Occasionally when Michigan couples or families disagree at home, it can result in an intense argument that may escalate to shouting. When you hear or see something that sounds intense, do you know how to differentiate a simple case of dysfunction from actual domestic violence? Being able to identify domestic violence can help you to protect your family and others in your community.

What are the signs of domestic violence?

 The Michigan State Police have provided some pointers on how you can tell if domestic violence is happening. If you witness an intense argument, be on the lookout for any crashing or breaking or any sounds of someone being hit or punched.

The tricky part is that not all domestic violence is directly physical. When someone is kept in a dangerous situation or abandoned, it could possibly be considered domestic abuse. Even if a disagreement escalates to the point of someone being locked out of his or her home, it can indicate that domestic violence is happening. Threats, manipulation, gas lighting and other forms of abuse can indicate that emotional violence is taking place.

Coercion is another form of domestic violence. If someone you know in the neighborhood or at work is talking about their partner or family member limiting their access to healthcare and education, it may be a situation of abuse. This economic type of domestic violence can also be occurring if the victim does not have access to his or her finances or bank accounts.

This article is meant to help you identify possible domestic violence, and is not legal advice.