Myths and facts on dating violence

Threats of harm, including death to the victim and/or children, keep many battered women/men trapped in abusive situations.The most dangerous time for a victim is when he/she attempts to leave the relationship, or when the abuser discovers that he/she has made plans to leave.Even when children are not directly abused, they suffer as a result of witnessing one parent assault another.Batterers often display an increased interest in their children at the time of separation, as a means of maintaining contact with, and thus control over, their partners.Thirty percent of female homicide victims are killed by partners or ex-partners and 1,500 women are murdered as a result of domestic violence each year in the United States.MYTH #2: DOMESTIC VIOLENCE OCCURS ONLY IN POOR, UNEDUCATED AND MINORITY FAMILIES.

FACT: Battering is a pattern of coercion and control that one person exerts over another. It includes the repeated use of a number of tactics, including intimidation, threats, economic deprivation, isolation and psychological and sexual abuse. The various forms of abuse utilized by batterers help to maintain power and control over their spouses and partners.

Keeping domestic violence secret helps no one, has been shown to harm children, incurs substantial costs to society, and serves to perpetrate abuse through learned patterns of behavior. Although there are aspects of domestic violence (example: emotional, psychological, spiritual abuse) that may not be considered criminal in a legal sense, serious and long-lasting physical, emotional and spiritual harm can, and often does, occur.

and is considered a crime with serious repercussions.

MYTH #1: DOMESTIC VIOLENCE AFFECTS ONLY A SMALL PERCENTAGE OF THE POPULATION AND IS RARE.

FACT: National studies estimate that 3 to 4 million women are beaten each year in our country.

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