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Domestic Violence

  •  84% of women experience abuse by a spouse/partner
  • 86% are victims of a boyfriend/girlfriend
  • 3 U.S. women are murdered each day by a spouse/boyfriend
  • 3/4 of abusers are male
  • 248,300 rapes/sexual assaults in the U.S. in 2007 (ages 12 and above)
  • 1.5 million U.S. children per year witness domestic violence in their homes
  • 13,485 children were living in domestic violence shelters in 2007
  • 3.4. million persons were victims of stalking in 2006

Domestic Violence (DV) – one person in a relationship uses a pattern of intimidating behaviors to control another person

Intimate Partner Violence (IPV) - actual or threatened physical, sexual, psychological or emotional abuse (includes stalking).  Intimate partners can be of the same or opposite sex, married, unmarried, separated or just dating

Physical abuse – intimidation or control by means of hitting, kicking, slapping, burning or other physical means

Sexual abuse – forced sexual activity without active consent of partner

Threats of physical or sexual abuse – words, gestures, weapons or other means to communicate an intent to harm

Emotional abuse - threats to one’s possessions, loved ones, pets or sense of self-worth

Examples: name-calling, intimidation, stalking, not letting one see friends and family

  • Female victims of domestic violence are 80% more likely to have a stroke, 70% more likely to have heart disease, 60% more likely to have asthma and 70% more likely to drink heavily than other women
  • Sexual and domestic violence link to a variety of reproductive health issues including STD’s (sexually transmitted diseases), HIV and miscarriages
  • One in five tweens (age 11-14) say they have friends who are victims of dating violence; nearly half in relationships have friends who are verbally abused
  • Tween victims of physical dating violence are more likely than others to engage in risky behavior such as smoking, using drugs, dangerous dieting, engage in risky sexual behaviors or consider suicide

The incidents of physical abuse seem minor when compared to those you have read about, seen on television or heard other women talk about. There isn't a “better” or “worse” form of physical abuse; you can be severely injured as a result of being pushed, for example.

The incidents of physical abuse have only occurred one or two times in the relationship. Studies indicate that if your spouse/partner has injured you once, it is likely he will continue to physically assault you.

The physical assaults stopped when you became passive and gave up your right to express yourself as you desire, to move about freely, see others and to make decisions. It is not a victory if you have to give up your rights as a person and a partner in exchange for not being assaulted!

There has not been any physical violence. Many women are emotionally and verbally assaulted. This can be as equally frightening and is often more confusing to try to understand.

Source: Breaking the Silence: a Handbook for Victims of Violence in Nebraska

Local Resources:

GCSC Counseling Center

For short-term counseling or referral, please call Leigh Bailey at (850) 769-1551, ext. 4861.

Gulf Coast State College does not discriminate against any person in its programs, activities, policies or procedures on the basis of race, ethnicity, color, national origin, marital status, religion, age, gender, sex, pregnancy, sexual orientation, gender identity, genetic information, disability, or veteran status. All questions or inquiries regarding compliance with laws relating to non-discrimination and all complaints regarding sexual misconduct or discrimination, may be directed to Lee Wood, Executive Director, Human Resources/Title II/504/Title IX Coordinator and Employment Equity Officer, Gulf Coast State College, 5230 W. US Highway 98, Panama City, FL 32401.