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Domestic Violence and Its Impacts on Children


Domestic violence is an issue that has raised concern in the society because of its impact on the affected people. Domestic violence has serious impacts on children. When they grow up in a violent environment, they get affected psychologically and sometimes physically. Men and women also get affected in varying degrees based on the nature of the violence. Ethical behavior is one of the best ways of solving domestic violence in the society. The nurses also need to be ethical when addressing cases of domestic violence. They should know how to handle victims of domestic violence so that the impact of such actions may have less impact on them.

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Domestic violence is a public health issue that has raised a lot of concern in many health care providing institutions. The need to find a lasting solution to domestic violence is one of the major concerns globally. The impacts of domestic violence have been severely felt across all nations. This issue affects both men and women largely. However, women are at a higher risk of getting affected. According to the World Health Organization, more than a third of the women globally get affected. Domestic violence issue needs to be handled with a lot of concern. When domestic violence occurs, care should be taken when addressing it to avoid any negative impacts. This calls for an understanding of the personal feelings of the nursing by confronting them on their social beliefs, which play a very crucial role in defining how they relate with the patients and other community members. Although the issue has remained unaddressed for long, societies are now putting many efforts towards addressing the matter. Several guidelines have been set to address domestic violence. One of the major initiatives towards addressing this issue is awareness creation. Societies have teamed up in creating awareness on domestic violence and providing some clinical guidelines to improve the institutional response to domestic violence. Despite these efforts, domestic violence has remained a Public health issue that many clinicians have to cope with in their daily routine. However, understanding and solving the problem effectively well does not only improve the health performance but also helps the clinicians develop some prevention strategies.

Health Ethical Issues

According to a report by the International Council of Nurses, violence has been viewed as an issue that is not within the domain of the sector of health (Monagle & Thomasma, 2005). However, the nurses can get the guidelines on how to fight domestic violence and their responsibilities in handling such related cases from the code of ethics. It is an ethical responsibility for the nurses to respect the rights and dignity of other persons. The nurses are expected to be compassionate of their situation irrespective of the condition of their health. This duty must always be fulfilled regardless of whether the nurse or patient is battling with domestic violence. According to Chinn (2009), failure to observe the respect for human rights and dignity is one of the main causes of the problem of domestic violence. Many of these nurses may not be adequately trained on domestic violence. This may limit their ability to handle clients facing domestic violence effectively. To improve the situation, comprehensive training on handling and dealing with domestic violence should be given to the nurses alongside other trainings. This will help them be effective in handling the victims of domestic violence and apply the knowledge when dealing with such issues in their personal lives.

It is ethical that nurses caring for patients facing domestic violence not to withdraw from doing so when the situation is difficult or complex. Johnson (2008) argues that the nurse should always protect the patient’s life, health, and rights. The nurses are guided by some common guidelines that strictly state on what should be followed by the nurse when handling a patient. He or she should strive to promote health, prevent diseases, and reduce the level of suffering. Based on their limited training they have to depend on their capacities to address the painful issues.

Thirdly, both the ANA and ICN call for the nurses to promote activism and work together with the health professions in enhancing people’s health. All these issues combined with unemployment and racism creates an environment for domestic violence, and the nurses cannot ignore them. The nurses also listen to various societal views and opinions regarding power and gender, which they themselves are formed of. This in one way or the other is a contributor to family violence.

Environmental issues

According to Morrison and Monagle (2009), environmental factors contribute to domestic violence largely. These environmental factors may be those that one experience as he or she grows up or those faced at one’s workplace. One such factor is poor housing, which brings issues in the family leading to domestic violence. This factor is always combined with unemployment and poor health care, which may forces one to abandon an intolerant partner. Economic stability as stated by Chinn (2009), reduces domestic violence to certain levels as it includes the improvement in the health care, reduce unemployment and other factors that trigger domestic violence.

Discrimination at work place or in the society in whichever manner attributes to domestic violence. Women may be discriminated on various grounds in the society making them victims of domestic violence. Workplaces and societies should define guidelines that support coexistence and integration of different cultures and gender harmoniously without any form of discrimination. Doing this will not only improve the morale of the employees but also increase the production in the workplace and promote peace in the society.

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Legal actions may help when dealing with the issue of domestic violence. This may be in the form of arrest, prosecution, or giving restriction orders to the culprits of domestic violence. This will help those affected get justice from the court of law and give the culprits a chance to reevaluate their actions and reform for the better. This will reduce the cases of domestic violence largely. The laws enforced to address domestic violence should be implemented fully. Those that break these laws should be severely punished to avoid and reduce domestic violence cases.

Chinn (2009) points out that some environmental conditions like lack of resources trigger domestic violence. Providing the resources like shelter, good health care and some spiritual guidance or counseling can be a very effective way of helping the victims resolve their domestic violence issues. The institution of marriage should be observed carefully and any traces of domestic violence should be addressed as soon as possible to avoid its devastating impacts. Davis (1998) argues that men can be the best agents towards addressing the issue of domestic violence. They should be made realize that women are there not to be abused but respected. Men should come out strongly to defend women when they find them being abused in the workplace, markets or parties as a way of reducing chances of domestic violence.

Ethical Decision Model

It is ethically true that issues of domestic violence may not be solved by using the nursing code of ethics. There is a need to come up with a model of framework that helps one analyze the process of decision making to enhance ethical decisions. The model given below may provide a framework upon which ethical decisions are made.

Corey’s Ethical Decision-Making Model
Figure 1: Corey’s Ethical Decision-Making Model

The model showed above shows specific steps that should be taken in order to come up with an ethical model.


Domestic violence is an issue that has been raising concern in the society today. Men, women, and children all suffer from different forms of domestic violence. Domestic violence ranges from simple verbal abuses, to serious physical fights that may result into serious injuries. The problem with this issue is that the society has been ignoring it for a lot time that others consider it normal. From the discussion above, it is clear that domestic violence is an issue that is related to ethical behavior of the perpetrators. It is important to appreciate that when one reasons ethically in every decision he or she is making, then cases of domestic violence will be uncommon in the society. It is important to be rational in order to eliminate cases of domestic violence.


Chinn, P. L. (2009). Ethical issues in nursing. Rockville, Md: Aspen Systems Corp.

Davis, R. L. (1998). Domestic violence: Facts and fallacies. Westport, CT: Praeger.

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Johnson, M. P. (2008). A typology of domestic violence: Intimate terrorism, violent resistance, and situational couple violence. Boston: Northeastern University Press.

Monagle, J. F., & Thomasma, D. C. (2005). Health care ethics: Critical issues for the 21st century. Sudbury, Mass: Jones and Bartlett Publishers.

Morrison, E. E., & Monagle, J. F. (2009). Health care ethics: Critical issues for the 21st century. Sudbury, Mass: Jones and Bartlett Publishers.

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