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Essay on the Impact of Domestic Violence on Womens Mental Health in Mexico

Date:  2021-06-18 02:43:05
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Domestic violence has become a widespread issue in Mexico. It has been reported that between fifteen to seventy-six percent of women are being targeted for various forms of violence that entail sexual or physical throughout their life. Femicide, a term used to describe crime based on sex has been reported to occur at a rate of sixty-six percent of the killings of women that resulted from family members or even husbands ("Fast Facts: Statistics On Violence Against Women And Girls"). According to a report by Amnesty International, violence against girls and women in Mexico has continued to be prevalent. This as further been depicted by the numerous demonstrations around the country that are demanding for an end to violence channeled against women (Mexico 2016/2017). The violence is thus directed towards women at a high rate as compared to men. This depicts the topic of study as a form of gender inequality since one sex is suffering from the problem more than the opposite one. The essay will explore the issue of the effect of domestic violence on the mental health of women in Mexico.

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Women have continued to be undermined in various sectors of the economy. In the political field, it has been observed that gender inequality is quite rampant. Men are overrepresented as women continue to be underrepresented. Mexico has also had very few female cabinet members as well since time immemorial. Disparities in education also continue to dominate in the field of gender. Educational differences are common among girls who come from families with a low income since they are most likely to partake in domestic duties as compared to attending school. However, a study conducted revealed that the gap in educational disparity increases in college and graduate levels. The country has also been ranked among the three other nations that have more men than women with tertiary education qualification (Trevillion et al. 9). Women in the workforce in Mexico also continue to face discrimination as compared to their male counterparts. Most women in the workforce are employed in the informal sector and do not have a regular salary. The professional and technical occupations also have fewer women as compared to men that are sixty women to every one hundred men. The economic gender inequality has also been found to be quite significant where for every one hundred business owned by men; seventeen are for women. Lower rates of employment have further been reported for women in the rural areas as compared to men (Orozco et al. 756).

The highest rates of homicides or femicides committed against women have been reported in Mexico. It also has the highest rate of domestic violence at around sixty percent. The rates of gender violence and femicide are more dominant in the Mexican-USA border. Moreover, they have also been observed in regions that have a high incidence of drug activity and drug-related violence. The Human Rights Watch further note in 2013 that most women do not report to the legal authorities after suffering from sexual assault and domestic violence ("World Report 2013: Mexico").

Domestic violence against women affects their mental health in various ways. It can be referred to as a public health problem in that it produces mortality and morbidity at the national and international level. Furthermore, it also affects the quality of life of women. Domestic violence also causes trauma in women. These can be grouped into posttraumatic and anxiety disorders. The occurrence of domestic violence in women has also been associated with them being at higher risks of being diagnosed with stress and depression (Jackson 17). These women may also undergo symptoms of being suicidal. Women who usually suppress the symptoms of depression experience post-traumatic stress disorder and symptoms of suicide in that order. Experiencing domestic violence is a terrible aspect for women based in Mexico. It has further been associated with resulting in other feelings among the victims. They usually develop a low self-esteem, powerlessness, and helplessness. Self-medication with drugs or alcohol as well as sexual dysfunction is also experienced by women who face domestic violence. Self-medication among these women is usually a way to counter the emotional feeling they are undergoing at that particular time. The trauma resulting from domestic violence is what causes the mental health symptoms (Trevillion et al. 5). The most common mental health symptoms experienced by women who have suffered from domestic violence has been observed to be post-traumatic stress disorder. This is a condition of emotional and psychological stress resulting from psychological shock as a result of remembering a bad experience or one that had sad responses from others and the world outside. Depression and anxiety follow among the symptoms (Jackson 20).

The issue of domestic violence has attracted various stakeholders who are acting to come up with actual solutions. The government of Mexico is committed to tackling the problem of violence on women. There are permanent campaigns, posters and other modes of communication all aimed at preventing and eliminating the practice of violence against women. There are also Action Protocols for the Investigation of Crimes Against Women. Justice Centers for Women have also been set up to represent the various government bodies with the purpose of giving comprehensive services such legal, social, psychological and educational among others that are required by women who have suffered from violence (Donnelly and Ward 269). The issue of political disparity among women is also being tackled through the national political parties that have been required to set aside some of their funds and channel them to promoting, training and developing the political leadership of women. In this way, there will be an increase of women in the political arena leading to them being respected and valued more by men (World Health Organization 7).

