Here are frequently asked questions related to domestic violence:
1) What is domestic violence?
Domestic violence is a pattern of intentionally violent and/or controlling behavior used against a family member or a dating/intimate partner to gain power and control over that person, during and/or after the relationship. Domestic violence is also known as family violence, intimate partner violence, or dating violence.
2) How common is domestic violence?
In 2016, there were 82 domestic violence homicides in North Carolina. Nationally, 1 in 3 women and 1 in 4 men have experienced some form of physical abuse by an intimate partner. But because domestic violence can look different with different people, it can be hard to estimate exact numbers.
3) Who is affected by domestic violence?
Some people are at greater risk for experiencing domestic violence. This includes people who:
- identify as female
- live in communities with fewer resources
- experience societal oppression or marginalization
- were exposed to violence in their family of origin
Learn more about domestic violence risk factors here.
See rates of domestic violence in certain racial/ethnic groups.
4) How does domestic violence affect people?
The impacts of domestic violence are long lasting. Domestic violence affects people in different ways at different stages of the abuse. Many areas of a survivor’s life can be affected by domestic violence, including:
- Physical and emotional health
- Relationships with others - including co-workers, neighbors, children, other family members, and friends
- Career and job prospects
- Financial and housing stability
Learn more about the effects of domestic violence here.
5) What are some warning signs of domestic violence?
Domestic violence doesn’t always look the same in every situation. Family violence can often look very different than violence in a dating or intimate relationship. Yet because domestic violence centers around power and control, there are usually some common features. Warning signs often include:
- Inequality between the people involved (i.e. the abusive person shows a lack of respect or concern for the other person)
- Lack of choice (i.e. the abusive person makes most of the decisions or doesn’t listen when the other person says or indicates “no”)
- Fear or uncertainty (i.e. one person feeling “on guard” or afraid because of the abusive person’s unpredictable behavior or language
- Suspicion or lack of trust (i.e. the abusive person constantly demanding that the other person prove themselves or account for their whereabouts or behavior)
Learn some common signs of an abusive partner here.
If you or a loved one are experiencing domestic violence and need assistance, you can:
- Call the National Domestic Violence Hotline anytime at 1-800-799-7233 (SAFE) or TTY 1-800-787-3224.
- Text HOME to 741741 from anywhere in the US, anytime, to talk via text about any type of crisis including domestic violence.
- Get help from one of the service providers in NC.