Stop The Wheel Of Abuse
US statistics on domestic violence are terrifying. A woman is battered every 15 seconds. One in four women will be physically assaulted by her partner. One in three teens will be abused by her boyfriend. While both men and women have been known to carry out acts of violence, 95 percent of hospitalized victims of domestic violence are women.
"Many people mistakenly believe that domestic violence begins with a physical assault," she says. "Verbal and emotional abuse often act as part of a grooming process that is aimed
at one partner having power and control over the other person." She also warns that an abusive partner can have hold over his counterpart through rage, hostility, isolation, obsession and
intimidation. "He also will hurt things that are important to her -- pets, children, special belongings. It's all to gain control."
The first thing a woman should do when she realizes she is in a violent relationship is to tell people who can help. Professionals can devise safety plans, assist with documentation for police reports, divorce and custody battles, and more.
Do what works
Some women decide in one day that living with abuse is no longer an option, and they will leave and never look back. Other women prepare methodically -- gathering important documents, getting finances in order, developing a safety plan with a lawyer. Either way is fine, and the most important thing is leaving safely.
Leaving is one step in getting away. Keeping him away is the next hardest step. Abusive partners will go to great lengths to win the relationship back, so it is important to cut ties as much as possible.
Ask for help
Starting over is expensive, daunting, lonely and scary. But women can get through that part with support and resources. Expert counseling makes a big difference in navigating the confusion and
keeping on track.