Today we will talk partner to partner violence. The CDC recognizes this act as Intimate Partner Violence (IPV). IPV is the life threatening /damaging abuse caused by the significant other in a relationship. There are four types of abuse everyone should be aware of and a multitude of risk factors leading to future domestic violence experiences. The risk factors of IPV include individual risk, relationship risk, community risk and societal risk. For example, an individual experiencing or witnessing abuse may affect their present self; having low self-worth may cause someone to stay in an abusive relationship; bystanders affect others by being aware of IPV but never intervening; society affects others by not helping because they assume someone else will or they see no point because they claim society is ‘just like that’; and inequalities about gender norms can create a dynamic power struggle that can fuel IPV.
In knowing the risk factors of IPV, it will be easier to identify domestic abuse that may be happening to you or someone you know. The telltale signs, of course, are the four types of abuse that one may be suffering from.
- Physical violence – When there is force by hitting, punching, scratching, etc.
- Sexual violence – Any sexual act that is forced upon someone without their consent.
- Stalking – When the partner consistently pursues contact when their presence is unwanted. These scenarios can threaten the safety of the victims’ loved ones as well.
- Psychological harm – When the victim is stressed emotionally and mentally while damaging their self-esteem. This can break someone’s will to fight back.
If any of these factors are present in a person’s life, it is urgent to get help and to safely immediately. The statistics show that about 1 in 4 women as well as about 1 in 10 men have experienced any of the four types of abuse. IPV is much more common than most are aware of. There are plenty of resources for those who are looking for help and/or empathy. For more information of how you can help prevent IPV, feel free to visit this webpage from the CDC.