6 Reasons Domestic Violence May Increase During the Holidays
COVID-19, The Holidays & Domestic Violence
The holiday season is a cheerful time for many people, but 2020 has made it difficult for families to enjoy the “most wonderful time of year” as they initially expected. Family gatherings, parties, traveling, and holiday shopping are some of the various holiday activities that people are forced to forego due to COVID-19 restrictions. As a result, various factors may contribute to the potential increase in domestic violence crimes, including the six below:
Heightened stress: The COVID-19 pandemic has persisted for 9 months now, which has pushed people to their breaking points. People are dying at unconscionable rates, struggling to make an income, adapting to working from home and online learning, and suffering from the mental, physical, and emotional impacts of the pandemic. As a result, stress levels are through the roof, which may subsequently lead to domestic violence incidents.
Increased alcohol consumption and substance abuse: Studies reveal an increase in substance and alcohol abuse during the pandemic. During the holidays in particular, excessive alcohol consumption and substance use are to be expected, as family gatherings, days off work, and holiday parties call for a celebration. However, increased alcohol and substance use can bring out the worst in people, causing them to escalate situations to an alarming degree. This is because alcohol and drugs impair judgment, distort senses, and significantly impact behaviors and moods, which may contribute to domestic violence.
Financial stress: The US economy continues to struggle with the effects of COVID-19. Hundreds of thousands of people lost their jobs and exhausted their stimulus checks, making it difficult to afford holiday expenses such as gifts, food, travel, and more. While the National Retail Federation (NRF) predicts holiday sales to increase to 5.2%, an analysis of its data reveals that Americans will spend an average of $997.79, down 5% from 2019. Nonetheless, no matter how much money consumers are expected to spend this holiday season, the bottom line is that families are struggling to put food on the table and afford rent. Therefore, the pressure of purchasing holiday gifts and affording holiday-related expenses can cause people to lash out at their family and household members.
Family tensions: Family and friends who spend the holidays together may get under each other’s skin after spending lots of time together. Not only that, but family members may get into heated political debates, insult each other, have unreasonably high expectations of one another, and more. No matter how much a person loves their family, they are bound to disagree and fight with them, and the holidays are no exception. As such, bad situations can become worse in the heat of the moment due to domestic violence.
Isolation: Isolation is among the most common telltale signs of domestic violence. Thus, COVID-19 restrictions make it easier for reported aggressors to isolate victims from their friends and family. Since many families are spending the holidays without guests this year, victims may feel isolated and controlled, even if it’s not the alleged perpetrator’s fault. This may lead to false domestic violence allegations.
Exacerbation of preexisting psychological disorders of violent partners: Studies reveal that confinement during the pandemic is associated with anger, frustration, boredom, and confusion. A person with preexisting psychological disorders will likely suffer heightened effects of those disorders due to quarantine, unemployment, losing a loved one to COVID-19, and more.
Put 55+ Collective Years of Experience on Your Side
Our Bergen County criminal defense experts understand that no one could have anticipated the devastating events that occurred in 2020. People’s livelihoods drastically changed and continue to suffer the effects of COVID-19. As such, the pandemic may easily bring out the worst in people.
Thus, if you are facing domestic violence charges, you cannot afford to hire just any lawyer. As Criminal Trial Specialists Certified by the Supreme Court of New Jersey, our attorneys have the expertise your future and freedom rely upon. Waste no time in contacting us at (201) 574-7919 to learn more!