What Is Physical Abuse in Marriage? (2023)

Leah saw Anna walking gingerly into Bible study. She asked Anna if everything was OK. Anna did not respond, but small tears appeared. Leah settled in next to her, handing her tissues. When the study was over, Leah asked, “Anna, it looks like you’re in pain. What happened?”

Anna replied that she had fallen and was stiff but would be fine. Then Sunday morning at nursery drop-off, Leah ran into Anna and asked how she was healing. Once again, Anna could not find words, but the tears flowed.

Leah sensed something was wrong, but she didn’t want to push Anna to talk about it. She asked how she might pray for her. Anna opened up a bit, saying things were hard at home. Her husband has been more upset than usual because her injuries made it hard for her to keep up. She said he woke her up at 4 a.m., yelling at her to get going, and did not stop screaming until they got to church. Leah then feared Anna’s injuries were not from a fall, but because of physical abuse by her husband.

“Anna, it’s not OK if your husband hurts you,” she said. “I want to help you.”

After a few minutes, Leah convinced Anna to let a doctor look at her bruises because it was evident that she was not healing; maybe something was broken. Leah and her husband took Anna and her baby to an urgent care center and asked a deacon to tell Anna’s husband, Mike, that she left the church because she was in so much pain after the fall.

(Video) How to Handle Physical Abuse in Marriage

At urgent care, the situation became complicated. Anna did not want Mike to know she was getting help. She was afraid of what Mike might do. She wondered if she was overreacting and tried to excuse the incident because Mike had too much to drink that night.

Leah’s husband told Anna, “A husband should never hurt his wife. Your injuries are significant. It’s probably not safe for you to return home today.”

He gently told her that God does not want his precious daughters living in fear or being physically abused by their husbands. Quoting Proverbs 27:12, he encouraged her that it’s wise to flee danger. Anna agreed that she would not return home that night, which gave them time to assess the severity of the physical abuse and make the appropriate plans.

If you’ve been injured by your spouse or suspect someone you know has been, it’s important to be informed about this type of abuse. Just what is physical abuse in marriage? It’s more than you probably think it is.

What is physical abuse?​

Physical abuse is a means of coercively controlling another through fear and intimidation. It involves intentionally or recklessly using physical force that may result in bodily injury or physical pain. It also includes actions that lead to physical harm — such as refusing someone sleep or medical care. Physical abuse takes on many forms; nevertheless, all are grievously sinful:

  • Throwing objects to hurt or intimidate you.
  • Shoving, pushing, blocking you in a room or car.
  • Scratching, biting, burning, or spitting.
  • Slapping, grabbing, pulling hair, and punching.
  • Destroying possessions or treasured objects.
  • Hurting or threatening to hurt your children or pets.
  • Disrupting your sleeping to wear you down.
  • Denying you medical care.
  • Strangling or choking.
  • Attacking or threatening to attack with a weapon.
  • Any threats or actual attempts to kill you.

In what little we’ve heard about Anna, we see she endured various forms of physical abuse. It’s common for victims to make up stories to cover up the abuse, as Anna did, especially when they fear that addressing the abuse will make their life more difficult or dangerous.

But sometimes victims do not realize they’re being physically abused because they don’t recognize lower levels of violence rises to the level of abuse. Those lower levels of violence can include hair pulling, punching walls, and using purposeful, reckless driving to intimidate a spouse. Victims often dismiss violent behavior, thinking it’s an anger problem. Anna did this. She thought Mike acted out physically because he struggled with self-control, especially when drinking — this is a dangerous misconception.

(Video) WATCH: Why it’s so hard to leave a physically abusive relationship

If we consider examples from Scripture of people who use violence, such as King Saul, Haman, or King Herod, we see that it’s not that perpetrators are “out of control.” Instead, they’re using violence to maintain their control and power. When physical abuse occurs in a marriage, it’s vital to understand that the abusive behavior benefits the offender. Anna’s husband would shove her off their bed and punch her in the back for failing to keep up the home after their new baby’s arrival. Anna exhausted herself to meet Mike’s demands because she knew there would be a price to pay when dinner wasn’t ready and the house was untidy.

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What does the Bible say about physical abuse?​

God does not want us to value marriage more than we value a wife’s safety or a husband’s repentance. In fact, the Lord hates violence, “his soul hates the wicked and the one who loves violence” (Psalm 11:5). No amount of violence is acceptable in a marriage.

