© 2016 Sandhills Crisis Intervention Program | Ogallala, NE | firstname.lastname@example.org
What Is Domestic Violence?
When someone uses and maintains power and control over an intimate partner through a pattern of assaultive & coercive behaviors. (NNEDV, 2010)
Domestic violence can happen to any person, in any town, city, state or country. It doesn't matter how much money you have, your educational history or whether or not you have children. Domestic violence has no boundaries.
What Causes Domestic Violence?
Domestic violence is a conscious choice to use power and control against the person with whom you are in a relationship. Being abusive is not solely caused by alcohol, mental illness, drugs, stress, or lack of employment. Abusive people come from all backgrounds, religions, and cultures.
Who Is An Intimate Partner?
What Does Abuse Look Like?
There are four main forms of abuse - Physical, Sexual, Financial, and Emotional. While the list of signs and symptoms of each form of abuse is long and detailed, abusive people are often creative and find new ways to abuse and control their intimate partners.
Here are some things to look for:
Using or threatening to use weapons
Throwing things, destroying your things
Hurting/Killing your pets
Showing up unannounced
Not letting you go to the doctor
Making you have sex when you don’t want to
Scared to tell you partner no
Forcing you to do sexual acts that are degrading
Uses violence against you during sex
Denying you birth control/contraception
*Please note: These are only some of the most common forms of Sexual Abuse. Please contact us if you have specific and/or confidential questions or concerns.
Giving you an “allowance”
Forcing you to hand over the money you earn
Opening accounts in your name
Hiding money from you
Not letting you work if you want to
Calling you names
Minimizing the abuse
Isolating/keeping you from your family and friends
Blaming you for what they do
Accusing you of having affairs
Putting you down
*Please note: These are only some of the most common forms of abuse. Please contact us if you have specific and/or confidential questions or concerns.
What Does A Victim Look Like?
Anyone can be a victim of domestic violence. It happens to every race/ethnicity, every age, and whether you are male or female. Domestic violence crosses every sector of life; it doesn’t discern from economic factors, employment status or religious preference.
Bottom line: It can happen to anyone!
What Does An Abuser Look Like?
Just as anyone can be a victim, anyone can be an abuser. Being employed or unemployed does not dictate whether someone is abusive or not. Whether a person is over a certain age, from a specific ethnicity, or goes to a certain church does not mean that person is abusive. Anyone can be abusive.
What Is Sexual Assault?
Sexual assault is forced, manipulated or coerced sexual contact. It includes rape, child sexual abuse, same-sex assault, acquaintance rape, harassment and marital rape. The perpetrator uses sex to inflict physical and emotional violence and humiliation on the victim, or to exert power and control over the victim. Men almost always perpetrate sexual assaults – even when the victims are other men or boys.
How Widespread Is It?
People of every age, race, religion and physical appearance are raped. National statistics indicate that 1 in 6 women and 1 in 33 men have been sexually assaulted at least once in their lifetime.
The majority of sexual assault victims experience their first assault before their eighteenth birthday. Some people experience on-going sexual abuse during their childhood, a dating relationship or marriage. Other people experience multiple assaults at the hands of various assailants throughout their lives.
How Are Victims Effected?
Many victims fear they will be killed or permanently disfigured during a sexual assault, even if such acts are not threatened. Perpetrators will use whatever level of violence necessary to achieve their goal. Rape victims may feel a wide variety of emotions after the physical assault has ended. These include fear, guilt, disbelief, numbness, anger, grief, depression, and a loss of control over their lives. These feelings can last for years after the assault and can result in stress related illnesses, addictions to drugs or alcohol, eating disorders, drastic lifestyle changes, and even suicide. Recovery from a sexual assault can be a slow and painful process for both the victim, and those who are close to him/her.
Why Don't We Hear About It?
Reporting Sexual assault is the least reported of all violent crimes. According to a 2008 study, most sexual assaults are never reported to the police. The same study also found that stranger rapes are more likely to be reported than rapes by non-strangers. Many people tell no one about their assaults and try to cope with it alone. Victims are often hesitant to report their assaults for a number of reasons. Many fear that they won’t be believed or that they will be blamed for the assault, particularly if the perpetrator is someone the victim knows. Other victims feel that the experience is too personal to share with strangers, or fear that their anonymity will not be protected. This is of particular concern in rural communities.
Some Facts About Sexual Assault
• Sexual assault can happen to anyone, at any time, in any place. People of all ages, all economic classes, all races, all levels of education, and who live in all types of neighborhoods are victimized.
• Rape and sexual assault is not a spontaneous act or an uncontrollable sexual urge. It is a deliberate action used to make another person feel helpless, humiliated, and degraded, and in turn, make the rapist feel powerful.
• According to the National Intimate Partner and Sexual Violence Survey, nearly 1 in 5 women have been raped in their lifetime while 1 in 71 men have been raped in their lifetime.
• In 2008, there were 203,830 victims of rape, attempted rape, or sexual assault in the United States. That averages to approximately 1 every 2.5 minutes.**
• Most sexual assaults (more than 69%) are committed by someone the victim knows. **
• Nearly one-third of rape victims will develop stress disorders as a direct result of the assault at some point in their lifetime. This in turn increases their risk for serious alcohol and drug abuse problems. **
• Nearly 60% of all sexual assaults are never reported to the police.**
Sources of Statistics
*National Intimate Partner and Sexual Violence Survey, Centers for Disease Control, 2010
**Michael and, "Criminal Victimization, 2008,” (Washington, DC: Bureau of Justice Statistics, 2009)
What Is DatingViolence?
Dating violence means a pattern of behavior where one person uses threats of, or actually uses, physical, sexual, verbal, or emotional abuse, to control his or her dating partner.
