Since most people don't report it, it's hard to know how common intimate partner violence (IPV) is but national studies indicate 1 in 4 women will experience intimate partner violence in her lifetime. For mixed race and Native American women, this number is 1 in 3. IPV happens among individuals of all ages, gender, religions, income levels and education. It also occurs in LGBTQ relationships.
What Does An Abusive Relationship Look Like?
It's not easy to identify an abusive partner early in the relationship as abusers are often charming and groom their partner for a time before the abusive behavior begins. Early clues such as possessive and controlling behaviors may be attributed to jealousy, but usually intensify as the relationship grows. IPV doesn't look the same in every relationship, but there are common methods the abusive partner uses to gain power and control over their partner.
Signs of an abusive relationship may include: