Domestic violence often does not appear in a couple’s relationship until the woman is pregnant. Although Psychologists and Social Workers have been studying this trend for decades, they have not come up with any concrete knowledge of exactly why, this phenomenon occurs. If violence existed before a pregnancy, then it is almost a given it will continue, but for the couple who have been violence free up until this time, the effects can be devastating.
Being pregnant can be both a blessed time, and an extremely stressful one for a woman. If she has a soothing, committed partner, and the baby is expected to be welcome, then the risk of domestic violence towards her and her unborn child is limited. If the pregnancy was not wanted by the baby’s father, can go along way towards determining if a risk of violence may exist.
Pregnancy can bring up a whole host of relationship issues; money can start to become a huge factor, especially if the woman ceases to work early on in her pregnancy. As her shape begins to change, and hormones kick in, she may feel less desirable to her mate, who may respond by slowly emotionally withdrawing. If this issue is not addressed, this simmering undercurrent may explode into a violent confrontation.
Lower socio-economic groups have always had more violence; lets face it, it’s usually all about the money. Factor in an out-of-work or underemployed father to be, no medical insurance, and an already unstable romance, you are heading for a violent outbreak, although some couples suprisingly beat the odds. Teenage pregnancies are often at the most risk of violence, due to neither party being emotionally, socially or financially ready to handle the challenges of pregnancy, birth and raising a child.
Women in these types of relationships need to recognize their risk of being abused while being pregnant. Accessing community resources of counseling (for both parties) and shelters if need be, can go along way to preventing it. Remember the outcome must be positive for both mom and baby.