Intimate Partner Violence

Every 9 seconds a woman is physically abused  in the United States.  Women age 16-24 are the most vulnerable to non-lethal intimate partner violence. However, it is not just women that are abused.  Teen dating violence is on the rise and men represent over 25% of intimate partner violence victims each year.

Abuse is defined as an intentional, repeated act by an intimate partner or family member that causes physical, sexual, emotional, economic or spiritual harm, usually in a predictive cycle.

You can be in an abusive relationship even if:

  • You are not physically abused
  • You are not legally married to your abusive partner
  • You are in a same sex relationship with someone who abuses you
  • You have formally or legally ended your relationship, but your ex-partner continues to behave in an abusive manner toward you
  • You are not living with your partner, but he/she does abuse you physically, sexually, emotionally, economically or spiritually
  • You are passive or submissive to avoid the abuse

You may be in an abusive relationship, if you have any of these thoughts:

  • I am afraid of the person I live with
  • When I got hit, it wasn’t so bad, but now the children get hit, too
  • I am tired of being humiliated in front of others
  • The only way to stop the abuse is to kill my partner
  • I cannot take another beating; I think I’ll die next time
  • I was never forced to have sex before. Now I have been threatened and raped
  • I want to be safe in my home. Abuse takes many different forms. It can be physical, emotional, sexual, economic or spiritual. It can happen every day or every once in a while. It can occur in public places, like a store or a park, or in private places, like your home or your car. It can leave you with bruises and bumps on your body or leave you with a hurt inside that no one can see

If you are a victim of intimate partner violence:

  • Know that you are not alone
  • Know that the abuse is not your fault
  • Know that there is help available
  • Know that abuse is done deliberately
  • Know that your physical safety and emotional health are most important

If you or someone you know is in an abusive relationship help is only one phone call away: 800-736-1060.

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