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Domestic abuse is a pattern of behaviors used by one partner to maintain power and control over another partner in an intimate relationship. Often the abuse is done gradually and over time using many forms of manipulation.


Domestic abuse does not discriminate. Anyone of any race, age, sexual orientation, religion or gender can be a victim – or perpetrator – of domestic violence. It can happen to people who are married, living together or who are dating. It affects people of all socioeconomic backgrounds and education levels.

Domestic abuse includes behaviors that physically harm, cause fear, prevent a partner from doing what they wish or force them to behave in ways they do not want. It includes the use of physical and sexual violence, threats and intimidation, emotional abuse and financial control. Many of these different forms of domestic abuse can be occurring at any one time within the same intimate relationship.

The Power & Control Wheel is a visual representation of the different ways an abuser gains power and control over his/her partner.

If you feel you may be in an abusive relationship; we are here. Call Passages at 800-236-4325, 24/7.

What is Domestic Abuse?

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