Haven House


What is Domestic Violence?

Domestic Violence (DV) is abusive behavior - emotional, psychological, financial, spiritual, sexual, or physical - that one person in an intimate relationship uses in order to control the other. Abusers use fear and intimidation to maintain power and control over their victims. Coercive tactics used by abusers include:

  • Emotional/Psychological Battering
    • verbal abuse (name-calling, belittling, swearing, screaming); isolation; limitation of free movement (taking keys away, refusing access to a vehicle or phone, restricting right to leave the house); stalking; sleep and nutrition deprivation; extreme jealousy; threat of abuse; killing or threatening to kill you, a loved, or even a pet
  • Financial/Economic Control
    • withholding food or money, lying about assets, not allowing access to school or work, destruction of property, on-the-job harassment
  • Spiritual Abuse
    • Undermining one’s faith, denying access to faith communities, using holy books and reading to maintain power and control
  • Sexual Violence
    • accusations of infidelity, forced sexual activity, marital or acquaintance rape, sexual abuse of your child
  • Physical Abuse
    • hitting, slapping, kicking, shoving, pushing, denial of medical care or medication, punching, using or threatening to use a weapon

DV does not usually stop without intervention. Often it becomes more frequent and more severe over time. The long term results can be devastating for the victim and the family.

DV occurs in all racial, social, economic, religious and ethnic groups. It can occur in heterosexual, gay and lesbian relationships.

DV is a crime! We believe that people have a right to lead lives free from violence. The abuse is never the fault of the victim.

Computer Safety

Be aware that computer use, internet activities, and e-mail can be tracked. For more details about Internet Safety, click here. If you are in danger, please use a safer computer, call 911 or the 24-Hour Domestic Violence Hotline Response for Erie County at 716-884-6000 (for shelter) or 716-862-HELP (4357).

To quickly exit this site, click the "ESCAPE" button at the bottom of the page.