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The Effects of Domestic Violence on Victims

The effects of domestic violence on victims can often go beyond the common physical and visible effects that are bruises, chronic fatigue, changes in eating and sleeping patterns and involuntary shaking.

In fact, there can be mental, emotional and even spiritual effects of domestic violence that can impact the survivors themselves, the children who witness it and the community in which it occurs. Victims are also really concerned for their financial well-being, as to how they are going to survive, particularly if the abuser is in control and in charge of bills, input and output of money and funds.

View below some of the effects of domestic violence that the Joyful Heart Foundation, as well as the NSW Government observed. Please note, the effects of this trauma can vary from person to person due to each individuals’ responses to stress, age and the frequency and severity of abuse.

What are the common mental effects of domestic violence?

  1. Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), including flashbacks, nightmares, severe anxiety, and uncontrollable thoughts

  2. Depression, including prolonged sadness

  3. Anxiety

  4. Low self-esteem and questioning sense of self

  5. Suicidal thoughts or attempts. If you or someone you know is feeling suicidal, contact the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1.800.273.8255.

  6. Alcohol and drug abuse

What are the common emotional and spiritual effects of domestic violence?

  1. Hopelessness

  2. Feeling unworthy

  3. Apprehensive and discouraged about the future

  4. Inability to trust

  5. Questioning and doubting spiritual faith

  6. Unmotivated

What are common effects on children who witness domestic violence?

  1. Anxiety

  2. Depression

  3. Academic problems

  4. Fearful

  5. Emotional distress

  6. Low self-esteem

  7. Self-harm

  8. Aggressiveness towards friends and schoolmates

  9. Have less empathy and caring for others

What are common effects on the community?

  1. Children growing up without learning about positive and respectful relationships

  2. Abusers going to prison

  3. Higher rates of alcohol and other drug use, and mental health problems

  4. Domestic and family violence is estimated to cost the NSW economy more than $4.5 billion each year

Altogether, domestic violence has a rippling effect where the victims themselves, those who witness it and even just those within the community where it occurs are all affected. With this being said, if you or someone you know is showing signs of domestic abuse, please do not hesitate to contact me or the National Domestic Violence Hotline at (800) 799 – 7233.

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