Saturday, October 18, 2008

Domestic Violence Awareness Month

I was unaware of this months dual role of breast cancer an awareness as well as domestic violence awareness.

I did something for breast cancer, and was going to skip over DVM but that would be unfair since i have no experience with breast cancer but i have first hand knowledge of domestic violence.

Very early first hand experience.

You see I don't remember much about being kid other than some memories of abuse towards me or some one close to me.

I'm funny that way still, if you asked to pull a favorite holiday memory out of my head I cant do it.

But I can tell you exactly what the guy who molested me looked like, the first time I saw a dead body, or the first time I saw my mother cry.

My father was responsible for the last one, it was the first time I ever saw a man hit a woman.

My father hit my mother for ignoring a letter he had tossed on the table for her.

In front of my brother an aunt and I he hit her hard on top of the head several times.

I remember cradling her head in my arms as she cried, not saying anything.

I remember that as clear as day.

I recall dating a woman who was verbally abusive to me no matter what I did till I finally told her to kick rocks.

A year later through the rumor mill I found out she was dating a man who beat on her and that made her happy.

I had a friend who was so shaken by her ex that she asked me what would be a good gun that she could get to protect herself.

There was the ex of mine who was beaten by her boyfriend at the time with a leg of a night table in front of her daughter.

She escaped by leaving the daughter behind, jumping over a balcony rail and running to the neighbors to call the police.

The blood was still all over the carpet when I visited her later that week.

I can tell you more and more, about some real dysfunctional people, relationships both men and women, but that's the problem right there.

There is more and more.

I have seen a lot of it up close and personal from both sides, and I wonder what made me different.

I don't know how come I never gave in and hit a woman, because believe me boys and girls there were plenty of women I came across who I wanted to give some free rhinoplasty work to including the same ex who jumped the rail.

But I never bit.

Always said to hell with it and walked away.

I thank God for that.

Now I have no idea what makes people act the way they do in this matter, I can recite the stuff I learned in books to you but that would be all it would be a recital, because I do not understand the motivation for it.

What I can do is give a little information out for anyone who comes across this blog and is unaware of what October is or who might be looking for answers.

So here we go.

From Prevail.

Did you know that perpetrators of domestic violence act in ways that are predictive of their violent personality? Below is a list of behavioral characteristics that are common in men who abuse their partners.

Abusive of a previous partner


Controlling behavior

Pushes for an immediate commitment

Dr. Jekyll/ Mr. Hyde personality

Sexually aggressive

Abusive or disrespectful gender roles


Blames others for his feelings or behavior

Unrealistic expectations

Cruelty towards animals or children

These are the signs that some one you know may be in an abusive relationship.

Gives up favored hobbies or activities.

Changes in dress or appearance due to partner’s disapproval.

Increasing isolation or withdrawal from family and friends.

Sudden changes in mood or personality.


Signs/ symptoms of anxiety or depression.

Fear of partner or fear of discussing relationship.

Increase in alcohol or drug use.

Unexplained injuries such as scratches, cuts or bruises (or a story that is inconsistent with the injuries).

Breaking the Cycle of Domestic Violence: Helping the Survivor-

Reassure them that the abuse is NOT their fault and they have done NOTHING to deserve this treatment.

Validate their feelings.

Recognize their right to make their own decisions, even if they decide to stay in the relationship. REMEMBER, only the person in the relationship knows when it is safe and appropriate to break away.

NEVER tell someone to leave.

Do not attack the batterer.

Support them, no matter what.

Educate yourself and the community.

If you are familiar, provide resources for them to seek help if and when they are ready.

Addressing the Batterer-

Do not confront the batterer directly as that may put the survivor at greater risk.

Hold the batterer accountable for his actions.

For more information or help call the Domestic Violence Hot line: 1-800-799-7233