Domestic violence, also called intimate partner violence, is a pattern of abusive behavior in which one person uses fear and intimidation to gain power and control over a partner or family member. It can take many forms, including physical battering, emotional abuse, economic abuse, or sexual abuse, and can also involve children, threats, intimidation, and isolation.
Domestic violence is also called intimate partner abuse, family violence, same-sex abuse, battering, elder abuse, and teen relationship abuse.
While domestic violence can affect men, the large majority of its victims are women. Domestic violence often has devastating physical and emotional consequences for those abused and their children.
Last Revised: March 8, 2012
Author: Healthwise Staff
Medical Review: Adam Husney, MD - Family Medicine & Brigid McCaw, MD, MS, MPH, FACP - Family Violence Prevention
To learn more visit Healthwise.org
© 1995-2012 Healthwise, Incorporated. Healthwise, Healthwise for every health decision, and the Healthwise logo are trademarks of Healthwise, Incorporated.