October is Domestic Violence Awareness Month (DVAM)

October is Domestic Violence Awareness Month, a time where we focus on raising awareness of domestic violence – what it looks like, whom it impacts, how to support victims and survivors, and what we can do to create change. 

Domestic violence, also called intimate partner violence (IPV), domestic abuse or relationship abuse, is a pattern of abusive behaviors in an intimate relationship that is used by one partner to gain or maintain power and control over or to harm another intimate partner. It affects individuals in every community, regardless of age, economic status, sexual orientation, gender, race, religion or nationality.  

What are the types of domestic abuse? 

Domestic abuse doesn’t look or happen in one specific type of way. An abuser strives to instill fear by assaulting or threatening to commit assault on an individual with the goal of maintaining power and controlling the victim’s life and circumstances. Below are a few examples of the kinds of abuse that may be inflicted upon victims and examples of what that can look like. 

  • Physical abuse 
    • Threatening to hurt or kill the victim or the victim’s friends, loved ones or pets 
    • Intimidating the victim with guns, knives or other weapons 
  • Sexual abuse 
    • Pressuring the victim to have sex when they don’t want to or to do things sexually they are not comfortable with 
    • Forcing sex with others 
    • Refusing to use protection when having sex or sabotaging birth control 
  • Emotional abuse 
    • Telling the victim they can never do anything right 
    • Showing jealousy of the victim’s family/friends and time spent away 
    • Accusing the victim of cheating 
    • Keeping or discouraging the victim from seeing friends/family 
    • Embarrassing or shaming the victim with put-downs 
    • Dictating how the victim dresses, wears their hair, etc. 
    • Telling the victim they are a bad parent or threatening to hurt, kill or take away their children 
    • Destroying the victim’s property 
  • Psychological abuse 
    • Looking at or acting in ways that scare the person they are abusing 
    • Controlling who the victim sees, where they go, or what they do 
    • Stalking the victim or monitoring their victim’s every move (e.g. in person, online, and/or by GPS tracking on the victim’s phone) 
    • Preventing the victim from making their own decisions 
    • Pressuring or forcing the victim to use drugs or alcohol 
    • Preventing the victim from working or attending school, harassing the victim at either, keeping their victim up all night so they perform badly at their job or in school 
  • Financial/economic abuse 
    • Controlling every penny spent in the household 
    • Taking the victim’s money or refusing to give them money for expenses 

Throughout the month we will be holding multiple domestic violence awareness engagement opportunities. We hope you will join us for one or several of these events and follow our social media accounts to learn more about and help shed light on this growing issue.  

DVAM 2022 Events 

  • Tuesday, October 4 | 12 p.m. | This Birmingham Facebook Live 
  • Tuesday, October 11 | 10 a.m.-12 p.m. | In Her Shoes Simulation 
  • Wednesday, October 12 | 2-4 p.m. | In Her Shoes Simulation 
  • Thursday, October 13 | 4-6 p.m. | In Her Shoes Simulation 
  • Monday, October 17 – Saturday, October 22 | Week Without Violence 
  • Monday, October 17 | Purple Lip Day – paint your lips with your favorite hue of purple to show your support to domestic violence survivors and bring awareness to domestic violence
  • Thursday, October 20  
  • Thursday, October 27 | 5 p.m. | Blount County/Oneonta Candlelight Vigil 
  • Saturday, October 29 | 8 a.m. | Megan Montgomery Memorial Run/Walk @ Homewood Central Park 

Follow @YWCentralAL on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter for domestic violence information as we recognize Domestic Violence Awareness Month all month long.