Violence Against Women: Can Indian Parents Finally Have Their Daughters’ Back?

If as many as of women between 18 and 49 years of age in India have experienced physical violence (as per National Family Health Survey 5), then it is a clear indication that many families are still not raising boys to see women as equal partners, or even humans who deserve to live with dignity. But, when it comes to domestic violence, the conversation can’t stop here.

Why not teach our daughters and sons to spot early signs of a relationship turning toxic? Why can’t parents tell children to always prioritize well-being over social reputation?

Parental support can not only encourage women to walk out of abusive relationships but also provide them with the necessary emotional, financial and social support that is necessary to take a step that could have multifaceted implications on their lives.

A 2017 conducted in Malaysia found that unconditional support from families and friends, apart from assistance they received from government agencies, helped women survivors of domestic violence maintain their commitment to leaving abusive marriages.

Not just parents though, each one of us needs to accept this bitter truth- our loved ones will make decisions in life that we won’t approve of. Some of them might turn out to be good, while others could have bad repercussions. When that happens, they don’t need our silence or I told you sos. They need our love and kindness that could keep them from harm’s way and help them restart their lives.

We can prevent another such tragedy, but not by controlling young women’s bodies and robbing them of their agency, because that will do nothing to discourage abusive behavior. Instead, let us talk to our children, friends, and peers about domestic abuse. Let us change the dialogue around this taboo subject and focus on aspects like healing and support, rather than indulging in a blame game.

(Yamini Pustake Bhalerao is the author of The Laundry Girl ebook series. She formerly worked as Ideas Editor at SheThePeople.TV. This is an opinion piece and the views expressed are the author’s own. The Quint neither endorses nor is responsible for them.)

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