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All Press Releases for January 09, 2014 »
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First step to safely ending an abusive marriage is recognizing the signs of abuse

Safe Horizon reports that one out of every four women will become a victim of domestic violence at some point during her lifetime.
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    January 09, 2014 /24-7PressRelease/ -- Domestic violence is a problem across the United States, and it affects a large amount of Texans. According to the Texas Council on Family Violence, 144 women were killed in our state in 2012, and a staggering 188,992 family violence incidents were reported. It's important for people to realize the signs of domestic violence, as well as the steps they need to take to get themselves and their children safely out of an abusive marriage.

The common signs of abuse

Safe Horizon reports that one out of every four women will become a victim of domestic violence at some point during her lifetime. Most people look at domestic abuse as physical violence that results in bruises, broken bones and worse. However, many abusers start small and gradually get worse, until their victims are completely dependent on them and don't know how to get out. HelpGuide says verbal and emotional abuse can be even more confusing than physical violence. Abusers often control and intimidate their victims through threats, belittling or insulting language, shaming, restricting them from seeing family and friends and preventing them from having money or access to the phone or car. They may even threaten to harm the children or take them away in order to maintain control.

Other signs that point to an abuse personality include the abuser destroying the other person's belongings or having an unpredictable temper that often leaves the victim feeling like she is walking on eggshells.

Growing up in an abusive environment can have long-term effects on children. Girls who have constantly witnessed or been victims of abuse usually continue being victims into adulthood, while boys often continue the cycle of violence to become abusers themselves. Children often suffer from anxiety, sleep problems, health and developmental problems, poor school attendance and learning difficulties.

How to get out

Abuse victims need a strong support system and resources to help them break free. The following tips can help:
- Involving trusted friends and family to support them.
- Creating and rehearsing an escape plan.
- Gathering emergency supplies, such as cash, clothing and documents, and storing them in a safe place.
- Memorizing emergency and crisis hotline numbers and websites.
- Photographing physical injuries.

Additionally, victims of abuse should consider getting a restraining order when it's time to escape. Many shelters in the Houston area can help a person with this, as well as provide emergency shelter, resources and support groups.

How an attorney can help

Breaking the cycle of violence and escaping from abuse is scary, but is important for your safety and well-being, and that of your children. The good news is that you're not alone. There are many local resources to help, and a divorce attorney with experience in domestic violence cases can help you each step of the way and protect your rights.

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