Domestic Violence Facts

What is domestic violence? Domestic violence is a pattern of intimidation, coercion, and violence. It is used to achieve power and control over a partner.  Over time, this pattern often increases in frequency and severity. Abuse can be verbal, physical, emotional, sexual, or economic.  Domestic Violence does not discriminate. An abused person can be of any age, race, class, culture, religion, occupation, and sexual orientation.

Domestic Violence can include
  • Physical Assault 
  • Sexual Assault 
  • Intimidation 
  • Isolation 
  • Verbal abuse or harassment, including disrespectful or demeaning comments 
  • Threats against you or another family member 
  • Creating disturbances at your place of work 
  • Economic Control 
  • Harassing telephone calls 
  • Stalking behaviors
  • Child abuse 
  • Destruction of property or pets 
How to protect yourself
  • Learn where to get help; memorize emergency phone numbers 
  • Keep a phone in a room you can lock from the inside; if you can, get a cellular phone that you keep with you at all times 
  • If the abuser has moved out, change the locks on your door; get locks on the windows 
  • Plan an escape route out of your home; teach it to your children 
  • Think about where you would go if you need to escape 
  • Ask your neighbors to call the police if they see the abuser at your house; make a signal for them to call the police, for example, if the phone rings twice, a shade is pulled down or a light is on
  • Pack a bag with important things you'd need if you had to leave quickly; put it in a safe place, or give it to a friend or relative you trust 
  • Include cash, car keys & important information such as: court papers, passport or birth certificates, medical records & medicines, immigration papers 
  • Tell your friends, family and co-workers 
How to protect your children
  • Teach them not to get in the middle of a fight, even if they want to help 
  • Teach them how to get to safety, to call 911, to give your address & phone number to the police 
  • Teach them who to call for help 
  • Give the principal at school or the daycare center a copy of your court order; tell them not to release your children to anyone without talking to you first; use a password so they can be sure it is you on the phone; give them a photo of the abuser 
  • Make sure the children know who to tell at school if they see the abuser 
  • Make sure that the school knows not to give your address or phone number to ANYONE

In addition to the above precautions, consider installing a safety app on your family’s phones:

Learn more about technology safety in situations of abuse.

Learn how unhealthy and abusive relationships work by exploring our Power and Control Graph