Abuse Warrior may earn a commission for purchases made after clicking links on this page. Learn More.

What Are Key Examples Of Abuse

* I generally write using the pronouns he/him when referring to narcissists, but females are just as likely to be narcissists or exhibit narcissistic traits. So please don't think just because article uses the word him or he that it could not be a woman in that same role.

Sometimes, it can be difficult to know whether you are experiencing abuse or not, and this experience of not being able to trust yourself can be incredibly traumatizing. So, what are some clear examples of abuse?

What Are Key Examples Of Abuse

Especially if you are having your experiences be minimized and not able to trust your own opinion, knowing exactly when you are being abused can be difficult.

A key way to inform yourself on if you are being abused is to know the key examples of different types of abuse and how to identify them.

Once you are able to identify this abuse, you will be able to better receive the help you need, as well as start the healing process.

The simplicity of this process is not helped with the many complex different forms abuse can take, so while we will try to cover as many different types of abuse here, we will also try to keep the information we are conveying straightforward and simple to make it as easy as possible to identify the information we are looking for.

So, if you want to know the different types of abuse, and examples of them, to either be able to help yourself, or help someone close to you, make sure to keep reading!

The Different Types Of Abuse

There are many different ways, you, or someone close to you could be getting abused, and while some may seem obvious, others are not, and can even be normalized in society, so make sure to check this section to see if anything in it seems familiar.

Physical Abuse

This is one of the most well-known types of abuse and is often one of the few types of abuse most people will acknowledge.

This includes getting your body injured in any way. This could get slapping, choking, pinching, shoving, kicking, and even using drugs non-consensually, or using restraints.

Sexual Abuse

This type of abuse includes any form of sexual contact or activity which is not with consent.

This could include unwanted touching, rape, sodomy, any type of nudity which is coerced, exploitative photography, and any other sexual activity without consent.

Mental And Emotional Abuse

This type of abuse encapsulates your abuser trying to cause you either emotional or mental pain, which can be done in a variety of different ways.

This includes; coercion, intimidation, harassing, ridiculing, infantilization, isolation from friends and family, isolation from normal daily activities, using and manipulating silence, excessive yelling and swearing to cause distress, and manipulation.


This is when your profit or income is being used by your abuser for their own gain, often through illegal, or exploitative means.

This could be illegally withdrawing from a bank account, forging checks, or even stealing something from a vulnerable person’s house.


This is when an abuser will deprive someone through either action or inaction from necessary care to live a healthy life.

This could be not providing essentials like food and water, not providing clothing, or not providing medicine or medical care when needed.


This is when someone is unable to properly provide themselves with the care they need to look after themselves and live a healthy life, this could end up drastically harming their well-being.

This could be living in an unsanitary environment, living in a hazardous environment, or not giving yourself the essentials which you need to survive like food and water.


This is when someone is left in a vulnerable situation where they are unable to provide for themselves through lack of access to certain necessities like food, water, clothing, shelter, or medical care.

This could be abandoning someone in a public place, or leaving someone in their home with no access to the necessities which they need.

Signs Of Different Types Of Abuse

Now you know the different types of abuse, it is worth knowing the signs of these different types of abuse, so you are able to recognize them in yourself or in other people and then use this to get yourself, or the vulnerable person, the help which they need.

Signs Of Physical Abuse

The signs of physical abuse are often some of the more obvious signs, to list a few they could be; bruises, welts, black eyes, lacerations, or roper marks.

What Are Key Examples Of Abuse (1)

You could also notice broken bones, open wounds, punctures, cuts, or even injuries which have not been treated and have not healed properly.

You could find signs of broken or torn clothing, or something like glasses being broken. Of course, there are reports from the abuse of their physical abuse or a caregiver’s refusal to allow visitors.

Signs Of Sexual Abuse

The signs of sexual abuse could include, bruises in areas of sexual activity which show the use of force, venereal diseases, or genital infections which can not be explained.

There is also bleeding from areas like the vagina or anus, or torn and stained undergarments. There are also reports of being assaulted or raped.

Signs Of Mental And Emotional Abuse

The signs of mental abuse like this are often less obvious and easy to recognize, but definitely still present.

There could be an obvious level of being upset or agitated mentally. You can also recognize a lack of communication or not being responsive.

There could be symptoms of dementia or visible nervousness around different people. There are also reports of being mentally or emotionally abused.

Signs Of Neglect

Common signs of neglect are; dehydration or malnutrition, as well as bad hygiene, or bed sores. There is also obvious untreated health concerns or hazardous living condition. This could also be an unsanitary living condition or personal reports of being neglected.

