Types of Abuse

Intimate Partner Abuse:

 Intimate partner abuse is about one person in a relationship using a pattern of behaviors to maintain power and control over the other person.  it can happen to people who are married or not married, heterosexual, gay or lesbian, living together, separated or dating. Intimate partner abuse happens regardless of culture, religion, age, income or education. 


Emotional Abuse

Emotional abuse can have many characteristics  Some of the more commonly reported forms include:

  • yelling
  • silent treatment
  • raging
  • forced to do degrading acts
  • putdowns
  • controlling
  • sarcasm
  • isolation from family & friends
  • blame
  • belittlement
  • threats
  • threats of killing self/partner/children/pets


 Physical abuse

Some examples of physical abuse include:

  • pushing
  • threatening with weapons
  • shoving
  • use of weapons
  • slapping
  • restraining
  • punching
  • burning
  • choking
  • hair pulling
  • pinching
  • withholding medical treatment
  • biting
  • sleep deprivation
  • spitting
  • withholding food
  • cutting
  • physical intimidation
Financial abuse

Many people do not recognize financial abuse but it is a common means that abusive individuals use to control their partners.

This type of abuse may include:

  • Allowing no access to money
  • running up bills
  • withholding financial information
  • taking and/or belittling your financial contribution
  • threatening to cut off financial support if you leave


Sexual abuse

There is sometimes a misconception that one can not be sexually abused by a partner.

 The following are some forms of sexual abuse:

  • Forcing or coercing sex (rape)
  • insisting on sexual acts
  • accusing partner of cheating
  • assaulting breasts or genitals
  • being forced to watch or make pornography


Even in relationships, consent to participate in sexual activity is required.

Below is a short video about consent entitled,  "T ea Consent"  (warning: language may be offensive to some viewers)






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Child Abuse

Child abuse refers to any form of physical, psychological, social, emotional or sexual maltreatment of a child whereby the survival, safety, self-esteem, growth and development of the child are endangered. There are four main types of child abuse: neglect, emotional, physical and sexual.

Child abuse should be reported to the appropriate authorities.  In Nova Scotia the toll-free number to report Child Abuse is 1-888-919-4236 or 1-866-922-2434 (after hours).


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