For information on teen dating violence and healthy relationships: Go to www.kaitysway.org.
An new informative guide from DrugRehab.com is here. (Also a great resource about drugs and drug addiction.)
For information on how addiction if affecting your loved one, check out Addiction Center’s informational guide here.
What is Domestic Violence?
DOMESTIC VIOLENCE AWARENESS
Domestic violence and emotional abuse are behaviors used by one person in a relationship to control the other. Partners may be married or not married; heterosexual, gay, or lesbian; living together, separated or dating.
Examples of abuse include:
name-calling or putdowns
keeping a partner from contacting their family or friends
stopping a partner from getting or keeping a job
actual or threatened physical harm
Violence can be criminal and includes physical assault (hitting, pushing, shoving, etc.), sexual abuse (unwanted or forced sexual activity), and stalking. Although emotional, psychological and financial abuse are not criminal behaviors, they are forms of abuse and can lead to criminal violence.
The violence takes many forms and can happen all the time or once in a while. An important step to help yourself or someone you know in preventing or stopping violence is recognizing the warning signs listed on the "Violence Wheel."
ANYONE CAN BE A VICTIM! Victims can be of any age, sex, race, culture, religion, education, employment or marital status. Although both men and women can be abused, most victims are women. Children in homes where there is domestic violence are more likely to be abused and/or neglected. Most children in these homes know about the violence. Even if a child is not physically harmed, they may have emotional and behavior problems.
If you are being abused, REMEMBER
You are not alone.
It is not your fault.
Help is available.
COMMON MYTHS AND WHY THEY ARE WRONG
Domestic violence is not a problem in my community.
Michigan State Police records from 1997 show that a woman is killed by a partner or former partner about once a week in Michigan.
In 1998, the Michigan State Police reported more than 5,000 victims of domestic violence in Oakland County.
Domestic violence only happens to poor women.
Domestic violence happens in all kinds of families and relationships. Persons of any class, culture, religion, sexual orientation, marital status, age, and sex can be victims or perpetrators of domestic violence.
Some people deserve to be hit.
No one deserves to be abused. Period. The only person responsible for the abuse is the abuser.
Physical violence, even among family members, is wrong and against the law.
Alcohol, drug abuse, stress, and mental illness cause domestic violence.
Alcohol use, drug use, and stress do not cause domestic violence; they may go along with domestic violence, but they do not cause the violence. Abusers often say they use these excuses for their violence. (Michigan Judicial Institute, Domestic Violence Benchbook, 1998, p. 1.6 - 1.7)
Generally, domestic violence happens when an abuser has learned and chooses to abuse. (Michigan Judicial Institute, Domestic Violence Benchbook, 1998, p. 1 - 5)
Domestic violence is rarely caused by mental illness, but it is often used as an excuse for domestic violence. (Michigan Judicial Institute, Domestic Violence Benchbook, 1998, p. 1 - 8)
Domestic violence is a personal problem between a husband and a wife.
Domestic violence affects everyone.
About 1 in 3 American women have been physically or sexually abused by a husband or boyfriend at some point in their lives. (Commonwealth Fund, Health Concerns Across a Woman's Lifespan: the Commonwealth Fund 1998 Survey of Women's Health, 1999)
In 1996, 30% of all female murder victims were killed by their husbands or boyfriends. (Federal Bureau of Investigation, 1997)
40% to 60% of men who abuse women also abuse children. (American Psychological Association, Violence and the Family, 1996)
If it were that bad, she would just leave.
There are many reasons why women may not leave. Not leaving does not mean that the situation is okay or that the victim want to be abused.
Leaving can be dangerous. The most dangerous time for a woman who is being abused is when she tries to leave. (United States Department of Justice, National Crime Victim Survey, 1995)
MANY VICTIMS DO LEAVE AND LEAD SUCCESSFUL, VIOLENCE FREE LIVES.
Do you know someone who may need your help to break the silence? Here are some points to help.
—Ask if something is wrong
—Listen and validate
—Support his or her decisions
--Wait for him or her to come to you
—Judge or blame
—Pressure him or her
—Place conditions on your support
Break the silence!!!
OCTOBER IS DOMESTIC VIOLENCE AWARENESS MONTH
Help make a difference! Are you looking for ways to get more involved?