Understand Relationship Abuse We're all affected by the issue of domestic violence.
To understand relationship abuse, we must recognize that it is more than physical violence. Ending the harm and stigma of domestic violence requires a nuanced understanding of the behaviors that define it, as well as examples of healthy relationships to inform your decisions and interactions moving forward. Our advocates are available 24/7 by phone and live chat to discuss your situation and help you determine if your relationship might be abusive.
Domestic violence (also referred to as intimate partner violence (IPV), dating abuse, or relationship abuse) is a pattern of behaviors used by one partner to maintain power and control over another partner in an intimate relationship.
Domestic violence doesn’t discriminate. People of any race, age, gender, sexuality, religion, education level, or economic status can be a victim — or perpetrator — of domestic violence. That includes behaviors that physically harm, intimidate, manipulate or control a partner, or otherwise force them to behave in ways they don’t want to, including through physical violence, threats, emotional abuse, or financial control.
Multiple forms of abuse are usually present at the same time in abusive situations, and it’s essential to understand how these behaviors interact so you know what to look for. When we know what relationship looks like and means, we can then take steps to get help for ourselves as well as better support others who are experiencing abuse.
Recognizing abuse is the first step
Learn more about power and control in abusive relationships
Why people abuse and why people stay.