Domestic violence is an equal opportunity offender. It cuts across all racial, gender, cultural and socioeconomic lines. According to domestic violence (DV) statistics*, in the United States 1 in 4 women and 1 in 14 men are annual victims of intimate domestic partner abuse, with up to 10 million children witnessing some form of DV at home.
What allows domestic violence to persist is silence, "keeping the secret." There are many reasons male and female domestic violence victims keep quiet about what is happening to them in the privacy of their homes. Two of the most common reasons are embarrassment and fear. Typical worry includes what friends and family will think, the loss of security if the abusive partner is discovered, goes to jail or loses their job.
Physical aggression in relationships is a line that should never be crossed. However, when one partner does cross that line one of two internal dialogues will take place:
- They will say "OMG, what have I done?" By doing so, they recognize what they have done is completely unacceptable, will take full responsibility for it and vow to never let it happen again, or
- They will say "It’s your fault, if you hadn’t..." By doing so, they blame their partner. They justify their actions because they truly believe they were provoked by their partner.
Those who experience the first dialogue are far less likely to become abusers, but the same cannot be said for those from dialogue two.
Love should never hurt, and it is never acceptable put your hands on your partner, child or other family member in anger.
Not sure about your situation? Take the quiz. www.psychcentral.com/dvquiz
If you or someone you know is experiencing domestic violence, don't keep the secret any longer. Help is just a click or phone call away.
Get the facts! http://www.nrdcv.org
These national resources are available 24/7 and always anonymous and confidential.