By: Ava Mrozik
NIAGARA UNIVERSITY, N.Y. – There are many forms of abuse, some are all too often viewed as less serious than others; however, abuse is abuse. The question is, do you really know what abuse is? The minor signals that we may not notice immediately are, in most cases, what lead to more noticeable forms of abuse, such as physical.
The program of Family and Children’s Service of Niagara and ZONTA, an empowering women’s club in Niagara Falls, promote a purple flyer around campus listing the signs of the different types of abuse.
From verbal to emotional to sexual abuse and many more, there are a variety of signs for each and every type of abuse that may go unnoticed. For example, if someone is being called names and being put down in a way that is affecting their self-esteem, they may be a victim of verbal abuse. If someone is making another feel like they’re crazy or is just over-reacting, this may be mental abuse. If one’s significant other or a close friend is constantly checks their social media accounts and their phone or tries to keep them away from their family or other friends, they may be dealing with emotional abuse. If one’s significant other is trying to control their money, they may be experiencing financial abuse. If someone feels pressured into sex, that is sexual abuse. If they physically harm or threaten their significant other, they are experiencing physical abuse.
Family and Children’s Service of Niagara runs a Passage House which offers emergency services, housing support, counseling services, children’s services, legal and financial assistance services and community educational services. Rather than searching the internet, the Passage House provides everything right there when you walk in.
There are 24-hour hotlines in the Niagara area whose contact is also provided on the flyer around campus. ZONTA is another source to go to for help and support. They have an open invitation to attend or participate in dinner meetings, fundraisers, and fun activities to be involved in with women who have experience abuse as well.
If you know someone experiencing any of these abusive signs, please encourage them to call the hotline (716) 299-0909 and to get help. There are also Counseling Services available on campus in the basement of Seton Hall.