Working as a Pharmacist, I have seen many behaviors, illnesses, and addictions. It’s safe to say that I’m not surprised by much. But something happened recently to move me and make me angry at the same time. One of my customers reluctantly admitted that she was a victim of domestic violence. The black eye and the purple bruises along her jaw and neck were obvious, even beneath all the makeup. After counseling her on her medication use and offering her the domestic violence hotline, I wondered how many women were suffering through this same situation. I did a little research and I’m sad to say that domestic violence and violence against women are still alive and growing. Here is what I found.
1. 1 in every 4 women in the United States will experience some form of domestic violence in her lifetime.
2. About 85% of the victims of domestic violence are women
3. Teenage dating violence is a growing problem
4. Most domestic violence issues are never reported
5. About one-third of the reported cases of women who are killed, are murdered by an intimate partner.
6. It has been documented that about 7.8 million women have been raped by an intimate partner (that was in 2003).
Domestic violence or abuse happens in different ways. It may be physical, psychological, sexual, emotional, or even economical. I also found that each state has different laws. Only certain types of relationships apply to domestic violence laws. Most states require the victim and the person responsible for the abuse to be married or formerly married, living together, or have a child together.
There are several organizations shining light on the domestic violence across the country.
The Clothesline Project is an organization which brings awareness to violence against women.
The National Domestic Violence Hotline and the National Coalition Against Domestic Violence are other organizations fighting the cause. If you or someone you know needs help, please call 1.800.799.SAFE, or visit http://www.ndvh.org for more information.