Abusive marriages can be hard to leave at any age, but for older women with grownup children, there are issues that make it even harder. This is a factor service providers should have in mind as they come up with customized or targeted support.
As yet another Domestic Violence Awareness Month came to a close, for all the progress we have made toward awareness, our culture still struggles with its view of a victim’s most daunting struggle – leaving the abusive relationship.
GBV is a growing problem among older couples, women of age 50+ but it is not always taken seriously. So, they suffer in silence. It is rampant but mostly hidden because most victims fear reporting. This scenario is as a result of cultural, and social factors and norms, fear and embarrassment to ask for help, and the belief that the menace affects mostly the young women.
Gender-based violence affects women of all ages. However, women aged 50+, have been left out of demographic surveys and studies. Most of the documented data is for women aged 15 -49 years. The lack of reliable and comprehensible data on this group makes it even difficult to design appropriate policies and interventions to support them. As a result, they end up invisible and neglected. We need to change this.