Gender Violence

Gender Violence, Types & Its Characteristics

Gender violence is a vitally important issue that concerns us all equally. It is a problem that continues to seriously affect a part of the population and that is still deeply rooted in our society.

It starts from the most normalized behaviors, such as a joke or a mockery, but its consequences can be fatal, even lethal. In the USA, for example, 49 people died in 2017 due to gender violence and in Mexico, seven women are murdered every day due to the same circumstances.

It is very important to learn to detect it in time, whether you are suffering from it yourself or if you think that someone around you may suffer from it. To do this, in this Psychologyorg article, we will show you the different Types of Gender Violence and its Characteristics.

What is Gender Violence?

We can define gender violence, also called sexist violence, as any act that attacks women for the mere fact of being so. This type of abuse threatens the well-being of the victim, her freedom, and her dignity. It can occur in different life spaces, for example at work, at home (domestic violence), in a public area, and even on social networks.

Sometimes it is very difficult to tell when we are being abused because we don’t know how bad it is. To do this, we can use some very simple premises: if it makes you feel bad, if you feel attacked, if you are afraid, or if you have suffered aggression directly, it is gender violence.

Causes of gender violence

Sometimes we tend to wonder why it happens to us, and what we have done to suffer abuse or mistreatment. The reality is that the causes of gender violence have social roots and stem from inequality between men and women. These inequalities are strengthened and maintained due to stereotypes and gender roles, which place women below men in all (or almost all) aspects of their lives.

The person who attacks often does so to maintain power and dominate the other. The aggressors usually have problems of insecurity, and low self-esteem and have received an education in which certain types of gender violence are normalized.

In relationships with a couple, for example, it usually happens in a subtle way at first, controlling who you talk to and how you dress, up to insults, shouting, and, finally, physical violence.

Gender Violence

Types of Gender Violence and its Characteristics

1. Physical Gender Violence

Probably the most recognized type of Gender Violence, this involves the use of the body or other objects that can cause damage to the victim’s body. We distinguish aggressions such as punches, shoves, slaps, or scratches towards the woman. This type of violence can leave visible marks that, on occasions, victims of gender violence cover up or lie about their origin for fear of possible reprisals.

2. Psychological Gender Violence

This type of abuse is more common than we can imagine. They are acts that cause emotional and psychological damage to the victim, they usually have sequelae such as anxiety, depression, and very low self-esteem. We talk about acts such as insults, mockery, shouting, and threats.

Psychological abuse is very dangerous and completely nullifies the woman, making her live in fear and feel alone, and hopeless and believe that no one can help her.

3. Sexual violence

This type of violence covers all those acts of a sexual tone that do not imply the consent of the victim, or that if she has agreed it is because she has received threats and intimidation. The most obvious type of sexual violence is rape. Normally, we talk about abuse outside the couple, but sometimes sexual violence can occur within it.

4. Economic/Property Violence

We speak of economic violence when we encounter barriers, imposed by the abuser, in order to access our money or our resources to achieve it. That they coerce us not to work and stay at home or that our credit cards are controlled are very clear examples of economic violence.

5. Symbolic violence

In some countries, symbolic violence has been recognized as another type of gender violence. We use this term to talk about all acts that indirectly contribute to keeping women in a position of inferiority in society. An example that helps us to see this type of gender violence is the imposition of beauty canons that we must follow. This can sometimes cause discomfort and very serious psychological sequelae.

6. Social violence

We understand social violence when the aggressor humiliates, attacks, and exposes the victim in a public sphere. We also consider social violence to isolate the victim from her friends and family since, in this way, she distances herself from her usual environment. It is strongly related to psychological gender violence since it also causes serious consequences for the mental health of women.

7. Obstetric Violence

This type of gender violence occurs in hospitals and other health institutions. It occurs when doctors or health personnel point out as pathological or bad some natural processes of our body. By labeling them as bad, they proceed to make painful and unnecessary interventions on our bodies. It is usually during pregnancy and we find examples such as.

  • Do a caesarean section without medical justification
  • Unnecessary use of forceps
  • Criticism of the state of the pregnant woman
  • Denying you information about your state of health
  • Accelerating delivery without the consent of the pregnant woman

8. Vicarious Violence

A third factor intervenes in this type of gender violence: children.

