How Can You tell If You Are in an Abusive Relationship?

Are you walking on eggshells when your partner or spouse is  home, living in fear of the next outburst?

If the answer is yes, you are most likely in an abusive relationship.

Often many victims of abuse shrug off the characteristics of an abusive relationship by saying “that’s just the way he or she is.” One woman told me she would have left him in a minute if he ever hit her, but he hit her with words, and that hurt just as much as if he slapped her. Still she stayed because he “only” abused her with words. She didn’t realize she was a victim of abuse.

What are the characteristics of an abusive relationship?

1.Physical. This, of course, is the worst. All of the following are examples: Hitting, pushing, shoving, pinching, kicking, slapping, and rape.

2.Psychological – Mind Games – Name Calling: Insults, put-downs, criticism, sarcasm, ignoring, the silent treatment, humiliation, and harassment. They hit you with words…or silence. Remember that old childhood saying: “Sticks and stones will break my bones, but names will never harm me? In an abusive situation, they may constantly calls you names…and they do hurt! You’re so stupid! You’re so ugly! You’re such an idiot! That definitely hurts, and they don’t ever stop calling you names. Well, you’re not stupid. You’re not ugly. And you’re definitely not an idiot. You’re just a victim. And it’s time to leave that person, because they don’t appreciate you and your good qualities and they probably never will.

3.Jealous. They gets upset if you as much as talk to another guy/girl. They wants to know where you are every minute of the day…and is still not satisfied with your answers.

4.Threats. They tells you if you leave them, they may kill or harm you or the children or take the children away from you, or whatever it takes to control you. You fear they will carry out those threats.

5.Breaking Objects. Breaking things, pounding on tables or walls, throwing objects around or near the victim. This behavior terrorizes the victim and sends the message that physical abuse is the next step.

6.Past history of abuse. Abusers don’t change. They just get worse. Before you get involved with someone, meet their family, their friends, and find out what they are like tal to their former wife/husband/whoever. While you’re at it, take a good look at their family. These are his role models.

7.Controlling and Critical, as well as manipulative. It’s his way or the highway. Do they ignores your wishes. You find it’s easier to give in to their demands than fight them.

8.Hypersensitive. You walk on eggshells because you are afraid that anything you say will set them off. They blame you for everything that goes wrong.

9. Emotional Blackmail. They threaten to end the relationship if you don’t give them what they wants, or rejects you if you don’t give in to their demands.

10. Financial Abuse. They won’t contribute, or is perfectly able to work, but relies on you to bring home the bacon. If you want something new for the house, they makes you take it out of your paycheck to pay for it.

11. Sexual Abuse. Forcing you to have sex, whether you’re in the mood or not, or making you perform acts you don’t like.

12. Isolates you from family and friends. In order to gain complete control, they work on isolating you from your family and friends. They never wants to go with you to family events or from getting together with friends, and discourages you from going alone, as well.

13. Makes you quit your job. This creates complete dependence on them. However, if you keep your job, they will be sure to let you know his work is more important than yours.

14. Wild mood swings. Therefore you walk on eggshells. The abuser is like a bomb. You never know when it’s going to explode.

Then they promises, “It won’t happen again” and blames you for what happened…no matter what happened.

15. Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde. They all like them in the office. They think they are a real nice girl/guy but behind closed doors, at home, they are an abuser. A victim of abuse makes excuses for the way they acts at home.

How many of these characteristics fit your relationship?

Marilyn Frazer

Author of “The Relationship Trap”

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