Domestic Violence and Drug Abuse - Things you need to know to stay safe.Domestic violence often goes along with drug abuse. I would like to share some information about domestic abuse to help you know and understand what it is and how to deal with it.
The phrase domestic violence is used interchangeably with domestic abuse. Many people think that it is only domestic violence if you are physically attacked. I have heard women say, "well he never actually hit me" This does not mean there was no abuse. I prefer to use the term domestic abuse rather than domestic violence, as this covers all types of abuse.
Abuse comes in many forms and by the time the abuse becomes physically violent, many of the other forms of
abuse are present.
Let's look more closely at the different forms of abuse:
Examples of Verbal Abuse:
Examples of Sexual Abuse:
Examples of Economic Abuse:
Examples of Physical Abuse:
Also threatening actions which are physical but not enough to cause serious injury. For example, Blocking - standing in the way so that she has to request that the man moves (giving him power) or pushing him away (giving him an excuse for more physical violence).
Examples of Emotional Abuse.
Emotional abuse includes:
Emotional abuse is not the same as direct verbal abuse but it is just as damaging although more subtle. Emotional abuse is present in all the forms of abuse listed above, but is also a powerful form of abuse on its own. The abuser appears to be supportive but undermines the victim in many subtle ways and always sounds logical and reasonable about it. Tries to 'fix' the victim, and lets everyone know he is doing it for her own good
All abuse is a need for power and control. Many abusers get a 'high' from the abuse, in the same way that drug addicts get a 'high' from a hit of dope. We all need to feel power in our lives. In a healthy relationship we feel personal power, which is power over ourselves and our actions. In an abusive relationship the abuser needs to dominate and control and uses fear, physical force, money or emotional blackmail to get his power. This is power over another. All abusers operate in the reality of Power over Another, while victims are working in the reality of Power over Self.Now what does this abuse look like to the victim?
Almost all abusers follow a cycle which is so well known that it is called the Cycle of Abuse.
The Cycle of Abuse has three fairly predictable stages, and looks something like this:
There is never ever any justification for abuse. This type of excuse is an admission of the lack of personal power and also a lack of willingness to be responsible for one's own actions. By admitting that some external force can 'make you' hit someone, shows that there is no control over self. These people are giving their personal power away to a set of circumstances.
If you have not already done so, see my suggestions for making an
I can also suggest an excellent book,The Verbally Abusive Relationship. I own this book and found it extremely helpful in understanding the more subtle kinds of abuse.
If you already know that the drug user in your family is violent, please take some action NOW. Do not wait until you are badly hurt or dead.
More women are killed by an abusive partner than are killed by a stranger.
If you are attacked and you call the police, depending on the laws of your state, it is most likely that the abuser will get arrested. However, he may only be booked and then released. He may be given a conditional release which means that he cannot come back to the residence or in any other way interfere with you. This is on paper but in fact does not necessarily protect you from an abusers actions. The abuser may blame you for his arrest and seek immediate vengeance. If he is arrested you can find out from the local jail if he is being released. You can ask that you be informed of his release but sometimes you do not get much notice. My house mate was released at 3:00am after attacking me and even though she had a conditional release prohibiting her from coming near me, she was back at the house by 4:30am. This is when you use your escape planning and go to a friend, family member, motel or shelter. You are also entitled to file for a restraining order,. Again this is not a guarantee of your safety so as well as a court order you will have to be pro-active in keeping yourself safe.
The mistake that many people make is that they do not consider seriously enough that they could be the target of violence and that they could be seriously hurt or killed. I made the same mistake. I never thought that my house mate would attack me like she did. I was lucky - I got away from her. Had she been holding a gun or a knife I may not have been so lucky.
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This page updated 2013