Domestic Violence and Abuse: What You Can Do About It?
As a leading criminal law firm in Waukesha, we have seen what domestic violence can do to a family. We can honestly say that the results are never good. Domestic violence often begins with smaller issues such as yelling and possibly throwing things and often leads to much more significant problems like physical violence. Of course, over time, the physical abuse can escalate, leaving one party injured or worse.
Domestic violence also causes a lot of emotional and psychological problems for the person being abused in addition to physical abuse. There is an area of a person’s life or their well-being that is not impacted when they are being abused.
There are ways to help stop it from getting this far.
People in an abusive relationship often feel as if the abuser has their best interest in mind and that the abuse is only a result of their own shortcomings. Other people realize that they are in an abusive situation, but they are unsure how to get out of it without getting hurt. This same group also often feels trapped because they are not sure where to go.
Sadly, almost all the people that are in an abusive situation feel embarrassed by the situation. If they feel trapped, they do not want to admit that they do not know how to get out of this trouble. If they think that their actions cause the abuse, they are often too embarrassed to tell anyone because they are ashamed that they could “be so bad” that they are abused. Whatever the case, it is their family and friends that can help get them out of this situation.
Every situation needs to be approached carefully, and there is no “one right way” to help someone being abused. Your loved one must know that they have somewhere safe to go if they leave this situation, and they must feel like they will not be shamed for being abused or for leaving. In some cases, legal intervention may need to be taken to protect the victims.
If the victims are minors, there are several actions that you can take to help them get out of an abusive situation. You can contact the school, the state welfare system, the police, or other emergency services. It is always better safe than sorry when it comes to protecting a minor.
If the victim is an adult, the situation gets a little bit complicated. Many abuse victims are reluctant to do anything about their situation out of fear of retaliation. You cannot ignore the fact that they are being abused, but you need to approach the subject with caution. Do not be surprised if the victim denies the abuse. Many adults will deny being abused out of fear or shame.
Speak with close family members and friends of the abuse victim to see if there is a way to help. If no one is sure what to do and the abuse is very physical and dangerous, contact emergency services. If you feel that they may need legal help getting out of the situation, contact a law firm in Waukesha to find out what legal options can be used to provide assistance to the injured and abused party.
Signs of Domestic Violence
In addition to the obvious physical signs of abuse, there are several other indicators of abuse that should raise the warning flag. Some of these signs include:
- The person withdraws from all activities that they normally participate in to stay home without a legitimate reason.
- The person becomes withdrawn from family and friends. They stop attending social gatherings.
- When out in public, one person is very dominating and mean to the other person. They may call them names, berate them in front of others or humiliate or embarrass the victim.
- Change in clothing habits such as large dark glasses and always wearing long sleeves or long pants to cover bruises.
- Change in financial situation. An abuser will often make a person quit their job or take all their money for their own personal use, leaving the abuse victim in a very poor financial state.
There are many other signs that abuse may be occurring. Close friends and family members should be able to see the warning signs or at least suspect something may be wrong.
Many people feel it is not their place to say anything about what happens behind closed doors. While this may be good practice for respecting people’s sexual, political, and religious views, it can be harmful when applied to abusive situations. Many cases of serious physical and emotional abuse could have been prevented if someone took the time to intervene.
Yes, You Have Made A Difference
It is important to remember that the first time you approach someone about being in an abusive relationship that you may not see the results that you expected. You may hope that they will run out the door with you to a safe place, but you may meet with some resistance.
However, you should not give up – you have made a difference.
Even if that person does not pick up and leave that situation at that very minute, you have put the thought into their mind. They will begin reevaluating everything about themselves and their relationship. They will start to question the intentions of the abuser. This will make a difference.
With continued love and support from family and friends, the abuse victim will be able to get away and start fresh in a life not filled with fear.