Domestic & Dating Violence
Domestic violence, also known as "battering" or "spouse/partner abuse," is defined as an assaultive behavior between adults in an intimate relationship. The assaultive behavior can be inflicted by a current or former partner and be verbal/psychological, physical, or sexual in nature and intended to harm the physical or mental well-being of the victim. Rarely is domestic violence an isolated incident; it is a pattern of coercive behavior intended to exert control and domination by the offender toward the victim. The recurring abusive incidents usually escalate in frequency and severity and can result in serious physical injury, disablement, or death, without outside intervention to protect the victim, stop the violence, and hold the perpetrator accountable.
Aggressive behavior done by the perpetrator to the victim's body. It includes pushing, shoving, kicking, slapping, punching, choking, biting, pinching, hair-pulling, hitting, burning, clubbing, stabbing, shooting, threatening with a knife or gun, and other acts of commission. Sometimes, particular areas of the body are targeted, such as hitting the face or hitting the abdomen during pregnancy.
Physical attacks or abuse of the genital areas or breast, unwanted touching or pinching of the breasts, rape with objects, forced sexual activity with a third person, forced sexual relations accompanied by either physical violence or the threat of physical violence; this includes marital rape.
Assaults against a person's well-being by systematically degrading the victim's self-worth through name-calling, derogatory or demeaning comments; forcing the victim to perform humiliating, degrading acts; threatening to harm or kill the victim or victim's family; controlling access to money, sleep habits, eating habits, and social relations; and actions to imply the victim is "crazy."
Includes all the elements of emotional/psychological violence, but these behaviors follow at least one violent episode or attack on the victim, and maintains the impending threat of another assault.
A form of violence done without touching the victim's body. The assaults are made viciously on the victim by destroying personal belongings, family heirlooms, or the family pet. The destruction is purposeful and the psychological impact may be as devastating as a physical attack.
"My boyfriend shouldn't get so jealous, but when he does, I can tell that he cares for me. He does hit me sometimes, but when it is over, he gets really sweet and apologetic. It brings us closer together."
|Our culture accepts violence in all its institutions, including dating, marriage, and child-rearing. We're taught to accept violence from those who say they love us, so violence is confused with strong feelings for someone. Violence doesn't equal love.|
|"I know him, and he's really not a bad person. It must be something I said or did that got me into this."||Although our society perpetuates blaming a victim for the abuse she suffers, in fact, the real blame lies with the abuser. The victim is never to blame for an abuser.|
|Middle-class women are not battered.
||Battered women are all ages, races, educational groups, religious groups, and socioeconomic groups.|
|A slap never hurt anyone.||A slap can kill. According to the Journal of the American Medical Association, 35 percent of all women who arrive at a doctor's office or hospital seeking emergency treatment are victims of domestic violence.|
|Men batter because they have been drinking or because the woman has been drinking.||Not all batterers are users of alcohol or drugs. Even men who are chronic substance abusers batter when they are sober. Alcohol and drugs are an excuse for violence, not the cause.|
|Religious beliefs will prevent battering.||Women indicated that their religious beliefs do not protect them from assaults. For some, belief in a deity helped them endure their suffering, offering comfort and solace. Others become disillusioned with their religion.|
Are you in an abusive relationship? Answer a few question to see if you are.
A chart of violent and nonviolent behavior.
Mediterranean Passages: Religious, Linguistic, and Cultural
8:45 am - 7 pm
Writers Forum: Calvin Trillin