Everyday, there’s a story or another of abuse on the news, the internet and so forth. Some people survive and come out stronger. Hélas, some people don’t make it at all.
But, before I go further, you might be asking yourself, ‘what really is abuse?’ Well, abuse in the dictionary has many definitions. One definition describes it as ‘to use wrongly or improperly, misuse one’s authority’. Another says, it is ‘bad or improper treatment, or maltreatment. To treat in a harmful, injurious or offensive way’.
Further, another dictionary says that it is:’ To speak insultingly, harshly or unjustly to or about someone… We could go on and on describing this very word; the list is inexhaustible.
Does any of the above ring a bell? As sad as it is, unfortunately, abuse is all too common in our society. Physical harm, emotional degradation, domestic, mental, psychological, financial abuse are all forms of abuse that occur daily, often unheard of! Albeit this, most people shy away from addressing the issue. Many people suffer in silence, feeling as though there is no way out.
Today, if you’re undergoing abuse, I’d like to encourage you to run! It might seem easier said than done, however, as difficult as it may be, you don’t have to endure that pain. You don’t even need to use your faith to justify remaining in abusive situations.
Here are some helpful steps you can take to protect yourself and begin to heal:
- Recognize the abuse: The first step to healing and freedom is to recognise that you are being abused. This can be difficult, especially if the abuse is emotional or psychological, but it is important to acknowledge what is happening.
- Seek support: Talk to someone you trust, such as a friend or family member, or seek help from a professional, such as a therapist or counselor. You may also find support from a support group or hotline for abuse victims.
- Develop a safety plan: If you are in immediate danger, it is important to develop a safety plan. This may involve leaving the situation or finding a safe place to stay.
- Set boundaries: Set boundaries with the abuser, such as telling them that their behavior is not acceptable or that you will no longer tolerate it. Be clear and firm in your communication.
- Take care of yourself: Take care of your physical and emotional health. This may include getting enough rest, eating a healthy diet, exercising, and engaging in activities that bring you joy.
Remember, it is not your fault that you are being abused, and you deserve to be treated with respect and dignity. Your life is valuable. God loves you! He has great plans for you!
Don’t allow anyone to control or manipulate you under the guise of love. Take action and protect yourself from harm. It can take time and effort to heal from abuse, but with the right support and resources, it is possible to move forward and create a safer, healthier life.
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