This is a compensated campaign in collaboration with Allstate Foundation® and Latina Bloggers Connect.
When we talk about domestic violence most of us are not aware but this is often link to financial abuse. One of the easiest ways to control a person when they are being abused at home is with finances. Many victims in an abusive relationship depend on their abuser economically and are not able to support themselves and or to independently do things on her own. This puts the abuser in a powerful position as the victim has to ask for every single thing she needs and the abuser knows exactly what she is doing because he controls the money.
If you know or suspect of someone in this hard and desperate situation, help him or her understand that they are ways to cut the circle of abuse. Some things you can do:
- Be a good listener: Try to talk about it, be clear and direct, and don’t blame the person, remember you don’t know what they are going through.
- Be there: Isolation is also a factor, so make sure you let them know you are there for them.
- Be understanding: Remember that leaving a marriage or a relationship is the hardest decision a person can take, emotionally and economically so they are the only ones that can make that decision no one else can, all you can do is support and understand.
- Be patient: For a victim sometimes it is hard to recognize how bad the abuse has become and most of the time they live in denial. To start the process of understanding and to take the steps to change is a process that takes time and a big emotional toll on a person.
As we know a big percentage of domestic abuse cases involves men abusing and financially controlling their spouse or girlfriend. I believe that it’s very important for us to change our old fashion ideas and perceptions of what a “real man” is supposed to be and how he is supposed to behave, and how the roles of a man and a women are defined. As a husband and a father I believe in teaching boys that expressing their feeling is something good, the word “man up” does not exist in my vocabulary: if my son gets hurt or is crying he receives a big hug and he knows it’s OK to express his feelings. Suppressing feelings leads to anger and frustration, which in time leads to violence.
I also believe that as parents it’s important to inspire and motivate our children to be independence, in life and in finances. We need to help them understand that they have the power to become anything they want to be if they work hard for it, whether they are girls or boys. We also need to teach our children to love and respect themselves and others, to be accepting of differences and show them that violence will never lead to any positive outcome.
I am very happy to be able to share that Allstate Foundation’s Purple Purse initiative is making it easier to talk about domestic violence and the financial abuse that traps women in abusive relationships. This program has helped ignite fundraising for more than 140 national, state and local domestic violence organizations. Funds raised will support life-changing financial empowerment services to help domestic violence survivors build safer lives for themselves and their families. Allstate Foundation Purple Purse aims to break the cycle of violence in our nation – one family at a time.
For more information on financial abuse you can click here