Survival Guide: Abuse – Part 1 Definitions

Within each article I’ll include important links for those who affected by the subjects covered, please use these links if you need help!

 

 Please review links at the bottom for information about Rape
What is Abuse? (Reposted from Domestic Violence)

Domestic violence and emotional abuse are behaviors used by one person in a relationship to control the other. Partners may be married or not married; heterosexual, gay, or lesbian; living together, separated or dating.
Examples of abuse include:

  • name-calling or putdowns

  • keeping a partner from contacting their family or friends

  • withholding money

  • stopping a partner from getting or keeping a job

  • actual or threatened physical harm

  • sexual assault

  • stalking

  • intimidation

Violence can be criminal and includes physical assault (hitting, pushing, shoving, etc.), sexual abuse (unwanted or forced sexual activity), and stalking. Although emotional, psychological and financial abuse are not criminal behaviors, they are forms of abuse and can lead to criminal violence.

The violence takes many forms and can happen all the time or once in a while. An important step to help yourself or someone you know in preventing or stopping violence is recognizing the warning signs listed on the “Violence Wheel.”

ANYONE CAN BE A VICTIM!Victims can be of any age, sex, race, culture, religion, education, employment or marital status. Although both men and women can be abused, most victims are women. Children in homes where there is domestic violence are more likely to be abused and/or neglected. Most children in these homes know about the violence. Even if a child is not physically harmed, they may have emotional and behavior problems.

If you are being abused, REMEMBER

  1. You are not alone

  2. It is not your fault

  3. Help is available

 

COMMON MYTHS AND WHY THEY ARE WRONG

Domestic violence is not a problem in my community.

  • Michigan State Police records from 1997 show that a woman is killed by a partner or former partner about once a week in Michigan.
  • In 1998, the Michigan State Police reported more than 5,000 victims of domestic violence in Oakland County.

Domestic violence only happens to poor women and women of color.

  • Domestic violence happens in all kinds of families and relationships. Persons of any class, culture, religion, sexual orientation, marital status, age, and sex can be victims or perpetrators of domestic violence.

Some people deserve to be hit.

  • No one deserves to be abused. Period. The only person responsible for the abuse is the abuser.
  • Physical violence, even among family members, is wrong and against the law.

Alcohol, drug abuse, stress, and mental illness cause domestic violence.

  • Alcohol use, drug use, and stress do not cause domestic violence; they may go along with domestic violence, but they do not cause the violence. Abusers often say they use these excuses for their violence. (Michigan Judicial Institute, Domestic Violence Benchbook, 1998, p. 1.6 – 1.7)
  • Generally, domestic violence happens when an abuser has learned and chooses to abuse. (Michigan Judicial Institute, Domestic Violence Benchbook, 1998, p. 1 – 5)
  • Domestic violence is rarely caused by mental illness, but it is often used as an excuse for domestic violence. (Michigan Judicial Institute, Domestic Violence Benchbook, 1998, p. 1 – 8)

Domestic violence is a personal problem between a husband and a wife.

  • Domestic violence affects everyone.
  • About 1 in 3 American women have been physically or sexually abused by a husband or boyfriend at some point in their lives. (Commonwealth Fund, Health Concerns Across a Woman’s Lifespan: the Commonwealth Fund 1998 Survey of Women’s Health, 1999)
  • In 1996, 30% of all female murder victims were killed by their husbands or boyfriends. (Federal Bureau of Investigation, 1997)
  • 40% to 60% of men who abuse women also abuse children. (American Psychological Association, Violence and the Family, 1996)

If it were that bad, she would just leave.

  • There are many reasons why women may not leave. Not leaving does not mean that the situation is okay or that the victim want to be abused.
  • Leaving can be dangerous. The most dangerous time for a woman who is being abused is when she tries to leave. (United States Department of Justice, National Crime Victim Survey, 1995)MANY VICTIMS DO LEAVE AND LEAD SUCCESSFUL, VIOLENCE FREE LIVES.
    For further Information click here: Child Welfare Information Gateway

     

I understand that this is a very basic layman’s definition of abuse and during the next segments I’ll explore this subject with greater detail and personal reflection.
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Lie Anyway – Lies threaten Love

“I’m not upset that you lied to me, I’m upset that from now on I can’t believe you.”
 
cool-story
Speak with your face turned away,
words that I long for you to say.
I believe them even if they may
Holding my aching mind at bay
go ahead my love, lie anyway.