Calling dating violence a pattern doesn't mean the first instance of abuse is not dating violence. It just recognizes that dating violence usually involves a series of abusive behaviors over a course of time.
Every relationship is different, but the one thing that is common to most abusive dating relationships is that the violence escalates over time and becomes more and more dangerous for the young victim.
Who Is A Dating Partner?
Dating partner means any person, regardless of gender, involved in an intimate relationship with another person primarily characterized by the expectation of affectionate involvement whether casual, serious, or long-term.
Power & Control
The definition also points out that at the core of dating violence are issues of power and control. So what does dating violence look like?
• In the United States, one in three adolescent girls is a victim of physical, emotional, or verbal abuse from a dating partner.
• 4% of teens agreed that it’s okay for someone to hit their partner if they really did something wrong or embarrassing.
• 25-35% of teens equate jealousy, possessiveness and violence with love.
• 57% of teens know someone who has been physically, sexually, or verbally abusive in a dating relationship.
• Only 33% of teens who were in an abusive relationship ever told anyone about the abuse.
• Victims of dating abuse are not only at increased risk for injury, they are also more likely to engage in binge drinking, suicide attempts, physical fights, and currently sexual activity.
• Research demonstrates an association between teen dating violence and lower grade point averages.
• 81% of parents surveyed either believe teen dating violence is not an issue or admit they don’t know if it’s an issue.
• Girls and young women between the ages of 16 and 24 experience the highest rate of intimate partner violence - almost triple the national average.
• Violent behavior typically begins between the ages of 12 and 18.
• The severity of intimate partner violence is often greater in cases where the pattern of abuse was established in adolescence.
• About 72% of eighth and ninth graders are “dating".
• Nearly 1.5 million high school students nationwide experience physical abuse from a dating partner in a single year.
• One in three adolescents in the U.S. is a victim of physical, sexual, emotional or verbal abuse from a dating partner, a figure that far exceeds rates of other types of youth violence.
• One in 10 high school students has been purposefully hit, slapped or physically hurt by a boyfriend or girlfriend.
• One quarter of high school girls have been victims of physical or sexual abuse.
• Approximately 70% of college students say they have been sexually coerced.
What Is Stalking?
Legal definitions will vary from place to place, but a solid premise is a course of conduct directed at a specific person that would cause a reasonable person fear.
What Does Stalking Look Like?
There are many tell-tale signs that you're being stalked. However, there are also many tactics stalkers use that will not be as obvious.
Here's a list of the some of the most common stalking behaviors and tactics:
• Following, waiting around, spying, showing up, going through the victim’s trash
• Checking phone log, emails, odometer, monitoring computer use
• Unwanted calls, texts, emails, gifts, letters
• Vandalism, destroying victim’s property/belongings
• Sending/posting threatening messages/rumors
• Create fake accounts
• Questioning victim, victim’s friends/family where they have been & doing
• GPS tracking, surveillance by other technology
• Search the victim online, pay to find out information, hire a private investigator
Intimate Partner Stalkers
• Intimate partner stalkers are more likely to re-offend than other stalkers and tend to be more dangerous.
• Intimate partner stalkers frequently approach their targets and escalate in frequency and intensity of pursuit. They insult, interfere, threaten, and are more violent.
• Virtually all intimate partner stalkers re-offend, and do so more quickly than other groups of stalkers.
• 76% of Intimate partner femicide victims have been stalked by their intimate partner.
• 89% of femicide victims who had been physically assaulted had also been stalked in the 12 months before their murder.
• 79% of abused femicide victims reported being stalked during the same period that they were abused.
Document each stalking incident, date, time, what took place, any witnesses, if police were called: officer name, badge, report number, and how the stalking incident made you feel.
Vary routes taken to school, work, grocery store, etc…
Use a new email address (keep the old active). If you give out your new email, ensure you can fully trust that individual. If you delete the old account it could escalate your abuser, plus whatever emails are sent to that account can be used as documentation.
Use a safer computer for any email and internet use. A safer computer would be one that the abuser has not and will not have access to, such as at a library or school.
If possible, you may want to get another phone & phone number, just as with the email, getting rid of the old number could escalate the abuser. The old phone number can also be used to keep the abuser’s messages, call log, etc… If you feel that changing your phone number is your best option (on your original phone) contact us so we can help create a safety plan.
Talk with a few people you completely trust, they may be able to help you. For example, you can let them know who your stalker/abuser is, what he/she looks like and to contact you and/or police if he/she shows up.
You can set up a PO Box and have your mail sent there.
Switch the GPS location in your cell phone to “emergency only” rather than "all".
Avoid posting your location, what you are doing/where you are at, or other private information on social media sites.
Sign up with the Address Confidentiality Program. We can help with this.
Treat all threats seriously. You may want to document these, contact us right away, and/or call the police. You can ask law enforcement to do a “no contact” notification to the abuser-stalker.
Identify a few places you can go for help & to be safe in an immediate emergency.
In an immediate emergency, dial 911
NO MORE Campaign
VAWnet: National Online Resource Center on Violence Against Women
National Sexual Violence Resource Center
National Resource Center on Domestic Violence
National Network to End Domestic Violence
National Coalition Against Domestic Violence
Love is Respect/National Teen Dating Helpline
National Center on Domestic Violence, Trauma and Mental Health
Verizon Hope Line
Provides cell phones to survivors of violence to keep them connected to key organizations for safety and support.
Substance Abuse & Mental Health Information
GLBT Intimate Partner Violence
Children/Teens and Violence
Pets and Domestic Violence
People of Color and Violence
Teen Dating Violence