. However, the study will further ascertain the prevalence of domestic violence in Owerri North Local Government, Imo State, identify the forms of domestic violence encountered by women living in Owerri North Local Government, Imo State, the factors that promote domestic violence abuse against women in Owerri North Local Government, Imo State, and determine the effect of domestic violence on women living in Owerri North Local Government, Imo State.

Geographically, the study will be carried out in Owerri North Local Government, Imo State where women in this location will be enrolled for this study.


1.9 Definition of Terms

Domestic Violence:

Domestic violence which is otherwise referred to as spousal abuse is described as when adults in a relationship misuse power to control another whereas such establishment of control in the relationship is through violence and other form of abuse. It is also defined as a pattern of abusive behaviour including a wide range of physical sexual and psychological maltreatment used by one person in an intimate relationship against another to gain power unfairly or to maintain the person misuse of power, control and authority. The following factors amount to domestic violence; occasional verbal quarrels, frequent verbal quarrels, occasional physiological quarrel, frequent physical quarrel, psychological separation, physical separation and divorce.


1.10 Organization of the Study

The study is categorized into five chapters. The first chapter presents the background of the study, statement of the problem, objective of the study, research questions and hypothesis, the significance of the study, scope/limitations of the study, and definition of terms. The chapter two covers the review of literature with emphasis on conceptual framework, theoretical framework, and empirical review. Likewise, the chapter three which is the research methodology, specifically covers the research design, population of the study, sample size determination, sample size, and selection technique and procedure, research instrument and administration, method of data collection, method of data analysis, validity and reliability of the study, and ethical consideration. The second to last chapter being the chapter four presents the data presentation and analysis, while the last chapter(chapter five) contains the summary, conclusion and recommendation.


Chapter Five


Summary, Conclusions and Recommendations:

5.1 Summary of the Study

In this study, our focus was to assess the experiences of women victimized by domestic violence using Owerri North Local Government Area Imo State as a case study. The study specifically was aimed to ascertain the prevalence of domestic violence against women in Owerri North Local Government, Imo State, identify the forms of domestic violence encountered by women living in Owerri North Local Government, Imo State, find out the factors that promote domestic violence abuse against women Owerri North Local Government, Imo State, and determine the effect of domestic violence on women living in Owerri North Local Government, Imo State.

The study adopted the survey research design and randomly enrolled participants in the study. A total of 141 responses were validated from the enrolled participants where all respondents are women residents in Owerri North Local Government, Imo State.


5.2 Conclusions

Based on the findings of this study, the researcher made the following conclusion.

  1. The prevalence of domestic violence against women in Owerri North Local Government, Imo State is high.
  2. The forms of domestic violence encountered by women living in Owerri North Local Government, Imo State includes: rape and sexual assault, female genital mutilation, commercial sexual exploitation, and forced marriage.
  3. The factors that promote domestic violence abuse against women Owerri North Local Government, Imo State includes: insecurity, low self-esteem, substance use, and less access to education.
  4. The effect of domestic violence on women living in Owerri North Local Government, Imo State includes: physical injuries, sexually transmitted diseases, trauma, depression, and anxiety.

5.3 Recommendations

Based on the findings of the study, the following recommendations are proffered.

  1. Comprehensive and extensive premarital counselling should be given to intending couples on how to manage their marital relationship.
  2. There should be public enlightenment through the mass media on the negative effects of domestic violence against women, especially wife battery.
  3. Religious leaders too should vigorously teach against marital violence in their places of worship. Youths should be encouraged and taught to detest and not imitate brutish treatment of wives around them.
  4. Medical professionals are in position to help abused women; after physical treatment, they should refer them to counsellors and psychotherapists. Punishment given to grievously offending husbands should be publicized, so that it can serve as deterrence to others.
  5. Churches and mosques should organize seminars and outreach programmes where professional counsellors are invited to enlighten the people on the need for a violence free society with the home as the cradle.
  6. Young couples planning to get married should be guided on the ways to avoid violence in the intimate relationship of marriage.
  7. The government should establish and fund counselling centres at the community, and Local Government levels and employ professional counsellors to help victims and perpetrators of domestic violence.

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