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Domestic violence is a common crime in America, especially amongst the female gender. Studies indicate that nearly one-third of American women (31 percent) report being physically or intimately abused by a husband or boyfriend at some point in their lives (Commonwealth Fund Survey, 1998).
Domestic Violence towards women is a problem in the United States that is usually over looked and almost always not noticed by Society today. Violence is defined by the Riverside Webster's Dictionary (p.755) as: 1. Physical force employed so as to damage or injure. 2. As an instance of violent action. If this is the case than why is it that so many women are beaten by loved ones each year and little or nothing is done to correct this violent and hostile situation?
The battered woman is pictured by most people as a small, fragile, haggard person who might once have been pretty. She has several small children and is frequently assumed that she is poor and from a minority group. She is accustomed to living in violence, and her fearfulness and passivity are emphasized above all. Although some battered women do fit this description, research proves it to be false stereotype(Walker p.18). In fact most battered women have highly lucrative jobs such as doctors or lawyers, Corporation executives and nurses. Battered women are found in all racial, religious and ethical backgrounds as well as age groups and educational levels.
Statistical information on domestic abuse commonly notates that women in intimate relationships are amongst the greatest risk. Statistics also revealed that domestic abuse is the leading cause of harm amongst females of all races that usually involve a weapon. "Approximately one in four attacks involved the use of a gun or knife,” according to a studies. Young, black and Hispanic women were especially vulnerable, as were poor single women with low education levels who lived in inner cities.
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There are methods of getting out of an abusive relationship. There are clinics that specialize in domestic abuse and other abusive situations. Clinics such as The Women’s Haven and RAINN are amongst the well known resources for help. There are hotlines and crisis helplines that can help victims and victims have a sense of anonymity.