Is Emotional Abuse Domestic Violence on Long Island, NY?
Far too many people on Long Island wonder if emotional abuse counts as domestic violence under New York state law because the answer may not be immediately clear. Emotional abuse can look very different from person to person and show up in many varied ways, making it difficult to ascertain if emotional abuse can be categorized as domestic violence. Below, we review the connection between domestic assault and emotional abuse and when you should think about calling a divorce lawyer on Long Island.
What Is Emotional Abuse?
Emotional abuse is unfortunately all too common and can be equally hurtful as physical assault and abuse. It involves toying with the emotions of someone else, usually a domestic partner, in order for the abuser to get what they want. Although many people may consider this type of harm less significant and dismiss it, it can be extremely impactful on the victim and an indicator of physical violence to come.
Different Types of Emotional Abuse
There are many different types of emotional abuse, but some of the most common include verbal abuse, gaslighting, and manipulation. Verbal abuse is any kind of name-calling or put-downs. It can also involve saying things that are intended to scare or intimidate someone.
Gaslighting is when an abuser tries to make their victim doubt their own memories or perception of reality. Manipulation occurs when an abuser uses words or actions to control their victim’s thoughts, feelings, or behavior. Most abusers use any combination of these to gain power over their victims.
Warning Signs of Emotional Abuse
There are many signs that you may be in an emotionally abusive relationship, including but not limited to the following:
- You feel afraid or nervous around your domestic partner
• You are frequently criticized, put down, or ridiculed
• You do not have any control over the finances in your relationship
• Your spouse or partner has hurt or has threatened to hurt your animals
• You feel like if you aren’t careful around your spouse or partner, they will become extremely angry
The Impact of Emotional Abuse
Emotional abuse can have a serious impact on both your mental and physical health. It can cause anxiety, depression, sleep problems, weight gain or loss, and even post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). If you believe you or someone you care about might be the victim of emotional abuse or domestic violence, it’s crucial that you or someone else calls for help from a friend or family member you trust, a therapist or counselor, or an attorney.
Is Emotional Abuse Domestic Violence?
The Definition of Domestic Violence
Each state has its own separate explanation of what legally does and does not constitute domestic violence. That said, most states agree that the term includes any kind of the following types of assault — sexual, physical, financial, or emotional abuse against a domestic partner or other live-in family member.
Although physical abuse can be more easily seen than emotional abuse, emotional violence can be just as harmful. On Long Island, NY, spousal and domestic abuse is a crime and includes physical assault, sexual assault, neglect, and emotional or verbal abuse.
How Emotional Abuse Leads to Domestic Violence
Only being the victim of emotional abuse doesn’t mean that someone is safe from physical assault. They actually occur together more often than not. People who are abusive may use emotional violence as a way to control and manipulate their partners before ever becoming physically violent. Recognizing the signs of emotional abuse and taking action is important before physical assault actually occurs.
When to Contact a Divorce Lawyer for Help
If you are the victim of emotional abuse, don’t wait any longer to get help. An experienced Long Island family lawyer has knowledge of resources in your area like domestic violence shelters, charities, and safe houses that can give you a safe place to stay. They will maintain your confidentiality and will only contact you through approved means of communication.
Unfortunately, not everyone who allegedly committed domestic abuse is guilty and false accusations are actually quite common. If this happens to you, you should take immediate action to protect your rights and reputation. The first step is to consult with a divorce lawyer who has experience handling these types of cases.
A qualified divorce lawyer and family law attorney will be able to review the evidence against you and develop a defense strategy tailored specifically for your case. This may involve challenging witnesses who aren’t credible or casting doubt on the motives of the alleged victims. With an experienced advocate on your side, you stand a much better chance of achieving a positive outcome in your case.
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At Hornberger Verbitsky, P.C., we’re here for you. Contact our office today to schedule a free consultation to discuss your case and legal options by calling 631-923-1910 or fill out the form on this page.
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