Violence often escalates and takes shape of what is popularly called ‘the spiral of domestic violence’.
Physical violence is violence which is often considered ‘real violence’. It is the type of violence which leaves bruises and causes direct physical pain. Physical violence can consist of beatings, shoving, kicking, strangulation or the use of weapons. It can result in death.
Sexual violence consists of being forced into an unwanted sexual act. This can amongst other things be rape or forced prostitution.
Psychological violence is most prevalent. It revolves around control and isolation. It is not directly visible to outsiders and is about direct or indirect threats or humiliation of one’s partner – oftentimes in front of others. Physical violence almost never occurs without psychological violence.
Economic violence entails being denied access to money, having to hand in one’s own earnings and begging for pocket money or money for food. Economic violence can also result in the violent partner creating substantial debt for the other partner, for example through loans.
Material violence means that the violent partner destroys material things such as for example furniture and personal belongings. It is important to be aware of the fact that these actions are performed to achieve a goal and are pre-meditated. The violent partner never destroys his / her own personal belongings. The violent partner never throws his / her own computer out of the window, as the personal belongings of the partner subjected to violence are always the target.
Many of those subjected to violence are subjected to different forms of violence simultaneously.
A violent relationship typically evolves over time and the violence increases in roughness and frequency. A violent relationship can last a long time, oftentimes many years, while the violence slowly increases and becomes worse.
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