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SUBTLE YET LOUD : DATING VIOLENCE

Dating violence mostly among youngsters has become an increasingly notable challenge, destroying the socio-cultural texture of the current era. The field of dating violence has attracted a major visibility in research over some years, which has improved our understanding of certain factors that contributed the ill-intention to actuate the commission of more wrongdoings against vulnerable sections and what are not sufficient to surface within the framework of existing Penal Laws. Unfortunately, piecemeal attention paid to dating violence - prevention programming and existing programs of what has been marred with methodological weaknesses and a lack of demonstrated effectiveness in reducing aggression. In hopes of arrest attention this new research on dating violence prevention programs the current review examines possible new avenues for dating violence prevention programming among college students. We discuss clinical interventions that have shown to be effective in reducing a number of problematic behaviours, including motivational interventions, dialectical behaviour therapy, mindfulness, and bystander interventions and how they could be applied to dating violence prevention. We also discuss methodological issues to consider when implementing dating violence prevention programs.

Many legal scholars argue that it is not criminal to merely exploit the loopholes in ones legal system, but it is the failure of the legal system to address and eliminate those loopholes. During the course of this paper, the author tries to address and examine the problem of a similar legal grey area which is dating violence or as some would say intimate partner violence. That being so said some of readers might wonder, how is "dating violence" an unaddressed problem, where in a country like India the law clearly criminalizes and penalizes all forms of assault and exploitation. What they might not have noticed is that in a country like ours premarital relationships is still socially stigmatised and the wide definition of consent, sometimes the law is mislead to believe that the offence was a mere disagreement .After the completion of the paper, where we confine the purview of the said offence, examine all aspects of it and show the different harms that it causes our society however the discretion is left to the readers to decide whether or not to criminalize dating violence.

To draw a straight line upon a sphere would be considered to a perfect insanity so long it cannot be surfaced upon a paper-sheet. The moment the spherical geographical boundaries of the universe are confined upon a piece of paper drawing a straight line upon it is an easy task. So too is the case of ‘dating violence’. It neither comes within the purview of ‘sexual exploitation’ nor ‘sexual harassment’ rather having its inherent attributes gradual progression of what either lead to ‘sexual exploitation’ or at times ‘sexual harassment’.

The author has taken the best attempt to elucidate this ongoing socio-behavioural practices frequented among the young potentials of the society in best possible empirical manner.

Dating-violence is a new concept triggered predominantly with the large scale use of the advanced-technological devices, though, its consequential resultant mostly directed to the common offences like, assault, battery, etc. But what has newly evolved are: a) the use of tools to commit such offence; and b) the mode and shade of such offences.

The colloquial word ‘dating’ is directed to signify the particular act-situation of young minds to meet at appointed date, time, place for exchange and interact with the view to develop intimacy. This particular attempt is not objectionable from the legal point of view and now becomes to certain extent the accepted social-norms as well. The bonafide intention to develop healthy relation through persuasion is the centre-stage of negotiation and conciliation, while such persuasion, being made unilaterally with an ulterior motive to achieve some malafide object enables to be the point of outcry in public domain. The outcome of dating appears to be in various colours, shades and shapes – the matured versions of what however customised sometimes as abetment, fraud, forced rape, conspiracy, stalking, etc. Dating is an assertion of right of privacy where accountability per se is a misnomer however, dating is the rudimentary stage whence from the persuasion towards a leally wrong is directed.

In recent years, there have been numerous attempts to define teen dating violence, but there is no universal consensus on the definition of this construct. In our view, a contemporary definition that demonstrates the complexity of the problem is the one proposed by Lavoie, Robitaille and Hébert (2000). The authors define teen dating violence as “any behaviour that is prejudicial to the partner’s development or health by compromising his or her physical, psychological, or sexual integrity” (p. 8). As pointed out by Cornelius and Resseguie (2007), to understand and study dating violence, it is important to focus on different forms of violence because physical, psychological, and sexual violence are usually interrelated.

Similarly by the word "dating" it is hard to confine the acts, actions, or the act-situations legally since it's a generic term, however, the most common definition could be from the commoners’ parlance " dating is a stage of romantic and ahead viz; sexual relationships in humans whereby two or more people meet socially, possibly as friends or with the aim of each assessing the other's suitability as a partner in a more committed intimate relationship" and that is mostly pre-marital stage.

To simplify it further we can call it the courtship period. Now comes the word ‘violence’. Globally the term violence has been defined in many statutes, conventions, judgements etc. from diverse perspectives as well while the conventional definition explains "the intentional use of physical force or power, threatened or actual, in order to harm an individual" as ‘violence’.

Therefore, from the above definitions an idea relating to the term ‘dating violence’ may be elaborated as follows:

What is "dating violence"?

Dating violence is controlling, abusive, and aggressive behaviour in emotive relations, predominantly the romantic relationship. The centre-stage of such type of violence is the emotional transactions between the parties to such relationship. It can happen in straight or gay relationships. It can include verbal, emotional, physical, or sexual abuse, or a combination of any of them. The distinct and singular feature of such violence is that affects the faculties of the cognitive domain of the human beings to such relationship.

The characterization of different offences under dating violence.

Verbal and emotional abuse may include:

Physical presence is not often required in commission of offence, rather attempt to contact through any communicative-apparatus sufficient enough to correspondence either verbal sometimes physical are sufficient to the eventual outcomes of emotional abuse and psychological damages thereof. In some cases such psychological damage so showered upon the victim by the perpetrator may cause permanent psychological impairment that in turn, may eclipse even to the extent of future relations and marital life of the victim since, the victims of dating violence at the relevant time of occurrence slouch in fantasies subsequent appearance and cognizance of the said ill-deeds and evocation of the same, many a time, affects the behaviours of the victims to be perpetual patient of trauma. For the present discussion mostly the teenagers and young individuals of the society have been addressed to where opportunities of commission of such offence are having high frequencies. A person may be considered to have committed the offence of dating violence if the perpetrator is engaged in any act or activities, alone or in concert that sufficiently purport to have inflicted any verbal and emotional abuse to the other in such transaction, such as-

Name Calling

It is a common practice amongst romantic partners or couples to give each other nicknames excepting the names given within the household relatives out of love, care or affection or as a very common expression such as darling, honey etc. Rather in unfamiliar or new acquaintance that per se, appears to be derogatory, or the calling of the name, mode and manner of name-calling which is grossly perceived by any member of the public as to demeaning to the integrity of person of any individual. Experts believe that name calling is one of the indications of ones partners abusive nature or tendency of the same. verbal abusers act in a very composed mind manifestation of what appears to be in bouyancy to liven up their partner to accept such derogatory or demeaning callings. That such words, may be beguile the then acquaintance to accept it with spontaneity, what subsequently appears as questionable to the conscience of the victim even relating to his/her own behaviour. This systematic self-analysis and self-doubt are what takes it from name calling to verbal abuse -- it’s a repeated pattern that, over time, can make the victim believe the insults, making it harder for them to leave.

jealousy

jealousy can be catagorized as a common emotive component amongst couples or dating partners. But it is very concerning and alarming to know that the occurence of this feeling is very frequent in abusive. Relationshipsone of the most harmful effects of jealousy is that it can lead a couple to limit eachother’s independence. when this occurs, the victim can lose the individuality and strength that once attracted the very partners who are now limiting them in these ways. The result is not only that the person who feels limited will also feel less attraction to his or her partner, but that the person acting jealous may actually resent the ways in which their partner has changed.

belittling

Beyond name-calling, abusers may belittle their partner, either privately, publicly, or disguise disparaging comments in jokes. This can be followed up by more judgment and criticism such as calling the victim sensitive or acting as those what they’ve said is trivial, like passing it off as a joke. Other examples of belittling or insults include demoralising ones partner, making them feel guilty, or embarrassing and humiliating them.

• threatening to hurt the victim, someone in the victims family, or himself or herself if the victim don't do what the perpetrator wants.( emotionally blackmailing the victim)

To understand this particular form of dating violence we must first understand what is emotional blackmailing

Emotional blackmail is when someone (usually someone fairly close to the recipient/victim, who knows all of there weaknesses and therefore they can easily use it against the victims) threatens the victim through fear, obligation, and guilt either in an indirect or direct fashion in order to get what they want. In essence, an emotional blackmailer is able to control his/her victim through various techniques, using phrases. Through the power of manipulation, the victims emotional blackmailer can appear ever so charming to one so that one can easily commit to their needs. They can indirectly start bribing the victim with gifts so that the victims begin to feel obligated to them. It might lead to extreme statements from the emotional blackmailer to make the victim feel like if you do not comply with their wishes, the victim will be punished. They can go so far as to threaten to hurt the victim or even themselves in order to get the victim to do something for them. This is dangerous and one should ask for professional help at this point. Emotional blackmail is ultimately abusive as it is either the blackmailers way or no way. In a healthy, stable relationship, there is always a give and take balance. With emotional blackmailers, they do all the taking, so it is their way only, and this is how they place fear in the victim so that the victim cannot speak to them without feeling unworthy or afraid.

