Abusive relationship is a pattern of rude and coercive behaviors used to maintain power and control over a former or current intimate partner. Abuse can be emotional, financial, sexual or physical and can include threats, isolation, and intimidation. Abuse tends to escalate over time. It’s common for someone who is being abused to believe that it’s their fault and that they somehow deserve the abuse. If your partner is abusing you, you may feel confused, afraid, angry and/or trapped. All of these emotions are normal responses to abuse. You may also blame yourself for what is happening. But no matter what others might say, you are never responsible for your partner’s abusive actions. Relationship abuse is always a decision that a perpetrator makes to harm their partner. It’s important to know that you are never to blame for the way an abusive person treats you.
Key signs of an abusive relationship
An abusive relationship isn’t just limited to physical violence. It can include sexual, emotional and physical abuse, and may involve control of your finances. However, here are some signs to look out for:
1. Controlling and possessive behavior
They check on you all the time to see where you are, what you are doing and who you are with. They try to control where you go and who you see, and get angry if you don’t do what they say.
2. Being unreasonably jealous
They accuse you of being unfaithful or of flirting and will always want to isolate you from family and friends by behaving rudely to them.
3. Public embarrassments
They humiliate you either publicly or privately by attacking your intelligence, looks, mental health or capabilities as well as constantly comparing you unfavorably to others. Hence, they blame you for all the problems in the relationship, and for their violent outbursts. They also say things like, “No one else will want you”.
They yell or sulk, and deliberately break things that you value. They threaten to use violence against you, your family or a pet.
5. Physical and sexual violence
They push, shove, hit or grab you. They force or trick you into having sex or doing things you don’t want to do. Hence, they harm you, your pets or your family members.
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