There are always side effects in collateral damage associated with sweeping changes that occur in our country. The government instituted multiple rounds of state home orders in government shutdowns due to the coronavirus beginning in March. As we have seen the rates of testing increase, the hospitalization numbers increase in Wayne over time. The government has responded in its attempts to restrain the growth of this virus. Whether or not those attempts will be successful is anyone's guess at this stage. We know that these attempts to hinder the development of the virus have effects that go beyond people getting sick with COVID-19.
I think the most discussed side effect of these government shutdowns has concerned the economy. Even if you haven't been keeping up with the news, you have likely become aware that the unemployment rate in our country skyrocketed during these various shutdowns. This is adding an effect not only on Individual families in their communities but also on entire states in the nation. The legislation was passed in March and April that would allow auto work persons in most US citizens to become eligible for payments from the government. These payments or intended to help keep families afloat financially while the economy struggled to regain its footing in the face of his government shutdowns.
The economic well-being of families in Southeast Texas impacts how people feel about their lives overall. Many problems in a person's life can be papered over if they are doing OK financially. Job stability is tied to people's decisions in terms of their spending and their willingness to grow their families. When economic times are bleak, people are less willing to spend money and are more pessimistic about their future and their families. It just so happened that the coronavirus pandemic, the government LED shutdowns of the economy, and the problems associated with the oil and gas sector all collided at the same time to create an especially troublesome economic picture for Southeast Texas.
Another connection that we can draw from wrong economic numbers is their relationship to family problems. As a family law attorney, I can tell you that I have spoken with many families who have gone through divorces and who tell me that financial problems are a significant cause of the divorce. There may have been other factors at play but financial problems are at the top of the list. Sometimes we even have the unfortunate experience of seeing families deal with domestic violence in addition to an already tricky family law related matter.
That is what I would like to discuss with you today in our blog post. A significant concern among there is in the family law community right now is the possible relationship between the stay-at-home orders and an increase in domestic violence. To do our best to help keep our community safe and to help educate those of us who are impacted by this phenomenon, I would like to share with you my thoughts on the relationship between This virus, the shutdowns, and domestic violence. I would also like to share my thoughts on preventing incidents of domestic violence before they occur.
Domestic violence can increase merely due to the increased contact between family members.
I used to hear a lot about how we as American families don't take the time to slow down and do things as simple as eating meals together anymore. Our schedules used to be so overly burdened with activities, but it wasn't easy to sit down and have a simple meal with one another. Well, since about March 15th, I haven't heard much of that at all. Not surprisingly, most of us have seen our schedules come to a grinding halt other than the essential activities like work, grocery shopping, and things of that nature. The fact is that I'm sure most of us reading this blog are spending much more time at home than we had during any other time in our adult lives.
We are spending more time at home with our families, which can be both positive and negative. It is favorable for those who have healthy family lives and get along and care for our families. Those of us in this position May be able to look back on this time as somewhat intimidating and a little unsettling regarding the virus itself, but overall, we built memories that we will hold for the rest of our lives for better or worse. Or at least, that's how I'm looking at things trying to be as optimistic as possible.
On the other hand, if you are in a situation where your family life is overall a negative as far as impact on your life generally speaking, then you may struggle during these times when you will be spending more time with your family and out of your everyday routine. For the most part, this may mean problems with communication. A few arguments here; there is a general sense that you are unsatisfied with your marriage or even with your family as a whole. It may mean for an unfortunate few that domestic violence is a significant concern in your life.
When I talk about domestic violence in a general sense, I am talking about family violence In addition to domestic violence. This can mean violence against children as perpetrated by an adult, violence by one spouse against another spouse, or violence by a person In a dating relationship against their partner. Unfortunately, these are the forms of domestic and family violence that family law attorneys see with varying frequencies during their practice. While a typical child custody or divorce case is stressful enough for a family, domestic violence can worsen. While everyone is concerned with the physical effects of a virus, domestic violence's biological effects can leave much more significant impacts on individuals and families.
