Crimes of domestic abuse crimes are responsible for an alarming number of injuries and deaths each year, spanning all classes and races, as well as all income and education levels. Such behavior usually begins with a pattern of threats, insults, or irrational jealousy, and gradually becomes more frequent and severe over time. The abuser utilizes abusive tactics to essentially isolate, overpower, and control the victim.
What Does Domestic Violence Look Like?
While this is the typical abuse cycle, domestic violence can look very different from one case to the next. There are multiple kinds of abuse, all capable of causing long-term emotional, mental, and physical damage. There are five general categories of domestic violence, each of which is defined by certain behaviors:
- Physical - This is usually one of the first categories we think of when we consider domestic violence. Inflicting any kind of physical harm on a partner, such as hitting, kicking, slapping, punching, or forcing them to use drugs or alcohol classifies as physical abuse;
- Sexual - Forcing sexual contact without a partner’s consent is considered a form of domestic violence. A number of behaviors define this type of violence, including rape, treating someone in a sexually demeaning manner, or coercing someone into a sex act. Additionally, attacking sexual parts of the body also qualifies as sexual abuse;
- Emotional – Using words to inflict emotional pain is a type of domestic violence that commonly occurs between abusive partners and their victims. This can include calling someone names, belittling them, undermining their self-worth or diminishing their abilities. If someone is continuously criticizing their partner and breaking them down with their words, they are guilty of emotional abuse.
- Economic – Some victims are unable to recognize economic abuse when it is happening, but it is more common than many people realize. If a person seizes his or her partner’s financial resources or takes complete control over the finances in order to keep them in a dependent state, they are economically abusive. Other behaviors that define this category of domestic violence include preventing a partner from attending work or school, or cutting them off from the ability to access funds in any way; and
- Psychological – Psychological domestic abuse can take many shapes and forms and may include a combination of behaviors. Using fear to intimidate and control a partner, or making physical threats against them or their family and pets is all considered psychological abuse. Using fear to manipulate a partner in any way is a key behavior that defines this category of domestic violence.
Being accused of any form of domestic violence is a serious matter. If you are facing potential domestic violence charges, contact an experienced DuPage County criminal defense attorney today. Call 630-933-8400 to speak with a member of our team today and make sure you understand your rights in a court of law.