Dr. Christine Murray, associate professor in the Department of Counseling and Educational Development, has one goal in mind for Domestic Violence Awareness Month: end the stigma.
While Murray was just named Counselor of the Year by the Licensed Professional Counselors Association of North Carolina for her research, teaching and community efforts related to domestic violence, she knows her work is far from over.
As co-founder of See the Triumph, a social media campaign that challenges the stigma associated with domestic violence and provides resources to survivors and service organizations, Murray is focused on ending stigma and celebrating triumph.
“We’ve heard from hundreds of survivors of domestic violence in our research, and the vast majority are not repeat victims as popular stereotypes suggest,” Murray said. “These are individuals who have overcome incredibly complex, difficult situations to build positive, healthy lives.”
Throughout October, See the Triumph will share information, resources and inspiring stories to help change the negative perceptions of domestic violence survivors.
In addition to her work with See the Triumph and several other community initiatives, Murray remains committed to raising awareness among students on campus. According to Murray, dating violence occurs on colleges campuses more often than many students think.
“It’s really important that college students move slowly in dating relationships. Red flags of abuse can often be very confusing and misinterpreted as innocent signs of interest.”
Murray encourages students to have a support system of friends and family and to be aware of the many resources that are available. UNCG provides numerous on-campus resources for students who are victims of domestic abuse, including The Counseling Center, the Dean of Students Office, the Nicholas A. Vacc Counseling and Consulting Clinic and UNCG Police. There are also resources throughout the Greensboro community, such as the Guilford County Family Justice Center, that support student victims.
What can UNCG students do to start increasing awareness and decreasing the stigma? Start talking.
“Don’t be afraid to speak up if you have a friend, roommate or classmate that may be in a potentially unsafe relationship,” Murray said. “Educate yourself now about domestic violence, and don’t hesitate to reach out for help in the future.”
Students who are interested in raising awareness about relationship violence are invited to attend the Red Flag Campaign event on Tuesday, Oct. 27, from 7-8:30 p.m. in the Tillman Smart Room in Shaw Residence Hall. Sponsored by Housing and Residence Life and the Social Justice Diversity Initiatives program, the event will include free food and prizes. Participants are encouraged to wear or bring something red for a photo.
9 Warning Signs of Abusive Relationships
Someone may be in an abusive relationship if his or her partner demonstrates one or more of the following:
- Controlling, possessive behaviors
- Extreme jealousy
- Quick to anger
- Slow to accept responsibility for his or her behaviors
- Frequently checking in on a partner
- Words or actions that instill fear
- Verbal putdowns
- Physically violent acts
- Forced or coerced sexual acts
(List provided by Dr. Christine Murray)
Story by Alyssa Bedrosian, University Relations