Sadly, many Christian women have heard 1 Peter 3:1-6 misapplied to mean it’s good to endure abuse to win over their husbands. In this passage, Peter was addressing a common problem at the time. Christian women were becoming believers before their husbands, and they needed to know how to handle witnessing for Christ in their homes.

Peter’s instruction about submission here is good. But when taken out of context and applied to abuse, it’s dangerous and wrong.

  • First, suffering physical abuse in marriage does not accomplish redemption. Only Jesus’s suffering on the cross does that.
  • Second, God would not want us to overlook what He hates. God doesn’t want wives subjected to violence, ever (Colossians 3:19).
  • Third, God desires wives to bless their husbands who do evil by getting them the help they desperately need for their depraved sin.
  • Finally, Peter goes on to stress husbands’ need to be gentle with their wives. Peter implores husbands to “live with your wives in an understanding way, showing honor to the woman as the weaker vessel since they are heirs with you of the grace of life, so that your prayers may not be hindered” (verse 7).

Nowhere does this chapter suggest a wife should endure physical abuse. Being married does not require enduring violence or any other form of coercive control. When a husband abuses his wife, he desecrates the image of God in her. This is a severe pattern of sin that grieves the Lord, and He wants his people to seek help (Ephesians 5:11). (See “Does the Bible Say Women Should suffer Abuse and Violence” in the Journal of Biblical Counseling, 2014, pages 9-21). Addressing abuse is loving for the offender because oppressors are in a dangerous spiritual position. But how should we think about handling a victim’s safety?

What if I’m being physically abused?​

The Bible teaches us that it’s good to take steps to procure our safety. Recall that when Jesus could avoid suffering, He did. When the Pharisees were colluding to kill him, Jesus fled (Matthew 12:14). When the Jews picked up stones to stone him, Jesus hid and slipped out (John 8:58-59). And when people plotted to take Jesus’s life, He no longer moved publicly and withdrew to the wilderness (John 11:53-54).

Taking steps to address abuse will be frightening. Knowing who you can trust and how your spouse will respond to being confronted is hard. Here are some guidelines:

(Video) Domestic violence expert teaches how to spot warning signs of abuse

  • Do not confront your spouse. You’ve already discovered that confrontations often lead to more volatile, if not dangerous, situations for you. So be praying about disclosing your abuse to someone who can help you seek wisdom and safety as you seek to address it.
  • Remember wise and loving people will take the time to listen to your entire story. Like Jesus, they will enter in. They will not minimize, dismiss, or excuse what you tell them. They will connect you to people or resources that address physical abuse.
  • Evaluate the level of danger you are in using a safety assessment tool such as this one from the Johns Hopkins School of Nursing. Ideally you would do this while working with someone familiar with domestic violence.
  • If you have children, you must consider how they are impacted. Ninety percent of children living in a home with domestic abuse are aware of the abuse, and forty percent of children are also victims of abuse.

How do I get to safety?​

The story of Abigail also provides some helpful ways to think about taking steps toward safety. When her husband, Nabal, made an unwise and selfish stand against David, he placed her and her entire household in danger. Abigail wisely disregarded her husband’s unrighteous actions and sought protection. God honored her bravery, and she saved her household (1 Samuel 25).

If you’re in a dangerous situation like Abigail, notice how she took action. It’s important to highlight that Abigail went behind her husband’s back and against his authority, humbly asking David for help. You, too, will need to be furtive and cautious. Take these steps:

Keep in mind, fleeing danger does not necessarily mean divorce. It can mean many things, including separation or a temporary escape. The important thing is to secure your safety and your children’s immediate safety. Violence always picks up where it leaves off — it’s an entrenched sin pattern. You and your children cannot afford you to respond out of what you hope will happen; You must face what is happening.

It took Anna a few days to decide what to do. But after a safety assessment, it was clear that returning home was dangerous for her. She made the difficult but God-honoring choice of fleeing physical abuse, hoping that her husband would repent. In the meantime, she faced many challenges, including finding a place to live, caring for an infant alone, being judged by friends, and having enough money.

She was tempted to return many times. Her church helped her see it was not wise to return home until Mike fully repented for a sustained period of time. They connected Mike to a counselor and helped meet Anna’s practical needs. Amid the storm, Anna often feared that the Lord would not provide, but good friends like Leah helped her cling to God’s promises.

What if I am afraid to get help?​

If you’re not ready to talk to someone you know, remember one fundamental truth: God delights in rescuing and redeeming His people. Though your situation feels impossible, nothing is impossible for God. Begin by talking to God and asking Him for help. If you’re not ready to address the abuse, there are five things you can do now.

