One in three people are affected by domestic violence in some way, and if you are one of these people there is help available. If you are in a dangerous relationship, it is important that you erase your browsing history on your computer to protect your safety. If you are in immediate danger, call 911 now.
How the Cycle of Violence Works
Domestic violence can happen to anyone. Family violence happens in every kind of neighborhood and to every type of person. Domestic abuse works in a cycle. The more you know about the cycle of violence, the more empowered you will be to make a change.
Before the violence is the romantic stage. If violent people had a sign on their head that read “I am an abuser,” people would know to stay away. Unfortunately, people who abuse are still people, and they have both good and bad qualities. In the beginning, most abusers are romantic. They often have dynamic personalities, and people may be surprised to find out that they can become violent.
The romantic stage is followed by building tension. This stage occurs when the abuser begins to make hurtful comments or indicate that he or she may be abusive in the future. Stories of past violence, angry outbursts, jealous behavior or stalking behavior may occur at this stage.
This tension leads to a violent episode. This stage involves either severe emotional abuse or physical violence. This is the stage in which people may become injured or killed. This is also the stage after which most people seek help.
Violent episodes are often followed by an absence of violence. The abuser may promise to change, apologize, send gifts or try to change his or her behavior. The abuser may make his or her partner feel guilty or make excuses about behavior. Many times, the abused person will take his or her partner back at this time. After this fourth step, tension building and a violent episode usually reoccur. The biggest problem with this cycle is that the cycle will become more violent and more dangerous each time. It is important that you seek help now.
The Connection between Substance Abuse and Domestic Violence
You may already know that there is a connection between addiction and abuse. Substances may make a violent person angrier, or they may make arguments more severe. Sometimes, a person who has been abused for a long time will begin using drugs or alcohol to cope with the emotional and physical pain.
Just like the cycle of abuse, a cycle of substance abuse will not get better without treatment. Without proper help and treatment, this cycle will never end.