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Domestic violence and pregnancy

Domestic violence is many things. While most people invision physical violence, it can also include verbal abuse as well as sexual abuse (yes, even if he is your partner). Once you are pregnant, domestic violence can become an even larger issue.

First and foremost, it isn't safe for you or your unborn child to remain in a domestic violence situation. It only takes one blow to the stomach to cause severe damage to the developing baby, or even the loss of the baby.

Often, domestic violence tends to escalate during stress, and that includes stress of a pregnancy (both wanted and unwanted by your partner), impending birth, and during the time after the baby is born.

If you feel that everything will change after the baby is born, unless your partner is actively participating in anger management classes to change his behavior, it will not. And it will most likely get much worse.

Don't worry about money or the security your partner provides in your relationship. Your life and the life of your baby is much more important.

Confide in a family member, close friend or your physician for support to leave. Your physician will be able to recommend you to resources in your community which are for victims of domestic violence. There may be transition houses where you can reside until you can find a place to live and get on your feet. Many cities and states also have domestic violence hotlines, where you can phone for support resources as well.

Online, you can visit the National Domestic Violence Hotline Website. You can also find the Domestic Violence Coalition in your state.

Remember, as hard as it is to leave, the effects of your staying can be devastating. Nothing is more important that your safety, and the safety of your unborn baby, and leaving is the only way to ensure that.


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