October is Domestic Violence Awareness Month. You might have noticed a “=Domestic Abuse” poster around the Treasure Valley lately. These posters are a part of our Domestic Violence Awareness Month campaign. They make you think about what domestic abuse really is. We tend to think that abuse is just physical but we know that is not the case. Abuse can be in the form of aggressive words, manipulation, control and even threatening to hurt those you love and care for.
The word “violence” in reference to those affected by domestic “abuse” has a very distinct connotation to it and for many, it simply is not adequate. Because domestic abuse is subtle, it is often unseen and it carries long-lasting impacts that linger even after physical injuries might heal.
During this October, as we have for the past several years, we are running an awareness campaign to help start conversations and work to break the cycle of domestic abuse in our community. Our campaign focuses on five key messages that don’t involve physical abuse but can be very damaging and involve one person in a relationship exerting power and control over another, the basis of domestic violence.
During this month, we hope you will see billboards, posters, newspaper ads and social media posts with the following messaging. Because these are warning signs and these are things that many might not realize can be abuse in and of themselves.
Controls Who I See: If your partner isolates you from friends, family and even seeing anyone but them is a form of domestic abuse.
Threatens My Pet: Did you know that it is domestic abuse if your partner threatens to hurt your animal, take them from you or refuse to feed or care for them?
Intentionally Hurts Me: Put-downs, public humiliation, doing things to intentionally hurt your feelings, breaking your personal belongings, and physically harming you…. This list is endless and these are all domestic abuse.
Threatens Our Kids: If your partner threatens to harm your children, keep them from you or uses them to make you do things you don’t want to do like stay in the relationship, this is domestic abuse.
Checks My Phone: You should be allowed your privacy, which means not having to provide your passwords or allowing your partner to read your texts or check your call records and look at all your social media. Even more, your partner should not be able to access your phone wherever they like or keep it from you, this is abuse.
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