Abuse Victim FAQ's
This section contains FAQ's (frequently asked questions) for victims of abuse, mostly child sexual abuse, but many of the questions here will apply to other abuse as well. There are only a few questions at the moment, with more coming. If you have a question you think should be here, submit it here and I'll do my best to add it to this site with an answer.
Click on the questions to show/hide answers.
Should I try to prevent the abuse? Make him stop or run away?
In most cases, YES. If the abuser is actually threatening your life, it's probably best not to try to stop it or get away, but in most other cases, you should try. If you try and they make a threat, you probably have to give in and let them do what they want, but that does not mean you are giving permission, and it does not make the abuse be your fault. If the abuser is someone you know, and especially someone you thought cared about you, don't be afraid to ask them to stop. If they don't listen, run if you can. If you do get away before the abuser does anything, you should tell someone because they may try again later, or they just might find another victim.
If I pretend I'm enjoying the abuse, will he (or she) stop?
Most abusers want to be "in control", so some think that by pretending you're enjoying it, they will get discouraged and stop. In a small number of cases, that may happen, but it's more likely to make it worse. Another thing abusers want is to believe what they are doing is ok, especially sexual abusers. Sometimes they truly believe it is. If you pretend you're enjoying it, they may feel less timid and go even longer or even further, and that extra confidence may even make them return sooner. The general rule is, if it appears the abuser cares about you, or if the abuser appears to not want to hurt you, don't pretend you're enjoying it. If the abuser appears to be using his power over you, pretending you are enjoying it will probably get him upset, Some will stop sooner, but others just might get even more violent to make sure you don't enjoy it. There may be rare cases where pretending you're enjoying it can help, but not enough to be worth the possible risk.
I got aroused, excited, or got pleasure from the abuse. Does this mean I'm "sick" or doing something wrong or what the other person did was ok?
NO. Sexual abuse, or any kind of abuse, especially if done lovingly, can bring pleasure or arousal. That's the body's natural reaction to certain types of touching or certain acts. There's nothing wrong with you and the other person is doing something wrong.
Should I tell someone about the abuse?
YES! YES! YES!
Might seem like a dumb question to put here, but most victims don't tell, and in many cases it's because they don't think they should. With any kind of abuse, you don't deserve it and it should be stopped, and the only way to stop it is to tell. If someone threatens you, see the next question.
What can I do if someone threatens me? Says they will kill me, or someone I love, or any other kind of threat?
If someone makes a violent threat, you need to go right to the police. Go to someone you know you can trust, tell them, and have them take you to the police station. The police are there to protect you and will do their best to keep you safe.
I will be adding more here soon and will eventually be categorizing everything. If you have a question you think should be here, submit it here and I'll do my best to add it to this site with an answer.