If you are being abused by your partner, you may feel confused, afraid, angry and/or trapped. All of these emotions are normal responses to abuse.
But no matter what others might say, you are never responsible for your partner’s abusive actions.
Studies consistently indicate that women are disproportionately the victims of domestic violence, and most of those crimes are committed by men against women .
Nonetheless, it is important to recognize that domestic violence can and does occur in two spirit and LGBTQ relationships and against men perpetrated by women.
Embarrassment or Shame: It’s often difficult for someone to admit that they’ve been abused.
They may feel they’ve done something wrong by becoming involved with an abusive partner.
Fear: A person may be afraid of what will happen to them or their children if they decide to leave the relationship.
If a person is in a LGBTQ relationship and has not yet come out to everyone, they may fear their partner will reveal this secret.
These behaviors can physically harm, arouse fear, prevent a person from acting freely or force them to behave in ways they do not want.It is important to emphasize that when it comes to our people: violence and abuse are not Native American traditions, and neither is ever okay.Abuse can happen to anyone belonging to any tribe and is not limited to a specific age, class, religion, gender or sexual orientation.Abusive people think they have the right to control and restrict their partners.They may also enjoy the feeling that exerting power gives them.Leaving is often the most dangerous time for a victim of abuse because abuse is about power and control.When a victim leaves, they are taking control and threatening the abusive partner’s power, which could cause the abusive partner to retaliate in very destructive or dangerous ways.It is important to recognize that while drugs or alcohol can sometimes escalate abuse, they do not cause abuse.Domestic violence and dating violence stem from a desire to gain and maintain power and control over a partner.As such, it is important to stress that culturally based, confidential support and services should apply equally to all domestic violence survivors, whether female, male, LGBTQ or two spirited .The Power and Control Wheel, which is a non-Native diagram used to describe what typically occurs in an abusive relationship, has been revised by Native domestic violence advocates to reflect the root causes of violence in our tribal communities.