Going through the breakup of a marriage, the resulting separation, and an ensuing divorce proceedings is never easy. Unfortunately, in some cases, it can bring out hostile and aggressive behaviors you have never before experienced with your spouse. Domestic violence is a common problem. The emotional and often volatile nature of a divorce can make incidents of abuse more likely to occur. The following offers information you need to be aware of regarding these situations and the warning signs that could indicate you are at risk.
Domestic Violence and Divorce
Even in otherwise amicable cases, the process of separating from your spouse and going through negotiations regarding divorce related issues such as marital property, child custody, and support can become contentious. Feelings of anger, depression, or jealousy and the desire to seek revenge can cause your spouse to act out in uncharacteristic ways.
According to the New Jersey State Police, domestic violence and abuse often centers around power and one partner’s need to maintain control over the other. While cases in which you initiated the divorce or may have engaged in marital misconduct, such as having an affair, may seem like obvious triggers, it is just as likely to occur when your spouse is the one pushing for a breakup.
Domestic abuse can take a variety of forms. While it may include actual acts of violence, such as hitting, punching, or pushing, it may also include the following:
- Stalking you at your home, place of business, school, or online;
- Harrassing you in person or through phone calls, emails, and letters;
- Damaging your property or harming family pets;
- Making threats, which may involve weapons;
- Preventing you from accessing funds to which you are otherwise entitled;
- Harrassing you sexually or attempting a sexual assault.
If you are experiencing any of the above, help is available. As an experienced New Jersey divorce attorney, we can assist you in seeking a temporary restraining order (TRO). In addition to prohibiting your spouse from contacting you, it can also require the offender to attend mandatory counseling sessions, while entitling you to custody of any children, financial support, and the rights to property such as your home or car. In the event your spouse violates the order, he or she can be subject to immediate arrest.
Warning Signs of Domestic Abuse
The earlier you recognize and report domestic abuse, the sooner we can take actions to prevent it from occurring and the safer you and your children will be. According to the National Domestic Violence Hotline, warning signs to be alert for include:
- Put downs, mocking, and attempts to humiliate you;
- Searching through your phone or other personal items;
- Attempting to control what you do or who you talk to;
- Following you at work or when out in public;
- Claiming you are a bad parent and threatening to take away your children;
- Threatening to cut you off from funds or from any assistance;
- Alluding to guns or other weapons kept in the home or on their person;
- Looking at you or behaving in ways that cause you to fear for your safety.
If your spouse exhibits any of these signs, either during a separation or during divorce proceedings, it is important to let your attorney know immediately.
Our New Jersey Divorce Attorney is Here to Help
At Law Office Of Jordan B. Rickards, we can provide the trusted legal guidance and aggressive representation you need when dealing with domestic violence or a potentially abusive spouse. To request a free, confidential consultation to discuss your situation, contact our New Jersey domestic violence and divorce attorney today.