far too many people in San Francisco may currently be suffering from abuse at the hands of their spouses. For those hearing details of an abusive marriage from the outside, the solution to ending said abuse seems simple: the domestic violence victim simply needs to leave. Yet domestic abusers often exercise a great deal of control over their victims (especially when they are married). They may control the couple’s finances and their other resources, leaving their victims completely dependent on them. As if control is not enough, many may also use fear as a method of ensuring that their spouses never leave.
Those that are struggling with mustering the courage to leave their abusive spouses should know that there resources out there to protect. A recent update to a divorce case involving a Chinese woman and her American husband (who happened to make their marital home in Orange County) demonstrates this point. The woman claims that her ex-husband tried to compel her to satisfy his sexual desires, even going so far as to threaten her with deportation if she did not. Their tumultuous time together came to a conclusion when he reportedly broke two beer bottles and stabbed her in the shoulder with them. She pressed charges and he was subsequently convicted of assault. While he was able to avoid the five-year prison sentence he initially faced, he was forced to spend 180 days in jail, during which time she was able to leave him and return to China.
Domestic abuse victims need to know and trust that their cases will be taken seriously by those with the power and authority to protect. Working with an experienced family law attorney can help ensure this happens.