SINGAPORE - Women who are experiencing abuse and violence at home should seek help, not just for themselves but also for their abusive spouses, said Dr Carol Balhetchet.
"In a case of domestic violence, the husband may also need help to find other ways for him to communicate his unhappiness," the senior director for youth services at the Singapore Children's Society said.
Describing the two men as cavemen-like for dragging their wives by the hair, she said that domestic abuse should never be condoned.
Not seeking help could make matters worse and such incidents should never take place in front of children as it would teach them the wrong things.
The Association of Women for Action and Research's (Aware) support services manager, Ms Sheena Kanwar, advised victims of abuse to arrange for a safe shelter for themselves and their children. They should contact a trusted friend or family member who can help.
They can also apply for a Personal Protection Order at the Family Court or Family Violence Specialist Centre.
"If you're not ready or able to take legal steps, you can get support from a counsellor. At times, just reaching a friendly ear at a helpline can be a good starting point," she said.
Marriage counsellor John Vasavan said the couples should seek counselling, separately if necessary, after the husband is released from prison.
Running away from their partners should not be the only option because it does not solve the root of their marital problems.
Mr Vasavan said family service centres are equipped with counsellors to deal with such cases.
"See a counsellor and have both parties amicably share what they intend to do with the next part of their lives, be it go separate ways or get back together," he said.
This article was first published on April 14, 2015.
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