Types of Abuse

"History, despite its wrenching pain, cannot be unlived, but if faced with courage, need not be lived again." -Maya Angelou

There are many types of abuse, all of which have long-term effects that can be devastating to women and their children. Everyone that endures or witnesses abuse is affected by it. It’s also important to know the effects of violent behaviour on children that witness it. Please click here for more information.

The Abusive Behaviour Cycle

Abusive relationships often start out the same way as healthy relationships. The abuser is initially kind, sweet, loving, and even romantic. Their partners feel safe and cared for. However, along the way, tension grows, and the cycle of abuse begins.

Unfortunately, the cycle repeats itself, and the abuse usually gets worse over time. The abuser is so convincing, the partner will often try to “forgive” and forget.

Types of Abuse

Violence knows no bounds and can be found in any relationship (i.e., families, extended families, friends, acquaintances, etcetera). The following is a list of abuses that you may be experiencing.


Emotional/Psychological Abuse

Anything that makes you feel afraid or bad about yourself is psychological abuse. Put-downs and name-calling that hurt your feelings or diminish your self-worth are abusive, and so are intimidation tactics that are used to inspire fear. No one should be humiliated by or afraid of a loved one. An abuser might also prevent you from being able to do anything or see anyone when he or she is not around by trying to cut you off altogether from your friends, family, job and other activities.

Psychological abuse also comes in the form of threatening or guilt-inducing behaviour. Some abusers use:

  • the children to induce guilt, by making the children give you negative messages
  • use child visitation as a way to monitor or harass you
  • use threats to try to make you stay
  • threaten to kill themselves, you, a child, a pet, your friends or family members
  • threaten to have the child(ren) taken away by CAS, report you or your family to Ontario Works or even have you deported

Abusers are usually lying about their ability to accomplish any of these legal actions. Please feel free to call us for more information about how we can help: 613.234.5181.


Financial/Economic Abuse

Many abusers use money and economic resources as a means to maintain control over their partners and keep a system of dependence in the relationship.

  • If someone is preventing you from earning money (perhaps by prohibiting you from working or making you call in sick), you are being abused financially.
  • You are also abused if you are not allowed any say over household spending.

        • or if you are not allowed to participate in financial decisions.
        • You are also being abused if you must ask for spending money and account to him/her for how and where you spend it.


Physical Abuse

Physical abuse is any intentional violence against another person with the aim of causing pain or injury. Pushing, grabbing, hitting, punching, kicking, throwing things, damaging property, punching walls or using weapons in a threatening way are all forms of physical abuse.


Sexual Abuse

Sexual abuse can and does happen in marriages and other romantic relationships. Any unwanted, non-consensual sexual behaviour is abuse, including any kind of intimate touching or intrusion. The forcing or coercing of degrading, humiliating or painful sexual acts is also a form of sexual abuse. Every woman has the right to say “no,” even to her husband, boyfriend or other romantic partner.


Invasive Abuse

If someone is stalking you, this is invasive abuse. You have the right to privacy. This also means that no one can read your mail or e-mail, listen in on your phone conversations, or spy on you. You have the legal right to lead your own life without intrusion.

If you are experiencing abuse, please call us at 613.234.5181.  We are here to help!