The Texas Council on Family Violence was formed to serve three focal points when dealing with domestic violence in the State of Texas implementing prevention programs that are focused in ending the root cause of domestic violence, providing victim services of domestic violence and promoting support to victims and the violent offenders to help them deal with their issues in domestic violence....
According to the article contained in the Harvard Mental Health Letter, Violent Video Games and Young People, they argue against this notion of therapeutic release.
Despite these deficiencies, significant effort has been directed to expanding CEDAW’s reach through interpretation by the CEDAW Committee. General Recommendation No. 19 of 1992 stated that ‘gender-based violence’ constitutes ‘discrimination’ within the meaning of Article I. This, the committee declared, extends to any such violence which impairs other human rights, such as the right to life; the right not to be subject to cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment; the right to liberty and security of the person; and the right to equality in the family.
Domestic violence occurs when a current or former intimate partner exerts dominance and control in a relationship through physical, sexual, or psychological-emotional abuse, resulting in physical or emotional trauma to the victim. Other forms of domestic violence include stalking and dating violence. Other terms used for domestic violence include intimate partner violence, domestic abuse, family violence, spousal abuse, dating violence, wife abuse, and battering.
Domestic violence exists within all cultures, ethnicities, faiths, age groups, education levels, income levels, and sexual orientations. Domestic violence can occur between many different kinds of couples: married or unmarried couples, couples who live in rural areas and urban areas, those that cohabitate or live separately, couples that had been formerly married or had dated, and between heterosexual or same-sex couples. Furthermore, sexual intimacy is not required to be present in a relationship in order for domestic violence to occur.
Scholars have had a difficult time developing explanations for the occurrence of domestic violence. Yet, it is widely understood that perpetrators turn to abusive behaviors as a means to gain power and control over their partner. Behaviors of emotional, physical, and sexual abuse within a relationship typically increase in their severity over time, as the perpetrator seeks to dominate the victim more fully. But abusers may differ from one another when it comes to the reasons why they seek to increase their power through abuse.
The majority of relationships characterized by domestic violence experience what is referred to as the cycle of violence, which consists of three stages: (1) the tension-building stage, (2) the explosive stage, and (3) the honeymoon stage. The cycle is not the same for all victims in terms of duration, but there is evidence that the violence escalates as the cycle increases in frequency. Victims become so accustomed to the cycle that based on the behavior of their partner, they can usually anticipate when their batterer will become abusive. The first stage, the tension-building stage, is a time that can be characterized by extremely high stress. The batterer may vent this increased tension by taking it out on objects or by acting aggressively in other ways, and it is common for the batterer to act overly jealous of his partner and attempt to isolate the partner from family and friends more than normal. While this is happening, many victims feel like they are walking on eggshells and they try to do anything they can to stop their batterer from becoming physically abusive.
In September 2007, the National Network to End Domestic Violence (NNEDV, 2007) conducted a 24-hour point-in-time survey known as the National Census of Domestic Violence Services. With participation by 69% of domestic violence programs across the United States, results indicated that 52,203 victims of domestic violence were served within one 24-hour period. Of those served, about half sought shelter. Also during that time, 20,582 domestic violence hotline calls were answered across the country. The report also found that 7,707 requests for services were unmet due to lack of space or resources. Clearly, the pervasiveness of domestic violence across the United States is overwhelming, with a tremendous need for services for victims and their children on a daily basis.
The tension-building stage is followed by the explosive stage. The term for this stage is appropriate because this is the point in the cycle when the batterer releases his accumulation of stress by perpetrating violence against his partner in an act of rage. This may consist of either physical or sexual violence. During this stage, the batterer believes that the victim has caused him to be violent and that she must be put in her place, which is the batterer’s effort to control the situation. Law enforcement may or may not become involved at this stage, depending on whether the victim or a third party calls the police. If law enforcement does become involved during this stage, many batterers who remain at the scene often appear very calm and collected to the officer, since their stress was released through their perpetration of violence. On the other hand, victims often appear confused, hysterical, terrified, shocked, angry, afraid, and degraded. Batterers often use the victim’s demeanor to manipulate the situation by lying about what had transpired and denying that they perpetrated violence.
A few studies have reported that males are victims of domestic violence in similar numbers to women (Straus, 1999); however, it is often argued that domestic violence perpetrated by women toward male victims rarely result in injuries as serious as those experienced by female victims of male perpetrators (Stets & Straus, 1990). Many victim advocates suspect that the majority of violence committed by women in abusive relationships takes place for purposes of self-defense against an abusive male partner.
In sum, the honeymoon stage eventually cycles back to the tension-building phase, since the cycle of violence is a continual repetitious pattern. Many women find it difficult to break out of the cycle of violence because of the new hope that comes out of the honeymoon stage, which is a reminder that their partner has the capability of also being a good person and isn’t always a bad person.