Abuse is against the law. If you are under 18 you are a minor and there are laws to protect you and to punish abusers.
Your abuser may also threaten to hurt you even more if you tell anyone what they are doing to you. It is not your fault that you’re being abused, and it never will be.
Have an action plan:
- Speak up! It might be the last thing you want to do, but you need to tell someone about it. You can report abuse to the police or choose an adult you trust. It might be a teacher, a nurse at the clinic, a pastor or a friend.
- If you can out of the relationship with the abuser, do so. Ask the person you told to help you.
- If you can’t get out of the relationship, learn the warning signs! Watch out for signs and clues that your abuser is getting upset and may explode in anger or violence. Come up with several believable reasons you can use to leave the space (both during the day and at night) if you sense trouble brewing. Find safe areas! Know where to go if your abuser attacks or an argument starts. It could be a neighbour, relative or a public space. Avoid small, enclosed spaces without exits.
Tell an adult that you trust each time the abuse happens. Sometimes adults may not want to believe what you are telling them. But keep telling people you trust what has happened until someone believes you and knows how to help you. Try and record the abuser so you have some evidence.
It is very common for abusers to blame their victims, but is never the fault of the victim or child. Abuse is always the abuser’s fault. Even if you do something wrong and make an adult angry, it is never a reason for abuse.
HEY! Always report any form of abuse or tell an adult that you trust each time the abuse happens. Plan to get out the situation as soon as possible. You can report the person to the police, call 999, call 95 SWAGAA and 9664 Childline of the Ministry of Education and Training.