Many women experience domestic violence as part of their daily lives, and often do not recognise it as such. It is about power and control and not always about physical violence. (We do recognise that some men experience domestic violence in heterosexual and same sex relationships and that women can experience violence from other women, however in the vast majority of cases domestic violence is perpetrated by a man to a woman.)
Violence against women is a serious social, criminal and community safety issue. In an average year one in ten women are know to have experienced violence from a partner or ex-partner, in Leeds alone this equates to over 35,000 women. One in four women will experience Domestic Violence at some stage in their lives. One third of all violent crime in West Yorkshire is domestic related. Latest Metropolitan Police figures suggest that Police are called out to a domestic related incident every 60 seconds.
Domestic violence can be:
- Punches and kicks
- The use of weapons
- Forced sex
- Other sexual assaults
- Forcing sex in front of/with other people
- Being imprisoned in house
- Not being allowed to see family and friends
- Being made to feel worthless
- Being put down in public and private
- Being made to feel ashamed/humiliated
- Not being allowed money
- Money being restricted
Domestic violence happens to women regardless of age, race, class, marital status, sexuality and disability.
Many excuses can be used to explain violent behaviour, most often he will blame the woman.