FACT: One in every four women will experience domestic violence in her lifetime. In 2004 Louisiana had the third highest number of females murdered my males in the nation. Eighty-four percent of them knew their offender. Twenty percent were wives, common-law wives, ex-wives or girlfriends of the offender. Fifty-eight percent were killed with a firearm. In 2011, law enforcement reports documented domestic and dating violence cases in fifteen northeast Louisiana Parishes over three (3) times the national average.
Myth: Domestic violence is not common. Fact is, 29% of women and 22% of men experience intimate partner violence during their lifetime.
Myth: Domestic violence only occurs among the poor. FACT: Women of all cultures, races, occupations, income levels, and ages are battered – by husbands, boyfriends, and partners. White, African-American and Hispanic women ALL can be victims of violence at the same rate. About one-third (1/3) of men counseled for battering are professional men, well respected in their jobs and communities.
Myth: It is not abuse if you are not physically injured. Fact: There are many forms of abuse: sexual, physical, verbal and emotional. When a person in a relationship constantly scares, hurts, or puts down their partner, it is abuse. Harassment, intimidation, forced or coerced isolation from family and friends, humiliation, threats of harm to you , your family or pets, threats of suicide if you leave, violating your privacy, limiting your independence and personal choices are ALL examples of abuse.
Myth: Alcohol or drug abuse causes domestic violence. Fact: They may lower inhibitions or control over violent behavior, BUT are used as an excuse to let down one’s inhibitions. Statistics show that 1/3 of abusers do not use drugs or alcohol.
Myth: Domestic violence behavior is “out of control” and unintentional. FACT: An abuser’s behavior is used to gain POWER and CONTROL and is definitely intentional.
Myth: Sexual abuse is not a common form of domestic violence. FACT: Sexual abuse ranges from true sexual assault, to harassment to exploitation. It is often linked to physical abuse and they may occur together.
Myth: Men are not victims of domestic violence. FACT: Males can be victims almost as often as females. Studies have shown that for every 47 women who are abused, at least 32 men have been abused.
Myth: Children raised in abusive homes are not affected by the abuse. FACT: The impact of living in an abusive household is profound. Many children develop cognitive and psychological problems. Eating disorders, sleeping disorders, depression, aggressive behavior, destructive rages, stuttering, shaking and diminished problem-solving skills are all symptoms of living in abusive household. Males and females who witness abuse are three times more likely to hit their own partners than those who grew up in nonviolent homes.
Myth: Animal abuse is rare or is not a sign of an abusive relationship. FACT: Many abusers hurt family pets to gain POWER AND CONTROL. Threats of injuring or killing pets indicate increased violence or lethality. An estimated 88-percent of pets in abusive households are either abused or killed.
Domestic Violence Hotline: 1-888-411-1333
LaSalle Parish Victim Advocate: 318-992-2067
Emergency: Dial 911