Understanding Abuse! Us, we cut the branches when the tree itself is decayed from its roots; and other times we aim for the whole damn tree when only the branches are dried and twisted. Meaning, we focus on the ‘what’ instead of the ‘why’s, as to what has happened, and how do we stop it, instead of why did it happen and how do we prevent it. We pass laws, even put execution at the top of it for the most heinous crimes we conceive of; we think fear would be the end to, or that our hatred would be the answer.
Yes, the laws should be strong, but it’s not just the laws that should be; laws can only do so much, and can only do so on a surface level. If you tell your kid, who’s picked up the habit, that they should not smoke, even punish him, for that matter, there’s a slim chance he’ll not smoke when watchful eyes aren’t around, and a very high chance, it will come out in some other way as to him doing things more than smoking; whatever submerged, festers. Point being, punishment isn’t permanent; “we are our true selves when no one is watching”.
Then we aim our axes at the tree, the culture, for it is the main reason why things happen. “The patriarchy, the male dominance, the men, they are the problem”; that’s what we get taught, that’s what we deem as the enemy. I cannot speak for the west but here, yes there are a lot of branches that must be amended or cut, maybe in our culture itself, mythologies we’ve misunderstood, misinterpreted and some, even propagandistic as to carry on the oppression. We absolutely forget the why of things, they never get passed down, never get remembered, most are satisfied or at least settle for the ‘what’s; why do we worship the god of destruction with a third eye at the center of his forehead as our top god; or why do we not pray with blue flowers.
Coming back, we make abuse a men versus women thing; as far as my experience goes, women, when are hurt by a man usually conclude that all men are evil, and when a man gets hurt, his aim, his resentment (if he bears any), is aimed at the particular woman who has hurt him. Why? It maybe because women feel the oppressive hand that has been built in their psyche over the course of bad experiences with men, over the course of years of being taught men are as such.
Now, I’m not undermining what people do or what has been done. One cannot even begin to imagine, let alone comprehend the abyss the victim goes through the rest of their lives. I have been around, tried to help, tried to understand the wreckage; have been more than a supporter of equality of opportunities, but we have a tendency to jump from an extreme to the next, and I believe we should prevent that.
We Should Not Attack the Tree Itself
We should not attack the tree itself, if the problem can be ameliorated by cutting a few branches. And, if you look at the statistics, five percent of the ‘criminals’ commit ninety-five percent of the crime; it’s the same group of people, minority of the minority who are repetitive offenders. Let me give you an example, when I was growing up, there was a drug dealer woman a few blocks from where I live, she had been in and out of rehab herself, but through her, almost a generation of the guys from her block ended up as heroin addicts, and through sex with her, almost all of them ended up with AIDS. Then, around a decade ago, she moved away, or died, the story differs with sources, but she wasn’t there anymore; and the guys, some went to rehab, some moved away, almost all of them have disappeared, but some have risen to become a dependable member of the block. And as far as I know, this next generation, it’s rare to find an addict in that area. Because, the infectious branch was destroyed, the locality was aware thus, further damage was prevented.
We should not blame everyone for the actions of a few. Not all men rape. The innocence and divinity of each individual must be respected. In my experience, whenever the topic of oppression or rape comes about, which has, more than a few times, it has been concluded by the female supervisor and the women of the group that the men are to blame; and if you are significantly outnumbered, you might as well shut the hell up and expect to be picked on. It’s called a “class based guilt” which occurred all through the vicious communism, where you had to admit being guilty for whatever your category of people did. If you were even a bit richer than most in the community, through your own hard work and toil, you were thrown into the category of the “rich oppressors”, or something your ancestors did, or something someone else’s ancestors did and that too has been shoved into your category thus you had to accept being guilty and were fit for any punishment you “deserve”.
I mean, most of us men, almost all, can’t even muster up the courage to go and say hi to a girl we like, let alone abuse or harass, mostly due to fear of rejection. And yes, repression, unable to conjure up the courage too comes out in distorted ways, but that too falls in the minority of the minority.
Now, with all that out, I hope we can reason out why do such things happen; the underlying psychology, maybe even biology of the pathology. One of the reasons I believe, is, just as bullies, the ones who abuse are one in the two, ones who have been abused, have a mental disorder themselves, OR ones who have unregulated level of self importance, along with the notion that they are above societal norms, and even the law.
The first one, the abusers are distorted, psychologically, mostly in their upbringing. They carry around all that hate, all that resentment and wish to do to the world, what life did to them. They want to destroy the kindness, the innocence, they believe it does not exist; and their resentment is finally pointed towards existence itself. Their mind is a hell they manifest into the world.
Now, the other kind, roots in inequality; roots in being raised as an infant adult who believes the world is built for, and around them. They have been treated as special, and in extremes, they believe others are mere tools, objects and thrash. In our culture, it certainly finds its root in inequality between men and women, and more unequal the society, more the cases of such abuse. Here, the culture is built such a way that, someone is always subordinate to the other, the superior is always right, and they feel they can do and get away with anything. They do it because culture allows them to; and that’s the part of culture, the distorted branch I was talking about that must be replaced. Equality is of utmost importance.
Here, again, our thoughts might digress. “Because, equality doesn’t mean similarity”, and we seem to confuse those two. Yes, the son and daughter are equal, but, there are differences in temperament. We are equal but not the same; of my little cousins, ever since they learnt to open YouTube, opened and searched for cars, bikes, wrestling; now, guess which sex they were. While, my other cousins, were interested in soap operas, reality shows, fashion on instagram, pinterest.
Now, no one told them what they should be seeing in YouTube, nor did anybody click anything for them. People say, you must raise your girls like boys, okay, mostly good. But then they say that you should raise your boys like girls, damn. Their playfulness, is taken as aggression; their high level activity, (just because humans aren’t built to sit and shut up for eight hours in a desk) is diagnosed as ADHD and are given Adderall, men are taught to be less violent, instead of channelling the energy towards something beneficial like working out, they later in life, we deem them lazy and useless.
If juvenile rats aren’t allowed to play, their brain isn’t much developed, and a rat brain can be a prototype of a human brain. Our neocortex, the new mammalian brain, especially the prefrontal cortex, the advanced brain gets underdeveloped if healthy growth is obstructed, and it, is the part that is associated with planning, personality expression, attention, decision making. And with underdeveloped brains, we are inclined to react awkwardly to situations, and even prone to impulsivity. See, the consequences of trying to impose the beliefs we ‘feel’ are right? Or the consequences that shutting up and being politically correct leads to? We should understand and regard the differences.
With who chooses what too, I didn’t choose cars or bikes or wrestling or fashion, I chose random information as the ones above; sorry momma, for being a nerd and devouring your brain with information and random “facts” whenever we enter a conversation.
Back to the point, to solve the first one, the upbringing of each individual needs to be monitored, each individual must be properly socialized, must be cared for when care is required. I know, each, isn’t possible, but the closer we get, the better. To solve the second one, equality and a sense of empathy is a must. The culture here must be altered on individual levels, and social levels. No one is better or worse than anyone.
To solve both? Education. Awareness. Empathy. and most of all, Empowerment of EACH individual.
Random fact: abusers, bullies, look for the meek kind, the ones who appear naive, ones who have been over protected, ones who have already been broken down, who will not fight, will not complain and obey; basically, ones they can abuse and think they can get away with. They rarely ever pick the loud, the confident kind. EMPOWER the ones around you, teach them strength, teach them to fight, arm them with the wisdom, strength, endurance and everything it takes, to navigate this world.