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Woman getting help with abuse therapy.

Dr. Elizabeth MacGregor
Ed.D, LPC
drmacgregor@montvillecounseling.com

Theravive Counselor

GEORGE MACGREGOR
DCSW, MSW, LCSW, CAM-II
georgemacgregor@montvillecounseling.com

Most Insurances Accepted, including Medicare

Abuse Therapy for Abuser and Victims

The Nature of Abuse

Abuse occurs when someone mistreats another without showing any concern for their inherent worth as a living being. The abuser degrades their victim and deprives them of their fundamental rights. Abusers usually want to control their victims and manipulate them into submission to their will.

The Many Faces of Abuse

abused manAbusers have many methods to control their victims. They may be physically violent by slapping, throwing things or even attempting to drown or choke their victims.  Physical beating and battering may escalate to rape or other sexual assault.  Alternatively, the abuser may neglect dependent victims, ignoring their basic physical or emotional needs.

Abuse can take on many different forms and it helps to recognize the types of abuse so you can end the brutal cycle of violence and abuse. Here some of the ways abusers choose to inflict mistreatment on others:

  • Physical abuse
    The physical abuser cause physical pain or harm to the victim ― shoving (yes, shoving is physical abuse), hitting, kicking, slapping, punching, pulling hair are all forms of physical abuse ― as well as the lingering physical reminders ― bruises, broken bones, internal bleeding and often death. Neglect is the silent partner of physical abuse. Depriving a child of essential physical needs such as food and water puts them at risk for malnutrition, which leads to significant development and health problems. Maltreatment by denying them proper shelter exposes them to an unsafe environment.

  • Sexual Abuse
    The abuser is almost always male and is often a relative, baby sitter, teacher, organizational or religious leader, trusted friend of the family or sometimes even a parent. The long-term effects of sexual abuse are complex ― the adult who has been sexually abused as a child carries with them self-blame and shame from their past trauma. Many children of sexual abuse develop post-traumatic stress disorder from the battlefield of their childhood: flashbacks, nightmares, withdrawal, outbursts and physical symptoms such as sweating and a racing heartbeat. Other symptoms are self-hatred, anxiety, depression, compulsive sexual activity and losing one’s train of thought during conversations.

  • Emotional / Verbal Abuse
    Cutting words can be as harmful to a child’s or spouse’s psyche as physical abuse ― the invisible scar of emotional or verbal abuse is no less painful. The abuser may use harsh criticism, call their victim names, tell them they are stupid, will never amount to anything, deprive them of the fundamental needs of love and attention (emotional neglect), ignore or minimize their pain or ridicule their physical appearance or accomplishments. Using words to abuse is an attempt by the offender to control the other person. It’s sometimes difficult to identify verbal abuse, but the damage to the self-esteem is hard to miss.

  • Internet / School Bullying
    Children can bully their classmates without mercy over the internet. A large part of today’s social life for teens is online. This circumstance makes easy targets for abusers. Cyber bullying is so prevalent that there are now anti-bullying laws in effect to try to prevent and punish offenders. The level of bullying is so intense that it is a direct cause of some teen suicides. And children who are abused at home often cover their pain by bullying others. Kids need help in dealing with this serious issue and a therapist can give them the skills they need to handle the tremendous stress of this type of abuse.

  • Self-Abuse
    Cutting yourself, self-poisoning or doing some other physical harm to yourself is a way for you to cope with a painful past ― and you should seek help immediately. Abusive self-talk is another negative consequence of suffering from a tormented past. A trained counselor will help you find a healthier way to deal with your pain.

The Long-term Effects of Abuse
The long-term effects of child abuse show up in destructive ways in adulthood. Girls grow up being drawn to damaging relationships, often taking on a submissive role. Abused boys are likely to become adult offenders, molesting the next generation of children. Most abused children tend to repeat this grim pattern with their children. And those children repeat it with their children.

Abuse Services to Heal the Pain of Abusive Relationships
You can break the cycle. When seeking abuse services treatment for these issues, it’s important to choose a counselor who understands the traumatic and far-reaching effect that childhood abuse can have on your life. Montville Counseling Center provides a safe environment to explore these issues and guide you through the healing process. Montville Counseling Center is a court-approved provider of domestic violence counseling for victims and perpetrators of violence. If you or someone you know has been instructed by the courts to have qualifying domestic violence or anger management counseling, please contact us to schedule an appointment.

abused womanMontville Counseling Center is a court-approved provider of domestic violence counseling for victims and perpetrators of violence. If you or someone you know has been instructed by the courts to have qualifying domestic violence or anger management counseling, please contact us to schedule an appointment.

Montville Counseling Center also participates with Employee Assistance Program (EAP) for counseling for abuse and anger management. An EAP is a benefit offered by some employers to their employees and their family members to help resolve personal issues with professional and confidential counseling services. Check to see if you are covered by your employer with this benefit.