Every woman needs to know the risk factors for abuse. Verbal violence often turns into physical violence with time. Verbal violence is just as damaging as physical violence. Abuse can take many forms, including physical, psychological, financial, sexual and invasive (i.e., stalking), and abuse can happen in any personal relationship. Most importantly, all forms of abuse are wrong, against the law, devastating and affect the individual, the children and the community. Abuse affects women of all ages, cultures, educational levels, socioeconomic backgrounds and sexual orientations. Abusers maintain control through fear and intimidation tactics. An abuser can lead a woman to wrongfully believe that she has no way out and/or that she is the cause of her own victimization, but this is never the case. No one can be held responsible for the behaviours of others, and abusers need to be held accountable for their own actions. No one ever deserves to be abused.
If you think you may be in an abusive relationship, please call us at 613.234.5181. We can help in more ways than you think.
Are You At Serious Risk?
Ask yourself the following questions. If you answer “yes” to any of them, call us as soon as possible for further support or clarification.
Does anyone in my home…
- Treat me like I belong to him/her?
- Tell me that if “he/she can’t have me, then no one will have me?”
- Stop me from seeing my family and friends?
- Make me live in a remote or isolated area?
- Take my paycheque from me?
- Refuse to give me money, transportation, or access to a telephone?
- Abuse alcohol and/or drugs, which leads to erratic behaviour?
- Have a history of depression, which leads to threats?
- Hurt or kill my pet in order to frighten or punish me?
- Force me to stay awake?
- Sexually abuse me?
- Force me to do sexual acts that make me feel uncomfortable or cause me pain?
- Break or damage things that are special to my children or me?
- Endanger me (and my children) through reckless driving?
- Try to convince me to stay with him/her by making me feel guilty?
- Threaten to kill my loved ones or me?
- Threaten to commit suicide?
- Use a weapon against me and/or others?
- Make me think about calling the police because I’m scared of what could happen next?
If you answer “yes” to any of the above and “yes” to any of the following questions, your life could be in danger.
- Does he/she have possession of any weapons?
- Has he/she ever threatened you or your children with them?
- Has he/she abused, killed, or mutilated a pet?
- Has he/she ever confined you or your children against your will?
- Is he/she aware that you are leaving? It is a good idea to have a safety plan, as this is an extremely dangerous time. Please click here.
Police and Victim Services have access to a variety of risk assessment tools. Please contact your local police services if needed or call us at 613.234.5181.