Please listen to my personal story.
October is the National Domestic Violence Awareness Month
October was first declared as National Domestic Violence Awareness Month in 1989. Since then, October has been a time to acknowledge domestic violence survivors and be a voice for its victims, and I wanted to compile a list of resources for those in need. Domestic violence is prevalent in every community, and affects all people regardless of age, socio-economic status, sexual orientation, gender, race, religion, or nationality and way more ubiquitous than previously understood.
Physical violence is often accompanied by emotionally abusive and controlling behavior and silencing as part of a much larger, systematic pattern of dominance and control and can happen in interpersonal relationships, families and organizational communities like a church. Domestic violence can result in physical injury, psychological trauma, deep lifelong wounding and even sadly, death. The devastating consequences of domestic violence can cross generations and last a lifetime, but there is help and hope, you are not alone!
Although there has been substantial progress in reducing domestic violence, the numbers are shocking. There is an average of 20 people who are physically abused by intimate partners every minute! This equates to more than 10 million abuse victims annually. These numbers, and my own experience as a survivor, inspire me to do whatever I can to help vulnerable fellow women and children to seek healing and safety.
1 in 3 women and 1 in 4 men have been physically abused by an intimate partner, and 1 in 5 women and 1 in 7 men have been severely physically abused by an intimate partner.
Millions of Americans, mostly women, live like I did in daily, silent fear within their own homes. In addition, every year millions of children are exposed to domestic violence, and they often go unnoticed, with no adult to protect them. I wish, in retrospect, that someone had seen the signs in my family and intervened. People also know about child abuse and, mindbogglingly, do nothing about it.
Domestic violence incidents affect every person within a home and can have long-lasting negative effects on children’s emotional well-being, and social and academic functioning. We must shed light here now. Please listen to my personal story above about hurt and hope, and get help now.
The National Child Traumatic Stress Network (NCTSN) has compiled a list of helpful resources for parents and caregivers, children and teens, mental health providers, child welfare workers, law enforcement professionals, educators and school staff, and policymakers.
Crisis situations often stem from multiple unaddressed issues with a person’s ability to exist comfortably in their environment. Whether you are in crisis, approaching crisis, or supporting someone in crisis — slow down, take a moment to sense what is happening in your body, and remember that you do not need to navigate this alone.
PROJECT LETS PEER SUPPORT SERVICES:
Text 401-400-2905 for urgent support with psychiatric incarceration/involuntary hospitalization.
OTHER CRISIS RESOURCES:
• Create a safety plan or Psychiatric Advance Directive
• Peer Respite Centers
• Emergency Action for Panic Attacks
• Questions to Ask Before Giving Up
• Crisis Information: Important Stuff to Know Beyond Awareness
• The Project LETS Crisis Approach
The National Domestic Violence Hotline
This is the foremost first step for people experiencing Domestic Violence (D.V.) Call the National Domestic Violence Hotline at:
1−800−799−7233 or TTY 1−800−787−3224.
Call 1.800.799.SAFE (7233)Chat live now
Text “START” to 88788
D.V. can happen to couples who are married, living together or who are dating. Domestic violence affects people of all socio-economic backgrounds and education levels. If there is no physical or sexual assault, sometimes the abuse is covert, and very hard to recognize.
Abuse is a repetitive pattern of behaviors to maintain power and control over an intimate partner. These are behaviors that physically harm, arouse fear, prevent a partner from doing what they wish or force them to behave in ways they do not want. Abuse includes the use of physical and sexual violence, threats and intimidation, emotional abuse, silencing and secrecy and economic exploitation or deprivation. Many of these different forms of abuse can be going on at any one time and can be in families or entire communities. Abuse can have life-long scars, but with awareness, treatment and support, we can learn to heal and be safe.
The Power & Control Wheel of Abusive Relationships
This was given to me a few years back by a counselor. Think of the wheel as a diagram of the tactics your abusive partner, family member or community uses to keep you in the relationship. While the inside of the wheel consists of subtle, continual behaviors, the outer ring represents physical, visible violence. These are the abusive acts that are more overt and forceful, and often the intense acts that reinforce the regular use of other subtler methods of abuse. This was very insightful because abuse can happen even if it is covert. It took me YEARS to see this and I’m beginning to stop recreating this in my life. Please get help if you are in an abusive relationship or community, you are not alone, regaining your strength and healing is possible!
The Living Recovery Program
I’m taking this program right now, created by a fellow survivor, Sandra Brown, and it has been very helpful for domestic violence survivors, and survivors of narcissistic/psychopathic/Cluster B personality disordered abuse.