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Is it abuse?



How to know when it's abusive?

Intimate partner violence and abuse is an abuse of power that includes a wide range of threats and acts:


Physical abuse: 

Slapping, choking, or punching her. Using hands or objects as weapons. Threatening her with a knife or gun. Committing murder.


Sexual abuse: 

Using threats, intimidation, or physical force to force her into unwanted sexual acts.


Emotional or verbal abuse:  

Threatening to kill her (or to kill the children, other family members or pets), threatening to commit suicide, making humiliating or degrading comments about her body or behaviour, forcing her to commit degrading acts, isolating her from friends or family, confining her to the house, destroying her possessions, and other actions designed to demean her or to restrict her freedom and independence. 


Financial abuse: 

Stealing or controlling her money or valuables (of particular concern to older women). Forcing her to work. Denying her the right to work.


Spiritual abuse: 

Using her religious or spiritual beliefs to manipulate, dominate, and control her.

Criminal harassment/stalking:

Following her or watching her in a persistent, malicious, and unwanted manner. Invading her privacy in a way that threatens her personal safety.


​To combat domestic violence, security expert Gavin de Becker has developed a potentially lifesaving tool called MOSAIC.

This online assessment is free and protects the user’s identity.


Anyone—the victim or concerned loved ones—can log onto the website and answer 46 questions to determine how much of a threat an abuser poses to an individual or family. MOSAIC expresses its results on a scale of 1 to 10, with 10 being the most likely to escalate—including homicide,” Gavin says.


The technology is based on similar programs used to protect congressmen and Supreme Court justices. “It takes the factors of a situation and breaks them down and then sees all these pieces of the puzzle and puts it back together in a way that, in a domestic violence situation, a woman can/may see the picture for the first time.”


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