http://doi.org/10.33698/NRF0169 – Sandeep Kaur, Anurag Bhai Patidar, Meenakshi, Sarit Sharma, Navneet
Abstract: Domestic violence in India is endemic and widespread predominantly against women. The study was carried to find out the prevalence of domestic violence and its contributing factors among married women. Cross-sectional descriptive research design was used in this study to assess prevalence and contributory factors of domestic violence among married women of selected slums of Ludhiana. A total 323 married women were selected by simple random sampling technique. Interview schedule was used to collect information from the subjects on domestic violence and its contributory factors. Results found that 198 (61.3%) of married women experienced domestic violence within last 12 months in slums. Majority (75.8%) of married women who experienced domestic violence were illiterate and were housewives(56.0%). Maximum number of (95.9%) women experienced domestic violence committed by their husband and 7 (3.5%) of married women experienced domestic violence committed by mother in law. The most occurring contributory factor of domestic violence present in 95.9% of women was “Woman not earning” and the least occurring contributory factor (07.07%) was woman’s infertility.Woman’s age, woman’s occupation, husband’s age, husband’s education, husband’s occupation, type of family, number of family members, socio- economic status had significant relationship with domestic violence. The study concludes that domestic violence is highly prevalent among married women. Economical unproductive housewives and illiteracy are the main contributing factors for the same. Further studies on domestic violence among different vulnerable section of society are recommended.
Keywords: Domestic violence, Contributory factors, Married women, Slum.
Correspondence at:Dr. Anurag Bhai Patidar Lecturer, College of Nursing, Dayanand Medical College and Hospital, Ludhiana, Punjab-141001
Woman is referred to an adult human female belonging to a specified occupation, group and nationality. Woman and men together constitute the social, economic and political reality of any society. The relationship between men and women in terms of rights, duties, status, control, inclusion, exclusion and power in various facets of life is culturally determined by societies (Shah, 2006).1From womb to tomb a woman is subjected to discrimination and violence in the family as well as in society. (Sebastian, 2001)2. The subordinate status of women combined with socio cultural norms that are inclined towards patriarchy and masculinity can be considered as an important factor determining the domestic violence against women (Sahoo and Pradhan).3 Violence against women is a universal phenomenon that persists in all countries of the world. Women and girls are vulnerable to several forms of violence throughout their life. The most prevalent form of violence against females worldwide is domestic violence. (Sarkar 2009)4Domestic violence is aggravated by social pressures, women’s lack of access to legal information, lack of effective laws, inadequate efforts by public authorities to promote awareness of existing laws. (Pradhananga and Shrestha)5 Domestic violence takes many forms and occurs in all settings, within the household and is in almost all cases, perpetrated by men. (Shah, 2006)1. It covers physical, sexual and psychological violence occurring in domestic sphere (Alka and Sharma 2010).6 Married women are more likely to experience physical or sexual violence by husbands than by anyone else. Nearly two in five, (37 %) married women have experienced some form of physical or sexual violence by their husband.(NFHS-3)7.A study at Karachi revealed that financial issues were the commonest reason for domestic violence followed by infertility and not having a son (Ali et al. 2007)8 Domestic violence is a pattern of controlling behavior aimed at gaining power in order to control an intimate partner.It affects women across the life span from selective abortion of female fetuses to forced suicide and abuse. It also contributes to a number of chronic health problems, including depression, substance abuse, sexually transmitted diseases such as HIV/AIDS. The WHO has identified addressing violence against women as an urgent public health priority and essential for achieving Millennium Development Goal 3, the promotion of gender equality and empowerment of women. (Roush K, 2012).9 There is scarcity of empirical data on Domestic violence and its contributory factors among married women in India, which needs urgent attention. Therefore, the investigators planned the present study to assess domestic violence and its contributing factors among married women in selected slums of Ludhiana.
