Domestic Violence Awareness – Be the Advocate

If you or someone you know is in an abusive relationship, find out more about available support and resources. To speak with a Department of Defense Victim Advocate, contact Military OneSource at 1-800-342-9647, or the National Domestic Violence Hotline at 1-800-799-SAFE (7233).
This is not a cheery, happy-go-lucky subject.  I much prefer those topics of conversation but there are times we need to step out of our comfort zone and be there for those we love, help those who need help and take the time to educate ourselves.

 National statistics reveal that it affects more than 4 million people a year, with almost 17,000 of them murdered by an intimate partner and an estimated 2,000 children dying at the hands of a caregiver.
October is Domestic Violence Awareness Month.  It is a place I can not wrap my head around.

According to the U.S. Department of Justice, domestic violence is one of the most chronically under reported crimes in our country today.
A dark tunnel I would never want to enter.

Victims of abuse can be of any age, income level, educational background, or culture.
But the truth is it is there.  We as military-families need to look out for our friends, our children, for those who don’t know who to turn to.  We need to be the battle-buddy of those who are in a terrible war in their own home.

We also need to look out for the future generation.  Friends.  Neighbors. Family.  Those who will indirectly shape our own children’s lives.

“The exact numbers aren’t clear, but between three and four million children in the U.S. are also at risk for being exposed to abuse of a parent or adult in their homes. A number of studies have shown that children in these situations are significantly more likely to suffer from direct abuse or neglect by their caregivers. ” – Children the Other Victims of Domestic Violence

This commentary also goes on to explain some of the symptoms children may experience as witnesses of this abuse.  Stomachaches, headaches, out of control-behavior, all things that can be attributed to a variety of factors in every day life but if you take time to know these children you may just be the advocate they so desperately need.

Additional Resources:
Family Advocacy Program
Military OneSource
National Domestic Violence Hotline
American Overseas Domestic Violence Crisis Center 

 This year’s DoD observance of Domestic Violence Awareness Month emphasizes:

  1. The importance of promoting trust and communication in couples as a domestic abuse prevention strategy; and
  2. Helping victims understand their options when it comes to reporting domestic abuse to reduce fear of reporting and promote safety.  

By the way, do you know what constitutes Domestic Violence?  Educate yourself at the National Domestic Violence Hotline.

Do not ignore the situation. Reach out to those you suspect are in crisis. Let them know they are not alone and that help is available.

– Leanne from

Military Launches Domestic Violence Awareness Campaign,
National Domestic Violence HotlinebyLeanne KocsisonTuesday, October 04, 2011Military Life:,,

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