Recently, the coronavirus pandemic has changed the lives of many in various ways. People are coping with economic stress, job insecurity, and loss and homeschooling children. Weeks of social distancing and having to stay home can create situations of anxiety, stress, and tension. As the coronavirus cases continue to unfold, relationships are being challenged in new ways and the continuous hardships are creating environments where domestic violence can happen. Additionally, many helplines have experienced a “surge in calls … since early February.”
Domestic violence allegations are severe and can have a devastating impact on your future, your reputation, and your family. Therefore, accusations of domestic violence should be taken seriously and investigated. Retaining legal representation can help make sure that your side of the story is told and that a complete investigation is done. After spending close to two months together, living in small apartments through economic stress and uncertainties, it is no surprise that domestic violence accusations are on the rise.
If you find yourself in a situation that may escalate and lead to an accusation of domestic violence, it is important to learn how to defend yourself and how to find helpful ways to diffuse a potential situation and decrease the opportunity for violence. Managing stress, anxiety, and controlling your body language can help prevent situations where you are in a position to be misinterpreted or be accused – whether false or real – of domestic violence. For many who are experiencing stress and anxiety during the coronavirus pandemic, the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recommends:
- Taking a step back from social media, news stories, and taking the time for self-care. Even though it is important to stay informed, especially during the pandemic, keeping up with the latest updates and hearing about what is happening repeatedly can make a person anxious. If you are concerned, check the news moderately but be sure to take the time to care for yourself.
- Your mental and physical health is important. Taking care of your body and eating healthy can make a difference. Eating fruits, vegetables, limiting your consumption of alcohol, exercising regularly, and getting sleep can help increase your physical and mental health. In addition, taking the time to unwind and to enjoy positive activities are effective ways to reduce stress.
- Connecting with loved ones. Although people are not able to meet in person as much or to go to live events during this time, it does not mean that you have to experience complete isolation. Take the time to call, text, or video chat with loved ones when you are feeling overwhelmed. Having an outside perspective can help you view your situation differently.
If your partner has accused you of domestic violence, it is imperative that you retain an experienced attorney who can assess your situation and build a strong defense to minimize or eliminate your charges. There are many cases where prosecutors take allegations in police reports as the “truth,” even if there is no other evidence of an incident of domestic violence. Having a skilled and aggressive attorney by your side can help you fight the charges against you.