After my two hour long conversation today it got me thinking about abuse rates and what may cause them.
In the United States, more than 4 children die from child abuse and neglect on a daily basis. Over 70% of these children are below the age of 3. Boys (48.5%) and girls (51.2%) become victims at nearly the same rate. 2.9 million cases of child abuse are reported every year in the United States.
Abuse has a long shelf life. It takes a continuing toll on both physical and mental health well into adulthood. The study, conducted by researchers at UCLA and published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, examined the effects of abuse and corresponding lack of parental affection across the body’s entire regulatory system. It found strong links between negative early life experiences and health, across the board. The effects permeate one’s entire mind-body system.
This study of 756 subjects suggested that “biological embedding” occurs through programming brain circuitry in ways that shape response patterns to subsequent stress. That causes wear and tear extending across multiple mind-body systems, and creates adverse health outcomes decades later. The researchers suggest that toxic childhood stress alters neural responses to stress, boosting the emotional and physical arousal to threat, and making it more difficult for that reaction to be shut off.
Maybe instead of handing out medication we need to start to find the root of our health. We need to find out why so many people are unhealthy in their state of mind. With my current project being the military I decided to do some research before the call took place.
The military has some of the toughest jobs out there. Between rigorous training, deployments to the most dangerous parts of the world—which take them away from their families for long stretches of time—to frequent moves every few years to new bases, the stress of the military is endless.
Taskandpurpose.com did research on domestic violence in the military and had very helpful information.The bases-Camp Pendleton; Naval Base San Diego; Marine Corps Base Quantico, Va.; Naval Construction Battalion Center in Gulf Port, Miss.; U.S. Army Fort Bragg, N.C.; U.S. Army Installation Fort Belvoir, Va.; Joint Base Elmendorf-Richardson, Alaska; and Joint Base Andrews, Md.
The Army had a crime scene search compliance rate of 50%; the Navy, 56%; the Marine Corps, 24%; and the Air Force, 35%. When it came to evidence collection, the report found an overall compliance rate of 8%. The Army scored 5%, the Navy 0%, the Marine Corps 6% and the Air Force 29%. NCIS scored 58 percent.
The report also found that in some cases, a person’s criminal history was not submitted to the Defense Central Index of Investigations. This database provides information to commanders making disciplinary decisions and security clearance assessments. Information also was not submitted to the Federal Bureau of Investigation CJIS Division and the Defense Forensics Science Center in 180 of 219 cases.
Overall, the report concludes that the secretaries of the Army, Navy and Air Force need to take prompt action to make sure Defense Department policies are complied with. However, these are still not excuses to abuse one’s spouse. Plenty of service members under some of the most stressful circumstances are not abusers. However, servicemen and women do face additional challenges when it comes to escaping from or reporting abuse.
Being in the military is one of the 50 barriers to leavingsurvivor and advocate Sarah Buel identified.
Abuse among military couples is also vastly underreported, as survivors often fear repercussions from their abuser should he or she be demoted as a result of reporting abuse. When a domestic violence report is made, it may be subject to military-led investigation, and consequences may be dictated by the military code of conduct as well as federal law.
2-3: Male combat veterans who suffer from PTSD are two to three times more likely to abuse their female partners than veterans not suffering from PTSD.
1/3: About 33 percent of combat veterans with PTSD report having been aggressive with their intimate partner at least once in the previous year.
9 in 10: About 91 percent of combat veterans with PTSD reported being psychologically aggressive with their intimate partner in the previous year.
Up to 7 in 10: Between 30 and 70 percent of female veterans have experienced intimate partner violence in their lifetime.
>1/3: Among active duty females, 36 percent report having experienced intimate partner violence during their service.
177%: While intimate partner violence declined among civilians between 2003 and 2010, it rose by a whopping 177 percent in the Army during the same period.
1996: The Lautenberg Amendment to the Gun Control Act made it illegal for anyone convicted of a domestic violence misdemeanor to possess a firearm. Some exceptions are made, but by and large, the amendment does apply to military, meaning they may be discharged after a conviction.
3 years: Federal law mandates dependent support be offered to the survivor when a service member is discharged from the military due to an abuse offense. Support is remanded for up to 36 months, depending on length of service.
