The Dignity Initiative
Frequently Asked Questions
What is the incidence of intimate partner violence?
According to a CDC report (2010), women were more likely to be victims of severe physical violence by an intimate partner (24%) than men (14%). 1 in 4 women (24.3%) and 1 in 7 men (13.8%) aged 18 and older in the United States have been the victim of severe physical violence by an intimate partner in their lifetime. Data from 2011 states that severe physical violence by an intimate partner (including acts such as being hit with something hard, being kicked or beaten, or being burned on purpose) was experienced by an estimated 22.3% of women and 14.0% of men during their lifetimes
What if both people are violent? Is it always the man's fault?
Answer: There is no excuse for violent behavior regardless of gender, sexual orientation, religion or other belief systems.
Does violence also occur in homosexual relationships?
Answer: Yes. Domestic violence occurs in 1 out of 4 to 1 out of 3 same-sex relationships. (Center for American Progress, 2014)
Does violence include emotional violence?
Answer: Yes! Violence is defined as a pattern of abusive behavior in any relationship that is used by one partner to gain or maintain power and control over another partner. Emotional violence undermines an individual’s sense of self-worth and/or self-esteem. This may include but is not limited to constant criticism, diminishing one’s abilities, name –calling, or damaging one’s relationship with his or her children. (US Department of Justice Office of Violence against Women).
Might speaking out be an invasion of peoples' privacy? What if I get hurt?
Answer: Not speaking out may cost a life! Both women and men die at the hands of their abusers every year. According to Safe Horizons, One in three women homicide victims are murdered by her current or former partner, and 5.5 % male homicide victims were murdered by a spouse, ex-spouse, boyfriend, or girlfriend. (Bureau of Labor Statistics, 2007) Domestic violence is a crime. It is possible to report the crime anonymously by calling the National Domestic Violence Hotline at 1-800-799-7233.
Why don't people in abusive relationships just leave?
Answer: People stay in an abusive relationship for complex reasons. For example, people may stay due to economic, religious beliefs, children, various threats, and a “cycle of abuse” pattern that makes it complicated for the abused individual to leave.
If I think that someone I know is being victimized, what should I do?
Answer: Talk to the person, and let them know that you are there for them, and listen without judgment. Offer them resources such as domestic violence shelters, or the number to the National Domestic Violence Hotline at 1-800-799-7233.
If I think someone I know is abusing others, what should I do?
Answer: Contact the National Domestic Violence Hotline at 1-800-799-7233, local domestic violence agencies for help with next steps.
Why do people abuse?
Answer: The reasons and theories about why people abuse are varied. Abuse involves exerting power and control over others and it is UNACCEPTABLE. Many people who abuse have been abused themselves and help is available.
If someone jokes about violence, how should I respond?
Answer: People may joke about a sensitive topic because they lack knowledge and may be uncomfortable with the subject. Tell the person that domestic violence is a serious crime and that joking about it is inappropriate. Offer to educate them on the subject.
What if I am a witness of violence, what should I do?
Answer: Contact the police and report the crime by calling 911. Give as much information as you can such as location, address, and a description of those involved. Seeing such violence may also be disturbing. Make sure to take care of yourself if you need to by seeking counseling, such as Counseling Services if you are a current student. Call 972-881-5126.
I'm feeling very angry, and I'm afraid I might become violent. What should I do?
Answer: See help immediately. Contact Counseling Services at 972-881-5126 if you are a current student, or contact local domestic violence agencies, since most have programs for people who abuse. You can also contact the National Domestic violence Hotline at 1-800-799-7233.
I'm being abused. What should I do?
Answer: Know that you are not alone. There are resources both at Collin College and in the local community that will provide assistance. Start by contacting Counseling Services, at 972-881-5126, then local domestic violence agencies, and the National Domestic Violence Hotline at 1-800-799-7233.
I'm abusing someone. What should I do?
Answer: Seek assistance to deal with your violence. Start by contacting Counseling Services at 972-881-5126 and/or local domestic violence services.