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Monday, July 18, 2016

Domestic Violence Awareness + A Love That Disturbs



I'm at the IWSG blog with 
Insecurity Buster: Book Signing Fear


Domestic abuse can result in an extensive amount of physical, mental, and emotional abuse. If you're a writer, it’s important to tackle all 3 if your story deals with domestic violence.



Writing About Domestic Violence by Chrys Fey


1. Physical Abuse

Victims are pushed, slapped, hit, punched, and kicked. Objects are often used as weapons against them, or they are threatened with a gun or knife. They can have bruises that they cover up with long sleeves even in warm weather or offer weak explanations after a moment’s silence. They also get random injuries that can’t be explained.

2. Mental Abuse

The victim is stalked, intimidated, blackmailed, given ultimatums, and gas lighted (made to believe everything is her fault, and that she’s crazy because the abuser is playing tricks on her, lying, and manipulating her.) Abusers can also check in constantly, record her car’s mileage, read her text messages, and listen to her phone conversations. This could lead the victim to not go anywhere or talk to anyone.

3. Emotional Abuse

Abuser can tell her she’s ugly, stupid, fat, a bad parent, etc. Crude words could also be used against her. He can say these things so often that the victim believes them.

Victims have to deal with being put down all the time in public and in private. She is scared, jumpy, depressed, lonely, and obviously unhappy.

Image from Pixabay

Other Forms of Abuse:

Social Abuse – the victim can’t see certain friends or family members.
Financial Abuse – the victim doesn’t have control over her money.
Sexual Abuse – the victim is forced to do sexual acts against her will.

Warning Signs:

- Abuser constantly criticizes her.
- Bruises and injuries.
- Abuser blames victim for everything.
- Victim is threatened all the time.
- Abuser accuses victim of flirting or cheating.
- Victim is on edge or becomes quiet when partner comes into the room.
- Victim can’t go to school/work.
- Victim can’t see family/friends.
- The abuser controls everything (phone, car, money).


NOTE: Men can be the victim in domestic abuse, too.

Image from Pixabay

Aside from abuse between partners there are these types, too:

1. Child Abuse

As shocking as it can be to think about, there are monsters out there who abuse children physically, mentally, and sexually. Abused children will run and hide when their abuser is around, cry, or become quiet. Some are so emotionally damaged that they may become voluntarily mute. They will have odd bruises on their bodies and may be frail from a lack of food. They may not sleep well and could have dark circles around their eyes and fall asleep in class. Their grades could also slip.

2. Relative/Sibling Abuse

This is one that I’ve experienced…a close relative or sibling could become abusive such as a child to their mother, a brother to a sister, an uncle to a niece or nephew, etc. And many of the things mentioned earlier can qualify here, too. 

3. Animal Abuse 

Any abuse toward an animal including beating, starving, and leaving them outside without water (or inside a locked car with the windows up).


QUESTION: Do you have a personal story? If you’d like to share your experience with domestic abuse, you can. I’ll listen.

Chrys'Story: My half-bother verbally abused me and threatened me all the time with words and objects. He also caused my mom physical harm. I’ve also seen my sister abused by her ex-husband.


*Share this post to pass on domestic violence awareness.


***


BOOK BLAST FOR MEDEIA


A LOVE THAT DISTURBS by Medeia Sharif
Evernight Teen, June 17, 2016
Purchase from Amazon (merchant sites will be updated on the author's site)

Maysa Mazari is alarmed by her mother’s talk about arranged marriage. As a hijab-wearing Pakistani-American, she wants to find love on her own. Her judgmental Muslim clique has protected her from racist taunts, although the leader is turning on her as Maysa strays from the group because of her attraction to Haydee.

Haydee Gomez is a former gang member and juvenile detention student. Now living with a clean-cut aunt, she wants to turn her life around, even though one person will never let her forget her roots—Rafe, her abusive pimp. Haydee attempts to pull away from a life of prostitution when she develops feelings for Maysa, although Rafe isn’t willing to give her up too easily.

Finding themselves in danger from Maysa’s friends and Haydee’s pimp, it’s apparent their love disturbs everyone around them as they fight to stay together.

Find Medeia – YA and MG Author

Blog   |   Twitter   |   Goodreads   |   Instagram   |   Amazon


62 comments:

  1. I'm sorry to hear you and your family have experienced some of this, Chrys.

    I'm glad you mentioned that men can also be victimized. I think society sometimes forgets that.

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    1. Thanks, Madeline.

