More than 3 million domestic violence incidents are reported each year, among both men and women. Nearly 20 people per minute are physically abused by an intimate partner in the United States only. During one year, this equates to more than 10 million people. One-third of women and one-fourth of men will have experienced interpersonal violence, and for one-fourth of women and one-seventh of men, it's severe. (For more, visit NCADV.org.)
Despite the increased numbers, abused people maintain reluctance in coming forward or sharing their experience with others.
Why Victims Cover -up for Abusive Partners?
Statistics show that while lives may be lost in the process, victims of abuse would rather protect their abusers than bring them to justice. Here is WHY?
The dominant reason is dependency: Control by the abuser, shame about the abuse, and the dysfunctional nature of the relationship that lower the victim's self-esteem and confidence. This often cause the victim to withdraw from friends and family, creating even more fear and dependency on the abuser. The abuse itself is an emotional rejection with the threat of being abandoned. Abuse triggers feelings of shame and fears of both more abuse and abandonment in the victim, which are then relieved during the honeymoon phase. Then victims hope the abuser will change. After all, there are good times between episodes of abuse.
People coverup abuse to protect the reputation of their abuser. They also protect the abuser out of shame of being branded a failure in the society. An abuser uses tactics to isolate their victimss from friends and loved ones by criticizing them and making remarks designed to force you to take sides. You're either for them or against them. If the abuser feels slighted, the abused have to take their side, or you're befriending the enemy. The act of abuse is designed to increase control over you and your dependence upon them.
Victims also stay for the following reasons:
1. Finances. 2. Nowhere else to live. 3. No outside emotional support. 4. Childcare concerns. 5. Taking the blame for the abuse. 5. Denying, minimizing, and rationalizing the abuse. 6. Low self-esteem and confidence. 7. They love the abuser.
Helping You and Others in Abusive Relationships
It is not OK to protect an abuser.
It’s essential to build outside resources and talk about what’s going on in your relationship.
A professional is the best person because you can build your self-esteem and learn how to help yourself without feeling judged or rushed into taking action.
If you can’t afford private individual therapy, find a low-fee clinical in your city, learn all you can from books and online resources, join online forums, and find a support group at a local battered women’s shelter. Do this even if it means keeping a secret. You’re entitled to your privacy.
The next victim could be someone you know so take action now.
JustLikeYou is committed to creating AWARENESS while BRINGING LOVE & SUPPORT to people in abusive relationships.
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