A fairy tale wedding evolved into a nightmare of domestic abuse and violence violence within just weeks for young Lisa Casarez. She blamed herself, wondering what she needed to do better—or how she needed to just be better—in order to stop the battering. Maybe she should lose some weight? Perhaps if she did a better job at housekeeping? Maybe having a baby would fix things! She loved her husband, and vowed to do whatever it took to keep her marriage intact.
Two children later, nothing had changed, except for her resolve to keep herself alive for the sake of her kids. She left with a couple of quarters in her pocket, and the business card of a local police officer who had offered to help. Now, decades later, she runs a domestic abuse shelter and helps others to break free from dangerous relationships. If you feel trapped in a marriage that is abusive, seeking compassionate, but aggressive legal help from a local divorce attorney could save your life.
Domestic Abuse Statistics
Incredibly, somewhere in this country another woman is beaten every nine seconds of the day. 25% of women will suffer a violent attack at some point in their lives, generally at the hands of someone they know, and in their own homes. More than a third of women will be between 18 and 24 years of age at the time of the first attack, while almost a quarter are younger still – just 11 to 17 years old. Tragically, half of homeless women report that domestic abuse was the key issue behind their displacement.
Men can be Victims of Domestic Abuse
Domestic violence is often thought of a problem directed toward women, but men are targets of abuse, as well. Approximately 8% of men experience sexual violence in their lives, and nearly 14% suffer serious physical attacks by an intimate partner. They, too, suffer emotional and psychological abuse. Clearly, aggression is not limited to one gender or the other.
Why Domestic Abuse Victims do Not Report
A recent study reveals the reasons victims of domestic abuse give for keeping their stories to themselves for so long. It can generally be said that fears are the key motivator for silence:
- They may not be believed;
- They anticipate they could be blamed and judged;
- Fears that Child Protective Services might become involved and remove children from the home;
- Anxieties that Immigration proceedings could be initiated;
- They could lose economic security;
- They might lose their home.
California law defines domestic abuse / violence as acts that are physically, sexually, emotionally, or psychologically harmful. It could include actual hitting or kicking, hair pulling, or having things thrown in your presence. Name-calling, belittling, and subjugation are all examples of abuse. Threatening, stalking, or property destruction are also illegal abuses. If you find yourself feeling trapped in a relationship that threatens your health or your very life, do not wait another moment to get help. There are abundant resources available, and the legal team at Beck Law P.C., will assist you as you extricate yourself from danger. If you live in Mendocino County, Sonoma County, or Lake County California, contact our experienced Santa Rosa divorce attorneys to schedule a confidential consultation today.