      It's important that we know the victim, as well as the abuser, can be anyone regardless of age or gender.

      Delete
  2. I can honestly feel in this case , You see I went into a relationship nine years ago, he was fine at first then after he retired the beatings started on my arms, then the mental cruelty began , him saying Epilpepsy was known as "The Mad Disease" but the thing I still picture is just before we split up he looked at me with all the hatred he could muster in his face saying "Why don't you hurry up and die".
    Domestic violence is horrible and talking about it does help. Good luck yo any one who has endured it.
    Yvonne.

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    1. I recall hearing this before and it is just awful. No one should be treated like this or hear things like this. I'm glad you survived him. Stay strong!

      Delete
  3. That book sounds interesting.

    It is good to speak up about any type of abuse. Thanks for sharing your story; I think by exposing things like this it helps others expose their stories or circumstances and perhaps helps others either to get help or to leave an abusive situation.

    betty

    ReplyDelete
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    1. There are many types of abuse. For this post, I definitely wanted to brush on each one. I think it helps others share their stories, too. And even to seek help for the first time knowing they aren't alone.

      Delete
  4. It's a terrible thing that no person should have to endure.

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  5. Awful in every way. I've known a few who were verbally and emotionally abusive, one physical. Steer clear of such douchebags at my sea.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. It's always so hard to witness this, as well as experience it.

      Delete
  6. Hi Chrys - I've seen it happen ... it may have been frustration at the time ... but family situations are difficult to fathom sometime - it was not my family ... but near enough for me to see - though in another country ... I learnt from it ... we need to learn to understand, as well as help others ... sad that we have to be reminded - but we do ... all the best - Hilary

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  7. I just entered to win that book on goodreads! Will buy it after the giveaway is over though. :)

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  8. Thankfully I've never been in an abusive relationship. I have been contemplating writing about one, though. The tricky part is that I want the reader to recognize that the relationship is abusive but have the narrator be kind of oblivious. So I'll have to include some of those signs but there will be a lot of other things going on in the story so that the narrator doesn't understand what is happening until it starts to get bad.

    ReplyDelete
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    1. I think that you'd be a smart way to go about writing an abusive relationship in a story, because it's pretty much like that in real life.

      Delete
  9. It is difficult when one sees or knows of someone who has been abused. I have seen my half sister abused by her. First and second husband. My husband was abused by his father and watched his mom being abused. I have had clients abused by their husbands, wives, and children. When I was 7 I was sexually abused by my mom's best friend's boyfriend repeatedly. I remembered some of it but some I blocked out. I was very shy and most adults didn't speak to me but he did and I felt like someone was interested in me but then came the abuse. At first he would say it was a secret but when I started to fight he threatened to cut my throat. When that didn't work, he threatened my family and knew they didn't lock the doors. I would, when my parents went to sleep, go and lock the doors. He would say that it would be my fault. There is one moment that I still have blocked out...all I recall is playing with my mom's girlfriend's son and he was there. He told the little boy to stay and took me across the yard to his apartment . I remember walking into the his apartment and the next thing I remember is walking back on the grass towards my friend. I don't know what happened to this day and when I try to, I get anxious so it's best to leave it. The mind is an amazing thing. I did end up telling my mom who told me what to do. Whe he tried to hurt me again, I said NO and he threw me in my parents chair which almost tipped over. I walked to my dad never turning my back and sat beside my daddy. My mom went to him and told him never to return or else and he never did. My dad never knew or I knew my dad would have ended up in jail and I wanted my dad around. This is my quick story. I don't believe he raped me but he did hurt me if I moved. Why do these things happen?? I don't know but maybe it made me stronger and you as well.

    ReplyDelete
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    1. It is just so horrible that people can abuse each other. My gosh. I am so sorry you went through that. I didn't say it in my post, but my other sister was molested by someone in my family. Again, I am deeply sorry and hurt for you. I wouldn't push to recall those events because your brain blocked it for a reason. Sending hugs your way!

      Delete
  10. I am so sorry that you have to experience this. You and your mom didn't deserve it and remember, it was not your fault. Some people are just awful and want to drag you into their darkness. You are a wonderful and brave woman.

    ReplyDelete
  11. I'm really sorry you and your mother went through that. Any kind of abuse is horrible.

