Domestic violence is a pattern of intentionally violent and/or controlling behavior used against a family member or a dating/intimate partner to gain power and control over that person, during and/or after the relationship. Domestic violence is also known as family violence, intimate partner violence, or dating violence.
Domestic violence doesn’t always look the same in every situation. Family violence can often look very different than violence in a dating or intimate relationship. Yet because domestic violence centers around power and control, there are usually some common features. Warning signs often include:
Inequality between the people involved (i.e. the abusive person shows a lack of respect or concern for the other person)
Lack of choice (i.e. the abusive person makes most of the decisions or doesn’t listen when the other person says or indicates “no”)
Fear or uncertainty (i.e. one person feeling “on guard” or afraid because of the abusive person’s unpredictable behavior or language
Suspicion or lack of trust (i.e. the abusive person constantly demanding that the other person prove themselves or account for their whereabouts or behavior)
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If you or a loved one are experiencing domestic violence and need assistance, you can:
Call our Domestic Violence Hotline anytime at 1-803-792-9020.
Text 1-803-792-9020 from anywhere in the US, anytime, to talk via text about any type of crisis including domestic violence.