$1,215: The current monthly payment a spouse is entitled to if his or her spouse is discharged from the military because of an abuse offense. The discharged servicemember is also responsible for paying $301 monthly per child.
Sadly it doesn’t stop there. Military bases are condoning the actions of their servicemen and woman. WHY? Is it because they signed up to protect this country and what they do needs to be swept under the rug because if we start taking action there will be a military turn around and crisis need for service individuals? When the proper actions are not taken or they go unnoticed it as if saying we know what you did but here is a slap on the wrist the victim will be okay.
This past year I was diagnosed with cPTSD.
cPTSD- Complex post-traumatic stress disorder (CPTSD) is a trauma-related mental health condition that results from sustained abuse and powerlessness over time. CPTSD is related to but different from post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD).
Behavioral: agitation, irritability, hostility, hypervigilance, self-destructive behavior, or social isolation
Psychological: flashback, fear, severe anxiety, or mistrust
Mood: loss of interest or pleasure in activities, guilt, or loneliness
Sleep: insomnia or nightmares
Also common: emotional detachment or unwanted thoughts
1. Attraction to destructive relationships: “I’m the kind of person that always dates people who are bad for me.”
It is not uncommon for people traumatized by key caregivers to end up with friendships, romantic relationships, and even work settings which are not good for them. They find people who fit their traumatic identity, even when they are trying to make different and better choices, leading to re-traumatization through repetition of the past.
They may end up being around emotionally unavailable people, abusive or narcissistic people, or end up trying to rescue and fix people they date. Consciously, they want to find someone who can provide what they intellectually know they need and want, yet unconscious influences lead them down unwanted, familiar paths. Frequently, there is a powerful “chemistry” with new relationships, which makes it seem like the relationship will be different, only to learn with disappointment that it is all too familiar. When friends try to warn them, it’s not unusual for them to pick the new romance over a trusted friend. Repeatedly getting into destructive relationships can be disorienting and confusing, leading one to question one’s self-understanding and locking one into the old identity, while preventing new identities from taking root.
2. Avoidance of relationships: “I’m someone who is better off alone.”
Alternatively, people with negative developmental experiences involving intimate relationships may opt to avoid closeness and isolate themselves. Sometimes this starts early on and sometimes later, as an attempt to break the cycle of harmful relationships. But healthy relationships with other people are crucial for personal development, presenting opportunities for growth and change. Missing out on them in adulthood as a self-protective measure further impairs development of a fully adult identity, solidifying a self-perception of unworthiness and self-condemnation. There are many exceptions to the feeling that we are too flawed for others, who deserve better. Most of us have the capacity to offer more than we think we do, and thereby become more appreciative of ourselves. It’s too complicated for here to talk about hope, faith in oneself, and how a long process of recovery unfolds. It’s worth noting that sometimes we unconscious push people away, appearing to ourselves be a threat when we do not so intend.
How we raise our children is how future generations are going to turn out. While I don’t want to blame my past anymore for how my life is going there are very real factors to it. It is up to me to fix myself and have faith in what is going to happen. Is it wrong that I wanted someone to stand by my side and watch me grow and fix myself? No it is not wrong it is a life that I think would have helped me grow. Talking with a friend today about how I have been feeling and the actions I am taking he told me “You really have a sweet sole”. I have always prided myself on being a good person. To always be there for someone when they needed it. To listen and help any individual no matter their past. To overlook the negative and see the good in just about everyone. It takes a toll on ones self when you constantly are the strong one. When you put your own feelings aside to do what you can so they are happy in their life even when your own seems to be falling apart.
If helping people is what I was brought into this world to do then I would say I am 99% fulfilling that role. If raising my children the right way and making them into the men/woman that help others is the least I do then I know I did something right.
I work in the medical field and I get to help people everyday. From a itching painful rash to talking them through surgery to remove the cancer that is growing on their skin. I hold their hand and let them know they are going to be okay.
I never want anyone to go to bed wondering why they are not enough but as you read I can’t help everyone but I can at the very least not be the one that causes people to feel that way.
We don’t get to choose how we are brought up or who our parents are but we can choose when we leave our homes how we treat others and continue on with our lives.
Monday is here and I am already looking forward to our annual party this Saturday and the weekend!
I hope everyone has great week. If you need anything you know where to find me!