What is abuse?
When one person tries to have power over another person that they are in a relationship with or tries to control them we call it domestic abuse. When anyone, whether you know them or not, makes you do something sexual that you do not want to do, this is sexual abuse.
Abuse may be –
- Physical – hitting, kicking, punching, biting, burning, throwing things …
- Verbal – constant criticism, put downs, name calling …
- Emotional – making you feel stupid, fat, ugly, mad; isolation you from friends and family …
- Sexual – rape, sexual assault, or making you do anything you do not want to do, including emotionally black mailing you into doing things you don’t want to “you would if you loved me” …
- Forced Marriage – some young people are forced, by family members, to marry someone they do not want to – this is also abuse.
- Stalking and harassment – this might include following you; frequently making contact such as phoning, sending letters, text messages, emails or through social media, like Facebook and Twitter; sending unwanted or horrible gifts, such as dead flowers; gathering information on you by contacting people who know you or by using public records …
These are just some examples; there are many ways one person can be abusive towards another. If you feel scared, ashamed or controlled there is a problem.
Abuse can happen to anyone – it is not your fault and it is not okay. There are things you can do about it.
What to do
If you are worried that you are in an abusive situation what can you do about it? Talking to someone is always a great first step. You could call one of the Helplines or speak to a trusted adult.
Do not ignore it – Get help!
For more information, please take a look at the following pages: