Knowledgeable Family Law Representation

How does the cycle of violence affect victims and perpetrators in California?

On Behalf of | Jan 12, 2023 | Domestic Violence |

In California and the rest of the nation, the cycle of violence is a repeating pattern of physical, emotional, and sexual abuse in which the abuser feels a need to control or dominate the victim. This need for control often stems from the abuser’s insecurity and inadequacy.

The phases of the cycle of domestic violence

The cycle of violence typically consists of four phases:

  • tension-building
  • explosion
  • honeymoon
  • reconstruction/calm

During the tension-building phase, the abuser may become increasingly irritable and abusive words or actions are often used as a way to release this tension. As a result, the victim begins to fear, triggering an outburst from the abuser.

In the explosion phase, the abuser loses control and lashes out with violent behavior directed at the victim. This phase is often followed by the honeymoon phase, in which the abuser may express remorse and apologize for their behavior. They may also promise never to behave that way again and shower the victim with gifts or affection. However, this behavior is only temporary, and eventually, the tension-building phase begins again, and the cycle repeats itself.

Some effects of domestic violence

Victims of domestic violence often suffer from long-term physical and emotional effects because of being caught in this cycle. They may experience anxiety, depression, sleep disorders, flashbacks, substance abuse problems, and physical injuries.

Their abusive behavior can also negatively affect perpetrators of domestic violence physically and emotionally. They may suffer guilt, shame, headaches, stomach problems, and other physical ailments.

What interventions can break the cycle of violence?

Understanding the cycle of violence is essential to identifying and seeking help for those suffering. In addition, it is vital to create awareness about this issue so that more people can recognize it and act against it. Through education, intervention, and support networks, this dangerous cycle of violence can be put in the public spotlight before another life becomes a victim or perpetrator.