Domestic Violence is a pattern of behaviors that are coercive, manipulative, and isolating in a way that limits one person‘s access to safety and resources; these tactics are used to maintain power and control within a relationship.
Domestic Violence Includes:
Verbal Abuse: Criticizing, blaming, threatening, degrading or belittling.
Emotional Abuse: Making you feel embarrassed in front of others, ignoring you or withholding affection, ridiculing, isolating you from others, or making false promises.
Financial Abuse: Controlling money, withholding child support, destroying property, running up debts or destroying credit.
Sexual Abuse: Forcing unwanted sex, making constant sexual demands, coercing sex in order to prevent a fight, or refusing to respect sexual boundaries.
Physical Abuse: Pushing, choking, kicking, burning, or locking in/out of the house.
If you are experiencing violence at home:
Know that you do NOT cause abuse to happen. Only your abuser is responsible for her/his actions.
You don’t have to be isolated. Develop a support network, tell close friends or family members whom you trust, or call BRAVO.
Document and report abusive incidents. Keep a log including the date, location, and what your abuser SAID and DID. Include witnesses, medical records, police reports, and pictures of injuries. Keep all documents in a safe place where your abuser will not have access to them.
Make Safety Plans to protect yourself at home, at work, and in your car. Remember that a protection order may help, but it is not fool proof.
Get information on domestic violence resources in your area and your legal rights and options. Or contact BRAVO's Victim Services Coordinator, Lauren MacDade (firstname.lastname@example.org).
For National and Local Domestic Violence and Hate Crimes statistics, go to the Anti-Violence Programs site and choose "Publications" (www.ncavp.org).