The number of occurrences of domestic violence is staggering. The prevalence of domestic violence in the United States is difficult to determine because the crime is vastly underreported, yet the statistics are still overwhelmingly high: one in every four women will experience domestic violence in her lifetime. Nearly three out of four (74%) of Americans personally know someone who is or has been a victim of domestic violence. Around the world, at least one in every three women has been beaten, coerced into sex, or otherwise abused at some point during her lifetime. Approximately 30% of Americans say they know a woman who has been physically abused by her husband or boyfriend in the past year. In terms of lifetime abuse rates, various studies show that 22-33% of American women will be assaulted--including rape, physical violence, or stalking--by an intimate partner in their lifetimes. Young women are particularly at risk. This article is the first in a series that will focus on the topic of domestic violence.
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The month of October has been designated Domestic Violence Awareness Month.