Friday, February 26, 2021

How to Identify Intimate Partner Violence

woman holding hand out in front of her face
Domestic violence, also known as intimate partner violence (IPV), is known as a common invisible crime.  An intimate partner is a boyfriend, girlfriend, spouse, or domestic partner with whom a person is currently or formerly connected. If one understands the dynamics behind IPV that are intertwined within common behavior patterns, it is easier to spot. These cycles often bolster the denial and harsh effects that domestic abuse has on its victims.

IPV is widely known as a United States public health crisis, and there are now court approved domestic violence classes online. The question remains: is IPV preventable? If so, what are the proven strategies that have been shown to lower the incidence of this prevalent form of violence?

Phases of IPV

To better understand how to prevent IPV, we have to be able to identify it. Three phases of domestic abuse were conceptualized in the late 1970s by psychologist Lenore Walker: 

Phase 1: The Tension Building Phase

This phase refers to the build-up to an abusive episodeEvents might include fighting over money, kids, jobs, etcCourt approved domestic violence classes online teach that verbal abuse usually begins here, and in time, this tensionpeaks when it leads to a physical abuse phase.

Phase 2: The Acute Battering Episode

This phase is often the result of an external event, such as the loss of a job, a new pregnancy, etcIt may result from the emotional state of the abuser. A typical example is when an abuser is under the influence of alcohol or drugs. The instigating event that sets off the abuser is usually unpredictable. 

Phase 3: The Honeymoon Phase

Court approved domestic violence classes online teach that this part of the abuse cycle helps to cement the relationship and convince the victim that he or she should not leave. In this phase, the abuser may be apologetic, remorseful, and exhibit a sincere effort to be generous and helpful.

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