How many of us do we know the term ‘economic abuse’? How many of us have even heard of such a phrase? For few days, I have been asking friends and neighbours if they have got any knowledge of such a term. They had no idea, let alone of being aware of the fact that this economic abuse is a legal and moral crime…
They are not to be blamed. Even few days earlier, I was ignorant of the fact too. Thanks to a Pakistani drama (that I have been watching) based on the issue of domestic violence that I came across to the concept. According to Wikipedia –
Economic abuse is a form of abuse when one intimate partner has control over the other partner’s access to economic resources, which diminishes the victim’s capacity to support him/herself and forces him/her to depend on the perpetrator financially. – by Wikipedia
In countries like ours’, this is widely applicable for the wives. Its not that the husbands don’t suffer from this but that is in few numbers. In our country, where majority of the population belongs to the upper and lower middle class, this issue for the wives is a common phenomenon. Here, the general picture is – the man tries to take control of every single household matter, for e.g., what should be the menu for today, what should the wife wear, how the children should be managed, what should be given as a gift to the person who has sent a dinner invitation, etc. etc., and foremost comes the financial matters. Days after days, the wife is made to understand that she is incapable of handling those things and by and by she actually loses her confidence about her capability. Doesn’t this sound like slow poisoning?
Our society has become much more civilized now. The literate class does not use the mode of violence anymore for achieving the position of ‘the dictator’ over the house. Instead the weapon is trust.
“If you love your partner, you got to trust him/her. ”I don’t know who said that, but in my opinion the version should be like this –“If you love your partner trust him/her in every way, except your financial matters.”
The reason being that in today’s world your economic stability ensures your security, your ground. According to a site that deals with social issues, the forms of financial abuse can be –
- Forbidding the victim to work.
- Tactfully causing the victim to lose her job.
- Controlling on how all the money is spent.
- Not allowing the victim access to bank accounts.
- Withholding money or giving ‘an allowance’.
- Not including the victim in investment or banking decisions.
- Running up large amounts of debt on joint accounts.
- Refusing to work or contribute to the family income.
- Withholding funds for the victim or children.
- Hiding assets.
- Forcing the victim to work in a family business without pay, and many many more.
– by nnedv.org
Sadly, even if we come across these things around us, we don’t recognize them or even if we do we don’t consider it to be a crime, no matter how devastating the impact is. Like the drama says – Raise Your Voice, raise your voice to anything that is morally wrong. If you encounter with this kind of a problem, always remember that you are precious and nobody has the right to treat you like a garbage. And for the control freak spouse – life is all about sharing with your partner. Its worthless trying to snatch his/her independence, pointing incapabilities. Instead nurture your spouse’s abilities, enhance his/her efficiencies and ofcourse don’t forget to appreciate the efforts that were made to make you happy. Trust me, that will bring both peace and prosperity to both you and your family.