While talking to my clients, friends or family about domestic violence, one of the first things they say to me is ...."well, my partner does not hit me, he/she just calls me a bitch or a whore, and says I can't do anything right." Is this really abuse?"
My answer is absolutely YES, calling anyone names to degrade someone is verbal
abuse and is domestic violence.
There are several types of abuse that do not leave bruises on the outside: verbal, emotional, financial and sexual abuse for example. While they don't leave visible marks, these types of abuse can leave life long scars on the inside.
Hurtful words can linger for months - maybe even years. They can chip away one's self esteem and leave them believing these words and fighting to recover from them for a long time.
Children that grow witnessing verbal abuse run the risk of internalizing it for the rest of their lives-Plus it's more likely they can be the recipient of verbal abuse in future relationships.
So it's important to let them know what verbal abuse is and that is does exist.
What I tell my clients, friends and family members is to go with your gut feeling. If what someone is saying or doing to you does not feel good in any way and it brings you down, that would be domestic violence.
Talk to a domestic violence counselor to help to bring awareness to how abuse can come in many forms. You can also call the National Domestic Violence Hotline at 1-800-799-7133 to find a local agency within your area or log on to the National Coalition of Domestic Violence web site
for more info and facts on types of abuse at http://www.ncadv.org/.