Abuse is difficult to define, perhaps because the term covers so many types that are physical, psychological, sexual or verbal. The effects of such treatment at any stage in life, and particularly through childhood, can be devastating.
The abuse influences the victim's feelings, thinking and actions and can leave them angry, afraid, ashamed, guilty, embarressed, confused and worthless. Many can feel violated, dirty, vulnerable and reluctant to trust anyone. Depression, self pity and self blame are common reactions. Low self concept and feelings of being unattractive, incompetent, inadequate, dependent and unwanted by others are common thought patterns of victims. Antisocial behaviour can often develop and an inability to form close trusting relationships will become another destructive element.
If you are struggling as a victim of abuse (whatever form) and you would like to seek help to enable you to cope please contact WPH. There are professionally highly trained counsellors there to help. Telephone for referral information.