The Abuse Cycle – An Established Paradigm


This paradigm obtains regardless whether the abuse is sexual abuse, or abuse in the family, or abuse at the workplace, or where a public authority makes an adverse decision, which is wrong in law, causing harm.

  1. On abuse, the abused suffers harm
  2. Compounding the harm, the abused suffers shock and awe
  3. The abused experiences intrapersonal conflict, with need to trust the abuser
  4. The abused experiences intrapersonal conflict in respect to the power of the abuser
  5. The abused experiences intrapersonal conflict with the abuser’s implied and expressed threats to the abused, demanding silence, compliance and conspiracy
  6. The abused is not successful or availed of alternative authority to confide the abuse, with subsequent compounding intrapersonal conflict, compounding the harm
  7. The intrapersonal conflict interferes with the capacity of the abused to function, thus further compounding the harm
  8. The abused evidences strange behaviour such as withdrawal, or self-harm such as cutting, anorexia, bulimia, acting out, aggression to others, methods of intrapersonal relief in response to internalising rage that should properly be expressed towards the abuser
  9. When the torment is unbearable, the abused may be forced to take action against the abuser
  10. Where the abused is not able to do this, an observer may notice the “strange” behaviour of the abused, and in doing so, may be drawn to assist the abused
  11. The advocate encourages the abused to take steps to call out the abuser, but if the abused is not capable of doing so, will advocate for the abused.
  12. There will be repercussions by the abuser after attempts to call out the actions of the abuser – those repercussions can take many forms
  13. Those defensive actions of the abuser to defend the wrongdoing are in response to the fear of discovery and sanction
  14. The abused experiences relief in having a trusted authority to advocate on behalf of the abused.
  15. The abused experiences relief in stating the case to the advocate
  16. The abused experiences relief in the possibility for the abuser to be called to account
  17. If action is successful, the abused experiences relief in seeing the abuser being sanctioned
  18. The abused experiences the relief of validation of the events, and on the sanction being imposed on the abuser.
  19. The abused will experience the beginning of healing, renewal and recovery
  20. Paradoxically, the abused will experiences sadness and grief at having cast a light onto the abuse and the abuser, and seeing the truth of the events, affirming the integrity of the abused
  21. The abused will experience the publication of the events as a public affirmation of personal integrity
  22. The abused will experience relief and validation on the punishment, imprisonment, fines, or compensation, or order for exemplary damages, however defined, and payable by the abuser
  23. The abused will be free to live life with integrity and agency.





About lalegale

Legal and psychological advocate for freedom of political communication.
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