Anti Violence – Part 7: How do you know that you are being abused?

Often, kids who grow up surrounded by violence and abuse can think that this type of life is normal

How do you know that you are being abused?

It sounds like a crazy question. Of course you know you are being abused if your dad is beating you black and blue, or creeping into bed to have sex with you every night!

But, it really isn’t always that easy. Younger children or teenagers often have a huge trust in the adults in their family and believe them when they say it’s alright to behave in this way.

Or, if the adult who is abusing you tells you that you are to blame for the abuse, because you haven’t done well at school, perhaps, or haven’t helped enough around the house you might not recognize that you are being abused.

Often, kids who grow up surrounded by violence and abuse can think that this type of life is normal and are unable to recognize it as wrong and abusive. You need to know that no sort of abuse is OK! Even if you are living in a family where one of your parents abuses the other in front of you, you too are a victim of abuse. You deserve help and help is available.

Why abuse happens

If you are caught up in an abusive situation, you probably ask yourself ‘Why?’

It’s a very good question.  The first thing to understand, absolutely and completely, is that it is not your fault. It doesn’t matter if someone tells you that you are to blame, you’re NOT.

Many abusers try to shift the blame for their behaviour onto the victim, but this is their problem and part of their abuse. No one, least of all a child or young person, deserves to be abused no matter what they have done, not done or are accused of doing.

There are as many reasons why a person becomes abusive as there are different types of abuse…and different types of people. Not all abusers are really bad people…but all are doing a bad thing.

Sometimes, a person abuses others because they themselves have grown up in an abusive family and been a victim of abuse. They grow up thinking that abuse is normal, and transfer this behaviour to their adult lives and family relationships if the problem hasn’t been properly dealt with at the time.

Others may not be able to draw the line between discipline and abuse. Some can’t deal with the stress that they find themselves under, perhaps due to financial problems or family illness.

Mental illness, such as depression can also induce abusive behaviour, as can alcoholism and drug use.

Abusers like these can be helped if they ask for counselling and therapy…but they need to fully commit to solving the problem and might need help for a long time.

If you are being abused by a family member, you might think that reporting the abuse and asking for help is a betrayal, but actually it is the only way to help not just yourself, but also your abuser.

If you have been living in an abusive relationship, you may feel confused and afraid and not know where to turn or what to do.

You may have mixed feelings of love and anger; wanting the abuse to end, but not wanting the relationship to be over.

If you are in immediate danger call 911.

For help contact: Interior Health Crisis Line 1-888-353-2273.

The Anti Violence Advocates Society of Barriere is collecting cell phones and their chargers to be used by families planning to leave an abusive situation. Drop off your old phones at  Armour Mountain Office Services. Thank you to Media Esteem. Kevin has agreed to clear the phones to factory settings.

This column is courtesy of the Anti Violence Advocates Society of Barriere.

 

Just Posted

This bird’s eye view shows the tanker truck fire on Highway 24. (Photo taken by Kurtis Rainer)
UPDATE: Highway 24 open to single-lane traffic after fuel tanker fire

Driver pulled into the runaway lane after the truck wheels caught fire

Residents line up outside the Vernon Recreation Complex for their COVID-19 vaccine Saturday, June 5. (Jennifer Smith - Morning Star)
No appointments necessary for first dose COVID-19 vaccine: Interior Health

People can just show up at clinics, register on the spot and get the shot

(TNRD Library)
Let the mystery of the Summer Reading Club begin

Are you ready to ‘Crack the Case’ at the Barriere Library?

(Metro Creative photo)
Gardeners of all ages invited to enter 2021 NT Fall Fair contests

The North Thompson Fall Fair Drive Thru scheduled for Saturday, Sept. 4,… Continue reading

Milsom Lodge was built in the East Barriere Valley when the Milsom brothers purchased two parcels of land in 1911, DL 2323 and DL2324. (Milsom’s photo)
The Milsom Lodge: The mansion, the ballroom, the history

“At the turn of the century, when so many families were leaving… Continue reading

Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau participates in a plenary session at the G7 Summit in Carbis Bay, England on Friday June 11, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld
Canada donating 13M surplus COVID-19 vaccine doses to poor countries

Trudeau says the government will pay for 87 million shots to be distributed to poor countries

Premier John Horgan speaks as provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry, right, and health minister Adrian Dix look on during a press conference to update on the province’s fall pandemic preparedness plan during a press conference from the press theatre at Legislature in Victoria, Wednesday, Sept. 9, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Chad Hipolito
B.C. officials to provide details on Step 2 of COVID reopening plan Monday

Step 2 could allow for larger gatherings and a resumption of recreational travel

Indigenous Services Minister Marc Miller is seen during a news conference, Wednesday May 19, 2021 in Ottawa. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld
Indigenous child-welfare battle heads to court despite calls for Ottawa to drop cases

Feds are poised to argue against two Canadian Human Rights Tribunal rulings

The Great Ogopogo Bathtub Race has been held in Summerland as a fundraising event. Do you know which Canadian city introduced this sport? (Black Press file photo)
QUIZ: A summer’s day at the water

How much do you know about boats, lakes and water?

Two-year-old Ivy McLeod laughs while playing with Lucky the puppy outside their Chilliwack home on Thursday, June 10, 2021. (Jenna Hauck/ Chilliwack Progress)
VIDEO: B.C. family finds ‘perfect’ puppy with limb difference for 2-year-old Ivy

Ivy has special bond with Lucky the puppy who was also born with limb difference

A million-dollar ticket was sold to an individual in Vernon from the Lotto Max draw Friday, June 11, 2021. (Photo courtesy of BCLC)
Lottery ticket worth $1 million sold in Vernon

One lucky individual holds one of 20 tickets worth $1 million from Friday’s Lotto Max draw

“65 years, I’ve carried the stories in my mind and live it every day,” says Jack Kruger. (Athena Bonneau)
‘Maybe this time they will listen’: Survivor shares stories from B.C. residential school

Jack Kruger, living in Syilx territory, wasn’t surprised by news of 215 children’s remains found on the grounds of the former Kamloops Indian Residential School

A logging truck carries its load down the Elaho Valley near in Squamish, B.C. in this file photo. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Chuck Stoody
Squamish Nation calls for old-growth logging moratorium in its territory

The nation says 44% of old-growth forests in its 6,900-square kilometre territory are protected while the rest remain at risk

Most Read