Abuse in Pregnancy

Updated November 2nd, 2023

Abuse can happen any time, but it often starts or gets worse during pregnancy. Abuse can be physical, emotional, sexual, verbal, social, financial and digital. Abuse is when the abuser asserts power and control over the other partner. Violence is found in same-sex, transgender and heterosexual partnerships.

If this sounds like something that is happening to you or someone you know, it’s important to get help now before the abuse gets worse. There are many resources in to help.

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poster in Cree  

Kisáspin kíkimákan ki wá wanitóták wéká kiwí nótinitowák anikik kícisának ómá mékwá ká pimipanik ákosiwin COVID-19 takon ité kékí osci wícihikawiyék ékwéniw osci (Cree PDF)

Kiishpin kiwaahkaahikanink naanta kitipencikewinink miikaanikooyan mekwaac COVID-19 (Kici macaahpinewin) kaa ayaak, kikakii wiicihikoo (oji-cree)

poster in Ojibwe
Giishpin naniizaanak endaawin gemaa ge-miigaazhiweng megwaa owe COVID-19 aakoziwin ayag, gidaa-wiiji’igoo
(Ojibwe PDF)
poster in Arabic  

واعلمي أن سبل العون مهيَّأة إذا كنت تواجه أو تواجهين عنفًا في المنزل أو الأسرة أثناء جائحة كوفيد- 19 فاعلم 
(Arabic PDF)

poster in Low German  

Wann Du enn disse COVID-19 Pandemietiet Die nich meea Tus sejcha feehlst, wiels Du Famieljejefoah ooda Jewault bie Die Tus utstohne mottst, dann ess hieamett Help jebode 
(Low German PDF)

poster in Mandarin  

如果您在新冠肺炎(COVID-19)疫情期间遭遇家庭暴力, 您可以通过以下方式寻求帮助 
(Mandarin PDF)

poster in Punjabi  

ਜ COVID-19 ਮਹਾਮਂ ਾਰੀ ਦ ਦਰੌ ਾਨ ਤਸੁ ੀਂ ਘਰਲੇ ੂ ਜਾ ਂ ਪਰਿ ਵਾਰਕ ਹਿ ਸੰ ਾ ਦਾ ਸਾਹਮਣਾ ਕਰ ਰਹ ਹ,ੋ ਤਾ ਸਹਾਇਤਾ ਉਪਲਬਧ ਹ
(Punjabi PDF)

poster in Spanish  

Si está sufriendo violencia doméstica o familiar durante la pandemia del COVID-19, hay ayuda disponible 
(Spanish PDF)

poster in Tagalog  

Kung nakaranas kayo ng karahasan sa tahanan o karahasan sa pamilya
habang may COVID-19 na pandemic, may makukuha kayong tulong

(Tagalog PDF)


Types of abuse:

Physical abuse is when someone:

  • hits you
  • holds or restrains you
  • uses a weapon or other objects to threaten or hurt you
  • takes away your assistive devices for a disability such as your guide dog or a cane
  • denies you access to a health care provider such as a doctor, nurse practitioner, midwife, or dentist

Psychological or emotional abuse is when someone:

  • makes it hard for you to see your friends and/or family
  • blames you for the abuse
  • questions everything you do
  • controls how you spend your time
  • threatens to hurt a person or animal you care for
  • scares and threatens you

Verbal abuse is when someone:

  • calls you names or puts you down
  • makes fun of you in the presence of others
  • will not talk to you (giving the silent treatment)
  • yells and calls you names

Sexual abuse is when someone:

  • forces you to continue the pregnancy or have an abortion
  • demands sex or gets angry if you don’t want sex
  • infects you with a sexually transmitted infection

Note: even if you are married or engaged, a partner cannot force you to have sex

 Spiritual abuse is when someone:

  • belittles you about your spiritual beliefs
  • does not allow you to attend your place of worship
  • forces you to participate in religious activities or organizations

Financial abuse is when someone:

  • limits your access to your family finances
  • spends all the family money

Digital abuse is when someone:

  • stalks you on the internet
  • constantly texts you to know what you are doing
  • tracks your phone and your phone calls
  • emails or texts you inappropriate pictures
  • verbally or emotionally abuses you online (through social media)

If you are being abused you may:

  • feel sad and alone
  • feel scared
  • suffer pain and injuries
  • lose your baby (miscarry)
  • blame yourself
  • feel bad about yourself
  • turn to drugs, alcohol or food to cope
  • develop depression, anxiety, posttraumatic stress disorder
  • suffer from sleep disorders, eating disorders, panic disorders, substance dependence, antisocial personality disorders, psychosis.

If you are being abused, your baby:

  • may be born prematurely;
  • may be underweight;
  • may have health problems.

After birth, your baby may experience violence or see violent acts. Abuse can harm your baby’s emotional well-being and health. Once abuse starts it usually gets worse. You may feel like you have to “walk on eggshells” in order to keep the peace and stay safe.


Manitoba Government, Status of Women