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Family Intimate Partner Violence

Unfortunately, family and intimate partner violence is a growing concern for young adults across the country that can lead to significant injuries, both emotional and physical. Intimate partner violence or domestic violence refers to abuse that happens between two people involved in a close relationship.

Intimate partner can also include former dating partners and spouses. One episode of violence may be the initial start of an intimate partner violence concern, but this can lead to ongoing battering and abuse. When children witness or are involved in this type of abuse, the consequences can be severe.

The Impacts of Intimate Partner Violence in the U.S.

The effects on the victim will depend on the severity of the abuse and how long the abuse has occurred. According to the CDC, intimate partner violence is a significant concern across the United States. It cost the United States an estimated $8.3 billion in 2003 as it relates to the damages and medical care. Approximately, one out of every ten men and three out of every ten women have experienced IPV in the United States.

Teen dating violence may also be classified as a related issue associated with IPV. The reduction of intimate partner violence often relies on addressing and identifying risk factors and developing comprehensive programs to encourage safe and healthy relationships.

Domestic violence or intimate partner violence refers to battery and willful intimidation, physical assault, sexual assault or any other kind of abusive behavior that is part of a greater pattern of control and power. This manipulation, control or power is carried out by one partner against the other and can include emotional, psychological, sexual and physical violence and abuse.

The variations in the severe nature of domestic violence can be significant, however, the one critical element that must remain in place is one partner's efforts to keep control and power over the other. Many people are affected by domestic and intimate partner violence across the United States regardless of their sexual orientation, age, economic status, religion, race, gender or nationality.

Defining Domestic and Intimate Partner Violence

Domestic violence can lead to psychological trauma, physical injury and sometimes even fatal injuries. The consequences of domestic violence, however, can reach throughout a family and even a community. It is not always easy to identify early on in a relationship if one partner will become abusive.

The added pressure of having children can often increase the chances that a partner who was on the edge of domestic violence may engage in this behavior after the child is born. This can be devastating discovery for the other partner as well as the child. Continuous exposure to intimate partner violence can have life lasting consequences for the children and young adults who are involved. The physical injuries and the emotional scars left behind as a result of intimate partner violence can be very traumatic and can put the non-battering parent in a very difficult position. In many cases, abusers will try to apologize for their actions or convince the individual that they do these things out of care or love. However, control and violence always tends to intensify over time with an abuser.

An act of abuse that only involves a partner or a spouse may ultimately reach the children. It is detrimental for children to witness domestic and intimate partner violence, but it is also extremely damaging for them to be involved as a victim as well. Abusive tendencies that can indicate problems with intimate partner violence include:

  • Accusing a victim of cheating.
  • Controlling all the money in the household.
  • Indicating jealousy regarding the victim's time spent with friends and family.
  • Telling the victim that they can never do anything right.
  • Discouraging or keeping the victim from seeing family members or friends.
  • Preventing the victim from making their own decisions.

Children who are harmed as a result of an intimate partner violence may carry the consequences far into the future.

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