Result of violence -

ZS Archives | The result of violence

In several gender-based violence cases, the victims reported experiencing one of the four aforementioned types of violence. These broader categories of violence include sub-categories that delve deeper into violence’s nature and its consequences to the victims. However, it’s not only the victim that suffers in cases where GBV is present.

The families of lost loved ones also endure the realities of violence. Take the case of Karabo Mokoena. Five years after her murder, her family still hasn’t gotten any closure. (Source: News24/CityPass) And five years on, we are still fighting against GBV, with the violence cases only increasing.

The South African Society of Psychiatrists released an article stating that physical abuse at the hands of an intimate partner is the most common form of violence experienced by women and the leading cause of post-traumatic stress disorder in South Africa.

Professor Ugasvaree Subramaney said: “The nightmares, flashbacks, sleep difficulties, outbursts of anger, difficulty concentrating and emotional numbness that characterise PTSD can have a crippling effect on the sufferer’s social functioning, their work and family life, education and physical health, as well as having costs in terms of lost income and medical care, even long after a woman has escaped an abusive situation,” she said. Source:

GBV statistics

In February this year, police minister Bheki Cele released stats from the third quarter of 2021/2022, October – December. In three months, the stats show that 902 women were murdered, and there were 11 315 rapes. In a statement from People Opposing Women Abuse (Powa), they emphasise that they are not convinced that the statistics reflect the reality of women’s abuse and speculate that these cases are much higher than reported.

Signs and symptoms of PTSD in GBV cases

Statistics show that women are twice more likely to develop PTSD than men throughout their lifetime. Women also tend to experience these symptoms for longer and are more sensitive to triggers that remind them of their past trauma. Learn more about the signs and symptoms to prevent them from getting worse in yourself or someone you know.

PTSD is marked by feelings of distress, anxiety and reliving the traumatic event. In cases where PTSD is present, people avoid situations that could trigger the reminder of a particular event.

Common symptoms include:

  • Intrusive or unwanted thoughts
  • Avoiding trauma triggers
  • Flashbacks
  • Hypervigilance
  • Anxiety
  • Irritability
  • Self-destructive behaviour
  • Loss of interest in activities
  • Emotional distress
  • Guilt

PTSD Therapy

Therapy has three main goals: to improve your symptoms, teach you the skills needed to cope with PTSD, and restore your self-esteem and mental well-being. In the short and long term, psychotherapy and medications are effective treatments.

And a combination of psychotherapy and medications works very well together. Most therapies fall under the umbrella of cognitive-behavioural therapy. The idea behind it is to change behavioural patterns that disturb a person’s life.

At ZwavelStream Clinic, our approach is to provide holistic private mental health treatment tailored to every patient’s needs. The clinic was founded out of the desire to offer a mental health unit in a way that deinstitutionalises and de-stigmatises mental health hospitals.

4_ How to find a mental health care provider

Trauma counselling

When a traumatising event occurs, a psychological wound is left, resulting in traumatising events.

And since these events don’t discriminate between age, gender, race, or financial status, it is clear that everyone is at risk of experiencing trauma. When it is left untreated, it becomes a mental health problem that often leads to the development of secondary issues, like depression and anxiety.

The effects of trauma can impact a person’s quality of life and can be overwhelming for an individual. So much, so that basic tasks become impossible. But there is no reason to suffer through this immense pain forever. Trauma and its symptoms can be effectively managed. Trauma counselling is offered to those dealing with PTSD (Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder) or other forms of trauma, so they can heal old wounds and restore balance to their well-being.

Those who experienced gender-based violence are at risk of developing PTSD. And it happens in society more often than we care to realise. If you have experienced GBV first-hand, we urge you to speak out and seek help. We want you to know that at ZwavelStream Clinic, our doors are open to anyone looking to restore their mental health in a peaceful environment and a deinstitutionalised and de-stigmatised environment. If you notice the signs or symptoms of PTSD in yourself or someone you know, we urge you to get in touch with us so that we can help you through the process of recovery.

Jun 17, 2022

The correlation between PTSD & Gender-based violence

It is important to note that in a majority of gender-based violence cases Only a minority is reported to the police. In South Africa, we have […]