Domestic abuse is a pattern of behavior which involves violence or other abuse by one person against another in a domestic setting, such as in marriage or cohabitation.
One misconception is that domestic abuse only occurs between partners (i.e., couples). There can be violence and abuse between siblings, children and parents, or even between a caretaker and the person in need of care. Victims are encouraged to make a report to the authorities or seek professional help if they have been:
slapped, hit, or punched
threatened with a weapon
told that he or she is not worthy of being loved or cared for
prohibited from openly practicing his or her religious beliefs
forced to surrender his or her money for the other person to manage and control
prohibited from making decisions
forced into unwanted sexual activity
forced into activities that put him or her at any type of risk
Mental health professionals are able to provide psychological and behaviors health evaluations that include educating the individual about risk factors, having a safety plan, and assessing community supports for individual and family safety.