I remember looking at a poster about domestic abuse and thinking “he only does x,y and z, but he doesn’t do all of those things, so it can’t be abuse”. I think the worst thing, though, when you’re trying to come to terms with what you have been through, is when people somehow blame you, the victim. Even if not overtly, they make assumptions. I felt so ashamed. I felt guilty for what had happened.
Also there is a lack of understanding of the nature of coercion and manipulation which is a huge part of domestic abuse and has just as bad an impact as actual physical violence. Also, and this is really important: IT DOESN’T HAVE TO BE PHYSICAL TO BE ABUSIVE. Sexual abuse, coercion, emotional abuse, etc., are just as destructive and just as wrong and NO ONE, male or female, should feel obliged to put up with it out of a misplaced sense of ‘Christian’ obligation.
Addendum, 2nd June 2015: I have been contacted by a representative of the University of New England who produced the infographic in The Beautiful Kingdom Warrior’s post, reblogged below, so here is the link for the infographic and my apologies if it was in any way unclear where the infographic actually originated.
Click here for the link.
I wanted to share these excellent posts from TrueLove Homes with you:
MYTH #1: Domestic Violence only happens to poorer, uneducated women
MYTH #2: Domestic violence doesn’t affect that many people
MYTH #3: Abuse only constitutes physical injury
MYTH #4: Substance abuse causes domestic abuse
MYTH #5: Once we (fill in the blank), he will no longer abuse me
MYTH #6: He’s saved so he must be safe
MYTH #7: If it’s that bad, a victim of domestic violence would just leave
MYTH #8: The abuse must not have been that bad or she would not have returned to him
MYTH #9: All victims of domestic violence get custody of their kids
MYTH #10: Upon leaving an abusive relationship, life gets better