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Violence and Abuse

It is never okay to abuse or be abused by someone. There are different types of violence and abuse described below. For many of these, even if someone hasn’t laid a hand on you, they’re still abuse.

  1. Physical. Hitting, pushing or shoving, choking, breaking or throwing things, grabbing you too hard, blocking the door if you try to leave. Even if there’s no mark or bruise, it’s still abuse.
  2. Verbal. Yelling at you, insulting you, calling you names (e.g., stupid, ugly, dumb, crazy).
  3. Emotional. Guilt-tripping, playing mind games, gaslighting, humiliating, blaming, making you feel less about yourself or believe things about yourself that aren’t true.
  4. Digital. Controlling what you do online, hacking into your accounts or computer, stalking you online or through your phone.
  5. Isolation. Controlling who you see or where you go, getting extremely jealous, not letting you go anywhere or see anyone, even if they’re family or friends.
  6. Intimidation or threats. Threatening to end the relationship or use violence against you or themselves, blackmailing, making you fearful or feel small without explicitly threatening you.
  7. Peer pressure. Pressuring you to do things you don’t want to do (e.g., drugs, alcohol).
  8. Sexual violence. Pressuring or forcing you to have sex or engage in any sexual activities that you don’t want to do, preventing you from using any form of protection (contraception or condoms), stealthing (removing or sabotaging a condom during sex without your knowledge when you consented to having sex with a condom).

If you are experiencing any of the above or find yourself in a situation where your safety is at risk, there are adults who can help you. If you see a healthcare provider, you should feel safe in telling them if you feel afraid or are experiencing violence at home, school, or in a relationship. They will talk with you about what you’re experiencing and find the best kind of help for you.

Unsure if your relationship is healthy? Take this quiz by Tap808 to see where your relationship lies.

In addition, if you experience any type of violence, abuse, or discrimination in a school setting, you are protected under Title IX, which states:

“No person in the United States shall, on the basis of sex, be excluded from participation in, be denied the benefits of, or be subjected to discrimination under any education program or activity receiving federal financial assistance.”

This law covers a broad range, including sexual assault, harassment, and violence. More information about Title IX can be found on Know Your IX.

If you are experiencing any type of abuse, contact your healthcare provider or any of the hotlines below.

Local Helplines

Big Island

YWCA of Hawai‘i Island Sexual Assault Support Services: (808) 935-0677

Kaua‘i (Līhu‘e)

Kaua‘i YWCA Sexual Assault Treatment

  • Domestic Violence: (808) 245-6362
  • Sexual Assault: (808) 245-4144
Maui County

Child and Family Services Maui Sexual Assault Center

  • Lа̄na‘i: 1-866-443-5702
  • Maui (Wailuku): (808) 873-8624
  • Moloka‘i: (808) 213-5522

Child & Family Service: (808) 841-0822

Domestic Violence Action Center: (808) 531-3771

Parents and Children Together (PACT): (808) 526-2200

National Helplines

National Domestic Violence Hotline: 1-800-799-7233 or text “LOVEIS” to 22522

Rape, Abuse & Incest National Network (RAINN): 1-800-656-HOPE (4673)

Content reviewed by Shandhini Raidoo, MD, MPH, FACOG

Last Updated: September 25, 2020 by Phyllis Raquinio