1. People & Relationships
You can opt-out at any time. Please refer to our privacy policy for contact information.

Physical Abuse Statistics


Woman being consoled
Image Source/Photodisc/Getty Images

Physical abuse consists of anything an intimate partner does to the other partner that causes physical pain. If you partner has slapped, pinched, punched, thrown things at you or assaulted you with a weapon, you are a victim of domestic abuse.

If you feel you are being physically abuse please contact the Nartional Abuse Hotline at 1-800-799-SAFE (7233).

Below are physical abuse statistics for the United States:

Physical Abuse Statistics:

  • One in four women (25%) has experienced domestic violence in her lifetime.

  • Between 600,000 and 6 million women are victims of domestic violence each year, and between 100,000 and 6 million men, depending on the type of survey used to obtain the data.

  • Women ages 20-24 are at the greatest risk of nonfatal intimate partner violence.

  • Between 1993 and 2004, intimate partner violence on average made up 22% of nonfatal intimate partner victimizations against women. The same year, intimate partners committed 3% of all violent crime against men.

  • Separated and divorced males and females are at a greater risk of nonfatal intimate partner violence.

  • Women and men of all races are about equally vulnerable to violence by an intimate partner.

  • Intimate partner violence affects people regardless of income. However, people with lower annual income (below $25K) are at a 3-times higher risk of intimate partner violence than people with higher annual income.

  • Studies show that access to shelter services leads to a 60-70% reduction in incidence and severity of re-assault during the 3-12 months’ follow up period compared to women who did not access shelter. Shelter services led to greater reduction in severe re-assault than did seeking court or law enforcement protection, or moving to a new location.

  • Nearly three out of four (74%) of Americans personally know someone who is or has been a victim of domestic violence. 30% of Americans say they know a woman who has been physically abused by her husband or boyfriend in the past year.

Physica Abuse Homicides:

  • On average, more than three women and one man are murdered by their intimate partners in this country every day. In 2000, 1,247 women were killed by an intimate partner. The same year, 440 men were killed by an intimate partner. Intimate partner homicides accounted for 30% of the murders of women and 5% percent of the murders of men.

  • Most intimate partner homicides occur between spouses, though boyfriends/girlfriends have committed about the same number of homicides in recent years.

Physical Abuse and Children:

  • In a national survey of American families, 50% of the men and women who frequently assaulted their wives also frequently abused their children.

  • On average between 1993 and 2004, children under age 12 were residents of households experiencing intimate partner violence in 43% of incidents involving female victims and 25% of incidents involving male victims.

  • Studies suggest that between 3.3 - 10 million children witness some form of domestic violence annually.

Physical Abuse and Male Victims:

  • Due to cultural norms that require men to present a strong façade and that minimize female-perpetrated abuse men are less likely to verbalize fear of any kind which keeps them from reporting physical abuse by a partner.

  • Every 38% a man is abused by a wife or girlfriend in the United States.

  • Societal norms support female-perpetrated abuse in the home. Females have more resources available to them than men who are victims of physical abuse.

  • Surveys find that men and women assault one another and strike the first blow at approximately equal rates. Women are equally as likely to strike a man behavior that is excused by societal “norms.”

  • Men and women engage in overall comparable levels of abuse and control, such as diminishing the partner’s self-esteem, isolation and jealousy, using children and economic abuse; however, men engage in higher levels of sexual coercion and can more easily intimidate physically.

Resources For Victims of Physical Abuse:

©2014 About.com. All rights reserved.