Signs Of Self Neglect

The symptoms of self-neglect can often be similar to those of neglect, however, they are not identical.

For example, there could be the same signs of dehydration and malnutrition, as well as lack of hygiene and untreated medical conditions.

The main difference from neglect is the lack of an active abuser, and instead, the activity is being caused by oneself, instead of an outside force.

Signs Of Exploitation

The signs of exploitation include; sudden changes in personal finances and banking practices, sudden adding names to bank accounts, changes to financial documents like a will, withdrawals from an account without consent from the owner.

Unexplained losses of personal valuables. There is also bills not being paid, even if the funds have been transferred, forged signatures, and of course a self-report of being exploited.

Signs Of Abandonment

The signs of abandonment are some of the more obvious, these include; leaving someone in a vulnerable position like a public place, or leaving them somewhere where they should be safe like their home, but with no access to what is needed to live properly.

And of course, an individual report of abandonment.


With all of these types of abuse, it is worth keeping in mind, that not all of these signs and examples could necessarily be abuse, but some can, and learning to make this distinction is very important.

This can sometimes be hard, but going to someone you can trust like a professional or someone close to you, you are sure is not an abuser, and recounting your experiences, is a good way to help work out if you are abused or not.

Read More about Narcissist Abuse and Domestic Violence

Emergency Numbers

Rape Abuse and Incest National Network (RAINN) is the nation’s largest organization fighting sexual violence: (800) 656-HOPE / (800) 810-7440 (TTY)

988 Mental Health Emergency Hotline: Calling 988 will connect you to a crisis counselor regardless of where you are in the United States.

911 Emergency

The National Runaway Safeline: 800-RUNAWAY (800-786-2929)

Self Abuse Finally Ends (S.A.F.E)

American Academy of Child & Adolescent Psychiatry, Trauma & Child Abuse Resource Center

Domestic Violence Shelters & Resources

Futures Without Violence

National Center for Victims of Crime

National Coalition Against Domestic Violence

National Network to End Domestic Violence

National Sexual Violence Resource Center

Prevent Child Abuse America

Stalking Prevention, Awareness, and Resource Center (SPARC)

National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI) HelpLine: 1-800-950-NAMI, or text “HELPLINE” to 62640. Both services are available between 10 a.m. and 10 p.m. ET, Monday–Friday

National Domestic Violence Hotline: 1-800-799-7233

National Suicide Prevention Lifeline: 1-800-273-TALK (8255); www.suicidepreventionlifeline.orgOr, just dial 988

Suicide Prevention, Awareness, and Support: www.suicide.org

Crisis Text Line: Text REASON to 741741 (free, confidential and 24/7). In English and Spanish

Self-Harm Hotline: 1-800-DONT CUT (1-800-366-8288)

Family Violence Helpline: 1-800-996-6228

American Association of Poison Control Centers: 1-800-222-1222

National Council on Alcoholism & Drug Dependency: 1-800-622-2255

LGBTQ Hotline: 1-888-843-4564

National Maternal Mental Health Hotline: 1-833-TLC-MAMA (1-833-852-6262)

The Trevor Project: 1-866-488-7386 or text “START” to 678678. Standard text messaging rates apply. Available 24/7/365. (Provides crisis intervention and suicide prevention services to lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer & questioning—LGBTQ—young people under 25.)

The SAGE LGBT Elder Hotline connects LGBT older people and caretakers with friendly responders. 1-877-360-LGBT (5428)

The Trans Lifeline is staffed by transgender people for transgender people:
1-877-565-8860 (United States)
1-877-330-6366 (Canada)

Veterans Crisis Line: https://www.veteranscrisisline.net

International Suicide Prevention Directory: findahelpline.com

The StrongHearts Native Helpline is a confidential and anonymous culturally appropriate domestic violence and dating violence helpline for Native Americans, available every day from 7 a.m. to 10 p.m. CT. Call 1-844-762-8483.

‘Find a Therapist’ Online Directories


UK & Republic of Ireland

  • Emergency: 112 or 999
  • Hotline: +44 (0) 8457 90 90 90 (UK – local rate)
  • Hotline: +44 (0) 8457 90 91 92 (UK minicom)
  • Hotline: 1850 60 90 90 (ROI – local rate)
  • Hotline: 1850 60 90 91 (ROI minicom)
  • YourLifeCounts.org: https://yourlifecounts.org/find-help/

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *