Feminism, war and silence fuel domestic abuse in Finland

Interesting take on domestic abuse in Finland, Feminism, war and silence fuel domestic abuse in Finland. A few points that stand out for me:

It’s a scenario that underlines a Finnish paradox: in a country that is a pioneer of gender equality, with a national stereotype of iron-willed women, one in 10 females have been abused at home, according to government data.

European Union statistics show that nearly 40 percent of Finns know a friend or relative who is abused at home, nearly double the European Union average of 25 percent.

Experts explain this puzzle by piecing together a psychological profile of a society where private matters are kept private, where men have had violence drilled into them through five 20th-century wars, and where women feel like failures if they cannot rescue themselves.[…]

While victims of domestic violence elsewhere typically feel guilty for angering their partners, experts say Finnish women tend to berate themselves for being weak-willed.

“I felt ashamed. It wasn’t my fault he hit me, but I was ashamed that I was the one who allowed him into my life,” Taru says.[…]

The perceived strength of Finnish women can make them unwilling to ask for help, she says, describing a mother of four who refused to acknowledge she was a victim even though her husband made her walk on broken glass and stand naked in sub-zero weather.[…]

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