Home Letters Why has the father who brutalised his daughter already been forgotten?
It is nothing but a shame that we are not still up in arms over the injustice that the young women of our society face each and every day. Their cries of abuse only trend for so long, before they are easily forgotten within the blink of an eye. Then all that remains are memes and gifs of an unfortunate event, that happens quite literally every day to hundreds of thousands of young women, and men as well.
We have all watched with our own two eyes how a young woman was beaten and battered, kicked and broken; and we have seen a family standing together to defend it: It was her fault. She said things she shouldn’t have. It was done out of love. He only wanted to protect her from the decisions she was making. A son who watched it all happen in front of his own eyes continues to worship the man who abused his sister — the sister he did nothing to help or protect. She deserved this fate. She deserved to be objectified, ridiculed and hurt. Why?
Young women like me have asked “Why?” over and over again. Then we heard the answers, the answers from the people that hurt her: she dressed a certain type of way; she was friends with a certain type of people; she didn’t respect the rules of my house; she was turning out to be wayward; she was disrespectful; she deserved it.
The worst of it was that all we have seen was a glimpse of physical abuse, we haven’t heard the words he told her; the verbal abuse that broke a young woman, that killed her self-esteem, her self-worth.
I understand the feeling of never being good enough, the want of validation from a father, a parent, someone who is supposed to love and protect. We have seen pictures and videos of a happy family – a family who cares, proud to show their love to the world – picture perfect, as they say. They do not see that there are days when the highs are sky-high, and the lows hit below the surface.
Abuse can be paralleled with depression. We can’t always see it, we don’t always know it’s there, but when we see the consequences, there is only one question: Why couldn’t we stop this before it got so far? We can’t, because we sit and we justify; we enable the monsters among us, and in the long run, we hurt ourselves as a society.