If you’re in an abusive relationship, there is help. No one need stay and take abuse from another person. Acknowledging what’s happening and reaching out for help is difficult for victims of domestic abuse. Educating yourself about your options can help you take the necessary steps. At MM&A, we are committed to championing the rights of DV victims. Here are a few key points that you need to be aware of.

You’re Not the Only One

In New York City alone, more than 80,000 calls are logged by the city’s domestic violence hotline each year. Nationwide, a staggering 12 million-plus women and men are subjected to abusive behavior by their current or former spouse or partner annually. While women represent 85 percent of all domestic abuse victims, men suffer as well. Abuse is suffered by members of all races, genders, economic circumstances and sexual orientations.

There are Laws to Protect You

The law stands for DV victims in New York. Individuals who have been subjected to this abuse may pursue justice in both the criminal venue and family court. As a protective measure, you can obtain court orders that direct the abuser to stay away from you and your children. David Mejias has helped people from all walks of life toremove the abusive spouse from the home environment and obtain Orders of Protection.

This is Not Your Fault

It’s essential that you realize and accept that you are not to blame for the violence. You didn’t “ask for it” and you don’t “make your abuseract this way” despite what he or anyone else may say about it. Many abusers have very different public and private personas, which fools those outside the home and initially draws in their victims.

Domestic Abuse Takes Many Forms

Physical violence isn’t the only form of domestic abuse. Abusers often inflict harm via other methods, such as emotional and mental cruelty and exerting control financially. Power and control are the hallmarks of DV, and the perpetrators use a variety of methods to enforce their perceived dominance over their victims.

Just Leaving May Not be Enough

It’s important to remove yourself from the situation as soon as it’s safe to do so. But you should take other action as well to ensure maximum protection from your abuser. The week after you leave is typically the most dangerous period, as your abuser may be spurred to behave more violently to maintain control and keep you from leaving permanently. Stalking is another common consequence.

Dave Mejias is a leading advocate for domestic violence victims. He has worked tirelessly to help fund the Coalition Against Domestic Violence via legislative efforts and,through the court system, he seeks to protect you from any further victimization. Please reach out if you need help.

Author's Bio: 

David Mejias is a Long Island attorney specializing in family law and divorce. He is a managing partner at Mejias, Milgrim & Alvarado where he has practiced law for 18 years. He currently serves as the Chairman of the Long Island Hispanic Bar Foundation, the charitable branch of the Long Island Hispanic Bar Association where he has previously served as President. In 2003, Dave Mejias became the first Latino elected to the Nassau County Legislature, where he served from 2004 to 2010.