Domestic Violence Awareness and Help

Acts of violence within intimate relationships can have serious consequences to the victims and families involved. Domestic violence includes physical, sexual, emotional and psychological abuse. Arapahoe County wants to end domestic violence and provide helpful resources for the victims and those who may need to support someone near and dear to them.

On average, nearly 20 people per minute are physically abused by an intimate partner in the United States. During one year, this equates to more than 10 million women and men. Read more…

Domestic Violence in Colorado

  • 36.8% of Colorado women and 30.5% of Colorado men experience intimate partner physical violence, intimate partner sexual violence and/or intimate partner stalking in their lives.
  • 32 Coloradans were killed by former or current intimate partners in 2018; almost 2/3 of those were killed using firearms.
  • 15% of homicides in Colorado were committed by intimate partners. Read more…

“Now I Know” Videos

These short vignettes describe common traits abusers often share and resources where people can obtain more information. Eight videos will be released throughout the month of October and can be found on our YouTube channel. Please help spread awareness to stop domestic violence by viewing and sharing the videos.

Warning Signs of an Abuser

Red flags and warning signs of an abuser include but are not limited to:

  • Extreme jealousy
  • Possessiveness
  • Unpredictability
  • A bad temper
  • Cruelty to animals
  • Verbal abuse
  • Extremely controlling behavior
  • Antiquated beliefs about roles of women and men in relationships
  • Forced sex or disregard of their partner's unwillingness to have sex
  • Sabotage of birth control methods or refusal to honor agreed upon methods
  • Blaming the victim for anything bad that happens
  • Sabotage or obstruction of the victim's ability to work or attend school
  • Controls all the finances
  • Abuse of other family members, children or pets
  • Accusations of the victim flirting with others or having an affair
  • Control of what the victim wears and how they act
  • Demeaning the victim either privately or publicly
  • Embarrassment or humiliation of the victim in front of others
  • Harassment of the victim at work

Source: National Coalition Against Domestic violence/signs of abuse

Get Help

If you are being abused by your partner, know there is nothing you have done or are doing to cause the abuse. It is solely the choice of the abuser to abuse. It may seem impossible to escape your abuser, change your circumstances, or find the help you need, but it is possible. However, you know your abuser best, so think carefully through your situation and circumstances and do what is the best for you.

Personalized safety plan: Although you can't control an abuser's use of violence, you can plan how you will respond to future abusive or violent incidents, prepare for the possibility of an incident happening, and plan how get to safety.

Tips for accessing resources: Getting help from law enforcement and seeking legal assistance.

Financial education: Webinar series from recent years for survivors of domestic violence and the advocates who serve them.

Gaining independence: public assistance programs such as food, cash and medical assistance, plus other services like child care assistance are available to those who qualify. access to hundreds of agencies and community services to help families and individuals in need of urgent and ongoing resources in our community. 

How to Help

Safety Plan for a friend relative, or co-worker who is being abused by an intimate partner. Remember: You are there for them.

  1. Don’t judge the victim (you are not in his/her situation).
  2. Avoid telling the victim that he/she needs to leave (they already know that they need to leave but doesn't not feel they can); instead discuss a safety plan.
  3. Don’t tell him/her that the abuser is a jerk, that you never liked him/her, etc. (That might drive the victim away or make him/her feel like they have to defend the abuser.)
  4. Become the victim’s confidante. Listen to everything he/she tells you. (You could be a good witness later by backing up their story.)
  5. Assure him/her you will keep what they tell you confidential. (This will help you gain their trust so they will be more likely to call you if they find themselves in a very serious situation, e.g., trying to escape.) Read on…

What to Say

Helpful things to do or say to help someone you know. 

Open a Dialogue
“Are you ever afraid of _________’s temper?” 

Show Concern
“I am afraid for your (and your children’s) safety.” Make honest but non-judgmental observations about changes you’ve noticed in them. “I’m worried about you. You don’t seem to laugh as much anymore.” 

Be Non-Judgmental
Respect your friend or family member’s decisions. There are many reasons why survivors stay in abusive relationships. They may leave and return to the relationship many times. Do not criticize their decisions or try to guilt them. They will need your support even more during those times. 

Acknowledge the Danger They're in
“I am afraid that the abuse will only get worse.” Acknowledge that they are in a very difficult and scary situation. Reassure them that they are not alone and that there is help and   support out there. 

“If you ever need to talk, I promise to just listen and not give advice.” Then follow through and not give advice! Read on…

Source: Family Tree/Domestic violence