The International Womens Year began in 1975, and the first world conference on women was held in Mexico. It was aimed at surveying the issues of inequality for women that had been continuous and come up with solutions. The International Womens Day on 8th March is also utilized in Mexico to address violence on women (Moghadam 22). The International Womens Day celebrations have continued to take place in force in Mexico. They have been organized based on the themes of terminating the practices of violence against women and femicide. Any form of economic, physical, psychological and verbal violence against women is highly condemned during the celebrations. Moreover, they also concentrate on advancing the rights of women who are marginalized (Espinosa, Joselyn).

Domestic violence is also widespread in the United States. Twenty-nine percent of women have been reported to have experienced physical abuse, rape or stalking by their partners. Twenty-four percent of women who are eighteen years and older have also been victims of severe physical violence in their lifetime by someone they were involved with in an intimate manner ("The National Domestic Violence Hotline | Statistics"). The United States Congress has passed two major laws that are related to violence against women. There is the Family Violence Prevention and Services Act (FVPSA) that offers national capital to assist fatalities of home violence and parties such as their kids. There are also activities to prevent violence and even try to advance the way service agencies work together in communities. They also cooperate with the National Domestic Violence Hotline that supports victims of violence through a twenty-four-hour call system that is toll-free. There is also the Violence Against Women Act that was the first main law to assist government agencies and even victims in working together and fighting sexual attack, domestic fierceness and other types of violence against females. This law has continued to be expanded to offer more services and programs. There are programs to prevent violence in communities as well as funding for the assistance to victims through services such as crisis centers. Furthermore, legal aid for violence survivors and services and programs for victims with disabilities are also provided ("Laws On Violence Against Women | Womenshealth.Gov").

Various approaches can be used to address the issue of gender inequalities against women. In my opinion, at the local level, the community should be educated on its effects and how they can intervene is a safe way. They should also be organized in a way such as coming up with a network of individuals who will be committed to arbitrate in situations that entail domestic violence and help the victims leave their abusers in a safe way. A safety application can also be designed for women such that they can alert the support network whenever they are in danger. At the international level, women should be given access to legal representation. In this way, they will be able to pursue justice against their perpetrators. Human Rights organizations should also be fully involved with organizations focusing on the welfare of women to end violence against women. Moreover, there should also be adequate information on the internet on how women can face their attackers and the hotline numbers provided for every location in case they are in danger.

Works cited

Donnelly, Peter D, and Catherine L Ward. Oxford Textbook Of Violence Prevention. 1st ed., Oxford, Oxford University Press, 2015,. pp. 269.

Espinosa, Joselyn. "International Women's Day In The Land Of Femicides". Left Voice, 2017, http://www.leftvoice.org/International-Women-s-Day-in-the-Land-of-Femicides.

"Fast Facts: Statistics On Violence Against Women And Girls". Endvawnow.Org, 2012, http://www.endvawnow.org/en/articles/299-fast-facts-statistics-on-violence-against-women-and-girls-.html.

Jackson, Peronica L. "Mental Health Symptoms of Women in Domestic Violence Relationships." (2011). pp. 1-38.

"Mexico 2016/2017". Amnesty.Org, 2016, https://www.amnesty.org/en/countries/americas/mexico/report-mexico/.

Moghadam, Valentine M. "Transnational Feminisms." Women worldwide: Transnational feminist perspectives on women (2010): 21-46.

Orozco, Arturo Enrique, M. Angela Nievar, and Wendy Middlemiss. "Domestic violence in Mexico: Perspectives of Mexican counselors." Journal of Comparative Family Studies (2012): 751-772.

"The National Domestic Violence Hotline | Statistics". Thehotline.Org, 2010, http://www.thehotline.org/resources/statistics/.

Trevillion, Kylee, et al. "Experiences of domestic violence and mental disorders: a systematic review and meta-analysis." PloS one 7.12 (2012): 3-9.

World Health Organization. "Understanding and addressing violence against women: Intimate partner violence." (2012). pp. 1-12.

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