Why could domestic violence incidents increase during the pandemic?
I think the simple fact that we're all spending more time at home leads more people to be vulnerable and in situations where domestic violence may occur as a result. Whereas you and your spouse may have had a toxic relationship for months or even years, your regular schedules may have kept you out of each other's hair now in the crosshairs of potential incidents of domestic violence. Now that we're all face to face with one another on a near-constant basis these problems may begin to surface with more ease.
Suppose you and your spouse are not patient with one another and do not give each other as much physical distance as possible depending on the state of your relationship. In that case, it is not far-fetched to imagine a scenario or domestic violence could occur. Nobody hopes that this happens, but it is worth mentioning that having a plan to avoid incidents like this to avoid the situation of raw appliances does occur need to be thought about in advance. Trying to figure out how to prevent a problem as it is happening is not good enough and could very well be too late.
Have a plan regarding how to act if domestic violence occurs in your home
Let's lay out a hypothetical situation involving you and your spouse. Let's say that you have become worried over the past weeks and months that anger between you and your spouse will boil over and eventually lead to you becoming the victim of domestic violence. You have read newspaper articles, heard stories from other people, and ran through hypothetical situations in your mind time after time, but how dangerous domestic violence is. That hasn't stopped you from engaging in behavior with your spouse; it could very well lead to a domestic violence incident.
Rather than enter into a potentially dangerous situation with no plan in mind, I would recommend that you have some steps laid out for you to fall back on if you need to seek safety in the face of domestic violence in your home. Let's walk through some of those steps that you can take to put yourself and your children in a safer situation, And two, eventually hold your spouse accountable for their actions.
First, as the old saying goes, a penny's worth of prevention Is worth a pound of cure. What I mean by this is that if you can avoid a potentially hostile situation to begin with, then you will be in a better position than You would've been Merely trying to discover how to remove yourself from a violent scene in your home. For example, if you sense a discussion between you and your spouse is turning heated, you should physically remove yourself from that area. Simply no longer talking or changing the subject in a conversation may not do enough. If you physically remove yourself from the room and eliminate discussion, Then this can do a world of good for you and your family.
Next, you should develop a literal exit strategy for violence in the home and take steps to remove yourself. Having a couple of changes of clothes for you and your children in a bag somewhere where your spouse will not find it is an excellent place to start. This will be handy if you have to leave the house at a moment's notice in seek here or shelter in another location. Having gas in your vehicle at all times and contact information for safe homes or shelters in your phone would also be wise to plan for.
If you know that you and your spouse will have a discussion or potentially engage in a conversation that could turn to violence, I would recommend steering yourself away from rooms with sharp objects and things that can potentially be harmful to you. Rooms like your bathroom with lots of hard surfaces and indeed the kitchen with silver Ware and other sharp objects should be avoided. If your home has two stories, you should not get into discussions that may become heated on the 2nd floor. Do not box yourself into a corner and leave yourself no opportunity for an exit.
If you have become a victim of domestic violence, you should know that you have options as far as places to seek care, even during the pandemic. There are various shelters in our area that you can seek care with. He should perform some basic Internet research to have these places on Speed dial if he needs to call upon them. If shelters are not available to you, I would recommend contacting relatives and friends you can trust and determining whether or not you can seek refuge with them temporarily. Make sure that these folks are not people that will disclose your location to your spouse.
Finally, if you need to file for divorce or seek a protective order against your spouse, you should seek an experienced family law attorney. It is incredibly critical to your safety and that of your children for you to have an attorney who has worked with clients in your position before. You do not want an inexperienced green attorney trying to navigate the complicated court system, especially during a viral pandemic.
Questions about the material contained in today's blog post? Contact the Law Office of Bryan Fagan
If you have any questions about the material contained in today's blog post, please do not hesitate to contact the Law Office of Bryan Fagan. Our experienced family law attorneys offer free of charge consultations six days a week in our office, over the phone, and via video. These consultations are an excellent way for you to learn More about Texas family law and our office's services to you and your family as clients.