    My character Lyuba is the victim of domestic violence by her unwanted boyfriend Boris, who was formerly one of her two best friends, when she's pregnant by him. I didn't depict any of the abuse on the pages, though there's mention of things like black eyes and lash marks. Lyuba's best friend Ivan, the man she really loves, discovers his suspicions are correct when he comes home one day and sees Lyuba pushed down the stairs by Boris before he leaves for work, but Lyuba refuses to leave. She's secretly relieved when Boris leaves for America right before she goes into active labor.

    ReplyDelete
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    1. It is. The things I experienced have stuck with me.

      That sounds very intense, Carrie-Anne.

      Delete
  12. I worked for 23 years with abused, neglected, an emotionally disturbed kids. Some of their stories, what they survived, would horrify.

    ReplyDelete
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    1. I can imagine. It is heart-breaking.

      Delete
  13. I lived with someone for a while who was verbally abusive. Glad I dumped him.

    One of DLP's books is about domestic abuse.

    ReplyDelete
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    1. Good for you!

      Really? I'll have to look into that.

      Delete
  14. Abuse of any kind is sad, but especially abuse of children. They're helpless and depend on adults to care for them. Unfortunately many do not. Also, abuse of animals angers me too. They, like children, depend on us to care for them. Great points, Chrys.

    ReplyDelete
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    1. I know. Children and animals are innocent and helpless. It angers me, too.

      Delete
  15. Abusive relationships are just so sad. it's even sadder when the person being abused doesn't get out of the relationship soon enough.

    ReplyDelete
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    1. I agree. Sometimes, they don't see it or are just too afraid.

      Delete
  16. Abuse is so ghastly. I'm sorry you had to deal with that. Hugs. We should be able to depend on our family to take care of us.

    ReplyDelete
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    1. Yes, we should be able to depend of family to take care of us. Sadly, that's not always the case.

      Delete
  17. Sorry you had to go through that. It is more common than we know and there are so many ways it can happen.

    ReplyDelete
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    1. It is very common. In so many households. So many have been hurt by this.

      Delete
  18. I just had my annual "how to recognize child abuse" training. As a sub, I'm a mandated reporter, so we have to be reminded of what to look for. So things like that don't get missed.

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    1. That's great! Sometime you should share the things to look for on your blog. It would be very informative to the rest of us. :)

      Delete
  19. My one cousin married a guy and shortly afterwards he smacked her. Thankfully, she was quick to get out before the abuse got worse. The guy should feel lucky too. Her father and brother were livid.

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    1. He should feel lucky. With my sister, it started a month after their wedding but she wasn't like your sister. Unfortunately.

      Delete
  20. The weird crap is the verbal/emotional stuff that gets blamed on the victim - unfortunately, I didn't even see some of it until the abuser started harassing my child and then I could see it and realized it had happened to me. I started taking steps to protect my child, and I also started taking steps to protect myself. When I watched Tangled by Disney, I felt like I was re-living some of my own childhood - it was kind of frightening how well they captured the verbal/emotional stuff between the "mother" witch and Rapunzel in "Mother knows best."

    ReplyDelete
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    1. The victim does get a lot of blame though they shouldn't. I haven't seen Tangled yet. I'm sorry that you experienced that as a child from your mother.

      Delete
  21. I think we are all victims of some sort of abuse at one time. But, I have witnessed a family member hospitalized from an abusive boyfriend. She was pushed out of a moving car and then convinced to not tell family until almost 2 weeks later. She could have died and we would have never known!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. That is very true.

      Oh my gosh! I am so glad she's okay.

      Delete
  22. I am sorry you were abused. It is horrible how people are made to feel it's their fate and how they often keep believing they are the problem or the person will change instead of seeking safety for themselves. You have written a good description of abuse (I'd never head the term "gaslighting" in this context)

    ReplyDelete
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    1. You're right. Victims do feel its their fate, that things won't ever get better for them, that this is their life.

      Delete
  23. I've experienced child abuse (including emotional and social abuse) and sibling abuse. Another fact I'd add is that if a child is absent Monday and Tuesday after a weekend from school. Adults too often look for a long period of absences. But if an abuser is smart they know how to get rid of bruises in the shortest time possible. Also in countries were spanking is allowed (I'm not against spanking and don't see that as abuse-feel free to disagree. Plus often in abuse situations the adult creates a situation where no matter what the child is bound to make a 'mistake' that the abuser uses to beat them. That is not spanking, that's childhood entrapment.), teachers need to be taught not just the difference between a spank and bruises that need reporting but also the laws. In recent years Jamaica gas taken on an initiative with television programs explaining abuse properly. Back when I was a kid ads would only show kids who were severely beaten and burned. That scared the hell out of me and me thinking at least I was not those kids. That's beyond abuse, that's attempted murder on children. Thankfully the campaign has wised up and included emotional abuse as well. But I have had the awful experience of almost losing sight in one eye in my teens. My glasses and dark skin helped hide most of the bruise. Only one friend noticed and talk to me.

