Domestic Violence Awareness Month
October is Domestic Violence Awareness Month. Physical, spiritual, sexual, emotional, psychological and economic abuse are defined as types of domestic abuse by the U.S. Department of Justice. The Department of Justice published crime victim statistics which illustrate that women between the ages of 18-24 experience domestic violence at a higher rate than other demographic groups. Domestic violence may not be one of the first obstacles a freshmen student thinks about when entering college, but it’s a problem that nearly one-third of college students report experiencing during their college years.
This type of abuse can act as a barrier which impedes a student’s ability to complete their coursework. According to statistics provided by the University of Michigan, domestic violence can make students feel isolated or trapped, especially if they associate in the same social circle. Victims may fear going to class or avoid going to parts of campus where they may cross paths with their abusive partner. In some cases, students may not even realize that they’re involved in an abusive relationship. Here are some signs of a potentially abusive relationship:
- Fear of your partner for any reason
- Feeling emotionally numb or helpless when around your partner
- Your partner has a bad temper
- Your partner puts you down or criticizes you
- Your partner threatens you in any way
- Your partner takes control of your finances
- Your partner keeps you from seeing friends or family
- Your partner is jealous or possessive
Student Victim Assistance on campus helps people to understand the signs of an abusive relationship. The advocate can help to assist the student with referrals to on and off campus services. Student Victim Assistance offers a 24-hour crisis line available at 404-413-1965. Resources are also available through the Counseling and Testing Center to help deal with the emotional stress from experiencing abuse.