The outside world may think of your relationship as a perfect one. However, abusers can be very sneaky about the way they present themselves to the public and to others. If you have wondered if your experiences count as abuse, you may be surprised that they are. Abusive Relationships are more common than you might think, but they are not always recognized. Especially not always by the victim or other people close to the situation. The abuser uses all sorts of tricks to keep the person being abused second guessing themselves, or the abuse. The following are four signs that you might be in an abusive relationships.
One big sign that you may be in an abusive relationship is if your partner attempts to minimize you. This means that he or she may humiliate you in public or in private or may attempt to make you feel small whenever possible. This is a way for them to try and take control. This type of abuse is emotional abuse, and it is something a trained therapist can help you identify and fight because it can be emotionally scarring. You may even believe the abuser and think things are really your fault. They also do this through Gaslighting, which is when someone by psychological means starts questioning their own sanity. If you speak up they may turn things around to try and make you feel like you’re crazy, over reacting, or pretend your experiences never happened. This is abuse.
An abusive partner can and may become violent with you from time to time. There are varying degrees of violence a person might experience, but do not mistake that one time he or she was violent as a one time thing. A violent partner will likely become violent again. While violence can end up with bruises, it can also be the threat of violence that is used to keep you in check. This can be punching walls, slamming doors, yelling at you and getting in your personal space. The treat that they could hurt you if they wanted you is part of the abuse even if they don’t actually lay a hand on you. Abusers will tell you it’s your fault for pushing them over the edge and blame you for their own outbursts and even for physical violence to your or your children.
There are doctors who can help you, especially now that you have access to smartphones where you can communicate through video calls. Just because someone else had it worse doesn’t minimize what’s happening to you. Considering 22 percent of women have been physically assaulted by a partner, it’s not normal. It’s an epidemic and you are not responsible for the actions, legal or not that they face for choosing to be violent to you. You don’t owe an abuser protection from the law. Give that bit of compassion to yourself and seek help.
Some abusers actually use money to control their partners, which can be quite devastating. These individuals will take away your access to money and ensure that any money that is given to you is used in a way that they approve. Sometimes, they might start controlling what you wear and how you wear things. They may try to isolate you from your parents, family, friends by controlling who you talk to and when. What you shop, where you eat, how much you spend. Regardless of who earned the money. This is another way to try and have control in a relationship that should be a partnership. They may withhold spending and debt from you and make you feel dependent on them for survival. This type of abuse is called financial abuse, and it could strip you of power, but you can fight back with an attorney that specializes on family law on your side.
Distorting The Truth
Some abusers use psychological violence against their victims. This type of abuse may make you feel like you are obligated to do things for your partner. For example, your partner may tell you that you have to do something for him or her to prove your love. Failing to comply makes you the bad seed in the relationship. Sometimes, psychological abuse takes the form of isolation since it helps the abuser keep you in the dark. There are support groups out there that can help you escape this relationship, and all you have to do is reach out. Tell someone you trust. If you have people rationalize the abuse or tell you to withstand it, disagree with them even if in your own mind. Talk to a therapist for clarity and create an exit strategy that can keep you safe.
These are just some of the signs that you can use to identify your abuser. You deserve better than this relationship, so take the time to consider some of these points.
By Kara Masterson
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