Abuse is something that goes beyond black eyes and bruises. Yes, when we hear the word abuse, we immediately think of a young girl or a wife that is hiding her injuries from her husband behind her clothes and large sunglasses that cover her face.
Physical abuse is indeed very dangerous and damaging in many ways. But, we should all take a moment and understand that physical violence is not the only kind of abuse, men are not the abusers every time, and women are not always the victims.
Abuse oftentimes is all about control. The abuser wants to have total control over their victim, whether mentally, physically, sexually, or emotionally.
The abuser will make you feel like you can’t do anything right. The abuser wants to be in control and they start making all the decisions, they control the finances because they feel as if they control your money, they can control your life.
They are very possessive of your hobbies and activities outside of your relationship with them because they don’t want to share your attention with anyone or anything else.
The abuser wants to scare and intimidate you. They want you to be powerless so that they can feel empowered.
Emotional abuse is something that can’t be seen but it can be felt. There are no outward signs of the abuse, there are no bruises and scars, but the pain is still so powerful, and it can linger for a long time in the victim’s body causing even more damage.
The abuser will diminish your accomplishments. They will make you feel useless and worthless. They will always be suspicious of you and your behavior and they will accuse you of wrongdoings and infidelity.
The arguments and the talking with them will happen in circles. They will act as they are the victim thus confusing you and twisting the facts and the reality to a point where you’ll question your own reality,
The abuser will also deny their affection towards you as a means of manipulation. They will be affectionate one day and cruel the other. You won’t know where you stand with them.
Sexual abuse is also a type of abuse and it can happen to everyone, regardless of age. But the victims can be scared to report the abuse due to many things – fear that no one will believe them or being ashamed.
Sexual abuse ranges everywhere from name calling, sexual insults, and demanding sex when the other party is not interested in forcing sex and threatening them if they don’t obey.
Abuse is an extremely painful and isolating experience. The victims often blame themselves. Moreover, they may also feel like they deserve the awful treatment. They think that it’s their fault because it was their decision be with the abuser in the first place.
If you too feel this way, please understand that you should never blame yourself for the abuse you have suffered.
There are no excuses for abusing someone. Sadly, the abuse often happens because the abuser has been abused themselves.
Of course, not all people are the same, and sometimes the person who has been abused can manage to deal with their emotions in a healthy way. However, sometimes the victim can take the role of the abuser if they hadn’t dealt properly with their feelings. That’s when they become controlling and manipulating because they were once being controlled and manipulated. It’s their defense mechanism.
If you suspect someone around you is being abused or you are, please seek help. Yes, it may be frightening. Yes, you may feel ashamed to speak about it, but know that you are not alone.
There are many people who are in your situation. And if all victims decide to speak up and stop tolerating being abused, then we can change something.
There are many services and support groups who can offer you support.
Please, don’t be quiet. Speak up and let’s raise the awareness about this. Together we can do it. Let’s say NO to abuse.