Latinos Domestic Violence

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Latinos Domestic Violence

Latinos Domestic Violence


Domestic Violence toward women is a pervasive social problem. It includes spousal abuse, rape, and child sexual and physical abuse. Most women also experience insidious and pervasive subtle Domestic Violence to some degree, and women of color experience that kind of Domestic Violence to higher degrees. This kind of abuse may not be overtly violent or threatening to bodily well-being at the given moment, but it harms the person's sense of worth, value, and well-being. Domestic Violence can be physical, sexual, psychological, emotional, or spiritual.

Unique Issues to Latinos and Domestic Violence

Battering and Wife Abuse

A few researchers have attempted to document the nature and prevalence of battering among ethnic minorities. One study (Stacey & Shupe,, 1983) reported that African American batterers were more likely to have used very severe Domestic Violence on women than were Hispanic batterers, who in turn were more likely to have been seriously violent batterers than White Anglos, Native Americans, or Asians. However, another study, which examined similarities and differences in the manifestation of wife abuse in Mexican American and Anglo American abused women, found that more Anglo Americans (64%) than Mexican Americans were being hit harder, and more frequently. In general, there were more similarities than differences in the manifestation of wife abuse between the two groups in this study. Anglo American women perceived more types of behavior as being abusive, and had a less tolerant attitude toward wife abuse, than did Mexican American women(Mattson, 2005). There was higher incidence of wife abuse among people of lower socioeconomic status and in younger age categories (18-30) for both groups, consistent with other research. Both groups also tended to have experienced a history of Domestic Violence in the homes of the men who battered, as well as child abuse in the families of origin of both the women and their husbands. About one fourth of women from both groups had siblings who were also involved in an abusive relationship. Mexican American women tended to stay longer in their abusive relationships than did Anglo American women. More Mexican American men than Anglo American men took the initiative in making up with their wives(Stacey & Shupe, 1983).

Child Abuse and Sexual Abuse

In regard to the childbearing and child abuse literature, there are interesting issues, parallels, and discrepancies. For example, in one study on attitudes of Anglo, African American, and Hispanic adults toward abusive situations, it was reported that African American parents showed the greatest concern for supervision and fulfilling of general parenting responsibilities. Hispanic parents, especially Spanish-speaking ones, expressed the most concern about physical injury, sexual abuse, and drug and alcohol abuse compared to Anglo or African American parents(Wyatt, 1990).

One study (Lindholm & Willey,, 1986), which looked at child abuse behavior patterns, showed variations among ethnic groups. The researchers analyzed 4,132 cases of child abuse that were reported to the Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department. First, fathers were most often the suspects among Anglos and Hispanics, but mothers were the more predominant suspects among African ...
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