Domestic Violence, also known as domestic abuse, spousal abuse, battering, family violence, dating abuse, and intimate partner violence (IPV), is a pattern of behavior that is used to maintain power and control over an intimate partner.
Domestic Violence victims are not just housewives. Domestic Violence victims are married and not married; heterosexual, gay, or lesbian; living together, living separately, or dating. Domestic Violence victims are any age, sex, race, culture, and religion; Domestic Violence is not something isolated to the housewife, it affects people of all socioeconomic backgrounds and educations levels.
Traditionally, when we think about Domestic Violence, we think of the victims as being physically abused, and while more often than not this is true; there are additional forms of abuse:
Emotional/psychological abuse – name calling, insults or derogatory statements
Isolation – not allowing the partner to communicate with friends and/or family; not allowing partner to seek or maintain employment
Sexual abuse – unwanted and forced; sexual humiliation
Stalking – unwanted or obsessive behavior; intimidation and fear
Threats of physical harm to partner and/or friends and family of partner
Individuals who are trapped in Domestic Violence situations as a result of their own fear or shame may experience physical disabilities, chronic health problems, mental illness, financial hardship, and an inability to develop healthy relationships. Some victims experience post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and children who are raised in an environment of abuse are likely to continue the pattern when they reach adulthood.
Victims feel powerless to change their situation; they feel alone, scared, trapped and uncertain of how to break free. If you or someone you know is a victim of Domestic Violence, there is help available to you:
· The National Domestic Violence Hotline | http://www.thehotline.org | (800) 799-SAFE (7233)
If you have questions on how to get help or how to help others, please reach out to us: http://www.kathyslegacy.org/contact/
Indiana Coalition Against Domestic Violence: http://www.icadvinc.org/what-is-domestic-violence/