Defining Domestic Violence
We define domestic violence as a pattern of abusive behavior in any relationship that is used by one partner to gain or maintain power and control over another intimate partner. Domestic violence can be physical, sexual, emotional, economic, or psychological actions or threats of actions that influence another person. This includes any behaviors that intimidate, manipulate, humiliate, isolate, frighten, terrorize, coerce, threaten, blame, hurt, injure, or wound someone. (US Dept. Of Justice)
Types of Abuse
Hitting, kicking, biting, shoving, restraining, slapping, throwing objects, withholding or denying medical care.
Marital rape, forcing sex after physical abuse or when sick, forcing undesired sexual behavior, treating you in a sexually demeaning manner, insisting you dress or perform in a sexual way that is uncomfortable, withholding sex or affection, criticizing and/or sexually demeaning you, using unwanted objects or weapons during sex that hurt you without your consent.
Habitually criticizes you, calls you names or yells at you, humiliates you in private or public, tells private information about you to others, calls you degrading names, puts you down in front of the children, expects you to ask permission, makes you feel bad about yourself, makes you feel guilty.
Maintains control over the family finances, makes you financially dependent, withholds personal care items you need for yourself or other family members or makes you ask permission to make purchases, prevents you from getting or keeping a job, taking your money.
Intimidates you and causes you fear, threatens to cause harm to self or commit suicide, insults or drives away your friends or family, sabotages your relationships with others including your children, forces isolation from friends, family, school or work, plays mind games, uses the children to make you feel guilty, threatens to take the children away from you, abuses pets, destroys your sentimental items, tries to make you and/or others think that you are crazy.
What Causes Domestic Violence?
Domestic Violence is caused by a need to have power and control over an intimate partner. Violence is a part of an effective strategy for creating and maintaining power and control.
Understanding Domestic Violence