1. Keep a log​

Keep a log of the physical abuse, including photos. You might need them one day to prove what has happened, but it also helps you keep track of the times your spouse escalates the violence.

(Video) What Does Relationship Abuse Look Like? (Abuse Series)

2. Call for help​

You can call anonymously to the National Domestic Violence Hotline (1-800-799-SAFE; or chat online at http://www.thehotline.org/help/), or Focus on the Family 1-855-771-HELP (4357) weekdays from 6:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m. (Mountain Time).

3. Decide when to seek help​

Perhaps your spouse throws things or traps you in rooms to lecture you. Ask yourself, at what point will I get help? The sooner you act for your safety the better, but you are the one who must walk out the many complex challenges that come with addressing abuse.

4. Get counseling​

Perhaps you have compelling reasons to stay with your oppressor: lack of resources or support, fear of retaliation, hope for change, concerns about your children, belief that you should stay, love for your spouse, or the desire not to disappoint yourself and others. Remember, getting help for the abuse does not necessarily mean you have to take action. It’s good to get support for your suffering, gain clarity about the reality of your situation, and seek the wisdom you need to navigate a tremendously troublesome marriage.

5. Pray​

Pray about who to confide in. Ask for God’s guidance. Talk to the Lord about your distress. Living with a spouse who treats you like an enemy is brutal. The Psalms are full of examples of how to pray when you have an enemy (Psalms 55, 56, 57). Sometimes we pray for our enemy’s judgment and deliverance. Other times we pray for their sanctification. It’s good to talk to God about all your needs.

Addressing physical abuse takes courage. Be comforted to know that God’s heart is always for the oppressed. He tells his shepherds to care for the oppressed, and He stands against those who oppress (Exodus 3:7-10; Psalm 9:9; Ezekiel 33:1-8; Ezekiel 34:1-25; Micah 2:1). Even though you cannot see it, God is at work planning your rescue and enlisting the people you need to help you.

The post What Is Physical Abuse in Marriage? appeared first on Focus on the Family.

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(Video) Why domestic violence victims don't leave | Leslie Morgan Steiner


What actions are considered physical abuse? ›

Physical abuse is intentional bodily injury. Some examples include slapping, pinching, choking, kicking, shoving, or inappropriately using drugs or physical restraints. Signs of physical abuse.

What does physical abuse do to a woman? ›

Physical abuse can cause many chronic (long-lasting) health problems, including heart problems, high blood pressure, and digestive problems. Women who are abused are also more likely to develop depression, anxiety, or eating disorders. Women who are abused may also misuse alcohol or drugs as a way to cope.

What is physical emotional abuse? ›

A relationship is emotionally abusive if a partner uses these behaviors to damage the other person's self-esteem and mental health. Physical abuse is when one person uses physical force against another to cause injury. Anyone using physical force that could harm you is abusive.

What are the 5 signs of emotional abuse? ›

5 Signs of Emotional Abuse
  • They are Hyper-Critical or Judgmental Towards You. ...
  • They Ignore Boundaries or Invade Your Privacy. ...
  • They are Possessive and/or Controlling. ...
  • They are Manipulative. ...
  • They Often Dismiss You and Your Feelings.
May 23, 2017

What is not considered physical abuse? ›

Physical abuse includes only non-accidental injuries. Injuries that are purely accidental are not abuse. Non-accidental injuries fall into one of the following categories: The abuser intended to cause injury to the child. For example: A parent immerses a child's hand in scalding water as punishment for stealing.

What qualifies as abuse? ›

Abuse is physical, sexual, emotional, economic or psychological actions or threats of actions that influence another person. This includes any behaviors that frighten, intimidate, terrorize, manipulate, hurt, humiliate, blame, injure, or wound someone.

How does physical abuse affect a person mentally? ›

The immediate emotional effects of abuse and neglect—isolation, fear, and an inability to trust—can translate into lifelong consequences, including poor mental health and behavioral health outcomes and increased risk for substance use disorder.

What causes someone to be an abuser? ›

Abusive people believe they have the right to control and restrict their partner's lives, often either because they believe their own feelings and needs should be the priority in the relationship, or because they enjoy exerting the power that such abuse gives them.

What are 3 physical effects of abuse? ›

Immediate physical effects of abuse include but are not limited to: Bruises, welts, and black eyes. Cuts, lacerations, and wounds. Fractures, broken bones, and dislocations.

