Candy Olivares, blogs on her site Candypolooza , a Military Family Lifestyle blog. She is a mother to two boys and an Army wife of 9 years. She loves to volunteer in the community and serves on the board of the Good Fellow Combined Spouses Group on Good Fellow Air Force base. She enjoys spending time with her family, writing, cooking, working out, and travel. Follow her on Twitter @Candypo.
“Ma’am, do you feel safe at home?” Do I feel safe at home- really? I thought it was odd that the medical assistant would ask this in the line of normal questioning done during this appointment. Actually each time I go to the clinic for an appointment, I am asked about my safety and thank God each time I say, “Yes, I do feel safe.” No one should ever have to answer “no” to that question. Unfortunately people do say “no.”
October is Domestic Violence Awareness Month. Did you know, “Every 9 seconds in the United States a woman is assaulted or beaten?” Although statistics weren’t readily available for this post, abuse within Military families, does happen. It’s sad that a person we call “a hero” can be an abuser to a loved one. Not only men are abusers but statistics show, “Men who as children witnessed their parents’ domestic violence were twice as likely to abuse their own wives, than sons of non-violent parents.” It’s an unfortunate cycle.
Domestic abuse can be physical, emotional or psychological. I had the privilege to meet a spouse here at Good Fellow that served as an advocate for battered spouses at their previous duty station. She shared with me that “domestic abuse among military families was in all ranks.” That’s right, you read that right all ranks; from the “privates to the officers”. Why would we think that abuse would end at a certain rank, or within a specific branch? The business of domestic abuse is in all branches and across ranks of the military, unfortunately. *I can’t provide branch or rank specifics on the numbers as it’s not broken down like that. The act of abuse on a spouse that a person has vowed to honor and cherish is just heart breaking, yet eye-opening at the same time. No one should have to endure domestic abuse. Let’s work to bring awareness to Domestic Abuse.
If you know of someone that is going through domestic abuse, let them know there are resources to help. They are not alone. Victims can always speak confidentially to a primary care physician on post or any of the counselors available at Family Health or Family Advocacy groups.
Resources For Victims of Domestic Abuse
Military OneSource http://www.militaryonesource.mil/abuse
National Domestic Violence Hotline (800-799-SAFE 
Family Violence Prevention Fund: http://www.endabuse.org
Military Homefront: http://www.militaryhomefront.dod.mil
Thanks to the Mental Health Office at Good Fellow AFB, for providing the statistics in this post.
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