The National, Wednesday 15th May 2013
By SONIA KENU
THE majority of women who seek treatment in hospital for mental illness are victims of domestic violence and problematic relationships.
National Capital District health services Sr Manasseh Kelly said 95% of women diagnosed with mental illness came from problematic relationships.
Kelly told The National yesterday that in a home where there was domestic violence, women were vulnerable toHIV and other social risks.
Kelly is facilitating a couples counselling/HIV and domestic violence training this week at the 6-Mile clinic in Port Moresby. The 21 participants are from organisations, volunteers and community health workers.
Kelly said there were many different forms of domestic violence – physical, emotional, financial, social and sexual.
“Most people are aware of the physical violence because we can see the scars or bruises on a person’s body which tells us how he or she has been hurt.
“Many women in communities today are suffering silently from emotional, financial, social and sexual abuses and do not speak openly about.
“It is important to note that when a woman is deprived of her right to financial support, freedom to move around and socialise, she will look for pleasure outside her family and without her husband’s consent.
“When a woman is continuously abused, she will want to take revenge which could expose her to contracting HIV or she could be exposed to other dangers.”
“We must also be aware that there is a cycle to violence and if we don’t stop it at the first instance, it will continue and we won’t realise it.”