Navigate:

Can you visibly tell who is a victim of domestic abuse?

Very often victims of domestic violence go out of the way to cover it up because they are embarrassed by it. In some cases of course, a loved one might be able to tell who is a victim of domestic abuse by spotting a split lip or a black eye. Signs of physical abuse, such as cuts or bruises, are often visible, and a patient observer might recognize the psychological signs of violence. On the other hand, many instances of domestic violence cannot be discerned by the casual observer, and sometimes the victims of domestic violence are very inventive in fashioning plausible cover stories to explain injuries.


Some victims of prolonged domestic violence display what University of Pennsylvania psychologist Martin Seligman terms "learned helplessness."
Learned helplessness is an adaptive reaction to constant degradation in which the recipient comes to prefer the devil she knows to the uncertainties of escape.