If you’re reading this, chances are, either you or someone you know, has been a victim of domestic violence.

Defined by the United States Department of Justice’s Office on Violence Against Women, the definition of domestic violence is “a pattern of abusive behavior in any relationship that is used by one partner to gain or maintain control over another intimate partner.” The Surgeon General has deemed domestic violence as the number one health concern in the country.

Domestic Violence Doesn’t Have to Contain Violence

One of the biggest misconceptions regarding domestic violence is the idea there must be “violence” involved.  Many people fail to report activity that falls under the crime of “domestic violence” because they are ill-informed regarding what “violence” entails.

Here is a brief list of what constitutes domestic violence:

  • Physical abuse: any form of violent behavior that results in injury or illness; hitting; biting; slapping; punching; shoving; denying medical treatment.
  • Sexual abuse: coercing the victim to partaking in sexual relations without his or her consent; sexually demeaning the victim with jokes or other behavior meant to belittle.
  • Psychological abuse: using intimidating tactics to cause fear; threatening to cause bodily harm to himself or the victim, their children, family, friends, or pets; not allowing the victim to visit family or friends or go to work.
  • Emotional abuse: any action meant to humiliate or lower self-worth or self-esteem; criticism; name calling; injuring a victim’s relationship with loved ones.
  • Economic abuse: denying financial independence; the abuser takes financial control, requiring the victim to be reliant on the abuser.
  • Stalking: repeatedly appearing at a person’s home or office and interfering with his or her daily life; following, spying on or watching someone; repeated acts of communication without consent.

Getting Help with Domestic Violence

 If you are the victim of domestic violence and you want help, contact Mendes Law, PC. We will listen compassionately without judgment and advise you of your rights.  If you need help filing for and obtaining a restraining order, we can assist you.

Our office is in Walnut Creek, and we help victims in Danville, Alamo, Walnut Creek, and the surrounding areas get their life back. Please call us today.

Resources for Domestic Violence

We encourage you to get help if you think you may be a victim of domestic violence. Here are some resources that might be of service to you.

STAND! For Families Free of Violence

National Domestic Violence Hotline – 1-800-799-7233

National Sexual Assault Hotline (RAINN) – 1-800-656-4673

The National Domestic Violence Hotline

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