Domestic violence is not a thing of the past nor is it going to go away any time soon. Unfortunately there are always going to be people with bad tempers, control issues and low self-esteem. Domestic violence is not normal, nor should it ever be thought of as anywhere near normal. The question is not whether domestic violence exists, the question is what can victims do about it?
Spousal abuse is one of the most common forms of domestic violence. Somehow, married men and women feel that the marriage certificate gives them the right to treat their spouse any way they want to. This is a falsehood, there is never an excuse to abuse each other in any form. The problem with spousal abuse is that often the abused spouse has no idea what to do or where to go for help.
Call or talk to a close friend about what happened. Your friends love and care about your well being. They want to know when you are happy and when you are hurting.
You need to talk to your friends even if you are ashamed/embarrassed to admit that the domestic violence is happening. Your friends will not judge you or treat you harshly, in fact they will want to help you in whatever way they can. You are not doing yourself any favors by putting on a brave face in front of your friends. You may think you are doing your friends a favor by not getting them involved with your troubles, but you are wrong.
Your family loves you and wants what is best for you. Talk to them about the abuse. You might be able to move in with a family member until you get on your feet. Your family is always going to be there for you. If you do not have blood relatives than people you consider as family do just fine. Family is family, blood or not.
There is a good chance that members of your family saw this abuse coming. Families are very special and look out for their own, it’s like they can almost sense a bad situation brewing.
If you are not around any friends or family members, then pick up the phone and dial a domestic violence hotline. The people who monitor the hotline truly care about you and your situation. You can even call anonymously if you just want someone to talk to about what is happening in your home. The hotline is free so there will not be any charges on your phone bill.
The person on the other end of the phone line can become your lifeline if things are really bad. He/she can give you phone numbers and addresses of places you can go to should you decide to leave your spouse.
In times of need, many people turn to their spiritual advisers for guidance. Most religions do not condone violence in any fashion and will be more than willing to help a domestic violence victim. Faith can bring many people through difficult times, even abuse.
This can be a bit tricky depending on your religion. Some religions teach that no matter what is happening, you do not leave a marriage. If this is the case of your religion, then you may still speak with your spiritual adviser, but may need to consider other options. No matter what your spiritual beliefs are, domestic violence is never acceptable.
Go to a neighbor’s house and talk or use the phone to call for help. Most people are still willing to help someone in need. If you are not sure what to do, going and visiting with a neighbor can help clear your head. It is also good to have a safe haven that is close to your home in case things get out of hand.
If you are in a situation where your spouse does not want you talking to the neighbors, then just keep an eye out for the closest neighbor and go there if necessary.
Call or go to the police station and ask for help. That is what the police are there for; helping people. There is someone who can direct you to the right agency/people to help deal with your situation. You have the option of filing charges against your spouse if you choose.
The most important part about going to the police is the safety factor. If you are fearful of your spouse, then get away from the situation before something really goes wrong.
The most important thing for a victim of domestic violence to know is that they do have options. No matter how bleak the situation and how isolated they feel, there are ways to get help.
There is no such thing as a little bit abusive, if he/she does it once then they are likely to continue doing it. It is wise to seek help after the very first incident, because being hit or yelled at once is too often.