COLUMBUS, Ga. (WRBL) — October is National Domestic Violence Awareness Month. According to the CDC, about 41% of women and 26% of men have experienced a form of domestic abuse from a partner in their lifetime.
According to Monica D. Luker, Resource Development & Marketing Manager at Hope Harbour, domestic violence is an issue that can come in many different forms other than physical. Victims can also experience abuse as verbal, financial, sexual or stalking.
Verbal abuse can be done through yelling, name calling, and threats. Financial abuse is when an abuser controls a victim’s finances, how they spend money or even the type of job a victim has. Abuse does not only impact the victim — it can affect pets and even children.
Luker says child abuse is 15 times more likely to occur in homes where domestic violence is present. This can be one of the complicated factors at play for why it takes an average of seven attempts for victims to finally leave their abuser.
Luker went on to share with some of the warning signs of abuse.
“You’re not always going to see a physical scar or laceration on a victim. It can be someone that was generally a bubbly, bright personality person. And now is reserved and doesn’t have the confidence that they once had. It could be someone that starts to think about suicide and ways of harming themselves. Just becoming more closed off to your environment and just not really wanting to do much. Depression is a huge trigger and signal for domestic violence,” Luker said.
If you or someone you know is currently dealing with abuse, contact the National Domestic Violence Hotline at 1800-799-7233 for support and resources.