Lawfully wedded punchbag?

The stats are frightening: one in three women will be abused by her partner – the very person with whom she is supposed to feel the safest.

Most women choose to hide the abuse from others for fear of retaliation, or as a result of shame. The 16 days of activism campaign (25 November to 10 December) aims to raise awareness about domestic violence.

Health24 has compiled this section for tips on recognising abuse, dealing with the situation, and on leaving your abusive spouse.

What did I do to make him him hit me?
Is your relationship abusive?
6 tactics used to control women
The different types of domestic violence
 Leaving your abusive spouse
Abuse of the mind

Many people deny that a married woman can be raped by her partner. It is only recently that people have started to except the fact that marital rape does in fact happen.

These articles offer useful information for people who have been raped – whether by a partner, friend or stranger.

Rape survivors: plan of action
Helping a rape survivor

Child abuse
We don't want to think about the possibility that our children might be abused. But the reality is that about a quarter of South African children have been or will be sexually abused before they turn 18. The statistics of physical abuse are unknown but one could speculate that they would be even more shocking.

Even though we wish to deny this reality, it is important to educate ourselves about the dangers of abuse. Knowledge is a powerful weapon - if you know the dangers and warning signs, you may be able to protect your child.

Sexual abuse: The secret crime
Protecting your child from sexual abuse
Signs of sexual abuse
Know the signs of child abuse

Seek help
Here is a list of numbers to call if you need to talk or if you want to walk.

Domestic violence support groups

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