New Category of Abuse

Spiritual Abuse
Belittling a person’s spiritual beliefs or preventing them from attending the church, synagogue or temple of their choice

Intellectual Abuse
Disrespect for another’s learning style, way of thinking or intellectual interests. This can involve ridiculing a child’s carefully thought out ideas or devaluing a person’s opinions. Calling a child ‘stupid’ or ‘slow’ is another form of intellectual abuse.

This kind of abuse is rampant and so ingrained, most do not notice it. Calling a computer expert a nerd is a good example. Ridiculing a person who likes chess instead of football is another.

Social Abuse

Social abuse is a new term and is generally defined as follows:

1) The coercion of an individual in a public setting or

2) The collective abuse by a group of people toward an individual. One person can often manipulate a group to control another individual as at school. Social abuse uses the power of the group to embarrass and to intimidate.

For example, under the meaning of the first definition, teenagers can be made to feel embarrassed in front of their classmates or made to feel self conscious about the way they dress. Under the meaning of the second definition, people at a family gathering might make fun of a new girlfriend.


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