Domestic Violence

Domestic violence can happen to anyone of any race, age, sexual orientation, religion or gender. It can happen to couples who are married, living together or who are dating. Domestic violence affects people of all socioeconomic backgrounds and education levels.

Domestic violence (also known as domestic abuse, spousal abuse, or intimate partner violence) occurs when a family member, partner or ex-partner attempts to physically or psychologically dominate another. Domestic violence often refers to violence between spouses, or spousal abuse but can also include cohabitants and non-married intimate partners. Domestic violence is perpetrated by both men and women.

Forms & Dimensions of Domestic Violence


Domestic violence has many forms, including physical violence, sexual abuse, emotional abuse, intimidation, economic deprivation, and threats of violence. Violence can be criminal and includes physical assault (hitting, pushing, shoving, etc.), sexual abuse (unwanted or forced sexual activity), and stalking. Although emotional, psychological and financial abuse are not criminal behaviors in some legal systems, they are forms of abuse and can lead to criminal violence. There are a number of dimensions including:
  • Mode: physical, psychological, sexual and/or social.
  • Frequency: on/off, occasional and chronic.
  • Severity: in terms of both psychological or physical harm and the need for treatment.
  • Transitory or permanent injury: mild, moderate, severe and up to homicide.

Passive Abuse


An important component of domestic violence, often ignored is the realm of passive abuse, leading to violence.
  1. Passive abuse is covert, subtle and veiled. This includes victimization, ambiguity, neglect, spiritual and intellectual abuse.
  2. Recent attention to domestic violence began in the women's movement, particularly feminism and women's rights, in the 1970s, as concern about wives being beaten by their husbands gained attention. Awareness and documentation of domestic violence differs from country to country. Estimates are that only about a third of cases of domestic violence are actually reported in the United States. According to the Centers for Disease Control, domestic violence is a serious, preventable public health problem affecting more than 32 million Americans, or more than 100% of the U.S. population.
  3. Popular emphasis has tended to be on women as the victims of domestic violence. However, with the rise of the men's movement, and particularly masculism and men's rights, there is now advocacy for men victimized by women. In a special report on violence related injuries by the U.S. Department of Justice (in August 1997) hospital emergency room visits pertaining to domestic violence indicated that physically abused men represent just under one-sixth of the total patients admitted to hospital reporting domestic violence as the cause of their injuries.

Stop Domestic Violence


\If you are a victim, you need to report it to the Harrison Police Department. We can help you and get you the assistance you need.