The Type

November 27, 2008

Rich, poor; young, old; pretty, plain, beautiful, ugly; mean-minded, generous; sweet-tempered, bad-tempered; mousey, bolshy; academic, illiterate; child-free, pregnant; mother, sister, daughter, cousin; insecure, confident; obliging, stubborn; acute, slow; professional, unprofessional; feminist, anti-feminist; thin, fat; short, tall; traveller, settler; journalist, teacher, housewife, gardener; web-designer, house-designer, film-star, extra, shelf-stacker, shop assistant, writer, musician, judge, juror…  tinker, tailor, soldier, sailor, butcher, baker, candlestickmaker…


(Photo found on Flickr)

Since working in the field, people have asked me “what type of woman ‘puts up with’ domestic violence?”.  The above list is my answer. There is no ‘type’. Domestic violence knows no boundaries. Contrary to popular belief, it is not just middle-aged or married women who suffer abuse in the home – in fact, young women are more at risk.

1 in 4 or more of us experiences sexual violence at some time in our lives, and 1 in 5 of us experiences abuse in the home, a place we normally associate with sanctuary, peace – our inner selves.

Shouldn’t we be asking what makes an abuser?

We are now into day three of the 16 Days Campaign, an International campaign started in 1991 to link violence against women with human rights – to show that such violence is a violation of a woman’s human rights. There is much more info here.

Aoibhneas Women’s Refuge (helpline: 01-8670701) is supporting the campaign by publishing a story for each of the 16 days, called 16 Scenarios.

Women’s Aid (helpline: 1800-341900) is running a Home Truths Campaign as their part of the 16 Days Campaign.

There is plenty you can do to help. Keep up-to-date at 16 Days Campaign or download the campaign pack HERE.


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I have been a bad, bad blogger, doing nothing here for two months now (though some drafts are waiting).

But at least I’ve not been completely idle:  Peter Donegan very kindly asked me to do a guest blog spot on his landscaping blog, and that has just gone live.

It should have been out this morning, but I had some techie problems. It’s easy doing your own blog, well relatively, but what format do you use to give it to somebody else? In my innocence I used OpenOffice, software I’m just getting used to, and up until today I thought it was okay and certainly better than Word. Pah! It couldn’t cope with the images which I’d forgotten to shrink, and multiple crashes ensued. Then I discovered that OpenOffice files are not easily opened by other software, so Peter couldn’t get at my pics.

After a second very late night (no sleep on Election night – Go Obama! – and not much better last night) today was spend uploading each pic all over again. Peter very kindly gave me his login so I could fix and finish everything properly. But in the middle of uploading, just as OpenOffice crashed for the umpteenth time, I had the message of death: “your startup disc is full”.  Aarrrgh!!!

There was some frantic, emergency moving and deleting, and several expletives were not deleted, and we were on our way again. Thankfully things were okay after that.

Well… okay except…  why-oh-why-oh-why, etc, is it so difficult to place pix in WordPress? You put them side by side, save it, and then suddenly they’re all over the place again. I obviously don’t know enough about it yet, as it was pure guesswork, but I had to reformat several times, sucking up great swathes of time.

Anyway, blogging about blogging must be a bad sign of something, I’m sure.

Thanks Peter for being so patient. Rock on. :)