At The Domestic Violence Shelter, Inc., we understand the importance of engaging with our community. It helps us spread the word about our programs and services, while also giving us the opportunity to learn more about the issues that community members may be facing. Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, we have been challenged to find new ways to connect with our community. We are excited to announce our Wednesday Workshops!

Wednesday Workshops will be held on Facebook Live at 1:30pm on the first Wednesday of every month. Topics will range from domestic violence and sexual assault to self-care and budgeting (and many other topics in between!) and will be hosted by members of The Shelter’s team. We will also provide a companion blog post with each workshop.

Our first Wednesday Workshop topic is Domestic Violence. Our Director of Community Based Services, Jill, and Director of Shelter Services, Shannon, discussed the services of The Domestic Violence Shelter, domestic violence, forms of abuse, power and control, why survivors may stay, barriers to leaving and abusive relationship and how to help if you know of someone who may be in an abusive relationship. In this blog post, we will recap the information covered in our first Wednesday Workshop. If you missed the live broadcast, go to https://www.facebook.com/thedomesticviolenceshelter/ to watch the recorded video.

Recap- Wednesday Workshop #1: Domestic Violence

The Shelter:

The Domestic Violence Shelter was one of the first three shelters in Ohio when we opened the doors in 1979. The Shelter is more than just a safe place for survivors of domestic violence, sexual assault, dating violence and stalking- we are also a program. You can learn more about these programs by going to http://www.thedvshelter.com/. The Shelter offers the following programs and services:

  • 24/7 Crisis Line: 1-800-931-SAFE (7233)
  • Emergency Shelter
  • Case Management
  • Youth Advocacy
  • Peer Support Groups
  • Sexual Assault Advocacy Program
  • Legal Advocacy
  • Community Education
  • Outreach
  • Volunteer Program

What is Domestic Violence?:

Domestic violence is the pattern of abusive behavior in an intimate partner relationship that is used by one partner to gain or maintain control over another intimate partner. Many types of abuse are included in the definition of domestic violence. You can learn more about domestic violence by visiting https://www.thehotline.org/identify-abuse/understand-relationship-abuse

Forms of Abuse:

When we hear the words “domestic violence” we often think of physical violence. There are also many other forms of abuse. Some of these forms include:

  • Physical
  • Emotional
  • Verbal
  • Sexual
  • Financial

Many survivors may experience multiple forms of abuse. If you are experiencing abuse, call The Shelter’s 24/7 Crisis Line at 1-800-931-SAFE (7233) and speak with a trained advocate.

Power and Control:

Domestic Violence is all about power and control. As explained by LoveisRespect, “Abuse is an attempt by abusive partners to gain or maintain power and control, and it comes in many forms. Abuse usually isn’t isolated — it forms a pattern of behaviors that collectively make the victim question their own self-worth and become further entrenched in the abusive relationship.”
As discussed in the Wednesday Workshop, Domestic violence is not caused by things such as anger managment or drugs and alcohol. Abusers are the best manager of their anger- they choose when and to who they express anger to. Even if abuse seems to increase in severity or frequency when an abuser is using drugs or alcohol, this does not mean that the drugs and alcohol are to blame. The abuser is choosing to use and may be using it as an excuse for their actions and abuse.

Why Do They Stay?:

It is common for survivors to be asked “why did you stay?” We understand that there are many reasons why a person stays in an abusive relationship. Some of these reasons include:

  • Increase in lethality or danger
  • Belief that the abuse is temporary and the relationship will get better
  • They believe they can make the abuser change with love and loyalty
  • They love them
  • Finances
  • Destruction of home or belongings
  • More severe abuse
  • Retaliation if they are found
  • Stalking
  • Harm to children, pets, family, friends or co-workers
  • Shame
  • Fear of being alone
  • Religious/Family Pressures

How To Help A Friend:

If a loved one is in an abusive relationship, it can be difficult to know what to do to help. The most important thing you can do is to believe them! Other tips include:

  • Be non-confrontational
  • Ask “is everything ok?”
  • Let them know you are concerned about them and their safety
  • Listen/let them talk (DO NOT talk negative about the abuser, but validate what they say)
  • Respect their right to privacy or to refuse help
  • Know when to refer to other resources (Give them The Shelter’s 24/7 Crisis Line Number: 1-800-931-SAFE (7233) and let them use your phone)
  • If it is safe, give them Shelter pamphlets and information

UPCOMING DOMESTIC VIOLENCE SHELTER EVENTS:

Next Wednesday Workshop- November 4 at 1:30pm!

Join us as Jill and Shannon discuss finances and budgeting. They will also provide a cooking demonstration where we will learn how to make a meal on a budget!

Picture this… A community without violence
The Domestic Violence Shelter’s Domestic Violence Awareness Month Scavenger Hunt

Check out our Facebook page to learn more!

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