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Do I Need Domestic Violence Classes or Anger Management?

How do I know if I should take domestic violence classes or anger management class?

Have you been court ordered to complete domestic violence classes or anger management classes? Sometimes it can be confusing because these terms are often used interchangeably. The classes can also be referred to as family violence classes, domestic abuse classes, batterer’s intervention classes, spousal abuse classes, family abuse classes or dv classes. It can add to the confusion that even the courts sometimes use the terms interchangeably.


How to know if you need to take domestic violence classes or anger management:
1. The victim in the case. The best guideline to use is who the victim in the case was. In general, if the victim in the case was a stranger such as someone that you got into a fight with at a bar you will usually need to take anger management classes. If the victim in the case was a spouse, girlfriend or boyfriend, dating partner, or other family member you will usually need to complete domestic violence classes.
2. Check your court paperwork. Most times the court paperwork will specify if you are required to complete domestic violence classes, anger management, or both.3. Ask your probation officer or attorney. This is often your best resource to answer regarding the details of your specific case.
4. Understand the difference between anger management and domestic violence classes. Anger management classes will focus more on impulse control and handling stressful situations in the future. Domestic violence classes may contain some components of anger management but the bigger focus in domestic violence classes will be on power and control. Domestic violence is not about anger management. Someone who is committing domestic violence at home can be perfectly capable of managing their anger at work when their boss is yelling at them because they don’t want to lose their job. They will manage their anger fine in court when they are standing before the judge because they do not want to go to jail. If you have a domestic violence charge, in nearly every case you will be required to take domestic violence classes not anger management.