Today we’re continuing our look at types of domestic abuse.
An abuser might refuse to handle his share of family responsibility:
Your abuser might refuse to get a job, to stay employed, or to perform necessary duties on his job (leading to him not getting promoted, not getting pay raises, being disciplined or even being fired). He might have repeatedly quit his job, or have been fired from jobs on multiple occasions.
An abuser may refuse to carry his share of the load around the home, in the marriage or as a parent, in order to force you to wear yourself out, to cause you to fail, to make you unhappy, to manipulate you, or to otherwise cause harm. He may give you too much to do so that he can blame you when you fail to get everything done, or to punish you for not being able to handle things in the manner he demands that they be handled.
He might set you a tight schedule and threaten you if everything isn’t carried out to his specifications.
An abuser who shirks his share of home responsibility may hold you responsible for doing everything that has to be done to maintain a home and raise a family. Duties such as talking to creditors, paying the bills, cleaning the house, running errands, preparing meals, raising the children, training the children, household repairs, and so on all end up on your shoulders–making it impossible for you to do everything as well as you might desire to, and pushing you to the point of exhaustion. The result is that you end up feeling guilty because you can’t do it all—but you can’t do it all. Your husband knows that you can’t, and he counts on your not being able to so he has a reason to get angry, punish you, fuss at you, etc.
He might abuse you through withholding medical care:
Your abuser might refuse to let you see a doctor, a dentist, or an eye doctor as needed.
He might refuse to let you buy necessary prescription medication, receive necessary treatments, have surgery, or purchase eye glasses.
When you are ill, are recovering from a serious illness, have just gotten out of the hospital, have just given birth or have had a c-section or other surgery, he might insist you still do your chores, wait on him, or take care of his sexual needs even though doing so might be detrimental to your health or cause an infection. He will probably fail to wait on you or help you even if you ask him to do so.
He might make fun when you say you are sick. He might accuse you of lying when you are ill.
He might abuse you through twisting Scripture (spiritual abuse):
Your abuser might twist Scripture in order to justify his abuse of you. He might twist it in order to dominate you or to elevate himself above you. He might define words such as “submission” and “obey” in a way that exalts him while degrading you. He might try to use Scripture to “prove” that women are of less value than men. He might insist that God is unhappy with you for having opinions or standing up for yourself.
He might use your Christian beliefs to ridicule or shame you. He might make fun of you for believing the Bible.
He might refuse to let you go to church. He might attend church with you in order to keep an eye on you.
We’ll continue on with this series in a few days.
Soli Deo gloria!