Domestic violence or domestic abuse is the systematic mistreatment of a partner or spouse. It can manifest itself in different ways and affect people differently. However, the psychological effects it has on its victims are more profound than many realize. Although most people tend to associate domestic violence with violent physical attacks, it can also take many other forms. It can be as simple as verbal abuse and intimidation. It may come in the form of controlling behaviours like insisting on knowing where you are and who you’re with all the time. Or it may involve threats and isolation to keep you from leaving the relationship.
The risk factor for abusive relationships is high and affects everyone differently. Nevertheless, there are still some general effects that being exposed to domestic abuse has on your mental health.
The Link Between Domestic Violence and PTSD
One of the domestic abuse's most significant mental health effects is that it can lead to Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD). PTSD is an anxiety disorder that occurs after a person experiences a life-threatening or terrifying event. It is prevalent in survivors of interpersonal trauma, such as domestic abuse. PTSD can cause a myriad of symptoms, including nightmares, anxiety, hypervigilance, avoidance behaviours, and a feeling of detachment.
PTSD is a serious and debilitating mental health condition. It can cause severe impairment in daily functioning, including work and relationships. It can be extremely difficult to get treated, as many people don’t realize how serious it is. Many people don’t understand how to identify it or what to do about it. If you experience symptoms of PTSD after being exposed to domestic abuse, you should seek help.
Domestic Abuse and Depression
According to research, people who have experienced traumas such as domestic violence and maltreatment are more vulnerable to developing depression. Intimate partner violence can cause serious mental, emotional, and spiritual anguish. A person who has been battered and insulted may suffer from confidence issues and have a persistent feeling of sadness or loss of interest, which may result in a variety of physical changes, including changes in sleep, appetite, energy, concentration, and daily behaviour, as well as thoughts of suicide.
Domestic Violence and Anxiety
Victims of domestic violence may also experience anxiety. This might manifest in the form of feeling anxious about all aspects of life, having deep distrust for others, avoiding people and just living in intense fear.
Domestic abuse is a serious issue that has many detrimental effects on your mental health. It can cause emotional trauma, depression, anxiety, and suicidal thoughts. It can also affect relationships with family and loved ones.
If you suspect that someone you know is being abused, try to be understanding of their emotions and their situation. Make an effort to support them by offering advice and listening. There are many resources available that can help you cope with the effects of domestic violence on your mental health. In order to move past the trauma caused by domestic violence, professional help is often needed. Book a session with us at Thejmore.