In South Carolina, the crime known as domestic violence involves someone causing harm or injury to a household member, or threatening or attempting to cause harm or injury to a household member while being apparently able to carry out the threat or attempted harm. The state also makes it a crime to violate a domestic violence protection order or to trespass on the grounds of a domestic violence shelter. For the sake of this law, household members include spouses, former spouses, people who have children together, and people of the opposite sex who live together or have lived together. Here are some signs to be mindful of in regards to domestic violence:
Hitting, slapping, shoving, grabbing, pinching, biting, hair-pulling, biting, etc. Physical abuse also includes denying a partner medical care or forcing alcohol and/or drug use.
Coercing or attempting to coerce any sexual contact or behavior without consent. Sexual abuse includes, but is certainly not limited to marital rape, attacks on sexual parts of the body, forcing sex after physical violence has occurred, or treating one in a sexually demeaning manner.
Undermining an individual’s sense of self-worth and/or self-esteem. This may include, but is not limited to constant criticism, diminishing one’s abilities, name- calling, or damaging one’s relationship with his or her children.
Making or attempting to make an individual financially dependent by maintaining total control over financial resources, withholding one’s access to money, or forbidding one’s attendance at school or employment.
Causing fear by intimidation; threatening physical harm to self, partner, children, or partner’s family or friends; destruction of pets and property; and forcing isolation from family, friends, or school and/or work.
This type of violence can happen to anyone, with one out of every three high school and college students having experienced sexual, physical, verbal, or emotional violence in dating relationships. Although dating violence is common, it is against the law. Nobody deserves to be abused in any manner while on a date, albeit being hit, slapped, controlled, cursed, or groped.