Is physical abuse worse than mental? ›

Emotional abuse, neglect may be more harmful long-term than physical, sexual abuse. Emotional abuse and neglect of children may have more harmful long-term negative effects than physical or sexual abuse, according to a 20-year study published by a team of researchers from Iowa, Australia, and Italy.

What are 6 behaviors that indicate emotional abuse? ›

Emotional abuse, which is used to gain power and control in a relationship, may take a number of forms, including but not limited to: insulting, criticizing, threatening, gaslighting, ridiculing, shaming, intimidating, swearing, name-calling, stonewalling, lying, belittling and ignoring.

What is the difference between physical and mental abuse? ›

Physical abuse is usually the most visible. Bruises on the skin, scars, and burn marks are all easy to see. Emotional abuse leaves no such visible signs. Because of this, psychological abuse may go unnoticed for many years.

Which are the 3 main warning signs that someone may be an abuser? ›

Warning Signs of an Abusive Person
  • Jealousy and Possessiveness. Wants to be with you constantly. ...
  • Controlling Behavior. ...
  • Quick Involvement. ...
  • Unrealistic Expectations. ...
  • Isolation. ...
  • Blames Others for Problems. ...
  • Blames Others for Feelings. ...
  • Hypersensitivity.

What are signs of narcissistic abuse? ›

Signs of Narcissistic Abuse
  • Signs of narcissistic abuse include:
  • Love-bombing. It's not unusual for people with NPD to shower you with compliments and affection. ...
  • Gaslighting. ...
  • Ignoring boundaries. ...
  • Projecting. ...
  • Nitpicking. ...
  • Some common examples of narcissistic abuse include: ...
  • Anxiety and depression.
Sep 29, 2022

What qualifies as narcissistic abuse? ›

Narcissistic abuse refers to the emotional, physical, sexual, or financial forms of abuse that a narcissist inflicts on others. This abuse can range from mild putdowns to severe, life-threatening violence. If you're in a relationship with a narcissist, you may frequently feel angry, confused, or alone.

Which of these are examples of emotional physical abuse? ›

Emotional Abuse Signs and Symptoms
  • Yelling or swearing (read about Emotional Bullying and How to Deal with an Emotional Bully)
  • Name calling or insults; mocking.
  • Threats and intimidation.
  • Ignoring or excluding.
  • Isolating.
  • Humiliating.
  • Denial of the abuse and blaming of the victim.

Who are most physically abused? ›

They are also at risk for depression and anxiety. Children of all ages, races, ethnicities, and socioeconomic backgrounds are at risk for physical abuse. Children ages 0-3 are most susceptible to physical abuse and serious injuries.

What is it called when someone abuses you with words? ›

Verbal abuse, also known as emotional abuse, is a range of words or behaviors used to manipulate, intimidate, and maintain power and control over someone.

What types of abuse have to be reported? ›

that California law requires mandatory reporting of known or suspected:
  • • Child abuse and neglect.
  • • Elder and dependent adult abuse.
  • • Domestic violence.

What 3 types of abuse should always be reported? ›

Physical, sexual, and emotional abuse are some of the most known types of abuse: Physical abuse is when someone hurts another person's body. It includes hitting, shaking, burning, pinching, biting, choking, throwing, beating, and other actions that cause physical injury, leave marks, or cause pain.

What type of abuse should be reported? ›

Presents State civil laws that define the conduct, acts, and omissions that constitute child abuse or neglect that must be reported to child protective agencies. The types of maltreatment defined include physical abuse, neglect, emotional abuse, sexual abuse, sexual exploitation, and abandonment.

What mental illness do abusers have? ›

The results of this research show that do- mestic abusers tend to obtain high points for some types of personality disorders, especially narcissistic, antisocial and bor- derline disorders. They also present symptoms of depressive disorders and consumption of drugs and alcohol.

How does abuse change a person? ›

Traumatic childhood events can change the way a person's brain and body work. Trauma can affect the person's emotions, memory, thinking and sense of self. Trauma can also affect relationships. Women most often develop the effects of trauma if, as children, they felt helpless and trapped by abuse.

What are the six long term effects of abuse? ›

These changes to your brain can lead to long-term emotional effects of child abuse.
You might experience:
  • Anxiety.
  • Depression.
  • Trouble learning.
  • Trouble paying attention.
  • Memory problems.
  • Problems with self-control.
  • Low self-esteem‌
Sep 9, 2021

What are the behaviors of an abuser? ›

Emotional/Psychological or Verbal Abuse – This behavior of an abuser can best be described as withdrawing or withholding emotional support or subjecting the victim to scathing verbal abuse. Behaviors include sulking, crying, withdrawing into silence, leaving, arguing, shouting, and insulting comments.

