Domestic Violence Facts

Domestic Violence Facts

Domestic violence (DV) is physical and/or emotional abuse used by one person in a relationship to control another.  The violence can be criminal and includes physical assault: hitting, pushing, or shoving; sexual abuse: unwanted or forced sexual activity; and stalking.  DV includes emotional abuse: using fear to control another.  DV exists when a person is forced to do something they do not want to do, or is prevented from doing something they want to do by physical force or intimidation.

Domestic violence is not a disagreement, a marital spat, or an anger management problem, but abusive, disrespectful, and hurtful behaviors that one intimate partner chooses to use against the other partner.

DV occurs in all walks of life, across all races, cultures, religions, and socio-economic groups.  It occurs between married couples, separated couples, heterosexual couples, and homosexual couples.  It occurs between people who reside together as a family or who have resided together in the past, as well as between people who are parents of a child whether they have lived together or not.Domestic violence is not due to the abuser’s loss of control over his or her behavior. In fact, violence is a deliberate choice made by the abuser in order to take control over his or her spouse or partner.  Domestic violence is a learned behavior and a pattern of abuse that takes many forms and can happen all the time or once in a while.

The following information was gathered from the CDC and the National Coalition Against Domestic Violence (NCADV).

  • Approximately 20 people experience intimate partner physical violence every minute.
  • 1 in 7 women and 1 in 25 men have been injured by an intimate partner
  • 1 in 10 women have been raped by an intimate partner
  • 1 in 7 women and 1 in 18 men have been stalked
  • An abuser’s access to a firearm increases the risk of homicide by 500%
  • Intimate partner violence accounts for 15% of all violent crime
  • Intimate partner violence is most common against women between the ages of 18-24

Experience shows that levels of violence in these relationships tend to escalate, and many police departments cite domestic violence as their number one problem. Tough laws and effective prosecutions, combined with education and a cooperative approach among law enforcement and social service agencies will take time to be effective. Clinicians need to hone their skills of assessment and treatment modalities for domestic violence and raise awareness of community resources.

AA Ross Family Counseling has a board approved CEU course that covers issues faced by domestic violence.

Sign up for the Domestic Violence course