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October is Domestic Violence Awareness Month

By Campus Security–October is Domestic Violence Awareness Month.  It is important to not be silent but vocal and get help when you need it.  Domestic violence not only affects the victim but the victim’s family, co-workers, and friends.  It takes a toll on everyone.  The only way to break the cycle is getting help and getting out of the relationship as quickly as possible.

Domestic violence is about power and control.  It’s not about love.  It can and does happen to anyone, both men and women.  One out of every four women are victims of domestic violence and nearly 3 million men are victims a year.

The type of violence that can occur is sexual, physical, and emotional/verbal.  Domestic Violence affects both the physical, mental, and emotional health of the victim.  Often times the victim will try to cover up any marks, seem distant, or always checking in with their partner.  It is important if you see these types of signs with anyone you know it is important that you encourage them to get help.  You will need to be the voice for them.

Domestic violence tends to be a cycle or pattern.  It starts with the tension phase where communication breaks down and stress and tension rises.  The woman or man will become nurturing and try to help resolve the issue.  The next is the battering phase where the violence occurs and the assailant justifies their actions.  The victim feels like they “deserved it” as the partner blames them for the actions.  The final phase is “honeymoon phase” where the partner will ask for forgiveness, act loving/caring, and give gifts.  The cycle will repeat itself.

If you know of anyone that needs help but they are not sure where to go you can contact the Council on Sexual Assault and Domestic Violence here in Sioux City at (712) 258-7233.  They have resources including a place for people to stay during the process.  They have victim advocates and work closely with the police department.  Always call 911 if you are being physically or sexually assaulted.

Don’t be silent.  Break the cycle.  Get help.  End the abuse.