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Who Are the Abusers?


People who abuse come from all class backgrounds, races, and religions. There is no “typical” abuser. People who abuse may:

  • Fear losing control
  • Have stereotypical ideas about how people in a relationship should act
  • Have low self-esteem
  • Keep to themselves
  • Have a history of family alcohol or drug abuse
  • Have witnessed violence between their parents or were abused as a child
  • Have poor relationships with partners or family members
  • Act extremely jealous and possessive
  • Have controlling behavior
  • Are quick to get involved in the relationship
  • Have unrealistic expectations for their relationships
  • Blame others for their own problems or for uncontrollable events
  • Act cruelly to animals or children
  • Act verbally abusive
  • Have abused former partners
  • Threaten to use violence
  • Use force during an argument
  • Not take responsibility for their actions

For additional domestic violence information:

Domestic Violence Unit
Police Headquarters
300 Indiana Avenue, NW, Room 3156
Washington, DC
Phone: (202) 727-7137
Fax: (202) 727-6491