Domestic Violence: What is it, and what can you do about it?
Domestic Violence: What is it, and what can you do about it?
Let’s start off with a definition of Domestic Violence, so you can see if you recognize it in any relationships.


 Domestic violence (DV) is a pattern of abusive behavior in any relationship where one partner attempts to gain or maintain power and control over another. It can be physical, sexual, emotional, economic, psychological, or technological. DV may be threatening or coercive behavior that negatively affects an intimate partner. This includes intimidation, manipulation, humiliation, and isolation, to name a few. Here are some examples of abusive behavior:


Physical abuse; punching, slapping, grabbing, biting, and hair-pulling, are all forms of physical abuse. This type of abuse also includes denying a partner medical care or forcing them to take alcohol and/or drugs. 


Sexual Harassment: Forcing or attempting to force sexual intercourse or any other non-consensual act. Sexual harassment includes but is not limited to, marital rape, sexual assault, forced sex after physical violence, or indecent exposure. 


Emotional abuse; Undermining a person's sense of self-worth is bullying. This includes, but is not limited to, constant criticism, curtailment of rights, name-calling, or damage to a relationship with children. 


Economic exploitation: Controlling or restricting a person's right to obtain, use, or retain economic resources to which he is entitled. This includes using coercion, fraud, or deception to prevent someone from obtaining money, assets, credit, or financial information


Psychological Abuse: This includes, but is not limited to, inciting fear through harassment; making threats of harm to self, partner, children, family, or friends; destruction of property. It also includes forced isolation from family, friends, school, and work.


Technological abuse: Action or conduct intended to harm, threaten, manipulate, harass, recruit, exploit, extort, or monitor another person through any form of technology, including, but not limited to: Internet-enabled devices, online. space and platforms, computers, mobile devices, cameras and imaging programs, applications, geo-tracking devices, communications technologies, or any emerging technologies. You should monitor social media platforms of the abuser to see if they are speaking negatively about you or posting private information or pictures.


Domestic violence can affect anyone, regardless of race, age, sexual orientation, religion, sexuality, or gender. Domestic violence affects people from all socioeconomic backgrounds and educational levels. Domestic violence and gender-based violence can affect intimate partners who are married, cohabiting, dating, or sharing a child.


Domestic violence not only affects its victims, but also has a great impact on other family members, friends, co-workers, and the community as a whole. Children who grow up witnessing domestic violence are among the most affected by this crime. Repeated exposure to domestic violence can cause psychological damage to a child, causing them to believe it is a normal part of life and repeat the cycle.


What can you do about domestic violence in New York City?


NYC 24-Hour Domestic Violence Hotline: 1-800-621-HOPE

You can call this hotline for help, 24 hours a day. They can give you information on what to do next, including where to go if you need immediate assistance such as shelter.

If you are in immediate danger, you should call 911 and ask the police for assistance. The offender can be removed from the house or arrested if there has been physical abuse.

Children witnessing domestic violence

If you are a parent who is the victim of domestic violence and your have minor children in the house who are witnessing the abuse, you must do something about it or you can lose your children. Children who are exposed to domestic abuse committed by one or both of their parents suffer from it also. Domestic abuse can trigger a Child Protective Services investigation.


If it is alleged that you did not take appropriate action to protect your children from exposure to the DV, you could end up facing neglect charges in Family Court.  

If you would like to learn more about Family Court in Nassau County, or perhaps schedule a free consultation with a Family Lawyer, please visit


The point of this discussion is to help educate the public on the pitfalls of domestic violence, what it looks like, and how to combat it. The Violence Against Women Act contains definitions of domestic violence that govern programs funded under the Act. The discussion here does not change the definition of DV in VAWA.


Sources: National Domestic Violence Hotline, National Center for Victims of Crime, and


Important Links


Hiring A Divorce Attorney


Child Protective Services FAQS



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