REPRODUCTIVE ABUSE

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Last night I watched an interesting episode of Law and Order SVU, and this topic caught my attention, I was stunned and watched it to the end.

Then I decided to contact a very good friend of mine, Google, and found a lot of material on the subject, to say I was stunned would be an understatement, but after reading up on lots of articles and wikipedia, I decided to compile this post, just to shed more light on this issue, and I can bet lots of people, both men and women don’t know this form of abuse exists.

Reproductive coercion (also called coerced
reproduction ) are threats or acts of violence
against a partner’s reproductive health or
reproductive decision-making and is a collection
of behaviors intended to pressure or coerce a
partner into becoming a parent or ending a
pregnancy.

Reproductive coercion is a form
of domestic violence, also known as intimate
partner violence , where behavior concerning
reproductive health is used to maintain power,
control, and domination within a relationship and
over a partner through an unwanted pregnancy.
It is considered a serious public health issue
and has great psychological and social
consequences including drug dependence,
suicide attempts, and post-traumatic stress
disorder .

Women report that their partners engage in
reproductive coercion because they want to
leave a legacy with the woman or have the
woman in their life forever as a few of the
reasons they perpetrate the coercion.

The three forms of reproductive coercion are
pregnancy pressure, birth control sabotage , and
pregnancy coercion; they can exist
independently or occur simultaneously. There
are also three periods in which reproductive
coercion can take place: preintercourse, during
intercourse, and postintercourse. Preintercourse
may involve pregnancy pressure, during
intercourse may involve birth control sabotage,
and postintercourse may involve pregnancy
coercion. If a woman does not comply with her
partner’s wishes, her partner may act out
violently against her, which is a common
response.

Pregnancy pressure

Pregnancy pressure is enacted by a woman’s
sexual partner when he pressures her into
having unprotected sex in order to become
pregnant.Ways in which this occurs are
through verbal demands, verbal threats, and
physical violence.

Examples of verbal pressure are:

“If you have a baby, you will never have to
worry about me leaving you. I will always be
around.”
“You would have my baby if you really loved
me.”
“I’ll leave you if you don’t get pregnant.”
“I’ll hurt you if you don’t agree to become
pregnant.”
“I’ll have a baby with someone else if you
don’t become pregnant.”

Birth control sabotage

Reproductive coercion can take the form of birth
control sabotage, either as verbal sabotage or
behavioral sabotage, and acts as an active
interference with contraceptive methods. Direct
actions are taken to ensure the failure of birth
control (such as poking holes in or breaking
condoms) or complete removal of contraception
(such as flushing birth control pills down the
toilet or removing contraceptive rings or patches
from the body). Partners can also forbid women
from using family planning or force them to have
sex without protection.

The most common forms of birth control
sabotage are when the partner refused to wear
a condom and when the partner ejaculated
before withdrawal , although it was the agreed-
upon contraceptive method.

Pregnancy coercion

Pregnancy coercion is the act of controlling the
outcome of a pregnancy – to either force the
continuation or termination of the pregnancy – by
threats or acts of violence if the woman does not
comply with the perpetrator’s demands or
wishes. Reproductive coercion
behaviors may result in several unintended
pregnancies that are then followed by multiple
coerced abortions .
Women who seek abortions are nearly 3 times
as likely to have experienced reproductive
coercion by a partner in the past year, compared
to women continuing their pregnancies.

Role in domestic violence

A strong
association between domestic violence and
reproductive coercion exists. Women in
abusive relationships are more likely to fear the
consequences of resisting their partner’s
reproductive coercive tactics.

Women who are abused by male partners and
men who are abusive to female partners are 3
times as likely to have an STI or contract HIV .40% of abused women reported that their
pregnancy was unintended, as compared to 8%
of non-abused women. Between 4% and 17%
of women report domestic violence during their
current pregnancy. Some women experience
increased domestic violence during pregnancy,
with violence more focused on the abdomen.

Men as victims

Men are more likely than women to
experience reproductive abuse, with 10.4% of
men and 8.6% of women reporting pregnancy
coercion or attempted birth control sabotage.
Contraceptive fraud is the conversion of a man’s
semen for a purpose that he does not consent to;
in this case, pregnancy. Conversion is seen
as the civil equivalent of theft, but because the
crime was committed by the mother and not a
third party, such as the resulting child, the father
is obligated to pay child support. If he attempts
to avoid or lessen the child support, it is seen as
seeking a remedy from the wrong person.

In order to overcome reproductive coercion, and
domestic violence in general, there needs to be
greater awareness, improved identification
techniques, and education about available social
and legal interventions available for victims and
survivors.

Well that’s all the light I can shed on this topic, I hope it helps.

Additional Source- The ever available Wikipedia

Posted by Arome Ameh (The Priest) From WordPress for Android

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Staircases And Cupcakes

 

image ofI was eleven when it happened, I can remember how it happened, because I was there when it happened.

It took me twenty four years to get here, and a lot of guts, but I think it’s time I got it off my chest.

I won’t pretend I grew up in a perfect home, and suddenly things went bad, for as long as I can remember, it was always the same, I grew up thinking all Fathers yelled, and all mothers cried.

Father was never happy, he always yelled, everything was always done wrong, and even when he did it wrong, he always found a way of blaming mother.

I saw him punch her, shove her, swear at her, but I never saw him hold her, hug her, kiss her, or even say anything nice to her.

It’s not a long story, just a brief sad story, of an eleven year old boy, a story that changed his life forever.

