A woman who is battered feels trapped in fear. She struggles to escape an abusive relationship due to:
- physical violence
- psychological manipulation
- financial dependency
- legal vulnerability
- lack of safe housing options
Domestic violence is a public health and safety issue that is inevitably intertwined with issues of poverty, homelessness, unemployment, substance abuse, crime, human rights, gender equality, and child development.
Victims of DV experience physical injury, sometimes life threatening, as well as: PTSD; anxiety; chronic depression and pain; drug and alcohol dependence; panic attacks; eating disorders; poverty; malnutrition; repeated self-injury and neglect; suicide attempts; strained family relationships; and an inability to adequately respond to the needs of children.
Research shows that children, who live with domestic violence, develop PTSD, depression, anxiety, violence, and cognitive problems. They are more likely to attempt suicide, run away from home, engage in teenage prostitution, and commit sexual assault crimes, and are at a greater risk of having serious adult health problems including tobacco use, substance abuse, obesity, cancer, heart disease, and a higher risk for unintended pregnancy.
The costs of intimate partner violence exceed $5.8 billion each year, $4.1 billion of which is for direct medical and mental health care services, much of which is paid for by the employer. The annual cost of lost productivity due to domestic violence is estimated as $727.8 million, with over 7.9 million paid workdays lost each year.
In the 2013 domestic violence had an immense and tragic impact when 11 individuals lost their lives to domestic violence.
Do you wonder if you need our services? Check out this Power and Control Wheel and ask yourself if any of these situations apply to you.