Types of Abuse
Domestic violence is a pattern of abusive behavior in a dating or domestic
relationship. This abuse can be physical, sexual, verbal or emotional, or a
combination of some or all of these.
Physical Abuse is any intentional unwanted contact with the victim’s body by either
the abuser or an object within the abuser’s control. Physical abuse does not
have to leave a mark or bruise.
- Pulling hair
- Using a weapon
Sexual Abuse is any sexual behavior that is unwanted or interferes with the
victim’s right to say “no” to sexual advances.
- Date rape
- Unwanted kissing or touching
- Forcing the victim to go further than they want (even if they have had sex
- Unwanted rough or violent sexual activity
- Not letting the victim use birth control or protection against sexually
Verbal/Emotional Abuse is anything that the abuser says or does to the victim
that causes the victim to be afraid, lowers the victim’s self esteem, or manipulates
or controls the victim’s feelings or behavior.
- Name-calling and put-downs
- Insulting remarks about the victim, family or friends
- Yelling and screaming
- Threats of violence and harm
- Racial slurs
- Intentionally embarrassing the victim in front of other people
- Keeping the victim from seeing or talking with friends and family
- Telling the victim what to do
- Making the victim feel responsible for the violence
- Harming or threatening to harm the victim’s pets
- Threatening to commit suicide
- Threatening to expose the victim’s secrets (such as sexual orientation or
- Threatening to take away the victim’s children