Health Corner

Domestic Violence Awareness Month

October is National Domestic Violence Awareness Month. Domestic violence, also called intimate partner violence, is an epidemic affecting individuals in every community, regardless of age, economic status, sexual orientation, gender, race, religion, or nationality. It includes physical violence, sexual violence, threats, and emotional abuse. Domestic violence can result in physical injury, psychological trauma, and in severe cases, even death. On average, 20 people per minute are victims of physical violence by an intimate partner in the U.S. This equates to more than 10 million women and men. On a typical day, more than 20,000 phone calls are placed to domestic violence hotlines nationwide.

Did you know?

  • One in three women and one in four men have experienced some form of physical violence by an intimate partner within their lifetime.

  • One in seven women and one in 18 men have experienced stalking during their lifetime in which they felt very fearful or believed that they or someone close to them would be harmed or killed.

  • Intimate partner violence accounts for 15 percent or all violent crimes.

  • Intimate partner violence is most common among women between the ages of 18–24.

  • The cost of intimate partner violence exceeds $8.3 billion per year.

  • Between 21–60 percent of victims lose their jobs due to reasons stemming from the abuse.

  • Victims of violence lose a total of 8.0 million days of paid work each year.

Here are some warning signs that might indicate a possible abuser. These are just some of the behaviors that might be experienced: 

  • jealousy

  • watching the amount of time you are away

  • wanting to keep you away from friends and family

  • sulking when he/she doesn’t get their way

  • talking louder until you give him/her your undivided attention

  • physically restraining you until you listen

  • following you around endlessly

  • threatening to harm you

  • making all the rules with no flexibility

  • making frequent accusations

  • frequently critical

  • controlling or possessive

  • hitting, slapping, punching, or other physical punishments

If you or someone you care about is in an abusive relationship, there is help. Call the National Domestic Violence Hotline at 1-800-799-SAFE (7233). Locally, you can call Great Rivers 2-1-1 for area resources such as New Horizons. For more information, contact health services at 608-796-3806.