Topic Monday: Domestic Violence Series–10 Ways Domestic Violence Affects the Workplace

Often a person believes that no one knows they are a victim of domestic abuse.  I felt that way.  I believed that it was our secret and didn’t move outside of the home.

I was terribly wrong in this belief.  Domestic violence spills over into every part of our lives, including the workplace.

Some ways that domestic violence spills over into the workplace are:phone at work

  1. Being so emotionally distraught or upset that it affects mindset and work—this was a constant struggle for me
  2. Constant calls at work to check up on you and interrupt work
  3. Unwanted visitors—the abuser dropping in to check up or insist on taking to lunch
  4. Time off—I had several instances where I was forced to take time off from work due to domestic violence.  This wasn’t because I wanted to, but I was not given any choice.  My husband even said “you will take the time off, even if it means you are fired” on at least two occasions.
  5. Sleepiness—there were many times when we stayed up half the night arguing and I was so tired that I struggled to stay awake and concentrate during the work daysleeping at desk
  6. Frustrating the employer—this was another big factor in my situation.  My husband constantly changed his mind about plans for vacation, etc.  when I would mention this to my employer he was left completely frustrated in being unable to know how to plan.
  7. Lack of Finances—even though I worked often from 40-75 hours a week, my husband hoarded all of my income leaving me with absolutely nothing.
  8. Lack of Respect—everyone knew I was being abused.  On more than one occasion, these co-workers even tried to help me.  However, when I went back to my husband, I lost all respect from my co-workers.  This greatly affected the workplace environment.fired
  9. Loss of Employment—I lost multiple jobs while I was married to my husband.  Each time this made finding a job more difficult.  The loss of income raised the intensity and stress in our situation.  Unfortunately, each time my husband cost me a job, he also narrowed the perimeters of where I could work until this became an impossible situation.
  10. Workplace Violence—from time to time on the news we hear reports of workplace violence due to domestic violence.  Often innocent lives are also affected and lost in this explosion of violence.

Join the Conversation: How has an abusive relationship affected your place of employment?