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October is Domestic Violence Awareness Month (DVAM). Domestic violence, whether it is called family violence, intimate partner violence, or battering, is a pattern of behavior that is used to exert power and control over a spouse or other person with intimidation and fear. In most cases, the threat or use of violence has an impact on the development of the victim socially, psychologically and emotionally. It also has an impact on the victims physical health; and it is a factor in homelessness.

The perpetrators of abuse typically use intimidation, threats, isolation, and various other forms of abuse to maintain power and control over their victims. It is also important to note that men who witnessed domestic violence as a child are more likely to be abusers themselves as adults.

According to AVDA, CEO Sherri Kendall, Domestic Violence Awareness Month began from the Day of Unity, in Oct. 1981, as a way to connect advocates across the U.S. and evolved into DVAM as now recognized. The goal of AVDA is to “end family violence by advocating for the safety and self-determination of victims, promoting accountability for abusers and fostering a community response to abuse.”

For assistance, One can call  AVDA at 713-224-9911, or the National Domestic Violence Hotline at 1-800-799-SAFE (7233).

AVDA offers a number of programs to make assist victims and to  make the public more aware of the issues surrounding domestic violence. Rebecca Hazen, Staff Writer, The Houston Chronicle has more information, here:

Unhappy Couple

Source: SolStock / Getty

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