What challenges did Amy face? Her central challenge was to decide whether or not to leave her husband. This is a common dilemma abused wives face, because there is both a hope that their husbands will change back into the men they originally married, and there is a fear of the consequences of leaving. This may explain why Amy let the protection-from-abuse order against her husband lapse. There is also an uncertainty as to exactly how to manage the details of leaving the relationship, such as how much money will be required, where to stay and whether or not to take the kid(s) with them. These conflicting emotions, hopes, and fears can produce apathy, denial, and indecision. There can be legal challenges too. The police are often limited in the power to prevent violence and may not be sufficiently staffed to monitor a given situation.
How could prevention efforts assist in this situation? A better question would be whether education could assist in this situation. Abused spouses need access to both the legal and practical information they need to both make and act upon a decision to end a marriage or living arrangement. For persons who are not students under parental or institutional protection (such as a college with abuse hotlines and counseling), their only recourse may be to hire a lawyer.
How did this incident affect Amy’s friends and family? Of course they were devastated by Amy murder. They will spend their lives second-guessing themselves as to what they could, should, or would have done had they only been more observant, more ready to get involved, more able to take a proactive role to stop the cycle of violence that ultimately led to her death.