Also published in Broowaha


Natural Selection – Make a new start

“Although no one can go back and make a brand new start, anyone can start from now and make a brand new ending.” Carl Bard

 

At anytime, there is a correction

To start over, without exception

Unconfined by election
Releasing inhibition

No holds barred, no friction
No need for deep inspection

Release yourself to a new direction
No chains surround, nowhere to check in

One more time, an election
To start over, takes only selection

Also published in Broowaha Magazine

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Cupid – Romanticized Abuse

“A bruise inflicted by someone else, however, is a whole other story: it’s like a big flashing arrow marking you out as punchable, and before long there’ll be boys queuing up to add bruises of their own, as if they’d just been waiting for somebody to show them it could be done.” ― Paul Murray

This moving post is from “E”…read it and weep for those caught in the web of abuse…

lovelycontusions

 I think that I romanticized you to the point, 
that when you hit at my face,
I thought of slapping fly’s off my cheeks.
That when you threw me across rooms,
I thought of it as you throwing me from on coming danger.
That when you tried to press daggers deep into my chest
I thought of it as cupids arrows telling me how I loved you.
When you said “I hate you, I’m sorry I love you”
I thought of it as poetry you wrote for me.
If you are involved in an abusive relationship click here for help

Shhhhh…. – Words can maim for life

 “Because even the smallest of words can be the ones to hurt you, or save you.”
Natsuki Takaya

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The tongue can set a fire no man can extinguish. The venomous stings it inflicts can break apart even the best friendships. Life and death are in the power of the words we speak. We’d do well to remember that when we blithely spout off the latest rumors, the latest dirt, about the ones we love. Don’t repeat the gossip, don’t listen to the gossip. Shhhhh…..

Also published in Wingposse Magazine, December 2012

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Yet His Eyes – PTSD

“The guns taught only one thing, but they taught it well: of what consequence is life? Of what consequence is a man? And, therefore, of what consequence if he tramples love in one place and goes to find it in the next? The little moment that he has, let him be at peace, far from the guns and all that remind him of them.” – Cornell Woolrich, The Fantastic Stories of Cornell Woolrich
 

ureyes2me

The wound, hidden, bled through his clothes

Those he meets casually talk in cliches
Yet his eyes, bright with promise, gleam for today
He will never stop running, though he grows weak,
from the stain flowing down his shirt
Yet his eyes, bright with promise, gleam for today 

If you need help with PTSD (Post Traumatic Stress Disorder) click here

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Poisoned Love – A death sentence for love

“Love does not last forever, then?”
“He asked me the same thing this morning,” she said. “No, it does not – not love that has been betrayed. One realizes that one has loved a mirage, someone who never really existed. Not that love dies immediately or soon, even then. But it does die and cannot be revived.” 

Mary Balogh, Simply Perfect


knife-in-back

I’m surprised at myself. Being a spiritually enlightened man, well acquainted with my own faults and well exercised at forgiving a mountain of offenses against me, I’ve found myself at an insurmountable barrier, bitterness at a betrayal, no not just one, but many betrayals, of my lover against me. I mouth the words like I know I should, “I forgive you”, I pray the prayers, “Lord help her”, but yet, I find a seething bleeding wound festering beneath my loving mask. Why does this have a root in me? Worse, why can’t I, under any amount of coercion, cleanse myself of this horrid stew I’ve brewed? I haven’t yet tasted the foulness of it, but I can smell it, tainting the air of conversation and poisoning the purity of the love I felt. I’m sure it’ll kill all of my affection, but, I must make sure it doesn’t destroy my compassion for others, or let it morph into its evil sibling, revenge. God help me, I’m just like the one I despise! Now I’m left with this battle, and how to win it, I’ve no sure plan. I need an intervention of grace, power to do what I could never do.


Everyone suffers at least one bad betrayal in their lifetime. It’s what unites us. The trick is not to let it destroy your trust in others when that happens. Don’t let them take that from you.” Sherrilyn Kenyon, Invincible
Also published in: Lifeasahuman.com 
Also published in: Broowaha

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