Family Violence

ExitCare ImageFamily violence is physical or mental abuse by someone in your family.

Physical abuse includes:

  • Hitting.

  • Strangling.

  • Choking.

  • Cutting.

  • Burning.

  • Biting.

  • Being forced to have sex (intercourse).

  • Bruising.

  • Breaking bones.

  • Damaging clothes or other personal items.

Mental or emotional abuse includes:

  • Being made fun of or put down.

  • Not being able to come and go as you wish.

  • Being yelled or screamed at.

  • Being accused of things a lot.

  • Being spied on, followed, or harassed.

  • Not being respected.

  • Being threatened and afraid.

  • Having no one to help you.

  • Having nowhere to get help.

  • Being left in a dangerous place.

  • Being refused help when you are sick or hurt.

You may make excuses for the person who is abusive. You may love this person or feel they love you. You may believe it will never happen again. However, abuse tends to become more severe. Take action.


  • Report the violence to the police. Tell the police if you, your child, or any other household members have been injured. Tell the police if you feel you are going to be in danger when the police leave or later.

  • For emergency help, call your local emergency services (911 in U.S.).

  • File a criminal complaint against the abuser.

  • Get a court order to protect you. A court order can give you short-term customy of your children, if this applies. It also says the abuser:

  • May not commit further acts of violence.

  • May not threaten, harass, or contact you at home.

  • Has to leave your household.

  • May not interfere with the children or any property.