Vicarious violence consists of using children to harm their mothers, either through threats, insults to them, or even physical aggression. The aggressors seek to control and dominate the woman so that she does not separate from them, or does not report her actions, through fear that something bad will happen to their children.

Gender Violence

You are not to blame

Finally, comment that if you are suffering from gender violence, do not feel guilty about it. You have not done anything to deserve it and if you must act in time it is to be able to get out of this situation as soon as possible. The accountability fibs with the offender and not yours.

Seek help, tell your situation to other people so that they can help you in everything you need and if you see it as appropriate, report the person who is exercising gender violence. You are not alone.


In conclusion, gender violence, often referred to as gender-based violence (GBV), is a pervasive issue that transcends borders and cultures, impacting individuals of all genders. This multifaceted problem encompasses various types of violence, including physical, sexual, psychological, and economic abuse, each characterized by its distinct traits.

Understanding the causes of GBV is crucial in combating this problem effectively. Rooted in gender inequality, power imbalances, and societal norms that perpetuate discrimination, GBV can only be addressed through comprehensive efforts that challenge these deeply ingrained beliefs.

The four primary types of violence associated with GBV – physical, sexual, psychological, and economic – collectively paint a disturbing picture of the harm inflicted upon victims. Physical violence involves bodily harm, sexual violence encompasses acts of rape and harassment, psychological abuse targets emotions and self-esteem, and economic violence seeks to control through financial means.

Read Also: What to do when your partner likes someone else? Psychologyorg


What is the meaning of gender violence?

Gender violence, often referred to as gender-based violence (GBV), is a broad term encompassing any harmful act or behavior that is directed toward an individual or a group based on their gender or that disproportionately affects individuals of a particular gender. It can manifest in various forms, including physical, sexual, psychological, or economic abuse, and can occur in both public and private spheres.

What is the main cause of gender violence?

The reasons for gender-based violence are complicated and varied. They can include deeply rooted societal norms and beliefs that perpetuate gender inequality, power imbalances, and discrimination. Factors such as cultural practices, economic disparities, and lack of education also contribute to the perpetuation of gender violence.

What are the 4 types of violence?

The four main types of violence often associated with gender-based violence are:
Physical Violence: Involves the use of physical force to harm or control another person.
Sexual Violence: Includes acts such as rape, sexual assault, and harassment.
Psychological or Emotional Violence: Involves tactics to control, intimidate, or manipulate through emotional abuse, threats, or isolation.
Economic Violence: This occurs when an individual’s financial resources or economic independence are used to maintain power and control within a relationship.

What is the most common form of gender violence?

The most common form of gender-based violence can vary by region and context, but it often includes psychological or emotional abuse, followed by physical and sexual violence.

How can we stop GBV?

Stopping gender-based violence requires a multi-pronged approach, including:
Elevating gender equivalency and difficult unhealthy gender standards.
Enforcing laws and policies that protect victims and hold perpetrators accountable.
Providing support services for survivors, including counseling and shelters.
Educating communities about the consequences of GBV.
Engaging men and boys in efforts to prevent violence and promote healthy relationships.

What are the 7 effects of gender-based violence?

The effects of GBV can be profound and include:
Physical injuries
Psychological trauma
Social isolation
Economic hardship
Increased risk of sexually transmitted infections (STIs)
Unwanted pregnancies
Long-term emotional and mental health issues

What are the effects of violence?

GBV is a global issue with the following facts:
It affects people of all genders but disproportionately impacts women and girls.
It occurs in various settings, including homes, workplaces, and communities.
It has intense biological, emotional, and social significance.
Many cases go unreported due to fear, stigma, and lack of support.

How does GBV affect men?

While gender-based violence predominantly affects women and girls, it can also impact men, particularly in cases of same-sex intimate partner violence. Men can experience physical and psychological abuse. It’s important to recognize that all forms of GBV are harmful, regardless of the gender of the victim.

If you want to read more articles similar to Types of gender violence, its definition, and its characteristics, we recommend that you enter our RELATIONSHIPS category.

Share This Post:

Similar Posts


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *