5 minutes - Article
By Elder Connie Forbister
It’s important to know when you are being taken advantage of, or if you are in an abusive relationship. Unfortunately, some relationships can turn out to be unhealthy and even abusive.
You deserve more
You deserve to be in a healthy, loving relationship with someone who respects you as a person and whose actions reflect this. Abuse is NEVER okay, and neither is forcing someone to perform sexual acts for money, drugs, or other favours.
Abusive relationships do not always start out that way. Very often, abusive partners will treat their partners very well – showering them with gifts or affection. However, this can also be accompanied with statements such as “I would die without you,” or pressure to rush the relationship, including pressure to move in or open a bank account together.
The abuser may isolate you from your friends or family, or may even tell you what you can or cannot do or wear. They will often say and do these things in a way that makes it seem like they are looking out for you – but a partner who respects you will never tell you how to dress or where you can or can’t go.
Abusive partners might also do things such as withhold your own money from you, convince you or make you quit your job, or pressure you into becoming pregnant or having unprotected sex. They may also even pressure you to have sex, even after you have already said “no.” This is NEVER okay.
In some cases, some people who experience abuse are often led into situations known as “sex trafficking”. Sex trafficking is the buying and selling of a person for sexual favours or acts. This is often done without the person’s consent. Often, the person who is doing the trafficking will try to convince the person to do it by saying things like “If you love me, you would do this,” or “If you do this, I’ll do something else for you.”
Your partner may introduce clients as their “friends,” and ask you to perform sexual acts with them as a favour for them. If your partner begins exhibiting these behaviours, IT IS TIME TO SEEK HELP. There are often many emergency shelters available for those who need help, or you can contact the police department or the Alberta One Line for Sexual Violence: Call or Text 1-866-403-8000