Redefining Abuse: What it looks like and how to fix it.

“Abuse is never deserved, it is an exploitation of innocence and physical disadvantage, which is perceived as an opportunity by the abuser.”
― Lorraine Nilon

Is it a classic story of a crazy stupid love?  Am I disrespectful and deserve to be punished, am I crazy and oversensitive or am I being abused? Ladies from time to time are faced with these questions. Today women and young girls all over the world are put in very compromising situations and many do not identify their situation as abuse. This is a challenge as abuse has no face. Abuse transcends religion, age, sex and socio-economic class. Abuse goes beyond the boundaries of many countries and affects women all over the world today. Therefore, it is paramount to inform people about the signs of abuse.

There has been a steady increase in abuse cases in the different regions of the world. A report from the World Health Organization(WHO) states that about 1 in 3 of women worldwide have experienced either physical and/or sexual intimate partner violence or non-partner sexual violence in their lifetime. In short, 35% of the women of the world have in some way been victims of abuse.

In recent news, reports have been made about abuse against women and young girls all over the world. However, as the brave actions of many young ladies today have resulted to dramatic change, sadly many young women today do not know what exactly abuse is and if they are being abused. This problem not only affects the victims but also influences the reaction of family members and loved.

What it Looks Like

I am sure you all are wondering how on earth do we fix this?

First and foremost, abuse needs to be redefined. The United Nations defines violence against women as; “Any act of gender-based violence that results in, or is likely to result in, physical, sexual or mental harm or suffering to women, including threats of such acts, coercion or arbitrary deprivation of liberty, either occurring in public or in private life.”

It is also very important to note that abuse comes in different forms such as but not limited to; domestic, physical, emotional, financial, verbal and sexual abuse.

A detailed list compiled by the Women’s Health Government provides signs that you should look out for. If a partner or anyone else is;

  • Keeping track of everything you do
  • Being jealous, controlling, or angry
  • Demeaning you
  • Physically hurting or threatening to hurt you or loved ones
  • Forcing you to have sex or other intimate activity
  • Controls your finances
  • Limits your movement and who you see
  • Use of force or weapons to dictate actions
  • Threatening to commit suicide

Signs for others to look out for

  • She is uncontrollably nervous
  • She covers her unexplained wounds and bruises
  • She is held without consent
  • Depression
  • Sudden reliance on substances
  • Withdrawal from friends and family

 

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