MYTHS & FACTS

DOMESTIC VIOLENCE

MYTH:

Domestic violence doesn’t affect many people.

FACT:

 

  • A woman is beaten every 9 seconds.

  • 3-4 million women are battered each year in the U.S.

  • Domestic Violence is the single greatest cause of injury to women.

  • The FBI estimates violence will occur during the course of two-thirds of all marriages.

MYTH:

Victims of domestic violence are exaggerating; it’s not that serious.

FACT:

  • An AMA report shows that every 5 years as many women are killed by their intimate partners as the men and women killed in the Vietnam War … 54,000.

  • On average, more than three women are murdered by their husbands or boyfriends in this country every day

 

MYTH:

Domestic violence only occurs in poor, urban areas.

FACT:

Women of all cultures, races, occupations, income levels, and ages are battered – by husbands, boyfriends, lovers and partners.

 

  • White, Black and Hispanic women all incur about the same rates of violence committed by an intimate partner.

  • Approximately one-third of the men counseled are professional men who are well respected in their jobs and communities. These have included doctors, psychologists, lawyers, ministers, and business executives

MYTH:

If a victim of intimate partner violence wanted to leave, she could.

FACT:

  • Many women do leave abusive partners, more than 50%.

  • Leaving an abusive partner may be the most dangerous time in that relationship. Women are 70 times more likely to be killed in the two weeks after leaving than at any other time during the relationship.

  •  Social, economic, cultural, religious, or legal issues often keep women in an abusive relationship.

  • Many women want the violence, not the relationship to end. They may take many steps to try to stop the abuse; leaving the home may be their last resort.

MYTH:

Husbands and wives are equally violent.

FACT:

  • 95% of domestic violence is reported by women – perpetrated against by their male partner.

  • When men are abused it is typically by their male intimate partner …domestic violence occurs in gay and lesbian relationships at the same rate as heterosexual relationships – approximately 35%.

  • 80% of all violent crimes committed outside the home are committed by males … it is highly unlikely that women, would make up half of partner violence.

MYTH:

Abuse stems from a momentary loss of temper.

FACT:

  • Intimate partner violence is the establishment of control and fear in a relationship through violence and other forms of abuse.  The violence may not happen often, but it remains a hidden and constant terrorizing factor.

  • More than 80% of male abusers are not physically aggressive towards any other adults in their lives. They solely assault their intimate partner.  If domestic violence were a mental illness or behavioral disorder, abusers would assault others in addition to their intimate partner.

  • Intimate partner violence is rarely an isolated occurrence; assaults typically escalate in frequency and intensity.  Assault is a crime whether it is committed within or outside the family.

MYTH:

Alcohol and drug abuse cause domestic violence.

FACT:

  • Alcohol and substance abuse do not cause domestic violence, but they do severely complicate it.

  • An individual under the influence of a substance can cause more serious injuries.

  • Many abusers do not use substances. These are issues that must be treated separately.

MYTH:

Intimate Partner Violence is the victim’s fault. If they stopped provoking their partner, then the violence would stop.

FACT:

  • No one deserves or asks to be abused, for any reason.

  • Nothing a victim does ever justifies the use of violence, threats, control, or intimidation.

DATING VIOLENCE

Unfortunately, there are many misconceptions surrounding teen dating violence that can make young adults feel as though their problems are irrelevant, misunderstood, or unimportant. The following are examples of a few of those uneducated assumptions:

MYTH:

Teen dating violence rarely happens.

FACT:

Teen dating violence is as common as domestic violence in adult relationships. A 2001 study of high school students conducted by Harvard University found that one in five teenage girls had been physically or sexually abused by a dating partner.

MYTH:

Some victims of teen dating violence or sexual assault provoke the violence committed by their dates by making them jealous, acting mean, or teasing them into thinking they want to have sex.

FACT:

Dating violence is NEVER a victim’s fault. There is no such thing as victim precipitated violence.

MYTH:

Sexual assault rarely happens to teens, and when it does, it is perpetrated by a stranger.

FACT:

Middle school, high school, and college age women experience a higher rate of rape than any other group. Rape is most likely to be perpetrated by someone the victim knows, such as a friend, an acquaintance, a date, a family member, or a partner.

Telephone & Fax Number
T: 406-222-5902

F: 406-333-2285

Business Office

411 E Callender Street

Livingston, Montana 59047

Mailing Address

P.O. Box 653

Livingston, Montana 59047

24/7 Support Line: 406-222-8154

Advocates are available 7 days a week,

24 hours a day including holidays.

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