When you think of domestic violence and abuse, you probably think of physical and verbal abuse. However, there are many forms of abuse. Oftentimes, financial abuse is overlooked. According to a study by the Centers for Financial Security, 99% of domestic violence cases also involved financial abuse. In fact, it is often the first sign of dating violence and domestic abuse. Learn the signs of financial abuse in a relationship so that you can protect yourself.
How-to Identify Financial Abuse in a Relationship: Knowing the Signs
What is Financial Abuse?
Financial abuse can vary from situation to situation. There is no one perfect example of it. However, it does involve controlling someone’s ability to get, use, and maintain financial resources. The victims may even be prevented from working so that they are unable to make or access money for themselves. In addition, the victims of financial abuse in a relationship may have their own money stolen or limited by their abuser. If the victim does have access to money, they may have to account for any of it that they use.
Look for Signs of Abuse
While every situation is different, there are certain things you can pay attention to. First, abusers may use or controls the money you have earned or saved. Examples of this include using your money or credit cards for their own benefit without asking. They may also ask to borrow money from you and never repay it. Also, they may ruin your credit by charging things to your account and not paying them off. Another sign of financial abuse in a relationship is if they have a double standard when it comes to spending. For example, they may spend money on entertainment, dining out, and clothing but criticize you when you make similar purchases
They may start to control where you can or can not work, and may even make you quit your job. In addition, they may actually try to sabotage your job. It is possible for them to go as far as hiding your car keys or removing your car battery so that you can not show up to work. These are only just a few of the signs of financial abuse, but there are many more.
If you or someone you know is a victim of financial abuse in a relationship, get help right away. Call a counselor, advocate, or religious leader. Remember that financial abuse is not something that gets better with time. Oftentimes, it can actually end up leading to other types of abuse. You can also call the National Domestic Violence Hotline at 1-800-799-7233 for confidential assistance from trained professionals. Do not wait until it is too late to get help.