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What is “Domestic Violence”?

The National Domestic Violence Hotline ( defines domestic violence as “a pattern of behavior in any relationship that is used to gain or maintain power and control over an intimate partner.” In other words, domestic violence is “a pattern of coercive behaviors that one person exercises over another.”

If you are in a relationship or situation that feels abusive, it is important that you seek help and know the resources available to help you and your children.

There are several types of abuse.

Emotional Abuse– If your partner does any of the below, you may be in an emotionally abusive relationship.

  • Participates in name calling, insults you or criticizes you continuously.

  • Is always jealous or possessive and does not trust you for no reason.

  • Always has to know where you are, who you call and tries to keep you home alone.

  • Isolates you from family and friends.

  • Keeps you from knowing the finances and refuses to share the family income.

  • Threatens you by hurting you or your family.

  • Makes fun of you in a hurtful way– in public or at home.

Physical Abuse- If your partner does any of the below, you may be in a physically abusive relationship.

  • Damages property when angry by throwing things, punching, kicking, etc.

  • Has ever choked you, pushed you, slapped you, bitten you or pushed you in any way.

  • Has left you in a dangerous or unsafe location.

  • Drives reckless due to drinking or trying to frighten you.

  • Forces you to leave your home.

  • Has ever used a weapon or object to hurt you.

  • Hurts your family or pets.

  • Has used physical force in sexual matters.

Sexual Abuse- If your partner does any of the below, you may be in a sexually abusive relationship.

  • Views you as an object.

  • Wants you to dress a certain sexual way.

  • Accuses you of cheating and is always jealous.

  • Forces you to have sex or perform certain sexual acts against your will.

  • Has held or forced you down during sex.

  • Has hurt you by demanding sex against your will.

  • Involves others in sexual activities with you.

  • Does not consider your feelings during sex.

If you have said “Yes” to any of the situations above, you may be in an abusive relationship.

Call the National Domestic Violence Hotline at 1-800-799-SAFE (7233), 1-800-787-3224 (TTY) or your local domestic violence center to talk with someone about it.

Hofmann Law Firm, LLC is located in Princeton, NJ and serves clients in and around Mercer County, Middlesex County, Somerset County, Burlington County, Hunterdon County, Ocean County and Monmouth County. Hoffman Law Firm offers FREE Consultations and will help you get the help you need.