Domestic violence is often misunderstood by both those inside and outside of abusive relationships. Those facing abuse at home in Louisiana may struggle not only with the issue they are facing at home, but the many misconceptions held by those around them. Here are a few of the common myths about domestic violence.

One of the most common myths about domestic abuse is that it is only physical. In fact, many people are damaged by hurtful actions or controlling behavior in relationships even if no physical contact is made. Another myth is that men are the only people who perpetrate domestic violence. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention dispelled this myth by reporting that one in seven men in the United States have been victims of severe physical violence by an intimate partner.

Abuse happens to those who live in affluent parts of Louisiana, not just those in poverty or who are uneducated. Victims may be very intelligent, professional people, as may abusers. Victims may also choose to stay in very dangerous and hurtful situations for reasons ranging from fear to financial insecurity, so the fact that someone does not leave is not necessarily an indicator of how tolerable the situation is or was.

Those who do choose to leave a domestic abuse situation may find themselves vulnerable as their former partner may have means and motive to find and hurt them. In Louisiana, restraining orders can help some cases like this. Meeting with a lawyer to understand the legal avenues to move on from a domestic violence situation may be a good idea for some victims, especially if a separation agreement or divorce is involved.

Source: The Washington Post, “Five myths about domestic violence“, Susan R. Paisner, Feb. 23, 2018