    Your post really details abuse well and I hope readers take this seriously. Thanks for sharing Chrys and sorry for your pain. Glad to see you moved forward to a lovely woman.

    ReplyDelete
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    1. It's very important to be informed about all types of abuse, the signs, and laws.

      I'm so sorry you experienced that abuse. Almost losing your eyesight is awful and the abuse that caused it must've been great. I'm glad you got through it.

      Delete
  24. No one deserves to be abused by another. Sorry about your experience, but I know you've moved on.

    ReplyDelete
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    1. In ways I have. To this day, I don't want to see or talk to my half-brother.

      Delete
  25. Abuse is horrifying, no matter what form it takes. I have written about abusive relationships, but have not experienced one myself (at least on the receiving end). When my kids push me to my limit (and beyond) with their shenanigans, I can yell pretty loud even though such a response is useless.

    ReplyDelete
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    1. I know what you mean about yelling loud. My patience breaks with my nephews. I always feel bad for yelling at them afterwards, though.

      Delete
  26. I am adding that book to my TBR list. Excellent post, Chrys. One of the abuses that has only come to awareness recently is 'financial abuse' as you mention. That is a horrible one too and surely it goes hand in hand with the physical and emotional. One of the things is the abuser can be very charming to the outside world and many would not suspect him of abuse. I'm sorry you had to go through that abuse from your brother! He is obviously, genetically inclined to be a bully and an abuser unless he learned it from someone. Very informative post, Chrys. Thanks for sharing this topic.

    ReplyDelete
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    1. Yes, they are so charming to others but are really snakes. My sisters husband put on a face around others all the time, but I could see through it.

      My half-brother didn't learn it from anyone in my family. I do believe there's just something within him that isn't quite right....

      Delete
  27. A victim of abuse comes across broken. They are off in some way. It's in their eyes a film of fear that never really goes away. Not even years later. :-(

    Anna from elements of emaginette

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    1. That's true, Anna. Heart-breaking but true.

      Delete
  28. I'm so sorry you went through that with your half-brother. I hope you're all in a better place today. Years of abuse, any type, is hard to shake off. I've had my share too and I feel stronger and have moved on.

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    1. I am in a better place but I still don't want anything to do with him...that's how I moved on.

      Delete
  29. I think everyone has experienced and witnessed forms of abuse. People are imperfect. In our quest for the ideal, we stumble many times. The issue is when the pattern becomes a crutch for someone and they pick a target. We're all living in a broken world, trying to find a sense of wholeness. Here's to being easy on ourselves, and others.

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    1. I agree. I think we all do in one form or another. Some more severe, too. It's hard to escape, especially when people nowadays are inclined to hurt each other.

      Delete
  30. I'm glad you made the note at the bottom about how it can go the other way, though rare, at times.
    I have a friend who was married and his wife essentially mentally abused him. Told him he was worthless and nothing. Refused to give any commendation. If anything went wrong, he was always at fault. He didn't have his driver license at the time and she refused to help him get his license so he could drive as well. He did whatever he could to try and make her happy but it was always thrown in his face for whatever reason. Whenever his wife didn't get her way, she would threaten him with suicide. Well, that was the tip of the iceberg. There were other things as well, but he still tried to work things out with her. To no avail. She eventually left him. Filed for divorce and he was served with divorce papers on their 13th wedding anniversary. It's quite possible, it was the best anniversary gift he could have received. 20/20 hindsight.

    ReplyDelete
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    1. It does happen. Men aren't the only ones who can be abusive. Women can especially be verbally abusive, as your story about your friend proves. Threatening suicide to get your own way is a horrible thing to do. It's unthinkable that someone would say that, but I know they do. I do think those divorce papers were a gift for him.

      Delete
  31. My first serious boyfriend (I was 16) was extremely mentally and emotionally abusive. I didn't recognize the signs, sadly--like many teen girls, I confused his obsession with love.

    When I broke up with him, he attacked me, breaking my spine in two places. I'm lucky to be here.

    ReplyDelete
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    1. I remember you telling me about how you broke your spine in two places. That is horrifying. I'm sorry that happened to you, and I'm glad you survived.

      Delete

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