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Family law: breaking the silence of domestic violence

Domestic violence occurs when one person behaves in a controlling way to gain power or control over another. The silence on this aspect of family law needs to be broken, and the residents of Nevada and other states may be wise to expand their knowledge of domestic violence. There is typically a behavioral pattern shown by the controller. More often than not, it happens between intimate partners and is of a physical nature, but can also be non-physical.

The majority of domestic violence victims are women. Records show that only in 15 percent of recorded cases were the victims male. Unfortunately, most victims blame themselves, and when the bruises fade and the broken noses mend, most regard the problem as over. However, it is not over and will probably never be over.

Abuse comes in different forms, and knowing what to look for could save a person from being abused. People are often only aware of physical abuse and ignorant to the other forms of abuse. If you are being hit, shoved, slapped, pinched, bitten, or having your hair pulled, you are the victim of physical abuse. Sexual abuse occurs when you are being pressurized into any sexual act without your consent. This includes marital rape and being treated in a sexually humiliating manner.

Belittling, ridiculing and undermining someone’s self esteem are emotionally abusing actions. This includes name-calling and destruction of relationships through vicious and unkind remarks. If money is withheld and financial resources totally controlled, thereby making one person financially dependent on the other, it is considered a case of economic abuse.

Intimidation and thereby causing fear and threatening to impose physical harm are actions classified as psychological abuse. This includes the willful killing of pets and damaging of property, as well as secluding that person from friends and family. Family law cases, in particular those regarding domestic violence in Nevada, are often not reported to the authorities due to the victim feeling responsible or being threatened. A supportive community can make a difference to victims of domestic violence. There is help for anyone suffering from domestic violence.

Source:, Breaking the silence: Woman caught in domestic violence epidemic, Jane Andreasik, Nov. 6, 2013

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