Recognizing and overcoming domestic violence

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Domestic violence is typically defined as inflicting harm or threatening to inflict harm on a family member or a past or present romantic partner. The term may also be used if an incident occurs between roommates regardless of their relationship status. In some cases, an abuser may harm a pet to inflict abuse on a victim. Let’s look at what you should know about domestic violence and how to get help for yourself or someone you care about.

It Can Happen to Anyone

Both males and females can be abused by a partner, family member or roommate. It can also happen to a person regardless of his or her wealth or religious affiliation. However, domestic violence tends to impact women more often than it impacts men, and it also tends to occur more often to people of color and those who are gender nonconforming. Many abusers will appear to be thoughtful or charming in public, so you shouldn’t assume that someone can’t be an abuser based on appearances alone.

It’s Not Just Physical

Physical, sexual, emotional, economic, and psychological abuse all fall under the category of domestic violence. In some cases, an abuser will tell a victim that he or she is clumsy, stupid or incapable of being loved by others. Abusers may also forbid their victims from getting a job or managing their own finances. Outward signs of abuse may include not allowing a victim to associate with family members or close friends without supervision. An abuser may constantly call a victim or keep track of that person’s whereabouts. Victims may try to explain away bruises or other marks by saying that they fell or that they were otherwise caused by accident.

Don’t Judge Victims for Staying

Victims may be conditioned to believe that what has happened to them is their fault or don’t have the financial means to leave. They may also believe that an attempt to leave a relationship could result in physical harm to themselves or loved ones. Therefore, it is important that you offer your unconditional support, guidance, and love to someone who is in an abusive relationship and get the help they require.

Domestic violence can happen to anyone, and victims may feel isolated or otherwise helpless to change their circumstances. If you know someone who is being abused or are being abused yourself, seek help from family members, friends or anyone else who can help you get away from an abuser safely.

Through the RISE program, you will discover how to love yourself, rebuild your self-confidence and how to uncover your value and purpose after the trauma of abuse. Start today!

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