10 Things I've Learned About Domestic Violence

Friday, 5 June 2020

While on my journey of healing from my marriage, I have learned a few things. Some of the things, I've known all along but didn't connect the dots until now. Hindsight really is 20/20.

#1. The kids are listening. Even when they aren't in the room, or you think they are sleeping; they are listening. The kids are scared of the things they hear. The effects of domestic violence often go unnoticed until the kids begin to act out.

#2. It's estimated that every 60 seconds, 20 people in America are abused by an intimate partner. 1 in 4 women and 1 in 7 men have been the victim of abuse by an intimate partner. Maybe you aren't in a violent, abusive relationship. Chances are that you know someone who is. Please learn the signs of abuse so you can help your friend, family member, or coworker.

#3. Domestic violence has been linked to PTSD. It was once believed that PTSD only affects combat veterans. Researchers now know PTSD affects victims of intimate abuse as well as other traumatic events. People with untreated PTSD are more likely to abuse others.

#4. The abuser will not accept responsibility for his/her actions and is likely to always blame the victim. The abuser will also spend his/her time seeking the sympathy of others.

#5. Narcissists are not likely to change. For change to happen the narcissist would need to be able to recognize his/her abusive behavior and really want to change. The nature of narcissism prevents such recognition and willingness to change.

#6. The victim will often become an abuser. If you're a victim of physical, mental, emotional, or other forms of abuse, it is extremely important to get help. As an abuse victim, you are more likely to become an abuser than a person who has not suffered abuse.

#7. Traumatic bonding is a thing. Traumatic bonding is defined as a strong emotional attachment between an abused person and his/her abuser, formed as a result of the cycle of violence. Traumatic bonding often keeps the victim from leaving the abusive relationship.

#8. Gaslighting is also a thing; a very common thing. The gaslighter will sow seeds of doubt to the point that the victim begins to question his/her own perception of reality. The victim will begin to question their own sanity. The gaslighter will make sure his/her victim has no self-worth and will often convince the victim that he/she is the abuser.

#9. After leaving a domestic violence relationship, friends and family will often unknowingly assist the abuser in harassing the victim. Friends and family will try to "help" by telling the victim what the abuser is doing and saying. This act is not helpful and is another way for the abuser to harass the victim. The abuser is counting on the good intentions of friends and family. If you have a loved one who has just escaped an abusive relationship, the best way you can help is to stop communicating with the abuser. Your loved one doesn't need to know every time the abuser makes a disturbing social media post or solicits pity from others.

#10. The last and most important thing I've learned about domestic violence since leaving my own narcissistic, abusive relationship is that leaving is easier than staying. While you're being abused, leaving seems impossible and unattainable. This really isn't the case. Once you make the decision to leave, just start putting one foot in front of the other and don't look back. Just keep going. There will be people to help you along the way. That fear you have is another side effect of the abuse you've suffered. Your abuser needs you to think you'll be all on your own without anyone to help you so you will stay.  Reach out your hand for help. There will be someone there to help you.


  1. This is a great informative post Jessica, I am so proud of you for taking your steps and never looking back. I am proud of this new life you're making for you and your kids. I am here for you always. Love you!

  2. Thank you! Your support over these difficult years has been so great. I don't know that I could do it without you.