Get Help Now
If you’re struggling with an abusive relationship or need advice on how to help a loved one, Connecticut Coalition Against Domestic Violence (CCADV) can help. CCADV’s 18 member domestic violence organizations available throughout the state offer confidential, safe and free services 24 hours per day, 7 days per week.
(888) 774-2900 (English)
(844) 831-9200 (Español)
What is Domestic/Family Violence?
Domestic violence is a pattern of coercive, controlling behavior that can include physical abuse, emotional or psychological abuse, sexual abuse or financial abuse. Often referred to as “intimate partner violence” when between two people in an intimate relationship (e.g., current or former spouses, current or former dating partners, or two individuals who have a child in common), victims are left feeling scared, confused, dependent and insecure about their ability to survive on their own, financially or otherwise. The children of an abused parent must contend with these same fears and realities.
Warning Signs & Risk Factors of Abusive Relationships
There are a number of warning signs that abuse may be present in a relationship, as well as several risk factors that indicate a greater risk for increased violence. Remember, domestic violence isn’t just about being physically hit, it’s also about patterns of coercion and control that may be verbal, emotional or financial in nature.
How Are Children Impacted When They Witness Abuse Between Their Caregivers?
Intimate partner violence, whether physical or verbal, cannot be hidden from children. Children often know what is happening even when parents think they are asleep in another room. Children may see or hear the abuse directly, they may see resulting bruises or injuries, or they may see damage done to the home. Children may feel different kinds of emotions when witnessing the abuse or its aftermath, such as fear, anger, sadness, loneliness or hopelessness. And they may react in many different ways, from hiding or freezing up, to trying to intervene to protect the abused parent.
It is important to remember that each child’s experience is unique and each child has within him or her a capacity for recovering from the difficulties associated with exposure to intimate partner violence. CCADV’s 18 member organizations can assist the victimized parent in building a nurturing, loving and supportive environment that will provide the base for teaching kids the skills they need to be healthy, happy and confident.
How You Can Get Help
CCADV’s 18 member domestic violence organizations available throughout the state offer confidential, safe and free services 24 hours per day, 7 days per week. You can call the statewide hotline to speak to a certified counselor about your situation or that of a loved one. There are advocates available who specialize in the needs of children who have witnessed intimate partner violence among their caregivers. Each organization offers a host of free services, such as:
- Support groups
- Emergency shelter
- Court advocacy
- Safety planning
- Risk assessment
- Information & referrals