Intimate partner and domestic violence are major public health and criminal concerns in South Carolina with an average of 36,000 assaults reported to law enforcement every year. In 2014, South Carolina was the state with the highest number of women killed by men, and has been in the top ten states EVERY year for the past fifteen years (Violence Policy Center). The homicide rate for women killed by men is TWICE the national average.
The National Intimate Partner and Sexual Violence Survey released by the CDC in 2011 painted a stark portrait of the prevalence of these types of violence in our communities.
- More than 1 in 3 women (35.6%) and 1 in 4 men (25%) have experienced rape, physical violence and/or stalking during their lifetime.
- About 1 in 4 women and 1 in 7 men have experienced severe physical violence at some point during their life.
- Nearly 1 in 5 women have been sexually assaulted at some point in their life. Over half of their attackers were intimate partners.
- One in 6 women and 1 in 19 men has experienced stalking victimization to the point where they felt very fearful or believed that they or someone closed to them would be harmed or killed.
- Two thirds of the female stalking victims were stalked by current or former partner. For male victims, this figure was 41%.
Although victims of these crimes may be reluctant to report their victimization for a variety of reasons, including love, shame, a fear of retribution or a fear that nobody will believe them, an important step in reducing the prevalence of these crimes is to hold perpetrators accountable. There are many law enforcement and other community support groups that can assist those who decide to come forward. Please see the contact list of local and national agencies on the tab for victims/survivors.
The Damage Domestic Violence Does…
- is physical and emotional
- is long lasting
- is devastating to children
Below is a list of the possible effects of domestic violence suffered by victims/survivors and their children.
- Fear towards the perpetrator
- Physical injuries
- Distrust, hatred, anger towards the perpetrator, and towards themselves
- Loss of self esteem and confidence
- Loss of friendships and family connection (Social Isolation)
- Loss of their home and financial stability
- Problems in school or at work
- Alcohol or drug abuse to escape the pain
- Physical retaliation or self protection leading to arrest
Although perpetrators of domestic violence may not recognize it, the potential harms to their lives that result from their behavior are severe, and include
- Arrest and incarceration
- Loss of their family
- Restricted or no access to their children as a result of family court actions
- Loss of their children’s respect and love
- Loss of job
- Loss of possibility of entering some professions (e.g. Military, police, teaching, nursing)
- Loss of social standing
- Loss of legal immigration status for non-citizens
You may believe you can’t stand the embarrassment of participating in a batterer intervention group, but it may be a way for you to interrupt and to begin to change the behaviors that are destroying your family and your own future.
To enroll, or for more information, call 803-791-1322