Domestic violence is a very sensitive and often misunderstood topic. Sadly, many people seem to perceive it as something a person has chosen for their life rather than it having been forced upon them. Too many well-meaning individuals ask a victim, "Why don't/didn't you just leave?" when it should be obvious that if a victim actually could just leave, domestic violence wouldn't be a thing.
Often, when people hear the term "domestic violence," immediate thoughts of heinous physical abuse come to mind. And, while physical abuse is certainly included, it is not the only type of abuse that constitutes domestic violence. According to the U.S. Department of Justice, domestic violence is "a pattern of abusive behavior in any relationship that is used by one partner to gain or maintain power and control over another intimate partner." This can include physical, emotional, psychological and sexual abuse, to name a few.
If you have experienced domestic abuse of any kind and are looking for a compassionate, empathetic and understanding counselor to help you process the myriad of emotions that come with it, please contact me right away.