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More About Abuse

What is Domestic Violence?

Physical Abuse

Physical abuse is any intentional and unwanted contact. Physical abuse includes slapping, punching, biting, kicking, or using a foreign object to inflict pain to one’s body. Physical abuse can also include the threat of inflicting pain.

Emotional/Psychological Abuse

Emotional abuse is the most common form of control and may also exist in relationships with or without physical violence. This includes put-downs, name-calling, isolation from friends and family, and insults to hurt one’s self-esteem. The victim may begin to feel as if the abuse is his or her fault or deserved.

Financial Abuse

By controlling and limiting a person´s access to financial means, an abusive partner can ensure the victim will have limited resources if there are thoughts of leaving the relationship. Economic abuse includes limiting or restricting one’s access to employment or education, and limiting access to funds, making it difficult to meet basic needs.

Sexual Abuse

Sexual abuse is unwanted sexual activity, through force or coercion. Perpetrators and victims do not have to be strangers for the sexual activity to be considered abuse. Most victims of sexual abuse know their abuser.

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What is Elder Abuse?


Failure to provide necessities of life such as food, clothing, shelter, medical attention, personal safety or comfort.

Physical Abuse

Action causing discomfort, pain or injury, including hitting, pushing slapping and inappropriate use of medications or physical restraints.

Verbal/Psychological/Emotional Abuse

Maltreatment including harassment, insults, threats, intimidation, silent treatment or preventing contact with family and friends.

Sexual Abuse

An action that forces one to participate in or view a sexual act.

Financial Abuse

Actions that trick, threaten or persuade older adults out of money, property or possessions.

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What is Dating Violence and Abuse?

Physical Violence

Hurting or trying to hurt a partner by hitting, kicking, or using another type of physical force.

Sexual Violence

Forcing or attempting to force a partner to take part in a sex act, sexual touching, or a non-physical sexual event (e.g., sexting) when the partner does not or cannot consent.

Psychological Aggression

Using verbal and non-verbal communication with the intent to harm another person mentally or emotionally and/or exert control over another person.


A pattern of repeated, unwanted attention and contact by a partner that causes fear or concern for one’s own safety or the safety of someone close to the victim.

Back to Find Help: Teen Dating Violence and Abuse

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