Material and methods
Cross sectional descriptive research design was used in this study to assess prevalence and contributory factors of domestic violence among married women of selected slums i.e. EWS slums near Jamalpur of Ludhiana City, Punjab.The complete list of the houses in the area in which married women were residing prepared. The houses were selected using simple random sampling technique by lottery method. In case more than one married women in a house only one was interviewed. Inclusion criteria: 1)Married woman residing with husband for the past 12 months. Exclusion criteria:1) The subject who was not willing to participate. 2) The woman who had any type of mental illness.3) The subjects who were unable to provide information. Sample size was 323 married women & it was determined statistically based on the prevalence rate reported in India. The data collection was carried out during November to December 2011. Written permission was obtained from the Municipal Mayor and Health Officer of City, Ludhiana to conduct the research project. Structured Interview Schedule prepared by the researchers was used to identify the domestic violence and its contributing factors among married women. The test- retest reliability of the tool was 0.8. Participants were interviewed by the researcher using Interview Schedule to collect data. Analysis of data was done using Statistical Package for the Social Sciences (SPSS) software.
The present study explored that more than half 198 (61.3%) of married women experienced domestic violence. All (198) of the victims experienced humiliation and restriction in the family and 155 (78.3%) experienced physical abuse.113 (57%) married women experienced sexual abuse and 65 (32.8%) women were threatened by partner or family member. Table 1 shows that maximum (95 . 9 %) of the victims experienced domestic violence committed by their husband followed by mother in law, father in law, sister in law and brother in law 7 (3.5%),4(2.0%) 3 (1.5%) 3 (1.5%),respectively.
Table 1: Distribution of married women as per persons committing domestic violence
|Mother in Law||007 (03.5)|
|Father in law||004 (02.0)|
|Sister in Law||003 (01.5)|
|Brother in Law||003 (01.5)|
*percentage exceeds due to multiple responses
Table 2 depicts that the most occurring contributory factor of domestic violence present in maximum (95.95%) of married women was “Woman not earning” followed by women asking for money from husband in 186 (93.93%) cases. Approximately 3/4th (75.75%) of victims were those with factor “Husband spends most of the money on substance abuse”. More than half of (58.58%) women told about factor “Often refusing to have sex with husband”. The least occurring factor14 (07.07%) was woman’s infertility.It was found that factors ‘Woman not earning’, ‘Woman asking money from husband’, ‘Husband’s habit of substance abuse’, ‘Husband spend most of the money on substance abuse’, ‘Often refusing to have sex with husband’, ‘Family’s demand of dowry’, ‘Woman earning less than husband’, ‘Family’s son preference’, ‘Husband having an extramarital affair’ ‘Husband’s habit of gambling’, had significant relationship with domestic violence whereas factors ‘Woman earning more than husband’ and ‘Woman’s infertility’ has no significant relationship with domestic Violence (p>0.05).The present study also revealed that the married women 198 (100 %) who experienced domestic violence faced humiliation and restriction in the family furthermore; majority 155 (78.3%) of them experienced physical abuse. More than half (57%) of married women experienced sexual abuse and 65 (38.2%) were threatened by the family.It was revealed that most of the contributory factors were significantly (p<0.05) associated with domestic violence. It includes husband’s habit of substance abuse (85.35%), woman asking money from husband (93.93%), husband spending most of the money on substance abuse(75.75%),woman not earning (95.95%), woman earning less than husband (29.79%), family’s demand of dowry (40.40%), family’s son preference (22.72%), husband’s habit of gambling (19.69%), h u sb a n d h a v i n g a n e x t r a m a r i t a l affair(11.11%).The study revealed that the woman’s age, woman’s occupation, husband’s age, husband’s occupation ,husband’s education, type of family, number of family members, and socioeconomic status had significant association with domestic violence (p<0.05)however; religion, woman’s education, number of children were not significantly associated with domestic violence.
Table 2: Contributing factors of domestic violence
N = 198
|Woman not earning||190 (95.95)||1|
|Woman asking money from husband||186(93.93)||2|
|Husband’s habit of substance abuse||169 (85.35)||3|
|Husband spend most of the money on substance abuse||150 (75.75)||4|
|Often refusing to have sex with husband||116 (58.58)||5|
|Family’s demand of dowry||080 (40.40)||6|
|Woman earning less than husband||059 (29.79)||7|
|Family’s son preference||045 (22.72)||8|
|Husband’s habit of gambling||039 (19.69)||9|
|Woman earning more than husband||038 (19.19)||10|
|Husband having an extramarital affair||022 (11.11)||11|
|Woman’s infertility||014 (07.07)||12|
*percentage exceeds due to multiple response
Despite the implementation of Domestic Violence act, 2005 the problem is still highly prevalent in India. The present study found that more than half (61.3%) of married women experienced domestic violence within the last 12 months. A similar study conducted by Krishnan Suneeta et al. (2008) on 744 young married women in slum area of Banglore, India signifies over half (56%) of study participants reported to have experienced domestic violence.10 The present study highlighted those married women who experienced domestic violence (198) faced humiliation and restriction in the family (100%) and majority 155 (78.3%) of them faced physical abuse. More than half 113 (57%) of them experienced sexual abuse followed by 65 (38.2%) were threatened by family. Gaikwad V et al. (2011) revealed that 62 (81.58%) were reported verbal abuse, 24 (31.58%) women reported physical abuse, 21 (27.63%) women reported psychological abuse and 8 (10.53%) women reported sexual abuse .11Regarding the persons committing domestic violence the present study shows that husband was the main person committing domestic violence i.e. in 190 (95.9%) women. Similar study conducted by Ali T.S. et al. (2007) on 400 married women aged 15-45 years in low socioeconomic areas in Urban Karachi shows that the prevalence of verbal abuse was 97.5% by the husband and 97.0% by in laws and the prevalence of physical abuse was 80% and 57.5% by the husband and in laws respectively.8 The present study explored that most of the contributory factors were significantly associated (p<0.05) with domestic violence. It includes husband’s habit of substance abuse, woman asking money from husband, husband spending most of the money on substance abuse, woman not earning, woman earning less than husband, family’s demand of dowry, family’s son preference, husband’s habit of gambling, and husband h a v i n g a n e x t r a m a r i t a l a f f a i r . Chandrasekaran V et al. (2007) in a cross sectional study among married women between age group 15-45 years reported that the factors associated with domestic violence included alcohol consumption or tobacco use, dowry payments by woman’s family.12 The present study shows that the woman’s age, woman’s occupation, husband’s age, husband’s education, husband’s occupation, type of family, number of family members, and socioeconomic status had significant association with domestic violence whereas woman’s education and number of children were not significantly associated with domestic violence. Similar findings were reported in a cross-sectional study on women between age group 15-45 years by Chandrasekaran V et al. (2007) that younger women were more likely to report domestic violence as compared to older age, women with lowest income, living in the nuclear family, women having employment, husbands’ education were associated with domestic violence, no association was found between women educational level and domestic violence12
Conclusion and recommendation: More than half of the study sample reported domestic violence. It may take any form ranging from the humiliation to restriction in family, physical and sexual abuse. Husband was behind this in majority of the cases. Economically unproductive women, substance abuse by husband and illiteracy were the main contributing factors for the same.Further studies on domestic violence among different vulnerable section of society are recommended.Nurses must be especially vigilant to identify the cases of domestic violence while working in community setting. She should also make them aware about Domestic violence act, 2005. Counseling of the victims should be undertaken as and when required.
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- Sebastian N. Reining in Domestic Violence. Health Action June 2003;16(6):30-2
- Sahoo H, Pradhan MR. Domestic Violence in India: An Empirical Analysis. Available from: http://www.isical.ac.in/~wemp/Papers/PaperM anasRanjan PradhanAndHarihar Sahoo.doc. Accessed on 10.2011
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- Pradhananga B, Shrestha Domestic Violence against Women in Nepal:Concept, History and Existing Laws. Available from: http://www.child t r a f f i c k i n g . c o m / D o c s / domestic_violence_0607.pdf. Retrieved on 11.12.2011
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- Krishnan S, Corinne HR, Alan EH, Subbiah K, Edmeade J, Nancy S et al. Do Changes in Spousal Employment Status Lead to Domestic Violence? Insights from a Prospective Study in Bangalore, SocSci Med January 2010;70(1): 136–143.
- Gaikwad V, Madhukumar S,Sudeepa D. An epidemiological Study of Domestic Violence Against Women and its Association with Sexually Transmitted Infections in Bangalore Rural. Online J Health Allied Scs 2011;10(3):3. A v a i l a b l e f r o m : http://www.ojhas.org/issue39/2011-3-3.htm. Accessed on 3.2012
- Chandrasekaran V, Krupp K, George R, Madhivanan Determinants of domestic violence among women attending an Human Immunodeficiency Virus voluntary counseling and testing center in Bangalore, India. Indian J Med Sci 2007;61:253-62.