When there is a clear pattern of abusive behaviours in a closely connected group of individuals, then you will recognise there is domestic assault. Family relationship, kinship, marriage, dating and friendly relationship are instances of close family relationships. The following sections will look at the various kinds of domestic assault.
Physical maltreatment is when someone uses physical antagonism such as beating,kicking,biting and throwing items at an individual. A victim of physical assault may suffer critical injuries, become disabled or die. This type of assault is usually easily detected when compared to other kinds of domestic abuse in criminal code. Here are some ways in which you can act:
- Go to a room in the house with a door or window and try to escape. Lock the abuser outside if you can. A room with a telephone for calling the police is also a good choice.
- Avoid any confrontation in the kitchen or in bathrooms. The kitchen provides easy access to weapons, such as knives and heavy blunt objects and bathrooms often have closets and other small spaces where the abuser can trap you.
- Form a safety plan. The National Center on Domestic and Sexual Violence has a PDF form that will help you develop a plan for what to do if you have to call the authorities. Fill it out and keep a copy in a safe, secure place where your abuser cannot find it.
- Call a domestic violence hotline. Call 911 (or your local emergency number) immediately for help; teach your children to dial 9-1-1
It is a mere phone call away, 1(866) 799-7233 (SAFE). Do not become a statistic.
- Find a safe shelter. If you have pre-arranged with a friend or family member, go to their house. If you have children, take them with you. You can also search for safehouses and women’s shelters in your area. A domestic violence hotline may be able to refer you to a safe location.
Many persons in an abusive relationship will not reach out to friends and family fearing the personal repercussions, should the abuser be confronted. Many suffer in silence. Please, seek help today. Some are even fearful of using the computer, possibly being discovered during their search for information on domestic violence. Many websites offering resources and help for the abused now offer “quick escape” buttons that allows the one browsing for information a speedy exit should the abuser walk into the room.