Domestic Violence By: Lily petRuzzo

You're trapped. You feel like you can't escape. There is no way out. You are stuck with this person forever because you can't leave. This is what it feels like to be stuck in an abusive relationship. You want to leave but you'd feel guilty. He makes it seem like it's your fault and that you owe him. He said if I left he wouldn't let me have the children, this is how he kept me.

Domestic violence is violent or aggressive behavior within the home, typically involving the violent abuse of a spouse or partner (dictionary.com). This is not okay. People that are in these situations need to get out. You may think, why can't they just leave? Or tell the police? It's more difficult then that. If you're being abused by your partner it hurts more emotionally than it does physically. Most victims feel fastened. There are many different situations and reasons why it is difficult to get out of these relationships.

I interviewed someone who was once stuck in an abusive relationship. She said the thing holding her back the most from leaving was her children. Her husband was hurting her, but he never did anything wrong to the children. He loved them so much and would never lay a hand on them. She knew her children needed a father and she didn't want them to suffer because of her problems. She thought she would be selfish if she left and took them. She wasn't being selfish at all. You need to do what is best for yourself in these situations and what most people tell domestic violence victims is to get out, no matter what. She would feel guilty for doing this because that's what her husband twisted into her mind. He made her think this way. He wanted her to feel bad for doing anything good for herself. She eventually convinced herself there was no way out and that this was how her life was gonna be forever.

According to a survey I conducted, 14.3% of hommocks students in 5th period English don't even know what domestic violence is. The first step to being able to stop this is having knowledge. People need to know how to help people going through this. 57.1% of students in 5th period English class said that the best way to help someone going through this is to tell them to get out of that relationship. This is the best way. These victims need to escape and be free. They deserve to live a happy life and having freedom is the best way to get that.

The most asked questions that victims get is “why did you stay?” or “why didn't you leave?” According to a TED talk by Leslie Morgan Steiner about domestic violence, she calls it, crazy love. “A psychological trap disguised as love, that millions of women and even a few men fall into every year.” What she means by this is that people don't leave because they don't know they're being abused. How could they? They're in love so they're obviously not being abused. Right? Wrong. Domestic violence mainly happens in relationships where the partners are “in love” or very close. Leslie went through this when she was in her twenties and she didn't leave because she thought she needed to stay with her boyfriend to help him get through this. He made her feel bad like it was her fault and that she was the only one that could help him.

Another reason why they don't leave is because it's incredibly dangerous. According to the, Center For Relationship Abuse Awareness, if you leave an abusive relationship the abuser will stalk you. They will leave you threats, scare your children, harm you, or kill you. It's difficult to leave and get out of an abusive relationship. The best way to help someone is to just be there to talk to them and to keep reminding them that it's not their fault and their abuser is a terrible person that you need to get away from.

The woman who I interviewed told me that after she got out of her relationship she liked to talk to other people who went through this and do research on this topic. She told me that 3 to 4 million women in the United States are beaten in their homes each year by their husbands.

She said she never thought that she would be one of those women, but she was. She said, “it's crazy right, to love someone who hurts you? But you know what was crazier? Thinking that someone that hurt me loved me.” The abuser made her feel less than. Like she wasn't good enough. He made her feel like a terrible person and that everything bad that happened in their relationship was her fault. The most common fear she had was wondering if anyone will love her the way he did. She had no one to talk to because he isolated her. He ruined all of her relationships on purpose so she would have no one. He wanted to be the only one in her life so she had to stay.

Things abuser might say

This is terrible and the abusers are messed up. “For the sake of your life, your mental health, and physical health, get out,” This was her advice because that's the only way you'll be happy again. Do what's best for you.

Getting out is the only way you'll be happy again

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