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What is Domestic Abuse?

Abuse between romantic partners—known as domestic abuse or intimate partner violence—takes many forms. It can be overt, as in physical violence, or subtle, such as controlling a partner through emotional, financial, or other forms of manipulation. Education about abuse is an important first step for victims seeking help, or for those who are unaware they are in an abusive relationship.

The What is Domestic Abuse? handout provides an overview of abuse, including common reactions to abuse, reasons why people stay in abusive relationships, and other helpful information. This worksheet can be used to provide basic education and to help victims see they are not alone.

We suggest accompanying this worksheet with the Types of Abuse handout, which describes the various forms that abuse can take.

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