I just got back from school, I was in the kitchen eating, and as usual, mother would set my meal with the usual cupcake on the side, chocolate flavored, so I could eat immediately I got back from school, she never missed it, I still remember the smell of cake batter, she baked so much, the aroma was almost permanent, and even up until now as an adult, I always remember her, when I smell cake batter, among other things.

It was quite, unusually quiet, I didn’t think much of it, because I knew it was just a matter of time before father would get back, and he would find something to yell about.

He got back earlier than usual, I was just about biting into my cupcake, when he walked in, I remember losing my appetite, he walked passed me like I was not there, not that I cared, I was accustomed to it, he yelled out for mum, but he didn’t get any response, I knew she was asleep, she was pregnant, and it was hard for her to keep up with her daily routine, I didn’t bother checking up on her, because I knew she was a light sleeper, and I didn’t want to wake her up.

He yelled out again, and still yet no reply, I remained in the kitchen, and waited for it, I heard him walk up the stairs, I could tell he was mad, what else was new, suddenly I heard him yelling at her, I couldn’t quite make out the words, but I knew there were angry words, I left the kitchen, and made my way to the foot of the stairs, I stretched my neck, trying to hear what was being said, dad was yelling, and mum was trying to pacify him, suddenly he appeared at the top of the stairs, and stared right down at me, I felt a chill, this was not normal, “what are you looking at you stupid boy”, he said, don’t you have anything better to do than stuff your face with cakes? Your mother has made a girl out of you, am pretty sure you are the first boy who will have his period; those were things father said to me.

I let his words wash over me, but I didn’t move, I was accustomed to it, I think deep down he just needed to rave and rant all the time to give himself a sense of self-worth, mother emerged from the bedroom, and simply told him to leave me alone, and that was when it happened, he turned around and punched her in the face, he didn’t care if she was pregnant or not, she spun around, and used her elbows to shield her tummy from hitting the wall, he grabbed her by the hair and pulled her back, haven’t you done enough to ruin him, father said, why doesn’t he act like normal boys, and you dare tell me to leave him alone, he spoke about me like I wasn’t even there.

Mother tried to pacify him, he started shoving her, I saw her walking back, towards the head of the stairs, I tried to warn her she was too close to the edge, but his constant yelling drowned my words, she missed her step, I saw her fall, it was like an eternity, but while she fell, she tried to shield her stomach, I saw her fall, I heard bones crack, I saw her falling, and I was rooted to the spot, until she hit me, and we both landed on the floor, I hit my head, and when I opened my eyes, I saw her, lying down, she was staring at me, but was looking through me, suddenly I felt something sticky on my cheek, it was red, it was warm, it was her blood, and then I realized, she was dead, he pushed her, I passed out.

I didn’t see him anymore after that, I went to live with my uncle, years later he told me, my father left, started afresh, was arrested, but never convicted, ruled as a domestic accident, people fall down stairs all the time.

I still don’t understand why he was such a bitter person, mother didn’t deserve what he did to her, I haven’t spoken to him or seen he since that day, personally I see no point

I have moved on, am happy, have a family now, they give me joy, decided to share this, I don’t know how it will help, but am pretty sure it will.

Written By Arome Ameh (The Priest)

A SOLDIER’S LETTER

soldier

Dearest Soldier’s Wife,

If you are reading this, it means i am no longer with you, and sadly i will no longer be able to tell you how much i love you, but one thing that warms my heart is the simple fact that i can watch over you and the children, so let’s just say you are now connected in high places.

I can only imagine the look on your face right now, but you know me, i always need to make a joke, just to keep you smiling, i am so sorry i had to leave, and i know it must really be hard for you to understand, why i decided to choose my country over my family, trust me i asked myself that same question, but the only answer i got was that it was simply my calling.

My love, i know i never say this too often, probably because i feel you already know, but i am the luckiest man alive, i knew that marrying you would be my greatest achievement, you are the best thing to ever happen to me, and i want you to always remember that.

I won’t pretend to know how you are feeling right now, or what you are going through, but i can assure you that with time, the pain will pass, and also take comfort in the fact that we shared a wonderful life together, no matter how brief it was, i am one of the lucky ones to be blessed with the sort of family i was given through you, and anytime you feel sad, and angry, just look at our children, there has to be some reflection of me there somewhere, and i know you don’t need to look to hard before you see it, tell them what type of a man their father was, remind them always why i had to leave.

Tell them that after you, they are the best things to ever happen to me, all three of them, tell Ikenna to please stop biting his nails, and to always remember to lace his boots properly before playing football, so he doesn’t trip over himself too much, always remind Habiba, to minimize her sugar intake, remember how you had to stay up all night some months ago because of her tooth ache, i know she is a brilliant girl and will grow up to be a great woman, and remind my little angel Aramide, whom i was, i know she is too young to remember me, but please tell her who i was, and remind all of them that i will be watching over them, and i promise not to let any harm come to them.

I love you with all my heart, and i apologize again for leaving you without warning, and i want you to know one thing, your happiness will always be my happiness, do not be afraid to be happy, never you feel it is selfish to want to be happy, simply because i am no longer with you, yes reading this letter, you may feel i have gone mad, and should not be talking about impossibilities, but trust me, and have faith in the fact that, joy and happiness will never be far from you.

I am glad to have spent the time God gave me with you and the children, and deep down inside i know you and the children have more happier days ahead, but always remember that i love you, and the kids more than life itself.

Your Husband

Soldier.

Written By Arome Ameh (The Priest)

Dedicated to all our Fallen  Nigerian soldiers, fighting the good fight to keep us safe, and to all their families, left to mourn their loss, we pray for and with you, and we say thank you for the sacrifice.