They argue that her own abuse should have made her aware of the dangers her child faced, and that she had a responsibility to leave the relationship before her abusive partner harmed the child.
The Violence of Total Motherhood
Mirah Curzer
3910

I’ll preface by saying I’m a survivor of child abuse.

My mom absolutely knew what was happening. She’s still with the man who abused me and is still abusive to her. I wish she had, at some point, left.

She made plans, multiple times, to leave. I wish she had followed through.

On this point, I think there’s a case, although not quite in the way it’s phrased. The ‘before the child is harmed part’ is laughable, because children are pretty well always harmed by abuse in the home — even abuse not directly perpetrated against them. But yes, a parent who is being abused and has children in that home does have some responsibility to get out with those children. I say that with full awareness of how abuse warps people’s realities, with how abusers operate, with full knowledge of how difficult it is to leave abusive situations. Having lived it, I agree that getting out is important, and getting children out is vitally important.

This is not, however, limited only to mothers.

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