Domestic Violence or Intimate Partner Violence

Domestic, or intimate partner violence, can take many forms. It is often violence used in an effort to gain and/or maintain control. Some of the more common types of domestic violence include physical abuse (hitting, pushing, hair-pulling, forced substance use), emotional abuse (insults, blame, or other methods to diminish a person's self-esteem), psychological abuse (threats, including against family, pets, friends, or the abuser themselves, stopping a partner from attending activities, or other manipulation), sexual abuse (coerced or demeaning sex acts), and financial abuse (controlling a partner's finances or restriction of financial resources like an allowance). The emotional effects of these types of abuse can be long lasting, and may cause depression, post-traumatic stress (PTSD), insomnia, emotional distance, and more. If you or someone you know is experiencing (or has experienced) abuse, a qualified therapist can help. It is also important for children who witness or experience domestic abuse to see a professional who specializes in the age group to prevent the trauma affecting adulthood and possibly perpetuating the cycle of abuse. Reach out to one of TherapyDen’s abuse specialists for support today. 

Meet the specialists

My first job out of college was as a case worker in an intimate partner violence housing program, and it is what ultimately brought me to psychology. Sadly, working with young adults also means working with survivors of intimate partner violence and sexual assault, as this is the highest risk time. I work with folks to heal from trauma, returning towards a place of feeling safe and empowered.

— Alison Gurley, Clinical Psychologist in New York, NY
 

I experienced feeling overwhelmed in my own past abusive relationship. I once felt crazy, had my perception of reality diminished by the words of an abusive partner, and have felt frightened and uncertain about my ability to find my way out of the relationship. I was expected to feel guilty and responsible for my abusive partner’s behavior and lived with the fear that I would never see my children again should I leave. I also understand the freedom that comes with healing from abuse.

— Eileen Martin, Counselor in Gibsonville, NC

Domestic violence, or intimate partner violence (IPV), is so pervasive. 1 in 4 women and 1 in 7 men have reported experiencing IPV in their lifetime (this number is most likely higher in reality). Many homicides are the result of IPV, and preventing domestic violence is incredibly important for society. The healing process is comprised of many parts (grief, identity transitions/issues, healing from trauma, coping with stress, and much more). Empowerment is a key part of this as well.

— Nathan Jacquez, Counselor in Salt Lake City, UT
 

I have worked in programs for domestic violence survivors since 2004 in the rolls of advocate, hotline worker, shelter manager, educator, counselor and program manager.

— Xavier Quinn, Licensed Clinical Social Worker in Bedford, NH

Domestic and intimate partner abuse can be displayed in a multitude of ways that can lead an individual to become isolated, suicidal and scared. Over a period of 19 years I worked closely with parents in the child welfare system (or therapeutically) who were separated from their children often due to domestic/intimate partner violence. My goal is to support you therapeutically, regain your confidence and develop healthy coping mechanisms.

— Bethanie Milford, Licensed Clinical Social Worker in New York, NY
 

I have been working with those experiencing domestic violence since I started work as a therapist. I have received extensive training and have many hours of experience supporting those who are currently in, thinking about leaving, leaving, or have already left, unhealthy relationships. I hold a stance of non judgmental support as you contemplate whether to stay in your relationship-- a choice only you can make. I help connect you to resources when and if you're ready to leave.

— Anna McDonald, Licensed Marriage & Family Therapist in San Francisco, CA

I have been supporting the survivors of violent acts since I was an undergrad in college. Since 2007 I have been an advocate for those who most often feel voiceless. It is so important to provide a safe place for survivors to share their story, find safety and work to rebuild their life. I use a variety of tools to help you combat trauma and increase safety.

— Alison Murphey, Licensed Marriage & Family Therapist in Los Angeles, CA
 

I have clinical experience in a domestic violence shelter setting working with outreach clients -- individuals, families, and in group settings. Safety is my first priority for you. Learning to recognize and accept that possible abuse (physical, emotional, financial, verbal, etc.) could be playing out in your life -- whether male, female, LGBTQ, or other -- is a first step to reclaiming your personal autonomy.

— Cindy Purifoy, Marriage & Family Therapist in Overland Park, KS

I have worked in programs for domestic violence survivors since 2004 in the rolls of advocate, hotline worker, shelter manager, educator, counselor and program manager. I have written publications on LGBTQ intimate partner violence, IPV involving transgender individuals, and how DV programs can be more welcoming of LGBTQ survivors.

— Xavier Quinn, Licensed Clinical Social Worker in Bedford, NH
 

My career began working with victims of domestic violence back in 2016. I have facilitated groups with the goal of helping clients go from survivor to thriver. Power and control wheel provides a guide and resources offer further options.

— Linda Brown, Psychotherapist in San Antonio, TX

There are different stages where someone might seek treatment for physical, emotional and/or sexual abuse in one's intimate relationship. Initial stages may be when the survivor is in crisis and just needs safety and stabilization. We would not go into any trauma work at that point. But eventually, as the person has attained physical safety and some distance from this relationship, deeper work can be done to help the person heal long-time wounds and move toward healthier relationships. Additionally, I can refer clients to needed support and shelter resources if necessary.

— Rowena Dodson, Marriage & Family Therapist in Mountain View, CA
 

Experience as a domestic violence counselor for adults, adolescents and children through group, individual and family therapy.

— Grace Gufler, Licensed Professional Clinical Counselor in Chicago, IL

My first job out of college was as a case worker in an intimate partner violence housing program, and it is what ultimately brought me to psychology. Sadly, working with young adults also means working with survivors of intimate partner violence and sexual assault, as this is the highest risk time. I work with folks to heal from trauma, returning towards a place of feeling safe and empowered.

— Alison Gurley, Clinical Psychologist in New York, NY
 

Sometimes we don't even realize when we're being abused. Instead, we may just feel that something is very wrong in our relationship, or in remembering a past relationship. Intimate partner violence can be physical, emotional, cultural, financial, social, sexual, cyber, and many more. It is a process to separate ourselves from abuse, but it is absolutely possible.

— Laura Angelucci, Therapist in Austell, GA