Domestic Violence and Alcohol Abuse

by AdamS on August 23, 2012

Many people believe that there is a strong relation between domestic violence and alcohol abuse.  The myth exists that alcohol abuse is the single greatest cause of domestic violence in the United States.  There are plenty of statistics that support the myth, some records show that in over ninety percent of the domestic abuse cases, the person who is being charged had drank alcohol during the time leading up to the fight.  It cannot be proved that alcohol is responsible for these instances however, since there have also been reports of sober people causing domestic violence.  The relationship between domestic violence and substance abuse is actually very complex.  Some of these individuals will need to go through specific treatment programs to treat their disorders.  Check out for more information on treatment programs.

Spouse Abuse

Studies have shown that heavy drinkers or alcoholics are more likely to beat their spouses than people who do not abuse alcohol.  On the other hand, most of these heavy drinkers who were reported to have abused their spouses, also abused their spouses while they were sober.  That means that it has less to do with the amount of alcohol a person drinks and more to do with the person’s mental health.  These people who abuse their spouses are dangerous with or without alcohol in their systems, but they are more likely to be violent after they have been drinking.

Men Much More Likely to Become Violent

There have been reports of women causing domestic violence, however most of the time it is men who are responsible for the violence.    Men who have a predisposition toward physically abusing their girlfriends or wives are much more likely to become violent after they drank alcohol.    The odds of male-to-female violence increases almost twenty times when alcohol is involved.  Women who physically abuse their partners are not as likely to become violent because of alcohol intoxication as men.

Myths About Link Between Domestic Violence and Alcohol Abuse

With all the data available that suggests the link between alcohol abuse and domestic violence, it is hard to argue that they are causally related.  However, most people responsible for domestic violence, use alcohol as an excuse for becoming violent.  Saying that they were drunk, allows the individual to somewhat justify their behavior.  Most people say that the drinking caused them to lose control of themselves and become violent when in reality they just wanted an excuse to cause violence.  The real problem is the people themselves, not the alcohol.  Alcohol abuse becomes the scapegoat in most domestic violence cases, while the real psychological problems the individual has are often overlooked.

Alcohol abuse and domestic violence will probably always be linked to each other because it is very difficult to dispute the number of people who caused domestic violence and also had been drinking on the day the event occurred.  People will always claim that they lost control of their emotions because they were drinking and that is the reason that they attacked their spouse, but often they had intentions to become physically violent before they started drinking.  The real issue behind domestic violence is the mental health of the individual who causes it.  If you know someone who needs to go through alcohol detox or any other treatment programs please visit

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