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Domestic violence affects many victims

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By YVONNE LEVARDI
Vantage Point
October is National Domestic Violence Awareness Month.
That we need to dedicate a month to promoting awareness of this issue at all is tragic, but to ignore it is to look away from the thousands who are abused and need help.
 I am familiar with domestic violence. Fortunately, I’m not a victim, but having seen close friends and loved ones struggle through the cycle of abuse has been difficult and frustrating. Watching those friends break free is uplifting, and the crushing disappointment of being able to do nothing as some go back is beyond description.
You may know that pain and have seen similar challenges, abuse and struggle in your loved ones’ lives. Sometimes you help and those loved ones are able to free themselves for the first time, sometimes it takes a few tries.
Although October is almost over, domestic violence is a problem that continues.
Whether it be rooted in a past trauma or brought on by normal stressors in life, domestic violence is never OK.
If you are a victim, ask for help. Talk to a friend, seek assistance at a shelter, call a crisis line – take action to protect yourself and your family members.
If you’re the one feeling out-of-control with your anger, or angry all the time, and you’re concerned about losing control or already have, then separate yourself from your loved ones and find someone you can talk to and work through that anger.
Above all, try and recognize the situation you are in and do what you can to change it for the better. None of us wants to hurt our loved ones or be hurt; let’s stop making excuses and take action.
Veterans in need of immediate assistance can call the crisis line at (800) 273-8255, press 1 or visit the Veterans Crisis Line website. Family members can also call to seek help for their veteran family member/loved one.