October is Domestic Violence Awareness Month and October may be over, but that doesn’t change the fact that more people should be aware about Domestic Violence and how to watch for it. According to domesticviolencestatistics.org, Around the world, at least one in every three women have been beaten, coerced into sex or otherwise abused during her lifetime and most often they know or are related to their abuser. Nearly 1 in 5 teenage girls who have been in a relationship claim that a boyfriend threatened them, if they thought about breaking off the relationship. But the statistic that gets me the most, about every nine seconds in the US a woman is assaulted or beaten. That’s roughly 9,000 woman a day. And its not only women, men do experience abuse as well.
According to helpguide.com, domestic violence and abuse are used for one for one purpose: to gain and maintain control over you. The abusers use fear, guilt, shame, and intimidation to wear you down and keep you under their thumb. Your abuser may also hurt you, threaten you, or try to hurt those around you. These types of abuse don’t discriminate. Domestic abuse often escalates from threats and verbal abuse to physical violence. Although the physical abuse is the most obvious, the mental and verbal abuse is very severe.
According to Breaking the Silence Handbook, Any situation that you are forced into that is unwanted, unsafe or degrading sexual activity is sexual abuse, no matter what. Even if you are in a committed relationship be it with a boyfriend/girlfriend or a spouse, forced sex is an act of aggression and violence. Additionally people whose significant other abuse them sexually and physically are at a higher risk of serious injury or death. Even if you think that your situation seems minor compared to other instances that you’ve read or heard about, there isn’t a “better” or “worse” form of abuse.
If you feel that you are victim of any type of abuse, there are a lot of resources to students right here on campus. You can talk to counselors at Birkham, you can talk to advisors, a trusted adult or even get restraining orders from campus police if needed. Go to www.ferris.edu/birkhamhealthcenter.com or you can call them at 231-591-2614. If you feel that you need to talk to the Department of Public Safety, you can call them at 231-591-5000 or visit them at the DPS office located in Bond Circle on the west side of campus.Check out loveisrespect.org, or thehotline.org. For more information you can call the National Domestic Violence hotline at 1-800-799-7233, it may just help or save a life.