With how major of a crime domestic abuse can be, you’d think most people would understand exactly what this crime might involve. But from the perspective of a victim, it’s not so clear-cut. Many people don’t want to believe they’re a victim. For example, the victim may not believe they’re experiencing domestic abuse because they know their abuser loves them, and they love them back.
The truth is, no matter who the abuse is coming from, why, and how – and regardless of their feelings for you and your feelings for them – abuse is abuse.
Below are three signs that you’re experiencing domestic abuse.
- Your Spouse Controls Everything You Do.
- You’re Forced to Have Sex Against Your Will.
- They Threaten You or a Loved One as a Form of Punishment.
Abuse isn’t always physical. And although control coming from a spouse starts out verbal, it can end up getting physical fairly quickly. From keeping you away from family and friends, to failing to let you have access to shared bank accounts, to refusing you to have any sort of social media platform, control can come in a handful of ways.
Victims who fail to comply to a spouse’s means of control and strict rules may end up physically abused, verbally ridiculed, or threatened (e.g., “I’ll throw you against this wall if you try to leave the house,” or “If you text or call someone besides me, I’m canceling your phone service and breaking your phone.”).
Relationship or not, male or female, legal age of consent or not, being forced to engage in any sort of sexual activity is illegal. Even when married to someone, they must accept that by law, your body is your body. No consent means no legal sexual interaction, period.
However, in the abuser’s eyes, they deserve sex whenever and wherever, disrespecting the partner’s feelings altogether and/or getting mad when the partner refuses to comply with their demands. With this type of black-and-white thinking, it’s not uncommon that the abuser resorts to raping the partner, makes threats to cheat, physically assaults the victim, or verbally abuses the partner.
Threats on their own, for any reason, are considered abuse, even if the relationship normally doesn’t have any other form of abuse. And, often, these threats overlap with control as a way to stop you from doing something, talking to someone, or going somewhere. Although, they can be used as a form of punishment too after you’ve already done something or are currently doing something.
Threatening to scream loudly in public to embarrass a partner to stop them from crying, kick a partner out of the house permanently if they don’t come home in five minutes, or have sex with someone else because their partner worked overtime are examples of this type of abuse as a form of punishment. Threats can be physical or not.
Abuse in the household can be a very scary situation for anybody to have to go through as the victim. Getting the legal help you deserve may be necessary to help you heal and get out of your abusive situation.
If you’re a victim, please call (909) 920-0908 to talk to a California-based Family Law Attorney today.