What Is Abuse?
According to Healthyplace.com, “Abuse is defined as any action that intentionally harms or injures another person.” 1
While the most commonly discussed forms of abuse are emotional/psychological, physical, and sexual abuse—Healtyplace.com describes additional forms of abuse. These include:
For a full list of what characterizes each form, we welcome you to visit: Healthyplace.com
What does "Abuse" mean?
The Latin origin of the word abuse means “to wrongly use.” 3 Do you know what this means? Anything or anyone who has been abused has been treat in a way which was not part of original design or a healthy interaction.
To put it plainly—it was wrong. Anytime abuse occurs— it goes against natural design.
This is why there are devastating outcomes associated with any form of mistreatment from one person to another. And I am here to tell you that those negative impact are 100% valid, legitimate, and real. I have no doubt you carry a significant burden in which you might feel as if you have to carry it alone. But I am here to tell you—you do not have to. And you are not alone.
If you or someone you care for are struggling because of past or present abuse—you have every right to think and feel as you do. Because what happened to you—was wrong.
Though the journey to shift an incomplete story which was affected by abuse is long and comes with numerous challenges, I believe it is possible to find the wholeness you deserve. It was wrong that someone’s choice to harm you has cost you such a steep price of healing—yet you are worth every step of the healing you were born to find.
Your name is not unwanted.
Your name is not abused.
Your name is not victim.
Your identity is worth so much more.
For the “What Is Abuse?” Video Discussion – check it out here: https://youtu.be/653RgC1b_PM
How Many Individuals Struggle Because Of Abuse?
When it comes to answering that question, we have several sources of information based off of types of abuse.
1 in 4 women (24.3%) and 1 in 7 men (13.8%) aged 18 and older in the US have been the victim of severe physical violence by an intimate partner in their lifetime.4
43% of dating college women report experiencing violent and abusive dating behaviors including physical, sexual, tech, verbal or controlling abuse.5
1 in 4 dating teens is abused or harassed online or through texts by their partners.6
48% of both men and women reported experiencing psychologically aggressive behaviors by their partner.7
1 out of 3 girls and 1 out of 5 boys will be sexually abused before they reach age 18.8
90% of child sexual abuse victims know the perpetrator in some way. 68% are abused by a family member.9
For male victims, more than half (52.4%) reported being raped by an acquaintance, and 15.1% by a stranger.10
Nearly 6 out of 10 sexual assaults occur in the victim’s home or the home of a friend, relative or neighbor.11
CPS protects more than 3 million children. Approximately 3.4 million children received an investigation or alternative response from child protective services agencies. 2.3 million children received prevention services.12
For those who story reflects these numbers, you know that you are more than a statistic, this is part of your story, but it is not the end of your story. This is where a conversation on Guilt versus Shame can be the first step to freedom.
Guilt Versus Shame
When it comes to abuse, victims will often take a sense of shame into their identity and believe they are worth less than they are because of another’s words or actions. I am here to tell you there is an important distinction between guilt and shame.
Guilt is the aftermath of an action. It can be healthy—as it lets us know what we did was wrong. But in the case of abuse, victims didn’t do anything to trigger the mistreatment. Instead, an abuser uses shame to try to take power over an individual by claiming they have a right to name another person’s identity. But it is not true.
Guilt can be healthy. Our words, actions, and behaviors have consequences. Guilt helps us to take ownership, learn, and grow. Shame, however, doesn’t offer a solution. It just grips our thoughts & emotions in a vice. In a sense, it presents a false reality.
How do we escape the trap of shame? I want to continue this critical conversation in the video below.
For the “Guilt Versus Shame Video Discussion – check it out here: https://youtu.be/sRzXXuxH-XE
I Am Glad You Are Here...
It takes courage to begin a journey to seek wholeness. Though many of us will face individual struggles in our own life—there are some struggles which feel as if they have the power to take the pen and write our future.
But you are the author—not any pain, brokenness, or hurt of your past and present.
The goal of this site is to create an environment of support along with hosting resources and tools which guide you towards wholeness.
One question constantly pushes me towards the future.
I would ask you the same question:
As you go through our site, know I believe in your future and hope you find all of the tools you need to help you take action and fight back against trauma from abuse calling the shots in your life.
Because your story—is far from over.
I Want To Admit...This Is Hard
I want to acknowledge it’s hard to know how to find ways to take action. Then, once you do find a path, it is difficult to walk it through to wholeness. Healing is not a one-time event. It is a process. Throughout that process, there will be numerous obstacles. This side of the journey must be acknowledged. Yet, even with the challenge, I believe you have what it takes to make it through.
We are rooting for you, not only once you complete your journey, but every step through it.
If you are looking for a guide to help you process your story and walk a journey of wholeness - we would love to partner with you in the Abuse Matters - Change Your Narrative Video Mentorship Guide.
Check out a sneak peak here: https://youtu.be/s5lGlHsU1HE
If you or someone you care for is in danger of harm, please contact one of the numbers below or check out our [77 resources article]
For Immediate Help:
Covenant House- 1800-999-9999
National Suicide Prevention Lifeline - 1-800-273-8255
Youth Crisis Line – 1800 Hit Home
For the “What Is It Like To Contact A Hotline?” Video Discussion – check it out here: https://youtu.be/6IRGmusmp1M
1. Tracy, N. (2012, July 29). What Is Abuse? Abuse Definition, HealthyPlace. Retrieved on 2020, March 1 from https://www.healthyplace.com/abuse/abuse-information/what-is-abuse-abuse-definition
2. Tracy, N. (2012, July 29). Types of Abuse: What are the Different Forms of Abuse?, HealthyPlace. Retrieved on 2020, March 1 from https://www.healthyplace.com/abuse/abuse-information/types-of-abuse-what-are-the-different-forms-of-abuse
3. Abuse: Definition of Abuse by Lexico. (n.d.). Retrieved March 1, 2020, from https://www.lexico.com/en/definition/abuse
7. Jordan, S. (2017, February 6). Emotional abuse: the silent killer. Retrieved March 1, 2020, from https://www.statepress.com/article/2017/02/spopinion-emotional-abuse-is-dangerous-trauma#
8. The Advocacy Center. “The Facts About Youth Sexual Abuse.” Accessed February 21, 2014,http://www.theadvocacycenter.org/adv_abuse.html
9. U.S. Department of Justice. “Sexual Assault of Young Children as Reported to Law Enforcement: Victim, Incident, and Offender Characteristics.” Bureau of Justice Statics. Accessed February 21, 2014, http://www.bjs.gov/content/pub/pdf/saycrle.pdf
11. Greenfield, Lawrence A. 1997. Sex Offenses and Offenders: An Analysis of Data on Rape and Sexual Assault, Washington, DC: Bureau of Justice Statistics, Office of Justice Programs, US Department of Justice.
12. National Statistics on Child Abuse. (n.d.). Retrieved March 1, 2020, from https://www.nationalchildrensalliance.org/media-room/nca-digital-media-kit/national-statistics-on-child-abuse/