Turkish association warns against prevalence of dating and domestic violence

A women's solidarity association based in Istanbul has published its 2021 "Violence Against Women Report," which draws attention to domestic violence, patriarchal structures and dating violence.

A woman holds a banner reading 'Women will not forgive violence' during a demonstration.

Didem Mercan / DUVAR 

The Istanbul-based Esenyalı Women’s Solidarity Association has released its 2021 "Violence Against Women Report," which involved interviews with 966 people.

The report states that in 2021, 488 people got in touch with the association seeking economic support, 191 people fleeing domestic violence, 148 seeking employment, 118 seeking school material support, 26 people seeking legal support, 25 people seeking psychological support.

“The forms of violence have changed. In recent times, children have also been victims of domestic violence. This was one of the most common issues we encountered within the past year,” Adile Doğan, President of the Esenyalı Women's Solidarity Association said.

“We can easily say that especially if women tried to get divorced, those children were exposed to much worse things, and that many men used their children against their mothers. The second striking thing in the report is impoverishment. As poverty increases, women's anxiety about divorce grows,” she added.

The report’s findings show that the main perpetrators of violence against women are husbands, fathers, and ex-husbands.

It also stated that as “economic survival dominates the household, women become more subject to patriarchal structures.”

What is more, the report maintained that violence is transmitted from generation to generation. “Boys who grow up in violent households replicate those behavioral patterns”, it states.

The association drew attention to the unilateral imposition of polygamy by men and emphasized the prevalence of dating violence.

According to the report, girls aged between 14 and 20 are often subject to violence and psychological abuse at the hands of their lovers. Privacy disclosure, blackmail, threats, persistent stalking, cyber-bullying inflicted by men on their flirts induce long-term psychological damage.