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Your partner apologizes and says the hurtful behavior won't happen again — but you fear it will.At times you wonder whether you're imagining the abuse, yet the emotional or physical pain you feel is real.This abuse or violence can take a number of forms, such as sexual assault, sexual harassment, threats, physical violence, verbal, mental, or emotional abuse, social sabotage, and stalking. It can include psychological abuse, emotional blackmail, sexual abuse, physical abuse and psychological manipulation.Though most frequently the perpetrator of abuse is a male partner against a female partner, abuse by a female partner against a male also takes place.
27.2% of women and 11.7% of men have experienced unwanted sexual contact (by any perpetrator).[vii]One in 6 women (16.2%) and 1 in 19 men (5.2%) in the United States have experienced stalking victimization at some point during their lifetime in which they felt very fearful or believed that they or someone close to them would be harmed or killed (by any perpetrator).[i]Repeatedly receiving unwanted telephone calls, voice, or text messages was the most commonly experienced stalking tactic for both female and male victims of stalking (78.8% for women and 75.9% for men).[iv]About 1 in 5 women and nearly 1 in 7 men who ever experienced rape, physical violence, and/or stalking by an intimate partner, first experienced some form of partner violence between 11 and 17 years of age.[ii]Most female and male victims of rape, physical violence, and/or stalking by an intimate partner (69% of female victims, 53% of male victims) experienced some form of intimate partner violence for the first time before 25 years of age.[vii]A survey of American employees found that 44% of full-time employed adults personally experienced domestic violence’s effect in their workplaces, and 21% identified themselves as victims of intimate partner violence.[iii]64% of the respondents in a 2005 survey who identified themselves as victims of domestic violence indicated that their ability to work was affected by the violence.Dating violence crosses all racial, age, economic and social lines.The Center for Relationship Abuse Awareness describes dating abuse as a "pattern of abusive and coercive behaviors used to maintain power and control over a former or current intimate partner." Individuals of all walks of life can find themselves in an abusive relationship.If this sounds familiar, you might be experiencing domestic violence.Domestic violence — also called intimate partner violence — occurs between people in an intimate relationship.