Domestic Abuse

Dear Class, 

I have written this essay to express the importance of domestic abuse. It is not something that should ever be taken lightly, nor should it be something to look past. Through various forms of research, I have discovered different ways that people have dealt with domestic abuse within their households. When one thinks of abuse, they usually assume that it is the man that is abusing the woman. But this isn’t always the case. As I have learned, and you will too by reading this essay, that there is much more to what goes on in an abusive relationship that people think. It isn’t just some pushing and some screaming. People have lost their lives, and those of their children by both males and females who are abusive. There are thousands upon thousands of stories of men and women sharing their experiences, when it comes to dealing with abuse. No type of abuse is better than another. People can be hurt physically and emotionally. This can lead to various types of long-term effects. Such as one dealing with depression, or other dealing with physical pain from their partner. I wish for those who choose to read this essay to understand how important it is to understand what domestic abuse is, and how to read the signs before it gets to a point where they are stuck. I want my readers to learn from the mistakes of others and find ways to help themselves. Asking for help is never easy but with time, it will be the right thing to do in the long run. During this phase, I learned about researching a topic that I was interested in. Fortunately, I don’t deal with any type of abuse in my household, but by understanding what the signs are of abuse. It allows me to assist those who aren’t seeing those red flags. I focused mainly on stories to express not only the facts but what happens. By doing this, I feel that the reader can clearly understand how important it is to know what abuse is. When it comes to this assignment as a whole, this phases assignment allowed me to “locate research sources (including academic journal articles, magazine and newspaper articles) in the library’s databases or archives and on the Internet and evaluate them for credibility, accuracy, timeliness, and bias.” As well as “Compose texts that integrate your stance with appropriate sources using strategies such as summary, critical analysis, interpretation, synthesis, and argumentation.” As I had explained, I have used different sources to come to the conclusions of this essay and used facts as well as stories to prove so. I used statistics and current life situations to develop my essay and give an overall explanation to the point that I am trying to convey. So, as you read this essay, once again, please keep in mind the importance of the point that I am trying to make. And always try to be safe!

Thank you 


There’s a difference between domestic abuse and domestic violence. Domestic abuse is where any person within a relationship such as an intimate one or a marriage, takes dominant control over the other. The main goal of one person within the relationship is to take full control by using tactics such as fear, guilt, and shame to make the other feel worthless. This allows the person who wants control to become the “puppet master”. They control every movement, every action of the other, and has complete dominance. Domestic abuse can happen in any sort of intimate relationship, whether it’s heterosexual or same-sex partners, domestic abuse can still be something that occurs. People seem to think that only women can be victims, but there are cases of men who have been victimized as well. The abuse starts with threats and verbal assault, it then escalated to more physical and violent abuse. While being physically abused has its obvious dangers, being emotionally abused can also lead to some heavy damage. Emotionally abusive partners can destroy your self-worth and can lead to anxiety and depression. No one should have to deal with any type of domestic abuse, so the first step in being set free is to be aware of the fact that you are in an abusive relationship, and once you have understood the signs, and then what measures to take from there. 

First, to be able to tell if you are in an abusive relationship, you need to ask yourself this: are you in fear of your partner? Do you feel like you are walking on eggshells around them? Do you feel like your partner is belittling you and make you feel like he has all the control whereas you have none? Do you feel self-loathing, helplessness, and desperation? These may be signs that you are in fact in an abusive relationship. Other times you might not be affected emotionally rather than physically. If there are times where you find yourself feeling scared that your partner may abuse you or injure you in any way, this may be a sign of physical abuse. Partners sometimes feel that they are forced to do things that they might not necessarily want to be doing. Such as sexual activities. If you find yourself being forced to participate in any type of unwanted, unsafe, or degrading sexual activity, you are being sexually abused. It doesn’t matter whether or not the person is a friend, family member, or even a spouse or intimate partner. If you feel that at that time you are not ready or wanting anything including sexual activity, anything that the other person does is nonconsensual which is a federal crime. According to statistics, on average, nearly 20 people per minute are abused within the United States. Think about it, that’s nearly more than 10 million men and women per year! When looking further into the analytics, about 1 in 4 women and 1 in 9 men experience physical violence, intimate partner contacts sexual violence, or intimate partner stalking with possible impacts of injury within their relationships. 1 in 4 women and 1 in 7 men have been victims of severe physical violence such as beating, burning, and strangling. 

So many people can be asked each day, if they feel that that they are in a house that isn’t safe, then why don’t they just leave? It isn’t that easy, according to a clinical professor named Sarah Buel. She states that “there is nothing survivors can do to stop the violence, nor is there anything they do to deserve the abuse”. She believes that after years and years of her studies and experiences, there is a long list of reasons that survivors tend to stay with their abusers. It starts by listing a lack of an advocate. The person who is being abused feels like they are being intimidated and hopeless about being able to seek help from any type of social or legal service. Second, the abuser’s influence. If the abuser happens to be wealthy for any type of reason, that person can hire someone to “throw” the case. In the sense that, they can pay a large amount of money so that the decision-makers view the case with more leniency. Third, the threats. There are times when children are involved, and the abuser is threatening the life of the victim and their children. According to statistics, survivors are more likely to be killed when attempting to leave an abusive partner. The victim needs to be sure that when leaving, or at least attempting to, that there is an extremely extensive safety plan that is in place. Fourth, the children’s best interest. Some of the victims believe that if the abuser is not physically abusive, that it is the best idea for the children to have both parents present in the home so that it doesn’t cause any damage to their lives. Fifth, pressure from children. Children can often put pressure on the parent that is the victim, by being unaware of the situation. They could often ask questions like, “where is mommy?”, or “why isn’t daddy coming home?”. This often compels the victim to try to please the children without having to explain to them what is going on. All the kids understand is that one parent isn’t present, and they just want the family to be together. Sixth, cultural and racial defenses. Some may use their culture or religion to justify the abuse that they are being faced with. They may think that what is happening is normal because that may be how women or men are treated within a certain ethnicity. But at the end of the day, the domestic violence that may be committed is still illegal and should never be permitted within a home. Seventh, denial. Some victims are in absolute denial of what they are facing. It’s upsetting to think that the abuser has manipulated the victim into believing everything is fine when it isn’t. They believe that if they just try to work things out and be better partners, then everything will be all right, and the abusing would stop. Eighth, disabilities. Victims who are disabled or physically challenged, usually have to deal with bigger obstacles, such as not being able to access social services or court. They can also be denied basic information about possible resources. Ninth, elderly. Older victims tend to hold traditional beliefs when it comes to marriage. They believe that there is no reason to leave, even if they are being abused. Whereas others are often afraid of being placed in an elderly home or having no one to assist them other than the abuser. And lastly, the abuser’s excuses. The abuser may be using excused to justify their violence as being okay. They can often blame what they are doing on stress or even substance abuse. There the victim may see nothing wrong with the actions of the abuser because he or she cannot be responsible for his or her crimes. Domestic violence isn’t caused by any type of stress or substance abuse because most people who are under the influence, do not often physically abuse their partners. It is rather something that adds to the reasoning for why they do what they do but isn’t the only reason. These ideas can be expressed by stories told by different types of survivors who have dealt with being abused either emotionally or physically.

The stories told by two women explain how they have survived domestic abuse, and what they are doing to help others in seeking the help that they need. These women have faced years of physical, emotional, sexual abuse, and even survived being shot. According to a woman named Angela, her story starts with explaining that her abuser used only verbal abuse in the beginning. She had known him for over 20 years, but he began to change once his mother had passed away. She found him buying weapons such as a machete and a shotgun. She saw him becoming more aggressive with not just her but others as well, but nothing physical had happened yet. Until one night in early November. They were having a conversation and at some point, she had asked him to leave. He didn’t like the idea and decided to grab her by the hood of her sweatshirt and throw her out of the door and got on top of her. He began choking her. He stopped eventually when she had managed to scream for her eldest son, and he had gotten up and left. From there on they had broken up, but at some point, tried to work things out again. One morning they were having a disagreement and Angela decided to take a bath. While she was sitting there, her spouse came in and shot her. He looked at her and said, “look what you made me do Angie, you made me shoot you.” He returned with her cellphone and was told to call 911. She had been shot in the back and felt like she was dying. She was rushed to the hospital and spent 3 weeks there. From then on, she became paralyzed. But instead of sobbing about it, she decided that she wanted to speak up. She wanted to share her story with others and help them follow the right path to get help when there are signs of abuse. Angela survived 9 gunshots that day, she is truly a survivor. 

