Physical violence is just the tip of the iceberg

If you think that 1 in 3 women worldwide has experienced some form of domestic violence, it is very possible that you or someone close to you has gone through this and most of the time have not realized that it is abnormal what It happens to him or, even if he feels that something is wrong, to tolerate these abuses. 

How subtle and sophisticated can domestic violence be so that you can’t realize you’re a victim? Very subtle, extremely refined, even for educated people. And very difficult to prove with evidence, because it gradually infiltrates, makes you doubt your own perceptions and values

The beating is just the tip of the iceberg of violence, in all its forms, and the only “advantage” is that it leaves obvious traces, which can be confirmed by the doctor and later constitutes evidence in court.

For a better understanding, let’s briefly explain the main forms of violence:

Physical violence

Physical abuse is manifested by slapping, kicking, punching, pushing, pulling on clothes, hair, scratching, slapping, disfiguring, beating, hitting the victim against walls or furniture, causing bruises, contusions, fractures, burns, mutilation, throwing objects at the victim, using white or firearms, immobilizing, tying, holding the victim, abandoning her in a dangerous place. Physical intimidation of the victim is also a form of violence. So is the destruction of property belonging to the victim or family. Usually, physical violence is repeated over time, not singular.

Psychological violence or emotional abuse includes emotional and verbal violence, in the form of insults, insults, threats, constant criticism, intimidation, control, emotional blackmail, inducing fear, maintaining a permanent tension, terror, starvation, sleep deprivation, discredit in front of others. This type of violence aims at manipulation and control and is administered “drop by drop”, until the victim erupts in one way or another and is considered aggressive or even the one who triggers the aggressive behavior of the aggressor. Insults have a wide spectrum (physical appearance, reproaches to the family, vulnerabilities, weaknesses, abilities, profession, household skills, etc.). Because it is long-term, it is very difficult to prove in court with evidence.

Economic or financial violence
 represents the control of the victim by limiting or canceling the income to ensure his financial independence. It usually begins with the prohibition or limitation of the right to work and / or to pursue a form of education, under the pretext of dealing exclusively with family and household. “The woman has to take care of her husband, the children, the house, not waste her time in the world full of temptations.” By depriving himself of personal income, the aggressor thus controls the victim’s access to money, food, education, medical care and hygiene products, means of transport, telephone and other sources of livelihood. Or, less frequently, by confiscating the victim’s personal income and excluding her from the administration of the family budget. The goal is total dependence on the aggressor.

Social violence it consists in controlling the victim by isolating her from family, friends, colleagues, acquaintances, neighbors. The purpose – to restrict access to information, counseling, support of any kind. The result – in the absence of other people with whom he can consult, consult, ask for help, the victim gradually comes to believe that abuse of any kind is normal and that she is to blame for the aggressor’s behavior.

Sexual violence – consists of any unwanted and unwanted sexual intercourse. I mean rape. That is, sexual intercourse obtained by force, threat and / or coercion, usually in the form of blackmail. Few people know that marital rape is also a form of sexual abuse. 

According to the analysis of the National Center for Health Assessment and Promotion, the forms of forced sex or sexual degradation are as follows: (a) continued sexual activity when the victim is not fully conscious, does not consent or is afraid to respond negative (this includes people with various types of disabilities or chronic disabling diseases); (b) physical harm to the victim during sexual intercourse or injury to his or her genitals, including the use of objects or weapons, intra-vaginal, oral or anal; (c) requiring the victim to have unprotected sexual intercourse against pregnancy or sexually transmitted diseases; (d) criticizing the victim’s sexuality and invoking sexually degrading names.

The same analysis considers sexual violence to be any form of physical, sexual, and psychological violence that occurs in the community, including rape, sexual abuse, sexual harassment, and bullying in the workplace, in educational institutions, and elsewhere; as well as trafficking in women and forced prostitution; as well as physical, sexual and psychological violence committed or overlooked by the state, wherever it occurs.

So beware of any form of violence. Don’t ignore it, and if it does happen again, take action. Now you can ask for specialized help. Call the HELPLINE with a unique national number 0800.500.333, intended for victims of domestic violence, discrimination on the grounds of sex and human trafficking. Here you will be directed to the institutions that can help you, depending on the particularities of the situation you are facing.

Photo: Pixabay (illustration)

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