Imagine two people in a relationship.
These two people absolutely, undeniably love each other.
Imagine that one of those people is a little bigger, a little stronger than the other and takes on the role of provider. The other person is a little smaller, a little weaker and somewhat dependent on their partner. The first has a bit more experience in life, has had more time to learn the lessons that the world teaches. The second is a bit more naïve, more vulnerable.
For the sake of our story let’s say that the stronger person in the relationship is called ‘Big’ and the more vulnerable one can be “Little”.
Big and Little have been living together for a little under 5 years.
Despite the love between them, Big sometimes hits Little. Big hits Little when they are having a really heated argument, or to teach Little a lesson or if Little has disobeyed Big.
Imagine that “Big” is a husband and “Little” is his wife.
Do you think this is a healthy relationship, or an abusive one?
Do you think Big is treating Little well or abusing her?
Do you think Big’s actions are justified and ‘for Little’s own good’?
Or do you think it is emotional, psychological and physical abuse?
Would you tell Little to stay?
Would you expect Little to grow and mature within this relationship?
Or would you tell Little to get out, that Little has a better chance in life if that life is far away from the behaviour of Big.
Would you tell Big to keep doing it?
Would you look the other way, even as Little cried?
Or would you tell Big to stop - or even step in yourself to physically protect Little or perhaps even contact the police if the violence continued.
But Big isn’t a husband. And Little isn’t a wife.
Big is a parent and Little is their child.
Yet, for reasons that are inexplicable, society sanctions the emotional, psychological and physical abuse of children in a way that they would simply never dream of allowing between two adult partners.
Our society, our legal system, has stood up to say that a person in a relationship has no right to overpower, abuse and manipulate their loved one…unless that loved one is a child.
Surely our children deserve more protection, not less, than adults who are strong enough to stand up for themselves or capable enough to leave if they have to.
Let’s stand up for the small. Let’s say no to physical and psychological intimidation of children.