Domestic Violence Awareness Month

Whether or not you know it, you know someone who has suffered from domestic violence. Contrary to popular belief, domestic violence does not only affect women or women of color; domestic violence affects everyone, and does not just refer to physical, obvious violence. Ever since its creation in October 1981, Domestic Violence Awareness Month supporters have been sharing statistics, stories, and voices of support for domestic violence victims. You can help stop the cycle of violence and terror today by learning more and spreading the news about domestic violence awareness month.

Domestic violence is far more prevalent than most people realize. Millions of people are abused by partners and family members each year, and the emotional, physical, and financial repercussions are enormous. Over the course of a single year, domestic violence creates a 5-12 billion dollar deficit on the US economy. Read on to learn the varied and nuanced definitions of domestic violence, the importance of Domestic Violence Awareness Month, and how you can get involved.

What Is Domestic Violence?

Woman Choking Herself

Domestic violence is a wide-reaching term for any type of abuse perpetrated within the home. Typically, domestic violence refers to abuse of a partner or spouse. Domestic violence is not limited to physical violence; it can include everything from punching, hitting, kicking, and intimidation with a weapon to name calling, stalking, stealing, and obsessive or absent communication.

What Is the History of Domestic Violence in the United States?

Protesters Of Abuse

Domestic violence has long been shoved under the rug in the United States. Although Domestic Violence Awareness Month (then known as the Day of Unity) was initially started in October 1981, it wasn’t until 1994 that the Violence Against Women Act legislation was passed by Congress.

How Did the Violence against Women Act Affect Domestic Violence??

Woman Hiding Her Face

Passed in 1994 and spearheaded by Senator Joe Biden, the Violence Against Women Act increased awareness of domestic violence across the country. This bill was the first piece of legislation that directly addressed violence against women. Since the passage of this Act, (between 1993 and 2010), states have taken a much more powerful stance against domestic violence, resulting in a decrease in the rate of domestic violence of nearly two thirds.

Who Is Effected by Domestic Violence?

The statistics on domestic violence are startling and shocking. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimate that throughout their lives, at least 23% of women and 14% of men are victims of severe physical violence at the hands of a partner. Even more shocking, over 47% of all adults will face severe psychological aggression from a partner over the course of their lifetime.

Kid Looking At Hole

Sexual violence victimization and rape is also endemic. According to the CDC, one in two women and one in five men will experience sexual violence other than rape, often before the age of 25 (79% of women before the age of 25, 28% of men before the age of 10). Over 50% of both men and women report being stalked before the age of 25.

All people are affected by domestic violence of varying types. Statistical data shows that domestic violence is consistent across ethnicities and sexual orientation. While instances of domestic violence are dramatically higher for women in families with a household income of less than $50,000, domestic violence is, unfortunately, present in every range of household.

Domestic Violence in Teens and Young Adults

Woman And Man

Domestic violence is not limited to adults in serious relationships. It is estimated that 1 in 5 children between the ages of 11-13 know of a peer in an abusive relationship, and a large percentage of domestic violence happens before the victim is even 18. The pattern of youth domestic violence is one major reason domestic violence awareness month is so important; when kids learn that it is not acceptable to be treated in aggressive and violent ways, they will be significantly less likely to treat their future families in the same way.

What Is Domestic Violence Awareness Month?

Domestic Violence Awareness

Domestic Violence Awareness Month is celebrated in the month of October. Its purpose is to spread awareness about the wide-reaching effects of domestic violence and inspire victims to reach out for help and support. Millions of people suffer silently through domestic violence, and the purpose behind domestic violence awareness month is to enable victims to emerge from the shadows, share their stories, and make the change to improve their lives.

When Was Domestic Violence Awareness Month Started?


Domestic Violence Awareness Month was started in 1981 by a group called the National Coalition Against Domestic Violence. At the time, it was known as a Day of Unity. Battered women’s advocacy groups were able to connect across the nation and share uplifting stories, difficult situations, and try to find hope through togetherness.

How Domestic Violence Awareness Month Campaigns Are Helpful

Man With Open Palms

What Do Domestic Violence Awareness Month Campaigns Do?

The purposes of Domestic Violence Awareness Month Campaigns are twofold: raise awareness and raise money.

The Importance of Raising Awareness

The Importance of Raising Money

Who Can Participate in Domestic Violence Awareness Month?

People Sitting

Anyone and everyone! Domestic Violence Awareness Month activities are geared towards domestic violence victims, survivors, and their advocates, but anyone with an interest and passion for human rights is invited to participate in any and all domestic violence awareness month campaign activities.

How Can You Prevent and End Domestic Violence?

There are a variety of ways that you can work with Domestic Violence Awareness Month supporters to end domestic violence and help and encourage its victims. The following list is just a few ways you can show your support for domestic violence victims and advocates.

Wear a Purple Ribbon

Domestic Violence

The purple ribbon has been designated a symbol of support for domestic violence victims. By buying and wearing products with the purple ribbon, you are supporting advocacy groups as well as showing the world that you will not stand idly by while domestic violence victims stay silent.

Create and Host an Awareness Event in Your Community

Woman Speaking

Bring awareness directly to your community by partnering with one of the many domestic awareness advocacy groups and launching an event in your town or school. Events can take many forms: from a flash mob, art installation, or public forum, any event that calls attention to the problem of domestic violence and provides advocates and victims alike with support and accurate information is beneficial.

Attend a Domestic Violence Awareness Month Event

Military Woman Reading

If you don’t want to host the event yourself, research events happening in and around your community and support local efforts to end domestic violence. These events can help you connect with other victims, learn about new ways to support victims and advocacy groups, and bring you together with other passionate people working to end domestic violence for good.

Share Information

What's Your Story

Whether it’s on social media, word of mouth, or on a t-shirt, Domestic Violence Awareness Month is the perfect time to start a conversation about domestic violence. You don’t need to be attending an event and it certainly doesn’t need to be October for you to share your knowledge of domestic violence statistics and advocacy groups. Do thorough research before you share, but spread the news with family, friends, and community.



Research local events during Domestic Violence Awareness Month and volunteer to help in any way that you are able. Consider volunteering year-round at an advocacy group or shelter to enable these often under-funded programs to continue helping victims of all genders, ages, and socio-economic statuses.

Talk About It

Woman And Man Talking

If you are a domestic violence survivor, consider using Domestic Violence Awareness Month as a time to share your story. Don’t feel pressured to share more information than you want, but perhaps your story will inspire others to help, volunteer, or get out of a negative and abusive situation themselves. Use your experiences to help change the world.


Domestic violence is a horrific problem, but with the help of more and more people and the increasing popularity of Domestic Violence Awareness Month, we can all do our part to end the cycle of violence. Next October, consider volunteering, hosting an event, sharing your story and more to support those in need.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

About is the premier online resource for those working in the field. Whether you are hoping to begin a career in drug addiction counseling or just need to do a little research on a specific topic, we have what you need. No client, dual diagnosis, job opportunity, or news item has gone uncovered. We are the premiere, up-to-date source for the chemical dependency counseling industry. Please bookmark us and share us with your friends using the social buttons below!

Be Social With Us!