Assaulting someone physically is a criminal offense. No one has the right to mistreat another person, even if that person is a wife, husband, child, parent or live-in partner. Yet, an alarming number of people are abused by members of their families, either on a regular or occasional basis. Domestic violence is violence committed against one person by another person of the same household.
Physical abuse occurs in various forms - being kicked, punched, shoved, slapped, sexually molested or harmed bodily in any way.
Domestic violence has no "typical" victim. The abused come from every ethnic background, educational level, income, age, race, religion and marital status. They share helpless feelings of frustration, confusion and fear. Often, they don't know what to do or where to turn for help.
Anyone can be a victim. The battered are frequently women. These women are often married to or living with their assailants. This is why domestic violence is commonly referred to as spouse abuse or wife beating.
Once a pattern of abuse has been established, the assaults often become more frequent and more violent over time. Abuse may result in permanent physical injury or death. It almost always leaves the person involved feeling isolated, angry, disappointed, lonely, bitter, rejected, helpless, humiliated, ashamed and afraid.
If you are one of the many victims of abuse in South Carolina or know someone who is, this information is designed to help by giving you some basic information. This information will show you that there are people and services available to you, so that you can take positive steps to deal with the problem. YOU ARE NOT ALONE.
It is up to you to decide what to do about your problem, and it is up to you to take the steps necessary to make the abuse stop. The realization that help is needed is the first step. If you have been assaulted, whether it has been one time, ten times or so many times that you have lost count, there are basically two things you can do - leave or stay. The purpose of this information is to help you take a firm stand against further violence. You must choose to never again be a victim of violence.
Various criminal and civil statutes are applicable under the Domestic Abuse Act. Be sure to consult a lawyer for specific, up-to-date information about these statutes.
You are not powerless or locked in a battering relationship forever. You can prepare to leave and be ready to set out on your own at the right time. Often, those who are in a physically abusive relationship find it difficult to leave the home and end the relationship permanently. If mentally and emotionally, you are unable to leave at this time, you can still protect your interests by doing certain things that will make it easier for you to leave at a later time.