According to the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA), trauma and violence greatly contributes to most people engaging in substance abuse. It is estimated that nearly one-fourth of all women in the world are sexually or physically abused at some stage in their lives. I chose to do my research on the relationship between domestic violence and drug addiction in women. This topic is interesting as almost everyone experiences some form of domestic violence during their lifetime. Women are especially the weakest and impacts of drug abuse largely affect them. Some of us grew in families where domestic violence was the order of the day. Over the recent past, the number of women in drugs as young as 15 years has continued to increase (Jackson, 2007). Such women blame their behavior on stress related issues most of which are inflicted by their family members. Statistics show that in every 30 seconds, a woman is battered. It’s for this reason that I wanted to find out whether domestic related violence is to blame for the increased drug addiction in women.
My research question is; how does domestic violence lead women to be addictive in using drugs? I am going to divide my research into sub-questions;
i. Are women the ones mostly affected by domestic violence?
ii. Between drug addiction and domestic violence, which precedes the other?
iii.Can domestic violence be as a result of women’s addiction to drugs and not vice versa?
The research will try to answer all these questions. Studies of domestic violence have found that perpetrators of domestic violence tend to be high on drugs during domestic abuse. As for batterers, they turn to abuse of drugs and alcohol to help them cope with the abuse. As the frequency of violence increases so does their probability of turning to substance abuse increase. Eventually these victims of domestic violence find themselves fully addicted to substance use.
I imagine my audience will be the general public which includes husbands, wives and children. It’s important that all family members are involved as domestic violence affects each one of them either directly or indirectly. The effects domestic violence may appear immediately or take some time to appear after the initial crisis is over. Such impacts may affect the behavior of women towards their family and friends and negatively affect how they raise their children.
One source that helped me a lot in my research was the book by the title “Encyclopedia of domestic violence” by N. A. Jackson. The book clearly defines domestic violence and explains about its various forms e g abuse, forced sex, emotional and physical intimidation e.t.c. It discusses the factors that contribute to violence at homes, their control and how to manage them. The book brings out another important aspect regarding plans that should be put in place to control the emergence of domestic violence.
Another book that assisted me was “Violence against women in families and relationships” by Stark and Buzawa. The book talks about facts and researched statistics of women using drugs and have a connection to domestic abuse at some point in their lives. According to this book, trauma caused to women at an early age either due to sexual, emotional or physical abuse is the main cause of their involvement in substance abuse. The book looks into psychological effects of trauma and stress as a result of violence imposed by loved ones; why most women will opt not to talk about their bad encounters and how this contributes to drug abuse and eventual addiction.
In doing the research, I am going to use additional books and journals related to domestic violence and drug addiction. The key words in the research are “domestic violence and control”, “women and drugs”, and “drugs and addiction”. I have realized that there are a lot of journals relating to this topic. I’m in the process of establishing those that best answers my questions and provides the best strategies of dealing with the situation. By using the key words above, I’m able to narrow down as topic from a wide range of available articles to suit my research.