The second woman’s is named Elizabeth. She begins by telling her story, by stating that her husband’s behavior changed rapidly. She wasn’t recognizing the signs because she said that it was hard to get perspective once she was in the situation. She says that one day her daughter had called her up crying because her husband, at the time, had threatened to hit her in the head with a hammer. Elizabeth had called the police and gotten a restraining order against him the following day. A month later, Elizabeth went before a judge and asked to dismantle the restraining order because she “couldn’t imagine this man hurting us.” But she was soon mistaken on January 13. Her ex had entered the house and began arguing with his daughter. When Elizabeth had entered the living room, she noticed that her daughters’ eyes were filled with fear. She quickly saw that her ex had begun approaching with a gun. Quickly Elizabeth began to dial 911, but as she turned around the shots rang, Elizabeth as well as her daughter had been shot. When the policeman had arrived, she stated that the officer had said that this was “just another domestic violence case.” Not taking into consideration the fact that there was a child was lying dead right next to him. Elizabeth had been put into a coma for almost a month, due to shots to her face. When she awoke, she was faced with the sad reality that her daughter was gone. She then decided that it was time to bury her. From then on Elizabeth found it difficult to tell her story because it was hard, but she did it as a way to express to other women how important it is to reach out and ask for help.

Not only do women find themselves being victims in a domestic abuse relationship, but men can be victimized as well. We can understand this by listening to David’s story. He starts by saying that he was a single dad with children and got remarried. With his new wife, he had not seen the warning signs in the beginning. He was constantly blamed for things that went wrong and always found every opportunity to belittle him. At times she would hit him, anywhere but the face. He felt that he had deserved it because he thought that he was a bad husband and was always withdrawn. Often, she would force him to have sex for him to be “a good husband for her.” He felt that he couldn’t leave, because it would mean leaving his children behind. When trying to talk to family, he was blamed for the actions that she was committing. He was told that it was his fault and that there had to be something that he was doing to make her act the way she was. At some point, she had decided to leave, but he was still blamed for it. He wasn’t ever able to tell anyone what happened until he fell into a depression. He finally built up the courage to tell a counselor what had happened. But he still felt useless, and like he had no purpose. He at some point realized that his purpose in life was his kids. He began being involved in their day to day care. Their love gave him strength, and he began to be able to start to live a somewhat normal life.  

These men and women are both extremely strong for continuing in their day-to-day lives, with all that has happened in the past. But these times that they were living in, are different from the times that we are currently living in today. During the recent outbreak of COVID-19, people have been told to stay in their homes. Meaning that men and women who are abused in their households are now forced to spend all 24 hours a day in a house with their abusers. During COVID-19, there have been major economic devastation. It has disconnected many from community resources and support systems that people may need. Due to these conditions, there may be a stimulation of violence in homes that there wasn’t before, or homes that have had violence and mistreatment may have gotten worse. In households with children, researchers have shown that there has been an increase in stress levels within a house. Which may result in aggressive or abusive behaviors. At times like this, when all the world needs is to stay calm and try their best to not stand down from sick individuals. Unfortunately, these households are experiencing more issues and dangers. What we need to do is continue to stand up to those who become abusers and continue to give help to those who have become victimized. A change in society is no excuse to stop helping those who are in need, especially when there are more individuals than usual being hurt and treated poorly. 

If you ever find yourself in a situation where you or someone you know is being abused, the best thing you can do is speak up. Abusers love to control and manipulate their victims into thinking that they are the ones that are wrong and that they are the bad guy when in reality they are merely just the victim. People that have been abused both emotionally or physically often find themselves depressed and scared of everyone and everything around them. Those people need help. They need to get themselves out of those situations and to feel happier. The abusers usually find a way to isolate their victims from their friends and family. But by starting to get that person to understand those red flags of an abuser, they can then understand what situation they are in and take the help and the support that they need. And at some point, they will break free from being in an abusive situation and begin to heal. 

Works Cited

Smith, Melinda. “Domestic Violence and Abuse.”, 2019,

“The US System Didn’t Protect These Women – so Now They’re Taking a Stand for Others.”

Amnesty International, 2019,


“David’s Story.” Domestic Violence Resource Centre Victoria,


“Barriers to Leaving, Part 1.”,, 31 Oct. 2020,

De Jesus, Teresa. “Manipulation, Gaslighting, and Psychological Attacks: Understanding

Emotional Abuse .” Day One, Day One, 23 Sept. 2020,


“NCADV: National Coalition Against Domestic Violence.” The Nation’s Leading Grassroots

Voice on Domestic Violence, 

“Intimate Partner Violence and Child Abuse Considerations During COVID-19.” SAMHSA

Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administered, 2020,