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Domestic violence is a pattern of abusive behavior characterized by the intent to gain or maintain power and
control over an intimate partner or other family members. The abuse can be established and intensified over

Domestic violence is characterized by violent actions or threats of violent actions, including behaviors that
intimidate, manipulate, humiliate, isolate, frighten, terrorize, coerce, threaten, blame, hurt, injure or wound a

The roots of domestic violence and other types of violent relationships are linked to power and control

Domestic violence does not end immediately with separation. Over 70% of the women injured in domestic
violence cases are injured after separation.
Types of Domestic Violence
Physical: is any use of force that causes pain or injury, such as hitting , kicking , or slapping

Sexual: Abuse can include sexual harassment, sexual assault or manipulating a person into having sex by using guilt
or threats

Emotional/ Verbal: Constant criticism, threatening to hurt loved ones or harassment at school or in the workplace

Economic: Controlling a persons income or financial assistance, misusing ones credit or making it difficult for a
person to get or maintain a job

Psychological: minimizing or blaming a person for the abuse, intimidating and/or threats destroying property
Domestic Violence Facts
More than 1 in 3 women(35.6%) and more than 1 in 4 men ( 28.5%) in the U.S. having experienced rape, physical
violence, and and/or stalking by an intimate partner in their lifetime Source: National Intimate Partner and Sexual Violence Survey, 2010
Summary Report. National Center for Injury Prevention and Control, Division of Violence Prevention, Atlanta, GA, and Control of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

85% of domestic violence victims are women. (Bureau of Justice Statistics Crime Data Brief, Intimate Partner Violence, 1993-2001, February 2003)

Domestic violence is the leading cause of injury to women between the ages of 15 and 44 in the United States,
more than car accidents, muggings, and rapes combined. ("Violence Against Women, A Majority Staff Report," Committee on the Judiciary,
United States Senate, 102nd Congress, October 1992, p.3.)

Police report that between 40% and 60% of the calls they receive, especially on the night shift, are domestic violence disputes.
(Carrillo, Roxann "Violence Against Women: An Obstacle to Development," Human Development Report, 1990)

People with lower annual income (below $25K) are at a 3-times higher risk of intimate partner violence than
people with higher annual income (over $50K). (Bureau of Justice Statistics, Intimate Partner Violence in the U.S. 1993-2004, 2006.)
Witnessing violence between ones parents or caretakers is the strongest risk factor of transmitting violent
behavior from one generation to the next. (Frieze, I.H., Browne, A. (1989) Violence in Marriage. In L.E. Ohlin & M. H. Tonry, Family Violence. Chicago, IL:
University of Chicago Press. Break the Cycle. (2006). Startling Statistics

The cost of intimate partner violence exceeds $5.8 billion each year, $4.1 billion of which is for direct medical
and mental health services

The roots of domestic violence and other types of violent relationships are linked to power and control
If one partner feels the need to dominate the other in any shape or form, whether it is physical, sexual, emotional,
economic, or psychological, then it is significantly more likely a relationship will turn violent.
Abuse can be a learned behavior. An abuser may have witnessed domestic violence in his or her home and understood
that violence was a means of maintaining control in the family unit
Significant life changes, such as pregnancy or a family members illness, can also increase the risk for domestic violence
to occur. In these cases the perpetrator may feel left out or neglected and may seek to regain control
Economic downturns can increase the incidents of domestic violence factors include: job loss, house foreclosure, debt
all can lead to higher stress levels at home which can then lead to violence
Attempts to leave the abusive relationship can also place the survivor at greater risk for further abuse and in some
cases increase the likely hood of homicide many feel as though staying in the relationship can be safer than attempting
to leave

Prevents contact and communication with friends and family

Controls money and important identification, such as drivers licenses and passports

Causes embarrassment with bad names and put-downs

Critical about survivors appearance and/or behavior

Attempts to control what partner wears

Has unrealistic expectations, like partner being available at all times

Threatens to take away or hurt the children

Acts like abuse is not a big deal, or denies its happening

Plays mind games to place blame on the survivor

Destroys property or threatens to kill pets

Intimidates with guns, knives or other weapons

Shoves, slaps, chokes, hits or forces sexual acts

Threatens to commit suicide


It doesnt matter how long a couple has been together, how successful one or both of the partners is or how loving the
relationship used to be, domestic violence can happen to anyone. It can span age, sexual orientation, religion and gender, and
affects people of all socioeconomic backgrounds and education levels. It can happen in opposite-sex and same-sex relationships
and can happen to intimate partners who are married, living together, dating or somehow estranged. A person does not have to
be married to be experiencing domestic violence.
Domestic violence also has a substantial effect on family members, especially children
Each child is unique and may respond differently to the abuse, but there are common short and long-term effects that can
impact a childs day-to-day functioning. Short-term effects can include academic and behavioral problems, sleep disturbances
and/or difficulty concentrating. Long-lasting effects can persist even after a child has grown up, like difficulty trusting others and
establishing relationships or ongoing depression.
When children are involved a survivor may decide to stay for the sake of the children. It is common for a mother to feel that it
is more important for the children to continue having a father figure in their lives. However, continued exposure to violence
can place the children at a much greater risk of being abused themselves and/or experiencing direct effects from the
abuse. Also, if a person has a limited support system it may be frightening to break up the family they do have and may also
experience guilt about conceiving these thoughts.

National resources
National Domestic Violence Hotline:1-800-799-SAFE (7233) or 1-800-787-3224 |
National Teen Dating Abuse Helpline: 1-866-331-9474 |
National Coalition Against Domestic Violence
National Health Resource Center on Domestic Violence
Jane Doe Inc. | For Victims and Survivors of Domestic Violence
Local Resources

Victim Resources - Gundersen Health System - La Crosse, Wisconsin
New Horizons: