Ah, Valentine’s Day.
If you can get past its hyped-up, commercialised veneer – and survive the competitive sport that is booking a restaurant on the 14th of February – there’s definitely something awesome about the day.
After all, it’s the one time that PDIs and massive bunches of flowers in the workplace are publically condoned, it gives us an excuse to write poetry more soulful than Kristen Stewart’s, and – once you get past the sickening stuffed animals that, frankly, have no business beyond a fairground shooting game – there’s something cool about a day that gives us a free pass to make each other feel valued and loved in the most over-the-top ways possible.
But while we’re appreciating how happy our relationships make us during Friday’s festival of love, maybe we can also appreciate how lucky we are.
Because many of us have relationships actually worth celebrating – but some people don’t share that luck.
Women every day suffer violence at the hands of their partners and families. One in three women will experience violence in her lifetime – and that equates to one billion women worldwide.
One. Billion. Women.
Scarily, sexual assault rates in Australasia are more than double the world average, according to a new study in medical journal The Lancet.
In Australia, the study says, 16.4 percent of women aged 15 or older report sexual violence at least once in their lives.
Even those who aren’t directly abused can often sense the omnipresent culture of violence against women in our culture – when they’re heckled on the street, threatened online or subjected to the casual glorification of gender-based violence in the media.