Guest Editorial: Domestic Violence and the Holidays

Guest Editorial: Domestic Violence and the Holidays

HATTIESBURG, MS (WDAM) - The Holiday season is a time for love, laughter, reflection and thanksgiving. However, for victims of domestic violence, the holidays can be a very emotional and difficult time. Unrealistic expectations, financial pressures, and the increased consumption of alcohol can raise stress levels, which can contribute to incidents of domestic violence.

Known as the 'private crime' domestic violence is often not reported. Many victims are afraid or ashamed to disclose the abuse. The recognition for signs of domestic violence is imperative to assisting those that may not know how to help themselves.

Some signs of domestic violence may be:

· Bruises or injuries such as Black eyes, marks on the neck, and sprains

· Attempts to hide these with makeup or clothing

· Sudden changes in attitude or physical appearance

Having few close friends and being isolated Having a drug or alcohol abuse problem Having symptoms of depression or loss of interest in daily activities Domestic violence is a far too common occurrence. It does not discriminate. It crosses all ethnic, social, and economic levels.

Signs of domestic violence often are overlooked, denied, or excused. The truth is that there is never an excuse. The only way to end domestic violence is to be aware.

The Hattiesburg Police Department's Domestic Violence Unit is equipped with investigators and victim advocates that are trained and dedicated to provide assistance to the victim's of domestic violence. REMEMBER: Domestic Violence Is a Crime!