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Ashling Murphy: What we can do as parents to ensure our sons don’t grow up to be men that hurt women

The violent death of young Tullamore teacher Ashling Murphy has shocked the entire country. While we can’t influence every factor that leads to men’s violence towards women, as parents, we can help shape our boys’ attitudes

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Tributes to Ashling Murphy at a shrine on the Grand Canal in Tullamore. Photo: Gerry Mooney

Tributes to Ashling Murphy at a shrine on the Grand Canal in Tullamore. Photo: Gerry Mooney

Tributes to Ashling Murphy at a shrine on the Grand Canal in Tullamore. Photo: Gerry Mooney

Ashling Murphy’s murder was shocking and horrifying. The chief suspect in that murder investigation is a man. Perhaps this is no surprise. According to the United Nations Office of Drugs and Crime, 95pc of murders are committed by men. Two hundred and thirty-six women had died violently in Ireland up to 2020, at the hands of men, since Women’s Aid started to record these deaths in 1996.

According to research, there is a complex interplay between individual, relationship, community and societal factors that may lead to gender-based violence against women. You may not be able to directly change or influence some of these factors, but there are some insights from research that might help you to help your son avoid growing into the kind of man who can be violent towards women.


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