Thursday, November 20, 2008
"But I don't beat women!"
Now through Wednesday (and also Nov. 24 and 25), DASH (Domestic Abuse Stops Here) is holding a bag & bracelet sale in the Lewis Alcove.
"We're trying to raise money for the DASH program," said senior Cecily Bonilla. "We raise funds and give them to domestic abuse shelters in the area," she explained.
DASH's aim is to increase domestic abuse awareness on campus and support local efforts. Last month, DASH held an informational meeting for that very cause. "We tried to get guys to come out," Cecily told me, "but most of them were like, 'Well, no! I don't beat women!'"
But everyone can learn from these meetings; and it goes beyond physical abuse.
A year ago, I entered into a relationship with a seemingly sweet, sensitive 28-year-old who appeared to have it all together and played the Prince Charming role perfectly. Within weeks, however, his true nature emerged and he turned out to be excessively controlling and possessive; demanding to know where I was at every moment and freaking out if I wanted to spend time with anyone other than him (including my best friends and family!). Irritated to the core, I googled "How to tell if you're in an abusive relationship." The guy had never physically hurt me, but out of a list of 100 "warning signs," he had committed over 95% of them. Mmhmm.
He was out of my life before we hit the three-month mark, but it wasn't without major drama. This just goes to show how easy it is for a relationship to become abusive, and people may not realize exactly what constitutes "abuse." Emotional and mental factors also come into play. It can go the other way around as well, with the female abusing the male. And let's not forget about gay relationships!
DASH is definitely onto something. So guys, you may not beat up your sig os, but you may still be abusive!