On average, 24 people per minute are victims of rape, physical violence or stalking by an intimate partner in the United States. (Source) Each October, service agencies and activists alike seek to raise awareness of this violence and its impact on individuals, families and communities. Designated as Domestic Violence Awareness Month (DVAM), this month provides an opportunity to learn about dating and domestic violence, to share information and resources with friends, family and neighbors, and to create change.
1. Violence impacts everyone.
1 in 3 women and 1 in 4 men will be in a violent relationship in their lifetime. Some populations experience violence at even higher rates, including people of color, people with disabilities, young people, and those who identify as LGBTQ:
- Abusive partners in LGBTQ relationships also reinforce their tactics that maintain power and control with societal factors that compound the complexity a survivor faces in leaving or getting safe in an LGBTQ relationship. (Source) The limited data available suggests that those who identify as gay, lesbian, bisexual and queer experience intimate partner violence at the same rate as those who identify as straight, if not at a higher rate. Trans and nonbinary people also experience intimate partner violence at the same rate as cisgender people, and likely at a higher rate.
- 1 in 3 adolescents in the U.S. is a victim of physical, sexual, emotional or verbal abuse from a dating partner, a figure that far exceeds rates of other types of youth violence, and nearly half (43%) of dating college women report experiencing violent and abusive dating behaviors. (Source)
- Native women experience relationship violence at even higher rates; more than half experience physical abuse, and 2 in 3 experience psychological abuse. (Source)
- People with disabilities are more likely to experience abuse than people without disabilities. Because abuse is about power and control, people with disabilities may face unique challenges and barriers to accessing support. (Source)
2. Violence is never the victim's fault.
Domestic violence is a pattern of abusive behaviors used by one individual intended to exert power and control over another individual in the context of an intimate or family relationship. Learn more.
3. There are resources available.
Domestic violence comes in many forms, and it isolates survivors and victims from social and financial help, often leaving them to choose between returning to their abuser or becoming homeless. Learn more.
4. You can support survivors.
As a friend, family member or coworker of someone in an unhealthy or violent relationship, you may be the first person to recognize your loved one is not safe. There are many things you can do to maintain your relationship with them and assist them in building a safety net for them, their children and their pets. Get tips.
5. Change is in your hands.
Donate now to provide life-saving programs and services to survivors.