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October is Domestic Violence Awareness Month

September 23, 2012
By CATHY BROWNFIELD - Family Recovery Center , Salem News

LISBON - Angered by something she said he punched the bedroom door with his fist and spat out at her, "Aren't you glad that wasn't your face?"

"He punches her where it won't show and nobody will know."

"She hasn't been out of the house in a long while. She's been waiting for the bruises on her face to heal, I think."

"Emotional abuse is the worst because nobody sees the festering wounds."

October is Domestic Violence (DV) Awareness Month. DV is about beating up on someone you supposedly care about.

If you really cared about the person you are abusing, you wouldn't hurt her/him. DV is resorting to cruel, unkind words because you have to be in control somewhere. DV is battering.

"Battering is a pattern of behavior used to establish power and control over another person with whom an intimate relationship is or has been shared through fear and intimidation, often including the threat or use of violence," according to the National Coalition Against Domestic Violence (NCADV). "Battering happens when one person believes that they are entitled to control another.

"Intimate partner violence" occurs everywhere and happens to those "society" oppresses: women and children, disabled persons who can't take care of themselves, elderly people, people of color, gays, lesbians, transgender, and other marginalized groups outside of "normal."

Abuse is:

-?physical battering

-?sexual assault

-?emotional or psychological abuse

-?abuse gets worse over time.

To learn more about "The Problem" of DV, visit online at

"He's a jerk and he's teaching his son to be the same way," someone observes.

NCADV says, "Children witnessing DV and living in an environment where violence occurs may experience some degree of trauma as abused children,"

"My father wasn't very good to my mother. He never touched me, but I saw how he treated Mom. He may as well have done the same to me," says a daughter who learned to be like her mother, a victim. "Back then there were no shelters for women and their children to escape to. Back then women were told, 'You made your bed. Now lay in it.'"

NCADV reports that people with disabilities who require assisted living are battered. Older women "are nearly invisible" living with battering because they were taught they couldn't leave their abusive spouses. There are a lot of such women. Without a job, financial resources, they feel stuck.

They are isolated from everyone they know. And rural battered women are further victimized with accusations that she "is unfaithful in her role as a woman, wife and mother.

The act of leaving the home place, land and animals that could depend on her may be emotionally wrenching leaving the battered rural woman surrounded by walls of guilt and self-abasement."

Come back next week for a discussion about teen dating violence as October, Domestic Violence Awareness Month, arrives.

Family Recovery Center promotes the well being of individuals, families and communities with education, prevention and treatment programs for substance abuse and other mental health issues. For more information, contact the agency at 964 N. Market St., Lisbon; phone, 330-424-1468; or e-mail,



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