Dear President Obama, Vice President Biden, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and the members of US Senate
I am writing this letter as I read another heart-breaking story of a woman suffering from abuse. This woman might be lucky and courageous enough to report her story, but there are countless women living in endless agony, unable to change their destiny.
Passing this act will help them do so!
Women belonging to different classes suffer the same fate – rich or not, educated or not, working or not …all suffer varied forms of emotional and physical abuse. Abuse is a daily part of a Saudi woman’s life – yet we are in denial. We live in denial because few cases are reported every year, only 257 were filed last year. In a country of 27 million people, the number is grossly under the true average.
The majority of women do not report due to fear and shame. The growing numbers of victims does not match the number of shelters available for them. Recently, 10 young victims family abuse were transferred to the a care center for the elderly, citing reasons of a lack of a specific shelter for them
Women from poor backgrounds suffer more but we often do not see how educated, working women suffer the same abuse in inconceivable, new ways.
A married woman in her early 20’s lives in insurmountable distress. Unlike most cases, her marriage was not an arranged one; she married a man thinking she had found the Prince Charming of her life! Little did she know about the beast lurking inside him...
Her husband, (self-proclaimed modern and open minded individual) is a greedy man who wants his wife to earn a living for him! He is someone who believes a housewife is worthless and women must bear all the expenses. He forces her to work 24/7, manage all the household chores and at the end of the month he takes her money to pay majority of the expenses and deposits his earnings in own bank account!
She can’t spend time with her children and can’t spend money of her own will. Her two children suffer as well; they feel desperate for their mother’s time. When their mother is away, they become the victims of his mindless behavior.
One day he threatened to strip her naked and throw her outside – this was his way to ‘fix’ her for protesting against his bad behavior
Despite being a working mom, she doesn’t get a day off on weekends while her single male colleagues work less hours with weekend holidays. At work her male colleagues makes her life a hell, (as her husband does at home). I ask, is there a place for a women to be free of emotional and physical abuse?
A women turns a house into a home – but she, herself does not feel secure inside her own home, I ask – is this acceptable? I sincerely urge President and senators to pass this act, a first step to see an end to violence against women in my lifetime. Passing this act will open locked doors for women across the globe, improving women’s public and private lives while creating a healthy future generation.
Please pass this act and create a better life for those suffering for years, for those unborn female children waiting to see the light…
KSAThe International Violence Against Women Act