As the world is observing the 16 days of activism against gender-based violence, the movement aims to end the violence perpetrated on individuals based on gender. Gender-based violence comes in many forms that are worth knowing about. Some forms of gender-based violence seem trivial. They may even be actions that we see daily, but because we have witnessed them so much that they appear normal, we may not view them as violence. This normalization does not make these actions any less violent.
Here are forms that gender-based violence may take.
1. Deprivation of liberty
One of the rights that humanity has worked tirelessly to avail ourselves of is freedom. Every human being ought to enjoy liberty in whichever form contributes to their healthy living. When an individual is deprived of liberty based on their gender, then it prevents them from living a healthy life.
People who do not have liberty are the most invisible. This deprivation creates an environment where other forms of gender-based violence can be done to those individuals without any questions. One example is when one is not allowed to go out in public or interact with others.
2. Fondling or unwanted sexual touching
Fondling or touching another person’s body sexually without their consent counts as sexual assault. Any sexual activity between two people ought to be consensual. Even without actual rape, this action violates one’s freedom to say no.
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3. Verbal insults
According to UN Women, verbal abuse counts as gender-based violence. In a family setting, this type of gender-based violence takes the form of constant criticism, belittling one’s abilities, name-calling and any other form of verbal abuse.
Apart from verbal assault, an individual can use words against an individual to defame them. Tarnishing a woman’s image through lies harms them psychologically. Everyone would want to have a good social standing in their community. Some defaming acts happen in line with one’s gender leading to a loss of respect and safety.
Harassment may happen to anyone and may not be gender violence. However, when an individual harasses another individual solely because of their gender, then it becomes an act of gender-based violence. Such harassments include exclusion or even mean comments.
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Coercion happens when an individual persuades another one to do something by using force or threats. Most of the time, coercion seems subtle and nothing to worry about. For instance, a lover may constantly shower one with gifts as a romantic gesture. This may be purposefully for control purposes. After some time, this overly romantic lover may start demanding for the girlfriend or wife to do certain things that may be against her will, yet she may not be able to say no. Some other partners may use threats to get things done.
7. Property damage
Property damage falls under the economic violence category. This is where another individual violates a woman’s right to own property by damaging her property. The basis of this violation is usually rooted in the belief that women are weak and may not do anything about this injustice.
8. Restricting access to financial resources
Women who experience this form of gender-based violence are mainly those in marriage. Here, the family has financial resources but there are so many restrictions that she cannot access them.
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9. Online or digital Violence
Violence against women happens on online platforms too. From bullying, sending one unwanted intimate message and exposing a woman’s private picture online, online violence makes one humiliated and emotionally injured. How To Handle Cyber Bullying
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10. Forced abortion
Another act that falls in the category of violence against women, is forced abortion. This happens to married women, girlfriends and young girls. When a pregnancy seems to have the wrong timing, people around the expectant may coerce her to go for an abortion. This is violence as it does not consider the woman’s consent and health.
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