Did you know that domestic abuse is on the rise in Bermuda? One in four families experience domestic abuse and the effects it has on those children is detrimental. In an effort to help stop the cycle of abuse Family Centre is raising awareness of this growing problem.
What is domestic abuse?
Domestic abuse is any type of controlling, bullying, threatening or violent behaviour between people in a relationship. It can seriously harm children and young people and witnessing domestic abuse is child abuse. It’s important to remember domestic abuse:
- can happen inside and outside the home
- can happen over the phone, on the internet and on social networking sites
- can happen in any relationship and can continue even after the relationship has ended
- both men and women can be abused or abusers
- it can happen in any family regardless of socioeconomic status, race, ethnicity, culture, etc.
Types of domestic abuse
Domestic abuse can be emotional, physical, sexual, financial or psychological, such as:
- kicking, hitting, punching or cutting
- rape (including in a relationship)
- controlling someone’s finances by withholding money or stopping someone earning
- controlling behaviour, like telling someone where they can go and what they can wear
- not letting someone leave the house
- reading emails, text messages or letters
- threatening to kill someone or harm them
- threatening to another family member or pet
How can it affect our children?
- Children who have witnessed domestic abuse are at a greater risk of becoming involved in abusive relationships as adults.
- Studies have shown that children growing up in domestic abuse end up with mental health problems at a rate higher than children who are actually direct victims of physical abuse.
- Younger children are impacted more severely by adult domestic abuse because of the developmental phase of the brain.
If you or someone you know is being abused, help is available.
For family support, contact Family Centre at 232-1116
To report abuse, contact the Centre Against Abuse at 297-8278