Get the Facts: Domestic Violence is a Serious, Widespread Social Problem
National Facts about Sexual and Domestic Violence
According to a survey of more than 16,500 adults, on average, 24 people per minute are victims of physical violence, rape, or stalking by an intimate partner in the United States.
About 1 in 4 women (24.4% or 29.2 million) in the U.S. experienced contact sexual violence, physical violence, and/or stalking by an intimate partner during their lifetime and reported some form of IPV-related impact.
Nearly 1 in 10 (10.6% or 11.8 million) men in the U.S. experienced contact sexual violence, physical violence, and/or stalking by an intimate partner during their lifetime and reported some form of IPV-related impact.
In 2001, about 85 percent of victimizations by intimate partners were against women (588,490) and 15 percent of victimizations were against men (103, 220).
The majority of women who were victims of contact sexual violence, physical violence, and/or stalking by an intimate partner first experienced these or other forms of violence by that partner before age 25 (71.1% or nearly 31.0 million victims), and 1 in 4 female victims (25.8% or about 11.3 million victims) first experienced intimate partner violence prior to age 18. (2)
Over half of men who were victims of contact sexual violence, physical violence, and/or stalking by an intimate partner first experienced these or other forms of violence by that partner before age 25 (55.8% or 20.8 million victims), and 14.6% of male victims (5.4 million victims) first experienced intimate partner violence prior to age 18. (2)This report presents the prevalence of sexual violence, stalking, and intimate partner violence among adults and their age at first victimization. In the United States, the experience of sexual violence, stalking, and intimate partner violence is far too common, with millions of people reporting victimization during their lifetime. Both women and men experience these forms of violence, but a greater number of women experienced several types of violence examined. For instance, during their lifetime, 1 in 5 women experienced completed or attempted rape; 1 in 6 women were stalked; and 1 in 4 experienced contact sexual violence, physical violence, and/or stalking by an intimate partner and reported some form of intimate partner violence-related impact. Results indicate that many males are also experiencing these forms of violence. For example, during their lifetime, 1 in 14 men were made to sexually penetrate someone else; 1 in 17 men were stalked; and 1 in 10 experienced contact sexual violence, physical violence, and/or stalking by an intimate partner and reported some form of intimate partner violence-related impact. Furthermore, findings indicate that these forms of violence often begin early in life for both women and men. Across the majority of violence types measured, most first time victimization occurred prior to age 25, and many victims first experienced violence before age 18. (2)
Massachusetts Statistics from 2010 Survey (3)
1.3 million women were raped during the year preceding the survey.
Nearly 1 in 5 women have been raped in their lifetime while 1 in 71 men have been raped in their lifetime.
1 in 6 women have been stalked during their lifetime. 1 in 19 men have experienced stalking in their lifetime.
1 in 4 women have been the vicitm of severe physical violence by an intimate partner while 1 in 7 men experienced severe physical violence by an intimate partner.
In the last 9 years MA has had 156 women murdered and 23 men murdered by their intimate partner.
23 children, 30 men, and 10 women associated with those victims were also killed.
Of these murders, 231 of the perpetrators were male and 31 were female.
Health Issues (5)
In 1994, thirty-seven percent of all women who sought care in hospital emergency rooms for violence-related injuries were injured by a current or former spouse, boyfriend or girlfriend.
In 2000, 1,247 women, more than three a day, were killed by their intimate partners In the U.S.
In addition to injuries sustained during violent episodes, physical and psychological abuse are linked to a number of adverse physical health effects including arthritis, chronic neck or back pain, migraine and other frequent headaches, stammering, problems seeing, sexually transmitted infections, chronic pelvic pain, and stomach ulcers.
Children’s Health and Domestic Violence (5)
Children who witness domestic violence are more likely to exhibit behavioral and physical health problems including depression, anxiety, and violence towards peers. They are also more likely to attempt suicide, abuse drugs and alcohol, run away from home, engage in teenage prostitution, and commit sexual assault crimes.
A recent study of low-income pre-school children in Michigan found that nearly half (46.7 percent) of the children in the study had been exposed to at least one incident of mild or severe violence in the family. Children who had been exposed to violence suffered symptoms of post traumatic stress disorder, such as bed-wetting or nightmares, and were at greater risk than their peers of having allergies, asthma, gastrointestinal problems, headaches and flu.
Fifty percent of men who frequently assault their wives frequently assault their children, an the U.S. Advisory Board on Child Abuse and Neglect suggests that domestic violence may be the single major precursor to child abuse and neglect fatalities in this country.
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