The Individual Is The Weapon, And Their Instrument Of Choice To Harm Is The Method
We have to place things in their proper order in solving this disturbing issue. That begins by recognizing some members of society:
– Came from home environments which lacked guidance, supervision, and love;
– Lack strong emotional regulation, for whatever reason (i.e., learned behavior, genetic, congenital impairment, abuse);
– Are conformists to earlier deadly instances that have occurred;
– Have learned from home environment, or peers, that conflict (real, or imagined) involves picking up a tool (whatever that may be) with the intent to harm someone in resolving conflict;
– Embrace negativity and sounds that enter their minds on a daily basis (media influences);
– Lack healthy coping mechanisms;
– Are selfish (dangerously!), with a sense of entitlement;
– Already have a need to let their personal difficulties spill out into the public arena, and care less who gets physically damaged as a result;
– Possess out-of-control anger and hostility, and
– Lacked positive role models in their developmental years.
Are these all of the variables? No, but they’re a good start.
If America wants to find solutions in combatting violence in society, it begins with identifying the actual source of the problem, instead of working backwards.
Intimate Partner Violence (IPV) And Brain Injuries
[National Domestic Violence Hotline 1-800-799-SAFE(7233)]
Our immediate thoughts are on the military and football players when brain injury is the topic of discussion. These injuries can become life changing for the patient, and heart wrenching for loved ones who see an unfavorable difference in personality and disposition.
Those who suffer from Intimate Partner Violence (usually women), are individuals who also deserve recognition for brain injuries because they, too, experience debilitating cognitive issues. Many from this community lack awareness that they even have brain injuries, and could have experienced several over the duration of the abusive relationship from their partner.
THE KEY ASPECT THAT PLAYED A ROLE IN IPV
Domestic violence increased tremendously because of the COVID-19 Pandemic lockdowns (Ballard, 2022) and (George, Wesley, & Geraghty, 2021).
“There are households where the pandemic has become a reason why family members finally interact with each other. In some cases, this helps to enhance the quality of relationships within a family. However, in families where there are abusive patterns, the home confinement and social isolation can be very dangerous to the victims” (George, Wesley, & Geraghty, 2021).
AN IMPORTANT FINDING
Ballard (2022) mentions a conference that was held earlier this year: Seeking Tomorrow’s Answers Together [STAT]. One of the topics was how COVID-19 affected mental health.
Lockdowns were detrimental for people in abusive relationships!
These are people who were literally held hostage by their abusers because the abusers had unlimited access to their victims.
Thus, lockdowns created a more dangerous existence for people who may have been already living with IPV.
Intimate partners, the medical community, safety forces, the various legal institutions, and society in general, all need to recognize that brain injuries due to the IPV epidemic is prevalent. Then, they can become aware of behaviors [symptomology] that are associated with those subjected to IPV (Costello & Greenwald, 2022), (Hillstrom, 2022), (Sutherland & Chakrabarti, 2022), and (Valera, 2022).
This knowledge can help remove misconceptions about these individuals, especially when they are confronted with life-and-death situations independent of their abusers.
Ballard, J. (2022). From Pandemic To Endemic: Relationship Violence Due To COVID. Retrieved From https://www.du.edu/news/pandemic-endemic-relationship-violence-due-covid
Costello, K., & Greenwald, B. D. (2022). Update On Domestic Violence And Traumatic Brain Injury: A Narrative Review. Retrieved From https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/35053865/
George, E. S., Wesley, M. S., & Geraghty, L. (Eds.). (2021). Cultural Studies. Marital Stress And Domestic Violence During The COVID-19 Pandemic. Retrieved From https://www.tandfonline.com/doi/full/10.1080/23311983.2021.1992085
Hillstrom, C. (2022). The Hidden Epidemic Of Brain Injuries From Domestic Violence. Retrieved From https://www.nytimes.com/2022/03/01/magazine/brain-trauma-domestic-violence.html
National Domestic Violence Hotline. (2022). Here For You. Retrieved From https://www.thehotline.org/
Sutherland, P., & Chakrabarti, M. (2022). An ‘Invisible Epidemic’: Survivors Of Domestic Violence On Living With Traumatic Brain Injury. Retrieved From https://www.wbur.org/onpoint/2022/01/20/survivors-of-domestic-violence-on-living-with-traumatic-brain-injury
Valera, E., PhD. (2022). Women’s Health. Intimate Partner Violence And Traumatic Brain Injury: An Invisible Public Health Epidemic. Retrieved From https://www.health.harvard.edu/blog/intimate-partner-violence-and-traumatic-brain-injury-an-invisible-public-health-epidemic-201812132708#:~:text=Intimate%20partner%20violence%20and%20traumatic%20brain%20injury%3A%20An%20invisible%20public%20health%20epidemic,-March%2017%2C%202022&text=While%20studying%20brain%20injuries%20in,consistent%20with%20possibly%20experiencing%20concussions.
Source: Newswise: MedNews; Journal of Head Trauma Rehabilitation (JHTR) –
Source: PsychCentral –
Source: The Lancet Psychiatry
Source: Science Daily; Cornell University
Source: Health Minute; Neurology
All of us become angry every now and again. It’s a healthy emotion. We’re capable of recognizing the anger and calming ourselves down before it gets out of control. But when should individuals seek counseling before the anger governs their lives? The following are a couple of examples:
- A want to maintain the anger internally.
- Repetitive arguments with spouse, friends, and co-workers.
RED ALERT. When the problem has escalated and therapy is a must:
- Verbal violence (i.e., name calling, swearing, making threats against individuals, their property)
- Destructive behavior such as breaking items.
- Problems with the law.
- Engaging in physical violence towards loved ones.
Individuals with anger management problems may have underlying depression and if they refuse to enter therapy, may experience psychiatric difficulties because the brain chemistry has altered.
Anger management therapy will teach the patient to use anger constructively. They will take their frustrations and develop clarity. The patient will also learn how to discuss feelings they’re experiencing, instead of verbal violence towards others. Finally, therapy will help the patient avoid searching for alcohol and illegal substances for a means of escape.