Violence Against Women La Plata MD

Remember: Domestic violence can happen in any type of relationship, income level, environment or culture. Common myths associated with domestic and intimate partner violence include as follows.

Russell P Butler
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Upper Marlboro, MD
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(410) 385-0202
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Criminal Defense, DUI, Child Abuse, Violent Crime, Domestic Violence
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Fighera Vincent J
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DC, Maryland

Acton Counseling Associates
(301) 392-6160
11 N Maple Ave
La Plata, MD

Violence Against Women

Group of Women

Prevailing myths about intimate-partner violence often encourage denial about abusive situations and prevent women from getting the help they need. Remember: Domestic violence can happen in any type of relationship, income level, environment or culture. Common myths associated with domestic and intimate partner violence include:

  • Myth: Family violence is rare. Truth: Although statistics on family violence are not precise, it's clear that millions of children, women and even men are abused physically by family members and their closest relations or partners.

  • Myth: Family violence is confined to the lower classes. Truth: Reports from police records, victim services and academic studies show domestic violence exists in every socioeconomic group, regardless of race or culture.

  • Myth: Alcohol and drug abuse are the real causes of violence in the home. Truth: Because many male batterers also abuse alcohol and other drugs, it's easy to conclude that these substances may cause domestic violence. Substance abuse increases the risk for and lethality of the violence. But for some men, battering begins when they come off of drugs and other substances. Substance use and abuse are not excuses for a batterer's behavior or for his failure to take responsibility for his behavior, however. In addition, successful completion of a drug treatment program does not guarantee an end to battering. Domestic violence and substance abuse are two different problems that both require treatment.

  • Myth: Battered wives like being hit, otherwise they would leave…Truth: The most common response to battering—"Why doesn't she just leave?"—ignores the economic and social realities facing many women. Shelters are often full; and family, friends and the workplace are frequently less than supportive. Faced with rent and utility deposits, day care, health insurance and other basic expenses, the woman may feel that she cannot support herself and her children. Moreover, in some instances, the woman may be increasing the chance of physical harm, death or losing her children if she leaves an abusive partner.

Are you in an abusive or potentially abusive relationship? Here are some questions to ask yourself about how you are being treated by your partner and how you treat your partner.

Does your partner:

  • Embarrass or make fun of you in front of your friends or family?

  • Put down your accomplishments or goals?

  • Criticize you for little things?

  • Constantly accuse you of being unfaithful?

  • Control your use of needed medicines?

  • Make you feel like you are unable to make decisions?

  • Use intimidation or threats to gain compliance?

  • Tell you that you are nothing without him or her?

  • Control how you spend money?

  • Treat you roughly—grab, push, pinch, shove or hit you?

  • Call you several times a night or show up to make sure you are where you said you would be?

  • Use drugs or alcohol as an excuse for saying hurtful things or abusing you?

  • Blame you for how he or she feels or acts?

  • Pressure you sexually for things you aren't ready for?

  • Make you feel like there "is no way out" of the relationship?

  • Destroy your property or things you care about?

  • Prevent you from doing the things you want, like spending time with your friends or family?

  • Try to keep you from leaving after a fight or leave you somewhere after a fight to "teach you a lesson?"

Do you:

  • Sometimes feel scared of how your partner will act?

  • Constantly make excuses to other people for your partner's behavior?

  • Believe that you can help your partner change if only you changed something about yourself?

  • Try not to do anything that would cause conflict or make your partner angry?

  • Feel like no matter what you do, your partner is never happy with you?

  • Always do what your partner wants you to do instead of what you want?

  • Stay with your partner because you are afraid of what your partner would do if you broke up?

If you answered yes to any of these questions, you may be in an abusive or potentially abusive relationship. If you do not seek help, the abuse will continue.

Ultimately, you can take the first step toward getting help by confiding in your health care professional. If you find yourself in a health care professional's office, an emergency room or clinic for treatment as a result of abuse, take the opportunity to talk to the health care professional about why you're there. Today, many health care professionals are trained to notice signs and symptoms of abuse, and they know how to help you. It might be up to you, however, to bring up the topic.

For the rest of this article, questions to ask your health care professional, information on treatment, prevention and more, click here.

Author: Editorial Staff of the National Women's Health Resource Center