Substance Abuse And Domestic Violence

3742 Words Nov 26th, 2014 15 Pages
Introduction and Background Many people who seek domestic violence services, and even more who do not seek services, are dealing with substance abuse issues as well as abuse. The reasons that domestic violence victims begin their substance abuse vary, but can include: use as a coping mechanism in order to survive the abusive situation, a way to deal with abuse of the past, coercion and by an abusive partner, chemical dependency, cultural oppression or a new sense of freedom (Bland & Edmund, 2005). Whatever the reason for substance abuse, it can lead to isolation and shame. These feelings are then often intensified and magnified when domestic violence is occurring at the same time. There is a large societal stigma surrounding both substance abuse and domestic violence. When they co-occur, the stigma is even larger and more judgmental. In order to understand the needs of domestic violence victims with substance abuse issues, it is important to understand each part; substance abuse and domestic violence, individually. Domestic violence is the violent, coercive, forceful, or threatening behaviors of one family member, intimate partner, former partner or household cohabitant against another (Definition, N.d.). Domestic violence is a pervasive problem that does not discriminate based on age, sex, profession, or socio-economic status. Victims of domestic violence are not just the stereotypical low income woman. It is estimated that one in three women and one in six…
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