October is Domestic Violence Awareness Month

I’ve heard one too many stories of late about abusive partners.  I have to tell you, I have no tolerance for abuse.  At all.  While women are usually victimized, men can also be abused.  It’s just that few people talk that.  As I tell my abused patients, get to safety first and ask questions later.  You might recall my previous blog post on abuse called  Run For Your Life.  

Well, October is Domestic Violence Awareness Month.  I am asking you to share this information on your Facebook, Twitter, Tumblr and other social media so that you and I can save the spirit and lives of those who are abused.  From the National Domestic Violence Hotine let’s review what abuse is:

Domestic violence can be defined as a pattern of behavior in any relationship that is used to gain or maintain power and control over an intimate partner.

Abuse can be physical, sexual, emotional, economic or psychological actions or threats of actions that influence another person. This includes any behaviors that frighten, intimidate, terrorize, manipulate, hurt, humiliate, blame, injure or wound someone.

Domestic violence can happen to anyone of any race, age, sexual orientation, religion or gender. It can happen to couples who are married, living together or who are dating. Domestic violence affects people of all socioeconomic backgrounds and education levels.

You may be in an emotionally abusive relationship if your partner:

• Calls you names, insults you or continually criticizes you
• Does not trust you and acts jealous or possessive
• Tries to isolate you from family or friends
• Monitors where you go, who you call and who you spend time with
• Does not want you to work
• Controls finances or refuses to share money
• Punishes you by withholding affection
• Expects you to ask permission
• Threatens to hurt you, the children, your family or your pets
• Humiliates you in any way

You may be in a physically abusive relationship if your partner has ever:

• Damaged property when angry (thrown objects, punched walls, kicked doors, etc.)
• Pushed, slapped, bitten, kicked or choked you
• Abandoned you in a dangerous or unfamiliar place
• Scared you by driving recklessly
• Used a weapon to threaten or hurt you
• Forced you to leave your home
• Trapped you in your home or kept you from leaving
• Prevented you from calling police or seeking medical attention
• Hurt your children
• Used physical force in sexual situations

You may be in a sexually abusive relationship if your partner:

• Views women as objects and believes in rigid gender roles
• Accuses you of cheating or is often jealous of your outside relationships
• Wants you to dress in a sexual way
• Insults you in sexual ways or calls you sexual names
• Forces or manipulates you into to having sex or performing sexual acts
• Holds you down during sex
• Demands sex when you’re were sick, tired or after hurting you
• Hurts you with weapons or objects during sex
• Involves other people in sexual activities with you against your will
• Ignores your feelings regarding sex

If you are being abused, don’t wait another second.  Tell others about the abuse.  Always carry your telephone.  Call 9-1-1.  Gather up your children and run for your and their safety.  Stop feeling sorry for your abuser!  Do it now.

If you know someone who is being abused, tell others about the abuse.  Call 9-1-1.  Drive someone to a safe place.  Do it now.  Please.

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