Hushed Voices, Secrets Untold

Giving women a voice, one day at a time

Archive for the tag “power”

What is Domestic Violence?

In my last post I talked about defining domestic violence. What is domestic violence? Domestic violence is about manipulation, anger and control. Domestic violence includes emotional, physical and sexual abuse, even if the abuse is subtle. Domestic violence can include loud verbal abuse or arguments, non-physical, but it is just as demeaning and degrading. The abuse can be sexual, using the bedroom as the punishment for wrong doing, or it can be simply physical, leaving tell-tale signs on the abused partner.

Those who abuse are all about anger and control. Everything must be manipulated and controlled by them. Their control is what gives them the “power” to demean and degrade in the relationship. Domestic violence begins silently like a brewing storm. One day he begins to question where you have been, who you have been talking to. This quickly escalates to him checking your cell phone, monitoring your calls, refusing to allow you to talk on the phone to others unless he is present, and then removing your phone completely because he is afraid he can no longer control you in fear you may call for help. Then he begins following you to work, refusing to let you take your own car to work, and then begins going everywhere with you including the grocery store and even the bathroom because he no longer trusts you.

Then the process begins of cutting you off from everyone and everything you love. This is the ultimate “power” trip for most abusers. He is in total control at this point; you have no one but him. He thinks he has you where he wants you. This is where the physical violence usually begins to escalate. The smacks across the table and the bruised cheeks are no longer enough. He has a point to prove. You belong to him and no one else. The violence becomes more routine and if he drinks that escalates as well.

This is why most domestic violence offenders are outraged when the victims finally leave or seek help. They have lost control. It is all about the control.

If you are suffering, you are not to blame, they are. Reach out, I know it is hard and frightening, but that phone call could save your life, and lead to a new life of health and happiness. If you need help please call the National Domestic Violence Hotline Number  1−800−799−SAFE  (7233). There are people waiting there who care.


Defining Domestic Violence

October is Domestic Violence Awareness Month. Domestic violence is a vicious cycle that grabs a hold of families and repeats itself over generations. I am a survivor, my mother was a survivor. I never wanted to repeat the cycle that my mother endured. For some reason, children of domestic violence seem drawn to those that will repeat the cycle for them, people that are not good for them or their self-esteem. Growing up in a home filled with domestic violence I never wanted that kind of life for my children, but unfortunately I got drawn into that violent cycle as a young girl.

When I speak of my years living in a marriage with domestic violence, people always ask, “Why did you stay so long?” This is not an easy question to answer. When you are living a life of domestic violence there is a love/violence circle that goes on day after day, month after month, year after year. There will be days of peace and days of hurt and pain.

The days that are filled with hurt and pain are followed by apologies, flowers, promises to never do it again, and filled with love. Those days can be long periods of time or short ones. You never know with domestic violence offenders, they have anger issues, they drink and they have very short fuses. You never know what will set them off. It could be something simple as a wrinkle in their favorite shirt, it could be their food is not heated properly, it doesn’t really matter the reason, it just happens.

The days that are filled with hurt and pain, you say to your self, “How can I stay?” and the days filled with peace you say, “Why should I leave?” This cycle continues until you just cannot stay anymore.

As I continue this journey I will explore many of the answers to these questions and try to answer many more about finding help and escaping the hell that is domestic violence. For now, I would like to leave the National Domestic Violence Hotline Number  1−800−799−SAFE (7233). If you are reading this and need help please do not be afraid to call. There are people waiting here to help you. I know making this call is frightening, I made that call and it changed my life. Help is waiting, you are not alone.



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