Domestic Violence - The Reasons Why She Stays

Domestic Violence

Many people believe that if a woman is being physically, sexually or psychologically abused she should just leave.  Unfortunately, it's not always that simple.  Making a clean break is a brave and extremely difficult step to take, for most if not all victims of domestic violence.

Reasons Why It May Be Difficult For A Woman To Leave An Abusive Relationship

  • She wants to stay in the relationship and just wants the violence to end.
  • She may think she is to blame for the abuse.
  • She is probably hoping that he will change without any outside assistance.
  • He may have threatened to take the children.
  • She may be so committed to her marriage that leaving is not an option.  It may be that her cultural beliefs or religion prevent her from doing same.
  • She may still love him.
  • She may be pregnant.
  • She may think the violence is a direct result of alcohol or stress.
  • He says that he is sorry and promises to never abuse her again.
  • She sees him when he's loving some of the time and then she refuses to acknowledge the bad times.
  • He may have a good relationship with the children.
  • She may have all sorts of hopes and dreams that she doesn't want to let go of.
  • She has been socially isolated and feels like she has no support.
  • She may fear loss of financial stability for herself and her children.
  • She thinks that he will not be able to cope without her i.e. she feels that she has to provide emotional support because he may have threatened suicide.
  • She may fear being labelled as a 'battered woman' or a 'solo mum'.
  • People don't take her seriously or don't believe that there is a problem.
  • She may be feeling too upset, confused or depressed to make rational decisions for herself.
  • Her family/friends encourage her to stay with him or back him.
  • She is afraid of being physically and/or verbally abused even more.
  • She is afraid for her life.

Most often than not, domestic violence increases in frequency and intensity over time and it can go from bad to worse after a separation.


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James R. Coffey
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