Domestic Violence shelters, and Mental Health Centers where help is
available. Please get help. In some extreme cases, getting out is a life or death
There are several sites that advise women (mostly) about protecting themselves:
(http://www.usdoj.gov/ovw/) then click on publications, and Why Women Stay
799-7233 or 1-800-787-3224] is a source of information and place to get referrals to
a local clinic or shelter for women.
There are, of course, sites attempting to help abusers: Treatment for
Resources (http://www.daniel-sonkin.com/), and others. Counselors working
with abusers have compiled long lists of excuses and rationalizations often
used by the out-of-control partner. Such a list of excuses can sometimes
dramatically illustrate to the abuser how many ways his mind distorts and
denies reality. (See other books and groups above.)
Finally, there are sites about many different kinds of abuse: Online Abuse
Exploitation (http://www.advocateweb.org/hope/default.asp). Remember, books
about verbal and emotional abuse are cited above. Norcross, et al. (2000) also
provide several additional sites concerned with abuse by a priest, therapist, lesbian
or gay partner, religious leader, self, elder caretaker, etc.
Two older publications can help you understand anger and marital fights (Wile,
1993; Maslin, 1994). Both books suggest ways to resolve the cognitive origins of
anger and reestablish love in the marriage.
McKay, Paleg, Fanning & Landis (1996) have studied the effects of parents'
anger on their children. It is a serious problem that parents can hopefully handle
with better self-control, especially by giving up false beliefs that fuel anger and by
learning problem-solving or communication skills (see chapters 13 and 14). The
effects on children of domestic violence are covered in detail in the next section.
Child abuse is our next topic. There is ample evidence that a degrading,
hostile, violent family has negative influence in many ways on a child
throughout life (more later), that is true even if the child him/herself has not
been physically abused. Rape will be dealt with later in this chapter, because
the act of rape is a hostile, cruel, aggressive, demeaning act, not primarily a
sexual experience. In chapter 9, child sexual abuse, such as incest, is
briefly discussed. It is located there because sexual abuse is often a family