Controlling behaviour

The effects of any controlling relationship can be devastating. Unfortunately, those who have suffered the abuse of a controlling partner may suffer many negative effects; the victim will often find it very difficult to trust a new partner. The constant emotional abuse drains them of self-esteem. Living under this chronic stress can affect the victim both physically and mentally with symptoms such as irritable bowel syndrome, anxiety and depression, insomnia, and maybe suicidal ideation or attempts. Controllers often start out as emotional abusers and can move on to physical violence over time.

Controlling behavior may include:

• not letting the victim/partner spend time with his/her respective friends

• calling or texting the victim frequently to find out where the victim is, whom they are with, and what the victim is doing

• telling the victim what to wear

• compelling the victim to spend, a majority of there time with their partner(perpetrator)

Physical abuse:

In general, victims of repeated violence over time experience more serious consequences than victims of one-time incidents. apart from deaths and injuries, physical violence by an intimate partner is associated with a number of adverse health outcomes. several health conditions associated with intimate partner violence may be a direct result of the physical violence (for example, bruises, knife wounds, broken bones, traumatic brain injury, back or pelvic pain, headaches). Other conditions are the result of the impact of intimate partner violence on the cardiovascular, gastrointestinal, endocrine and immune systems through chronic stress or other mechanisms.

Physical abuse may include

• shoving

• punching

• slapping

• pinching

• hitting

• kicking

• hair pulling

• strangling

Sexual abuse :

Sexual Abuse, in itself can never be considered to be any offence so long the course of actions to its entirety has matured the scope and extent of the conducts and behaviours backed by consent of the victim while once it appears to have not been approved by the victim at once it is considered as one of the most heinous and degrading crimes within the purview of Indian Penal Code. Victims of sexual abuse are at an increased risk of experiencing problems such as of depressive symptoms, disordered eating (taking diet aids, fasting, vomiting), smoking, and frequent sexual behaviour (having vaginal intercourse and oral sex partners, having anal sex). The risk increase even more so when the perpetrator, of said crimes happens to be the victims romantic/emotional partner. This situation is often attributed to the narcissistic personality of the perpetrator i.e. in his mind his partner/victim serves only one purpose, which is to fulfil his/her sexual desires and fantasies.

Sexual abuse may include

 Enforced touching and kissing

 Forcing you to have sex

 Not letting you use birth control

 Forcing you to do other sexual things

The main objective of the study was to examine the prevalence and the context of dating violence and to explore the underlying factors that contribute and perpetuate dating violence among students. From all of the above data we can conclude that dating violence is not only present but frequent in the lives of young adults. It has now became a very visible problem but a solvable one.

From all the research work I've tried to come up with some solutions

1) Before you start dating, make sure who you are dating.

We often tend to jump into relationships without properly evaluating our situation. We should be absolutely sure that we know who are we dating and how can we be happy together. We should keep our expectations realistic. We should try to know and understand the other person before we enter into a relationship. Sometimes we do feel a certain way about a person but it all changes after we start becoming intimate. It's very essential that we do not let our feelings for a person hide his or her flaws.

2) During the relationship we should be very calculative and cautious

When we are in a relationship we should always remember to make the other person as well as yourself comfortable. Both partners are equally important in an relationship. One should never to consent to something that he or she is not comfortable with. We should be honest with our partner. As keeping quite to please him or her creates communication gap. Communication is essential for a good relationship. It's very important to be safe as prevention is always better than cure.

3) Seek help and assistance

Once we do get into a situation where dating violence is inevitable or has already taken place. We should reach out to friends and family. It's very difficult for an individual to evaluate his or her situation at the time. Having trusted people around us will not only help us solve the problem, it can help solve it. Every person should have faith and not be scared at the time and be open and clear about the situation.

Man is a social animal and it will socialise in its own ways. We have advanced a great deal in our social interaction methods. But it is important to be safe and not vulnerable while we do so. Love and affection should not end up in violence and torture.


 

1. http://www.indiankanoon.org/doc/1092711/

2. Ismail, Berman, and Ward-Griffin, 2007

3. Teen Dating Relationships and Aggression-An Exploratory study Francine Lavoieline Robitaille, Martine Hébert first published january 1, 2000

4. Cornelius TL, Resseguie N. Primary and secondary prevention programs for dating violence: A review of the literature. Aggression and Violent Behavior. 2007;12:364–375. [Ref list]

5. Teen dating violence :need for early prevention, Elisa Guidi, Giullia Magnatta, Patrizia Meringolo,


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