Acknowledging that you or someone you know is involved in an abusive relationship can be difficult. Whether it is denial, embarrassment, or feeling overwhelmed because you wouldn’t know what to do, the signs are often ignored or rationalized.
This list is to help identify whether a relationship is likely to become or already is abusive. Abuse generally begins in subtle ways then typically escalates to more (physically) destructive behaviors.
Does your partner (male or female)….
~call you names?
~embarrass/criticize you in front of other people?
~put you down or make fun of you and then say he was “just kidding”?
~keep you from seeing or talking to family members or friends?
~tell you that your friends/family are jealous of your relationship and that’s why they don’t like him?
~try to control where you go?
~give you permission to do things?
~make you feel like you have to walk on eggshells?
~become very jealous/possessive and justify it because he loves you so much?
~say he can’t live without you?
~blame you or others for his negative behavior?
~threaten to hurt himself or you if you end the relationship?
~threaten to take the children if you end the relationship?
~hit, push, or restrain you?
~break or throw things?
~make you ask for money?
~make you feel guilty if you don’t want to have sex?
~push you to participate in sexual acts that are demeaning or uncomfortable to you?
~threaten to have an affair?
This list includes obvious examples of abuse, but some others are easy to excuse away. If you experience any of these behaviors within your relationship, it is not your fault. Please consider talking to someone.
I use “he” since the majority of domestic abuse is committed by males. However, women can and do abuse their partners (male or female) as well. The emotional impact is the same.