There are differing views, of course, as to what constitutes the predominant health concern in the United States. Some people might reasonably weigh in with the view that heart-related diseases top the bill. Others might just as easily point to cancer concerns.
The U.S. Surgeon General has an opinion on the subject, and he opts to go with domestic violence.
That expressed viewpoint is both eye-opening and depressing. As we noted in our immediately preceding blog post, though, it is hardly surprising in light of increased reports of domestic abuse actions occurring across the country.
A prominent provider of legal information has weighed in on the subject, noting that violence must first be defined before it can be meaningfully addressed and curtailed.
A federal government office focused on the problem states that domestic violence is “a pattern of abusive behavior” engaged in by one partner in a relationship to gain an unhealthy control or leverage over the other partner.
As the above-cited source notes, that behavior is widely encompassing. Although it is likely that most people tend to look at domestic abuse initially in terms of physical violence, abuse can also be sexual (marital rape, derogatory sexual comments), emotional (criticizing, demeaning) and economic. The latter type of abuse can involve one partner’s attempt to totally control financial information and resources through withholding funds, denying the other partner the opportunity to seek work and related actions.
A warped psychology is also involved in acts that involve threats, intimidation and stalking.
As we noted in a prior blog post (please see our entry dated August 14), domestic violence is “egalitarian,” meaning that its victims transcend any demographic limitations. In other words: Any person can be a victim of abuse.
Victims often need to be reminded that help is available to combat this insidious harm. The source link inserted above in this post contains contact information for many advocacy groups and agencies.
Additionally, many violence victims in family relationships find it immediately helpful to speak candidly with a proven family law attorney.