Intimate Partner Violence has two widely accepted definitions. The World Health Organization defines it as: “Any behavior within an intimate relationship that causes physical, psychological or sexual harm to those in the relationship”. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention defines it as: “A pattern of coercive behaviors that may include repeated battering and injury, psychological abuse, sexual assault, progressive social isolation, deprivation and intimidation”. In simpler terms, Intimate Partner Violence (IPV) is one person exhibiting power and control over another . Here are 6 facts you may not know about IPV:
- There are 4 main phases in the cycle of Intimate Partner Violence. They are the Honeymoon Phase, Tension-Building Phase, Explosive Phase, and Reconciliation.
- IPV victims can include female victims of male perpetrators, male victims of female perpetrators, males or females in homosexual relationships, and adolescents. Intimate Partner Violence does not judge; ANYONE can be a victim.
- An estimated 1.5 MILLION women and 830,000 men are physically or sexually assaulted by an intimate partner in the United States each year.
- A social worker that works in IPV works to raise awareness through education, performing universal assessments, risk assessments, intervention and counseling.
- #1 reason people stay in abusive relationships: for the kids. #1 reason people leave abusive relationships: for the kids. There may be a need to keep a family together, the importance of a parental figure or the fear of CPS involvement that could result in a loss of custody.
- 6. Other reasons individuals may not seek help can be due to individual barriers such as: low self-esteem, guilt, self-blame, fear of reprisal, gender considerations, failure to recognize violence as a problem, conflicting emotional states or practical concerns like unemployment and financial dependence. There are also societal/cultural barriers to seeking help. These include language barriers, consequences related to immigration status and invalidation by peers and family. Lastly, systemic barriers to seeking help consist of the belief that the legal system is not helpful, lack of health care provider knowledge, or the cost of medical care.
All information is from John Vassello’s Week 3: Intimate Partner Violence Powerpoint.