There is a silent epidemic happening in the United States among residents of Salt Lake City, Utah—many spouses are finding themselves victims of domestic abuse at the hands of the person that they married. It seems as if one of the hardest hit populations who experience this occurrence is the military community.

Though there are several resources that are available to military families who need help in multiple areas, domestic abuse goes largely unreported. This is due to the practice of punishing military members who abuse their spouses. It is not uncommon for those who have been accused to lose rank or be discharged from their branch of service completely. Not only do victims of abuse who are married to members of the armed forces live in fear of their spouse, they also live in fear of losing their livelihood.

Because of the nature of the lifestyle, a majority of those who are married to people in the military go unemployed for extended periods. Many are stay at home parents, offering a form of stability to their children that they cannot get otherwise. Abusers often use this as a way to keep their spouse quiet—if the abuser loses their career when light is shed on the situation, the spouse will then have nothing for themselves or their children.

There is help for those who are experiencing domestic abuse within a military marriage. If this situation sounds familiar, speaking to an experienced attorney may be beneficial. A legal professional could help you understand your rights.

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