Questioning abuse: Why it could be more prevalent in your life than you might think Written by Brendan Mooney Psychologist
When the topic of abuse is discussed, we tend to consider physical violence or verbal abuse of some kind.
Throughout human history it seems there has always been abuse. Given our history, have we accepted that abuse is just a normal part of society, and therefore will always exist?
What if this is a convenient belief so that we do not have to challenge the status quo, in other words, how the majority live?
In other words, what if a ‘normal human life’ is actually abusive?
Is it possible that most people live predominantly from ideals and beliefs adopted from their upbringing and society? And because living this way does not create the obvious forms of abuse and suffering we accept that this must be a true way to live. But what if it isn’t?
We have plenty of examples demonstrating that the status quo does not make sense. For example, the status quo says:
It is ok to drink poison (alcohol) as long as you do it in moderation
It is ok to accept abuse within society where it does not affect you personally
It is ok to tell a young boy he should ‘harden up’ or ‘swallow some concrete’ and in fact it is considered by some as ‘character building’
It is ok to look after your family exclusively, even though we are all part of one humanity
Whilst we absolutely need to address the obvious abuses within society, perhaps we ought to consider that the status quo may actually create the bedrock for these abuses to exist in the first place. This does not mean that those responsible for abuses are not to be held accountable for their actions, for they most definitely are, but we need to consider that there are many other more subtle forms of abuse occurring within society that contribute to the overall tension.
If we are really committed to addressing these forms of abuse let’s review what we consider a ‘normal human life’ to be.
For if this ‘normal' life really works:
Why are we the only species on the planet with high rates of self-abuse? And why is it so hard not to self-abuse (e.g. with food) in any way, when what we are abusing is our own body that we live in 24/7?
What if we redefined what we call abuse? In other words:
What if we considered anything less than love abusive?
What if holding back expressing how much you love someone is a form of abuse? Or staying in a job longer than you feel to because it scares you to move on? Or eating food that you know does not support your body?
There are many more examples that contribute to the whole of society lacking in love and truth.
If we considered anything less than love abusive, our entire approach to what we accept living as human beings would change, for we would no longer settle for the comfort of a life that is merely void of the obvious abuses.
More will be written in an upcoming series of articles on this topic. If you would like to read more be sure to subscribe to receive email updates.
BIOGRAPHY Psychologist Brendan Mooney works with adults, adolescents and children. With a genuine interest in people's well-being, Brendan brings a warmth, practicality and an equality that supports clients to truly address underlying issues and blockages that are preventing them from moving forward.