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Challenges domestic violence survivors face
One of the most immediate challenges domestic violence survivors face is physical harm inflicted by their abusers. Survivors often suffer from bruises, fractures, internal injuries and other physical ailments. Dr Tugnait says these injuries need medical attention or they may lead to long-term health complications. Also, survivors might experience sexually transmitted infections, unwanted pregnancies and chronic pain due to the abuse. Other challenges include:
1. Emotional and psychological trauma
Domestic violence survivors often face intense fear, anxiety, and post-traumatic stress disorder. The constant cycle of abuse, characterized by manipulation, threats, and humiliation, leaves survivors feeling powerless and trapped. The emotional scars or traumas can even lead to depression, low self-esteem and a heightened risk of developing mental health disorders.
2. Financial dependence and economic instability
Many survivors face significant financial challenges due to their abusive relationships. Abusers often control the family finances, leaving survivors economically dependent and without resources to escape the abusive situation. Financial constraints may prevent survivors from seeking legal help, securing safe housing, or accessing essential resources such as therapy and medical care. This economic instability can further come in their way of rebuilding their lives independently.
3. Isolation and lack of support
Domestic violence often isolates survivors from their support networks, leaving them feeling alone and cut off from family and friends. Abusers use manipulation and control tactics to sever social connections, making it difficult for survivors to seek help or disclose the abuse. The absence of a strong support system worsens feelings of lonliness. It can lead to a sense of hopelessness, making it harder for survivors to break free from the cycle of abuse, notes the expert.