Facts About

Domestic Violence

WHAT IS DOMESTIC VIOLENCE?

Domestic violence is a pattern of behavior where one person in a relationship tries to gain power and control over his or her partner through fear and intimidation.  This can take the form of threatening or actually using physical violence, or the abuse can be emotional, economic, or sexual.

WHO DOES DOMESTIC VIOLENCE AFFECT?
HOW BIG
IS
THE
PROBLEM?
CAN
DOMESTIC VIOLENCE BE PREVENTED?
HOW
ARE
VICTIMS PROTECTED?

If you are abused:

  1. Protect yourself and children

  2. Seek help, preferably for both yourself and your partner, but at least for yourself; and

  3. Make the changes necessary for you and your children to live abuse free.

It's never too soon - or too late -

to admit there is a problem and

seek help!

NOBODY DESERVES
TO BE ABUSED
WHAT
ARE
RISK
FACTORS?

Be prepared in advance to protect yourself and your children if a crisis should arise.

  1. Prearrange a safe place to go, such as the home of a friend or relative, a hotel or a shelter.

  2. Have the following items packed and in an accessible place

  • Cloths (2 - 3 days worth)​

  • Money, checks, and credit cards

  • Important papers such as birth certificate, court orders, and driver's license

  • Phone numbers of friends, shelters, and counselors

A PLAN FOR SELF-PROTECTION

If you answer "yes" to one or more of these questions, you may be a victim of abuse.

  1. Are your afraid of doing the "wrong" thing, even if you're not sure what that is?

  2. Does your partner watch your every move?

  3. Do you feel sexually ashamed or humiliated, or are you being sexually hurt?

  4. Does your partner refuse to help when you're sick injured, or pregnant?

  5. Does he or she "put you down" at home or in public?

  6. Do you avoid discussing some subjects because your're afraid your partner's reaction will be violent?

  7. Does your partner place excessive limitations on the things you do, such as the time he or she "allows" for you to do errands or see friends?

  8. Does you partner accuse you of being unfaithful, of being crazy, or being worthless?

  9. Has he or she injured you physically, no matter how slightly?

  10. Do you live in constant fear for yourself or your children?

ARE YOU BEING ABUSED BY YOUR PARTNER?

EARLY WARNING SIGNS OF ABUSERS

WHAT TO LOOK FOR

ABUSE DURING COURTSHIP

Physical abuse during courtship is often a guarantee of abuse later.  It is a mistake to marry with the idea "I can change him or her" or "it will stop once we're married."

ALCOHOL/DRUG ABUSE

People who abuse their partners often abuse alcohol or other drugs as well.  Many domestic violence incidents involve alcohol and other drugs.  (Drug abuse is no excuse to abuse someone else).

BACKGROUND OF FAMILY VIOLENCE

People who grew up in violent homes tend to repeat the pattern.  Also, someone who has already been abusive with a previous partner will probably be an abuser again.

MINIMIZING EFFECTS OF VIOLENCE

People who are cruel to animals or insensitive to the pain and suffering of others may be potential abusers of their partners as well as their children.

DENIAL OF PROBLEM

When asked to face the issue of problems in the relationship, potential abusers often deny there is a problem or place all the blame on their partners.  They go to great lengths to hide any relationship problems from others and refuse to go for help.

DIFFICULTY HANDLING FRUSTRATION

Potential abusers may overreact to relatively minor things like missing a parking space or being asked to help with chores.  People who react to situation by screaming, punching walls, or throwing objects are likely to abuse their partners someday.

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EXTREME JEALOUSY

Potential abusers may ask excessive questions about whom their partners talked to, accuse them of flirting, and e jealous of any time spent with others, including the children.  Jealousy is a sign of insecurity and possessiveness - it has nothing to do with love.

MENTAL ABUSE

Potential abusers may use "mind games" to gain control over their partners, such as placing unrealistic demands on them, belittling them,and using the line "if you live me, you would..." to get what they want.

NEED TO CONTROL

Potential abusers may make all the decisions about the house, withhold money or access to the car, dictate who the partner's friends can be, and forbid them from going to school, working, or having outside interests.

SEXUAL ABUSE

Potential abusers may treat their partners like sexual objects and become angry if the partners don't do as they want sexually.  They may mistrust the opposite sex in general.

THREATS OF VIOLENCE

Any threat of physical violence (such as "I'll get you" or "I'll kill you") is abuse and a likely precursor to physical assault.  An abusive person may say "Everybody talks like that", but most people do not threaten their mates.

VERBAL ABUSE

Potential abusers often say cruel and hurtful things.  They may degrade, belittle, curse their partners, and say that the partners would be unable to function without them.  Abusers may use verbal abuse in public, as well as in private.

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