(information taken from the publication "Wife Assault Hurts Us All"
It is a fact that abuse by a partner affects women in many ways.
- Sometime, it is difficult to cope with everday things.
- It is difficult, sometimes, to have energy to complete different tasks.
- You may find yourself less patient with your children.
- You may find yourself physically ill and in need of medication.
This is not unusual for many experiencing abuse. You may be affected by abuse in different ways.
Our self-esteem or self-concenpt is a measure of how we feel about ourselves. Low Self-esteem creates feeling of self-doubt and worthlessness, taking away the self-confidence needed to make decisions and to solve probles. When our own feelings and judgement cannot be trusted, solving even small problems becomes difficults. In many cases low self-esteem and poor self-esteem may lead to depression. Depression is a medical condition that often requires medication or therapy to be effectively treated. Low Self-esteem can also result in a disregards for personal appearance and health.
~ Feeling of Helplessness~
In abusive relationships, the abuse man maintain control of his partner's actions by physically, sexually, and psychologically abusing her. If the assaulted women tries to regain some control, the abuser may become more controlling. Her repeated unsuccessfull attempts at stopping his violence reinforce her feeling of helplessness. As a result the assaulted woman may give up trying to break the cycle of violence.
~ Self Blame and Guilt~
Many women are used to looking after the emotional needs of their family. When the emotional well-being of the family is suffering, as it does when abuse is present, the woman tends to blame herself and tends to believe she fails in her role to look after her family. Some women have hidden the abuse for years because of the guilt and shame they feel. The partners usually encourage this thinking by blaming her for the abuse. This results in the women falsely believing she has failed as emotional caretaker and that she causes and deserves the abuse.
~ Denying and Minimizing~
Denying and minimizing abuse are two ways of coping with his violences, although they are ineffective. They increase the danger already present by encouraging the victim to disregard signals which can warm her of further assaults.
Abused women frequently deny being victims of wife assaults and that a pattern of abused has been established. A false sense of responsibility for the violence and embarrassment prevents her from telling others about it. Other excusses can be made to explain away the violence and to renew hope for the relationship.
Minimizing abuse downplays its seriousness. Often women avoid accepting the reality that they are being abused by comparing themselves to others who have endure more extreme acts of physical and psychological abuse. Their own situations then seem much less serious and much less dangerous.
~ Drug and Alcohol Abuse~
Victim of wife assault suffer from stress and tension. Many abused women turn to drugs and alcohol to avoid confronting their abusive situation. Continued use of these substances lead to dependency for may women. Substance abuse added to the assaulted woman's problem. The abused woman who tries to deal effectively with her substance dependence and her violent situation at the same time is easily overwhelmed.
Alcohol and illegal drugs are obvious examples of abused substances, but abuse of drug given by doctors accounts for much of the substance abuse among women who experienced violence. Sleeping pills, pain killers and traquilizers are the more commonly abused prescription drugs.
Slide Show from Amnesty International "Campaign to stop Violence Against Women"
~ R E S O U R C E S~
C A N A D A
Amnesty Canada http://www.amnesty.ca 1-800-AMNESTY
NationalClearing House on Violence 1-800-267-1291 TTY: 1-800-561-5643
Transition and/or Safe Houses Northern BC Canada (1 250 996 8000)
UNITED STATE OF AMERICA
National Domestic Hotline http://www.ndvh.org/ 1-800-799-SAFE
National Sexual Violence Resources http://www.nsvrc.org/ 1-877-739-3895
National Coalition Against Dometice Violence http://www.ncadv.org/
Every States Address: http://www.usdoj.gov/ovw/state.htm