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Types of Violence

Domestic violence can happen to anyone. It can happen in all types of relationships including female abuse of a male partner, older adults abused by caretakers,  abuse in teen dating relationships  and abuse in lesbian, bisexual and transgender relationships. It also happens against people with disabilities, and is often overlooked. The term Domestic Violence is often referred to as “Intimate Partner Violence.” All intimate partner violence is illegal and traumatic.

Domestic Violence or Relationship Abuse is a pattern of abusive and coercive behaviors used to maintain power and control over a former or current intimate partner. Abuse can be emotional, financial, sexual or physical and can include threats, isolation, and intimidation. Abuse tends to escalate over time. When someone uses abuse and violence against a partner, it is always part of a larger pattern of control. 


Sexual Violence – Sexual assault is an unwanted or forced sexual act committed without consent. It can occur either against a person’s will, by force or coercion, or when a person is incapable of giving consent, such as when they are under the influence of drugs or alcohol. Force includes actual physical aggression, threats of physical aggression, emotional coercion, and/or psychological blackmailing.

Dating Violence - Teen dating violence “includes physical, psychological or sexual abuse; harassment; or stalking of any person ages 12 to 18 in the context of a past or present romantic or consensual relationship.”


Teen Dating Power and Control Wheel
Stalking/Harassment - A pattern of behavior directed at a person in a way that would cause a person to feel fearful and unsafe. It may escalate over time and lead to violence.


Human Trafficking - The recruitment, transportation, solicitation, kidnapping, and/or obtainment of a person, and sex trafficking refers to this practice for the purpose of sexually exploiting them by forcing them to commit commercial sex acts through force or coercion. 


Abuse of Older Adults – Committed by a person in caregiver roll or a person the older adult trusts, or mistreatment occurring in a residential care facility usually perpetrated by someone responsible to provide an element of care or protection. 
Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender Violence – Domestic Partner violence occurs in the lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and questioning (LGBTQ) community with the same frequency and intensity as the heterosexual community. Unfortunately, LGBTQ partner violence remains underreported and largely unacknowledged in both the heterosexual and LGBTQ communities. A common threat an abusive partner will use to maintain control is the threat of “outing” their partner. LGBTQ survivors may resist seeking help due to concerns they will not receive the same fair and unbiased assistance & services from systems as their heterosexual counterparts.
Violence against People with Disabilities – While all of us want or need support, many individuals with disabilities rely on others for food, medication, finances, personal care, or equipment that is necessary for independence and survival. People with disabilities may experience subtle forms of abuse such as denial of these basic needs by a partner or personal care provider. This can have devastating emotional, medical or even lethal consequences. These factors can also limit a person with disabilities ability to report abuse or ask for help.

What are the forms of Domestic Violence?

Domestic violence can be a hidden secret in many households across the United States. VIP can assist you in many ways. If you find that you or someone you know is a victim of domestic violence, please contact VIP to see how we can help you.

Examples of abusive behavior include:

Physical: Pushing, shoving, slapping, strangulation, punching, kicking, using an object or weapon, using force to cause pain or injury
Emotional: Name calling, threatening to harm partner, family, friends, pets or possessions, using insults (verbal abuse), isolation and harassment
Sexual: Sexual contact or acts without consent or forced through threats of physical harm
Financial/Economic: Control of your access to money, financial documents and information, restricting your ability to earn money /hold a job, forcing non-consensual debt accrual (like applying for credit cards or loans in your name without consent)
Psychological: Psychological abuse involves fear, humiliation, intimidation and control, including controlling what you do, who you see or where you go. Many survivors, friends and families realize only after physical abuse begins that emotional, sexual, economic or psychological abuse were present during the early stages of the relationship.
Technological: Technology-facilitated abuse is a form of controlling behavior that involves the use of technology as a means to coerce or harass another person. This can include controlling whom you can be friends with or follow on social media, sending unwanted or threatening emails/texts, or stealing your passwords and accessing your digital accounts or personal devices.

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