Battered Woman Syndrome Research Paper

2184 Words9 Pages
Domestic violence is widespread in America, and is usually thought of in terms of violence by men against women, though some women do batter men. Child abuse is also very common, and can involve violence against children of either sex by adults of either sex, even to the degree that it is not uncommon for children to be murdered by relatives. A hidden side of domestic violence is that between partners in same sex-relationships. It occurs between gay men and between lesbians. It has been estimated that more than six million women are victims of domestic violence every year in the United States, and this violence ranges from simple hassling in the street to rape and incest, to physical and psychological abuse, all of which are very destructive…show more content…
Coleman testified at the Los Angeles trial as an expert witness. This showed that the courts were applying the same standards to lesbian relationships as to heterosexual relationships. It is important because under California law, felony domestic violence charges can be filed if violence takes place between members of the opposite sex, but only misdemeanor charges if the domestic abuse occurs between members of the same sex. Garcia points out that lesbians face additional problems because of the homophobic nature of society which ignores or minimizes two women fighting as opposed to a man hitting a woman. Lesbians like to think that they have more loving, caring relationships than heterosexual couples, says Coleman. This article also points out, as do others, that lesbians often do not report domestic violence because they do not feel the police will respond, or because they fear exposure of their lesbian relationship to family and
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