The Cost of Domestic Abuse

These numbers don’t lie! According to a long-term scientific study of over 3,000 women, women experiencing physical abuse from intimate partners spent 42 percent more on health care per year than non-abused women.

The study also revealed that the cost doesn’t end when the abuse does. The study showed that women who experienced abuse for five or more years, continued to spend 19% more on health care per year than women who were not abused.

Now remember — this study only encompassed physical abuse and didn’t even look into verbal and emotional abuse, which are just as deadly.

Even more important is to grasp that these numbers represent real women living in chronic illness and pain due to domestic abuse. These are lives damaged by an growing epidemic, which is just as real inside the church as outside it.

And to the physical pain of these women is added the financial strain. If they have gotten out of abuse, it is highly likely that their financial circumstances are constrained – and they are having all these medical costs on top of their financial strain and physical pain. The physical problems may also have a concrete impact on their ability to provide for their financial needs!

This is a large, complex problem which is daily reality for many women! It’s more than just an interesting statistic and an insurance issue.

Possible Link Between Interstitial Cystitis and Sex Abuse

This article is fascinating, offering a possible link between sex abuse and Interstitial Cystitis. Though it has certainly not be scientifically verified, it suggests – yet again – that the effects of abuse are far reaching and tangible.

Measuring the Molehill

There have been some great comments on yesterday’s post, that I think merit some space of their own.

BloggerT7165 said:

The last time I checked there was roughly 70 reported cases a week of clergy sexual abuse in Protestant churches. Those are just the reported cases.

Danni replied:

So, that would be 3,640 accusations per year. Some of those will turn out to be false allegations – generally 1-3% if I remember correctly. So at the outside, that would still leave 3,531 credible accusations of Protestant clergy sex abuse per year. Then consider that MOST clergy sex abuse is never reported. So what number should we multiple that 3,531 by???

Now multiple by what for domestic abuse? If my comparative ratios dealing with people personally are used as a general guide, you would have to multiple 3,531 by 10 to even start to get a glimmer of an idea. That would be at least 35,310 instances of domestic violence in Protestant homes per year. And each of those represents a family, not an individual, experiencing abuse; not just once, but as an ongoing way of life.

These numbers are obviously not exact or scientific. But I know they are fairly accurately representative. This is what I’m seeing as reality from the inside actually working with this issue rather than pretending it doesn’t exist.

Molehill anyone???

As Hannah said:

So [if] its a small number of people dealing with this … its okay NOT to deal with it?

That would be my point exactly. How small is it really? This isn’t small! And if it were small, does that entitle the church to ignore the problem? How small does it have to be to say it doesn’t matter?

That is why Jesus said the good shepherd would leave the 99 who are safe and go rescue the one! That is our mandate as the church!!!

As BloggerT7165 said:

And one person suffering abuse is one to many.

EXACTLY.

And to all believers said:

churches wake up, stop [tickling] the ears!

Amen.