Domestic violence is often excused or denied because the abuse is often not only physical, but psychological. Understanding the signs of domestic violence is typically the first step to getting out of the situation. Here are some facts about domestic violence.
What is Domestic Abuse?
Domestic abuse occurs whenever a person intimidates their partner in order to control them. Domestic violence can involve any type of relationship, regardless of age, ethnicity, sexual orientation or gender. Abusive treatment can cause a person to feel helpless and can take away their self-worth, making it more difficult to leave the negative situation.
What Are the Signs of Domestic Abuse?
The most common sign that abuse is present is that a victim feels afraid to leave their partner. Often, a victim of abuse will feel as if they are walking on eggshells in their own home, or are trying to find ways to pacify an aggressive partner in order to keep the situation from escalating. A victim might become obsessively self-focused out of the fear that they will say or do the wrong thing and make their partner angry.
How Does an Abuser Dominate Their Partner?
One of the most common mistakes an abused victim makes is to believe that their abuser is actually the victim. Abusers can control their behavior, however; they typically choose who to abuse and when. Often, outsiders will not even be aware that abuse is present within the home. Abusers dominate their victims by humiliating them, forcing them to be isolated from others, making threats, intimidating them and shifting the blame for the abuse onto the victim. An abuser might minimize their actions or deny that they ever even occurred.
What Does a Victim Usually Feel?
Typically a victim of abuse feels ashamed or embarrassed in front of their family or close friends, contemplates if they deserved the abuse and whether they are the one who is crazy. They might feel like no matter how hard they try, they cannot get anything right. In situations where children are present, the victim may be afraid to leave because an abuser might threaten to harm or take away the children.
There is hope for victims of abuse, no matter how volatile the situation may be. There are programs available to assist victims of abuse, and a domestic violence attorney may also be able to help advise a victim about their legal rights.