Birth and Beyond – The Impact of Domestic Violence Through the Antenatal Period
Prof. Beulah Shekhar
Department of Criminology & Criminal Justice, Director, Center for Empowerment & Womens Studies, Manonmaniam Sundaranar University, TirunelveliKanpur, India. E-mail address: firstname.lastname@example.org .
Domestic violence during pregnancy is a focused attack that puts not just one, but two lives at risk. A descriptive study was done with the purpose to compare the obstetrical, psychological, social and fetal outcome impact of domestic violence during pregnancy. Through multistage sampling 500 women aged 18 to 35 years residing in Chennai City and District was assessed for domestic violence victimization during pregnancy and its impact. The predictors for abuse during pregnancy were the age, gravida, illiteracy, religion, duration of married life, alcohol consumption and drug use. All the women reported all the six types of violence of varying degree from moderate to very severe form. The psychological impact identified were anxiety, depression, emotional lability and suicidal tendency and stress There was a positive correlation found between the all the six types of violence and the obstetrical, psychological, social and fetal outcome. The regression analysis proved that relationship existed between the domestic violence and the obstetrical, psychological, social and fetal outcome. It was also found that physical, economic, social, sexual violence were associated with obstetrical, psychological, social and fetal health of both women residing in the city and district. The present results on robustness of the problem will be useful to sensitize the concerned agencies to strictly implement the law. This may lead to more constructive and sustainable response to domestic violence in India for improvement of women health and wellbeing. The study concluded that domestic violence has to be addressed by all health care professionals as a routine while caring for pregnant women.