Financial, or economic, abuse is a form of domestic violence that is easily overlooked. This silent abuse can provide just as much power and control over a victim as physical or emotional abuse. It is important to be aware of the signs of financial abuse and how it progresses.
Financial abuse may start off with your partner suggesting joint banking accounts to make things easier on you, or to feel more unified as a couple and prepare for the future. With time, the abuser takes more and more control over your finances until you are financially dependent on him/her.
Your partner may:
- Prevent you from getting or keeping a job
- Require you to track and report all spending
- Take your paychecks or benefits
- Make you ask for money
- Give you an allowance or budget
- Not allow you to spend money on yourself, while he/she does
- Not inform you on the total family income or allow access to it
- Withhold payments to credit cards in your name
Financial abuse can leave you feeling powerless and is often intertwined with other forms of domestic violence. If you are a victim of financial abuse, contact Peace at Home’s Crisis Hotline at 479-442-9811 for help. We offer several different services and can refer you to local resources, as well.