What are the four characteristics of abusers? ›

Abusers are master manipulators.
Below are 12 common characteristics of an abuser you may not be aware of.
  • Controlling. ...
  • Charming. ...
  • Jealous. ...
  • Inconsistent. ...
  • Manipulative. ...
  • Threatening. ...
  • Demanding. ...
  • Blames the Victim.
Oct 14, 2022

Who is more likely to be an abuser? ›

One study of 96 cases of domestic abuse recorded by the police found that men are significantly more likely to be repeat perpetrators and significantly more likely than women to use physical violence, threats, and harassment.

What are the long term effects of physical abuse on adults? ›

Stress and mental health problems such as depression may increase the likelihood of adults with a history of abuse and neglect becoming obese or having an eating disorder (Rodriguez-Srednicki & Twaite, 2006).

What factors lead to physical abuse? ›

Possible adult contributing factors
  • Low self-esteem.
  • Poor control over their emotions.
  • A history of being abused themselves.
  • Stress.
  • Financial problems.
  • Social isolation.
  • Relationship problems with a partner (may include domestic violence)
  • Lack of parenting skills.

What does emotional neglect look like? ›

Examples of emotional neglect may include: lack of emotional support during difficult times or illness. withholding or not showing affection, even when requested. exposure to domestic violence and other types of abuse.

What type of abuse is the hardest to detect? ›

Emotional abuse often coexists with other forms of abuse, and it is the most difficult to identify. Many of its potential consequences, such as learning and speech problems and delays in physical development, can also occur in children who are not being emotionally abused.

Which type of abuse is most damaging? ›

Studies show emotional abuse may be the most damaging form of maltreatment causing adverse developmental consequences equivalent to, or more severe than, those of other forms of abuse (Hart et al. 1996).

Can physical abuse cause brain damage? ›

Domestic violence is a common cause of traumatic brain injury. While a disproportionate amount of these individuals are adult women, both adult men and children can be victims of the severe physical violence that causes these injuries in a domestic setting.

What is emotional neglect in marriage? ›

Emotional neglect occurs when a spouse fails on a regular basis to attend to or respond to their partner's emotional needs. This is marked by a distinct lack of action by one person toward the feelings of the other, including an absence of awareness, consideration, or response to a spouse's emotions.

What are the 7 signs of emotional abuse? ›

Here are seven signs of emotional abuse and how you can get help.
  • Gaslighting. ...
  • Isolating you from loved ones. ...
  • Using insulting language. ...
  • Yelling. ...
  • Shifting the blame. ...
  • Acting extremely jealous. ...
  • Outbursts of unpredictable anger.
May 2, 2022

What are the 5 ways in which a person can be abused? ›

Physical Abuse

Burning. Strangulation. Damaging personal property. Refusing medical care and/or controlling medication.

Why physical abuse is wrong? ›

Abuse by your boyfriend, girlfriend, intimate partner or spouse can destroy your self-esteem and ability to trust people. It can also have serious physical, emotional and psychological effects, making it hard to function at home, at work or in social settings. If you are being abused, it is not your fault.

How do you confront an abuser? ›

Ensure you remain in control. You may want the abuser just to listen and not say anything until you expressly give permission for them to speak. Be prepared for him to defend himself and/or minimize the abuse, i.e. “I didn't hit you that hard.” etc. When this happens calmly reply by explaining the abuse in more detail.

What are signs of Gaslighting? ›

Signs of Gaslighting
  • Lying. Using this gaslighting tactic, the gaslighter will tell you outright lies. ...
  • Countering. This technique questions your memory or version of events. ...
  • Denial. The gaslighter may deny that they ever said or did something you know they did. ...
  • Diverting. Another sign of gaslighting is diverting.
May 4, 2022

What is a narcissistic husband? ›

A narcissistic husband is usually a very selfish person and will only think about themselves, and not about you or your relationship together. They might expect you to do all the housework, or they may want to have sex with you when they want it, but not when you want it.

What are the red flags of a narcissist? ›

Here are some narcissism red flags to look out for: Lacking empathy. They seem unable or unwilling to have empathy for others, and they appear to have no desire for emotional intimacy. Unrealistic sense of entitlement.

What narcissists do to their victims? ›

Narcissists also gaslight or practice master manipulation, weakening and destabilizing their victims; finally, they utilize positive and negative emotions or moments to trick others. When a narcissist can't control you, they'll likely feel threatened, react with anger, and they might even start threatening you.

What is the silent treatment narcissist? ›

Basically, the silent treatment is a passive-aggressive behavior by which an abuser communicates some sort of negative message to the intended victim that only the perpetrator and the victim recognize through nonverbal communication.

What is emotional abuse by narcissistic husband? ›

Narcissistic abuse is a form of emotional abuse perpetrated by someone who suffers from narcissism or sociopathy. These individuals have a tendency – whether conscious or unconscious – to use words and language in manipulative ways to damage, alter, or otherwise control their partner's behaviour.

How do narcissists treat their children? ›

A narcissistic parent will often abuse the normal parental role of guiding their children and being the primary decision maker in the child's life, becoming overly possessive and controlling. This possessiveness and excessive control disempowers the child; the parent sees the child simply as an extension of themselves.

What are the 7 main categories of abuse? ›

Types of abuse include; physical, sexual, psychological, verbal, emotional and mental, financial and spiritual.

Which of the following are examples of physical assault? ›

  • hitting, smacking and slapping.
  • punching and kicking.
  • pinching, scratching and biting.
  • shaking or suffocating you.
  • scalding or burning you.
  • hair pulling.
  • spitting or throwing things at you.

What is the highest form of abuse? ›

Abusive head trauma (AHT), also known as the shaken baby syndrome, is a form of child physical abuse with the highest mortality rate (greater than 20%).

What is passive neglect? ›

Passive neglect is the non-willful failure to fulfill care-taking responsibilities because of inadequate caregiver knowledge, infirmity, or disputing the value of prescribed services. Self-Neglect. This is the adult's inability, due to physical and/or mental impairments, to perform tasks essential to caring for oneself ...

Who might be an abuser? ›

An abuser could be anyone. It can be someone you know or someone you work with. It could be staff who care for you, like the nurse or care assistant in your home. It could be your family or friends.

How do people act when they are abused? ›

Domestic abuse can cause people to believe that they will never escape the control of the abuser. They may also exhibit a constant state of alertness to the point they never can completely relax. Other emotional signs of abuse include: Agitation, anxiety, or constant apprehension.

What type of abuse is most difficult to identify? ›

Emotional abuse often coexists with other forms of abuse, and it is the most difficult to identify. Many of its potential consequences, such as learning and speech problems and delays in physical development, can also occur in children who are not being emotionally abused.

What are the 4 main abuses? ›

Child abuse is when anyone under the age of 18 is either being harmed or not properly looked after. There are four main categories of child abuse: physical abuse, emotional abuse, sexual abuse and neglect. Find out more about each below, as well as the warning signs that a child may be being abused.

Who should abuse be reported to? ›

Local authorities have social workers who deal specifically with cases of abuse and neglect. Call the person's local council and ask for the adult safeguarding co-ordinator. You can also speak to the police about the situation.

What type of abuse has the most reported cases? ›

Neglect. Neglect occurs in 61% of child abuse cases. 12 It is the most common form of child maltreatment in the United States.

What are the 4 main types of intimate partner violence? ›

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) identifies four types of intimate partner violence—physical violence, sexual violence, stalking, and psychological aggression.

What are 3 examples of emotional abuse? ›

Emotional abuse can involve any of the following:
  • Verbal abuse: yelling at you, insulting you or swearing at you.
  • Rejection: constantly rejecting your thoughts, ideas and opinions.
  • Gaslighting: making you doubt your own feelings and thoughts, and even your sanity, by manipulating the truth.

What is an example of psychological abuse? ›

Psychological abuse can include someone regularly: Embarrassing you in public or in front of family, friends, support workers or people you work with. Calling you names. Threatening to harm you, your pets, children, or other people who are important to you.


1. 10 Relationship Red Flags of Abuse
2. Kari's Story of Abuse in Marriage
(Focus on the Family)
3. Will Couples Counseling Help With Domestic Violence?
(His Heart Foundation)
4. I Had No Idea I Was in an Abusive Relationship Because of Coercive Control | This Morning
(This Morning)
5. If Abuse Isn't Physical Abuse in a Marriage – Darby Strickland
(Focus on the Family)
6. Domestic abuse is a serious issue || STEVE HARVEY
(Steve TV Show)
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