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Understanding the Cycle of Domestic Violence - What You Need to Know

Identifying the presence of domestic violence in a relationship can be challenging. If you're concerned that your relationship may become abusive or think a family member, friend, or loved one is experiencing abuse, understanding the cycle of domestic violence can help you make the best decisions moving forward.

We'll work with you to handle certain processes, such as filing for a restraining or protective order in a domestic violence case.

To schedule a consultation with our team, contact us online or via phone at (713) 903-8112.

Phase #1: The Honeymoon Phase

Most police departments and domestic violence organizations separate the cycle of domestic violence into anywhere from three to six separate phases. For simplicity's sake, we'll be using three for this blog.

The first phase is the "honeymoon phase." During this period, the abuser is kind, charismatic, and charming. They go out of their way to make their partner feel loved. However, this phase also often coincides with the abuser reducing their partner's independence in some way, such as asking them to move in with them, share a bank account or phone plan, or engage in other activities that reduce their agency.

Phase #2: The Tension-Building Phase

During the "tension-building phase," the abuser slowly ramps up their aggression towards their partner. Frequently, this involves getting angry at their partner for minor offenses that don't warrant anger, such as forgetting to do chores.

The abuser also often begins to set impossible or unhealthy standards for their partner, such as requesting them not to go out with friends, restricting access to their finances or other resources, etc. If the abuser's partner violates these new "rules," the abuser may become increasingly aggressive or angry.

Phase #3: The Violence Phase

During the "violence phase," the abuser finally commits an act of violence against their partner. An act of violence can be a threat or something as severe as slapping, choking, or beating their partner.

Immediately after the violence phrase, abusers often transition back into the honeymoon phase, acting remorseful for their actions and promising to change for the better. However, this behavior usually just acts as a way for the abuser to avoid the consequences of their actions and maintain control over their partner.

Survivors/victims of abuse should consider filing for a court order, such as a protective order, that enables them to maintain their health and wellbeing while pursuing actions against the abuser.

At the Law Offices of Frank E. Mann, we'll work with you to find the best path forward in your case.

To schedule a consultation with our team, contact us online or via phone at (713) 903-8112.