What does torture, domestic violence and abuse have in common? All of the above terms are criminal offenses. They take place in relationships that are inherently disrupted, and are usually not isolated acts; on the contrary, they last longer. Because such violence is in the vast majority of cases committed behind closed doors, there are no witnesses or conclusive evidence. So how do you get out of the vicious cycle of fear and pain?
The main feature of domestic violence is that it takes place between members of a shared dwelling, whether they are partners, children or the elderly. Women are most at risk. It is reported that even more than a third of women have experienced some form of domestic violence in their lives. Vulnerable groups also include the elderly, the disabled, and children. And significant percentage of domestic violence is also perpetrated against men. Domestic violence can take many forms. The endangered person often does not know for a long time that the behavior of his or her partner or familiar person is slowly exceeding the limits of his or herrights. In general, there is physical violence (beatings, kicking, pulling hair), psychological abuse (humiliation, ignoring), verbal abuse (swearing, insults), economic abuse (destruction of personal belongings, money allowance), social abuse (preventing contact with the outside world, house arrest) and sexual abuse (sex enforcement, rape).
Psychological abuse against children is the least observable, because it is not obvious at first glance. However, it is usually accompanied by other forms of abuse. Psychological abuse against children consists in exercising the superiority and power that the abuser has over the child. It can be frequent reprimands, high demands on the child and constant comparison with other children. It can also be a withholding attention that leads to complete neglect. Another form of emotional abuse is when a child witnesses violence against another family member. These children can then begin to isolate themselves, avoiding social contact, they are unfocused, nervous, scared. Stuttering or tics may be noticeable, and they may urinate at night or complain of frequent abdominal pains or headaches.
You know for yourself that the way your partner treats you has long been wrong. No one knows anything, but you know you’re running out of energy, before completely you run out, you have to try to change something. Before further violence occurs, you can contact some of the intervention centers for people at risk of domestic violence. These workplaces provide social and legal support and psychological help. In addition to practical information that will acquaint you with your options, experts will help you draw up a safety plan. With its help, you can better evaluate the critical situation and escape by protecting both yourself and possibly other members of the household.
At the level of mental experience, the immediate consequence of violence is shock, long-term trauma, or post-traumatic stress disorder. Doubts often arise about one’s own value, which has been systematically denigrated by the violent person. Feelings of guilt and shame may also occur.
Maybe you live in a relationship you no longer have any illusions about. You are not sure whether you love your partner more or hate him or her more, you are driven by fear. You’re afraid to leave, you have doubts. Can you do it at all by yourself? Confusion and fear are something you don’t have to be left alone with. The goal of psychotherapy is, in addition to understanding and support, also the activation of internal resources and self-confidence. Then, hidden courage and the knowledge that you can live your life in another way, happily, arises. However, the partner doing the manipulatin usually senses quite quickly when it is necessary to replace the whip with sugar. He seeks rapprochement with apologies, promises, and imaginary plans for a common future. It’s hard not to believe, even though it has happened many times before. The psychotherapeutic process will help you understand how the dynamics in your relationship work. You may have already spent your childhood in the shadow of a dominant parent. The insights that a psychotherapist will help you gain, and the contexts that give your situation a deeper meaning, will then provide a good foundation for your other relationships.
Maybe you are solving the fact that there is no expert in your area who would help you in your situation. Online psychotherapy offers the opportunity to connect with an expert experienced in the topic of domestic violence from anywhere online. The discretion of online psychotherapy, which does not require a trip to the therapist’s workplace, can be important for the client, especially in the first meetings. An online psychotherapist can be your support at all stages of the process. He or she may be the first person you trust or someone you can live through the consequences of your former relationship with.
“I visited the therapist for the first time after I left my husband, who was torturing me physically and mentally for twelve years. I needed to confide everything and especially to come to terms with the fact that I allowed him to treat me like that. My therapist and I found that my conviction that I deserved to be treated like this by my husband was what kept me in my marriage. I have found that I have carried it with me since childhood. That’s why I started working to eliminate this pattern of thinking and raise my self-confidence. “