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Power and Control Wheel - Understanding Patterns of Abuse

Domestic Violence Lawyer explains the Power and Control Wheel

Domestic Violence CLE

"The Power and Control Wheel: Understanding Patterns of Abuse"

CLE No.: 174237275

This CLE will provide an overview of the Power and Control Wheel (the Duluth Model), a tool that can be used to assess the dynamics of intimate partner violence. The wheel will be discussed in the context of family law cases, and participants will learn how to use it to identify and address issues of power and control.

TRAINING MATERIALS FOR DOWNLOAD: Published materials will be provided as well as digital copies for online attendees. You can download a copy of the materials from my website here


Fort Bend Young Lawyers Association

Chris Meyer Law Firm, PLLC


Christopher Meyer

Domestic Violence and Divorce Lawyer

The Power and Control Wheel is a visual tool developed as part of the Duluth Model, which is a framework for understanding the patterns of abuse in domestic violence cases. This model was created by the Domestic Abuse Intervention Programs in Duluth, Minnesota, in the early 1980s. It's designed to illustrate the various tactics used by abusers to exert power and control over their victims. These tactics are categorized into several segments around the wheel, including:

1. Using Coercion and Threats - Making threats to harm, leaving, or forcing the victim to drop charges.

2. Using Intimidation - Making someone afraid by using looks, gestures, or destructive actions.

3. Using Emotional Abuse - Humiliating the victim, calling them names, and making them feel guilty.

4. Using Isolation - Controlling what the victim does, who they see and talk to, and limiting their outside involvement.

5. Minimizing, Denying, and Blaming - Making light of the abuse, shifting responsibility, and blaming the victim.

6. Using Children - Using children to relay messages, making the victim feel guilty about the children, and using visitation as a way to harass.

7. Using Male Privilege - Treating the woman as a servant, making all big decisions, and acting like the "master of the castle."

8. Using Economic Abuse - Preventing the victim from getting or keeping a job, and controlling finances. The Power and Control Wheel helps in understanding how various abusive strategies can interact to trap victims in abusive relationships, highlighting that domestic violence is more about power and control than just physical violence.

This event was made possible by a generous grant from the Texas Young Lawyers Association (TYLA).

(c) 2023 Christopher Meyer Law Firm, PLLC All Rights Reserved The information on this video is for general information, entertainment and educational purposes only. Nothing herein should be taken as legal advice for any individual case or situation This information is not intended to create, and receipt or viewing does not constitute, an attorney client relationship Please call (281) 845-2472 if you have any questions about this disclaimer.

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