Domestic violence is a silent epidemic. According to thehotline.org, 1 in 4 women (24.3%) and 1 in 7 men (13.8%) aged 18 and older in the US have been the victim of severe physical violence by an intimate partner in their lifetime. Domestic violence doesn’t discriminate and knows no boundaries or borders. In fact, people of any background can be a victim or guilty of domestic violence. Domestic violence includes behaviors that physically harm, manipulate, intimidate or control a partner. This can happen through many different ways including financial control, threats, physical violence and emotional abuse. While you may think it would be obvious, sometimes it is hard to realize or know if you’re in an abusive relationship. Learn the signs of domestic violence so that you can get help for yourself or a loved one.
How-to Know if You’re in an Abusive Relationship: Learn the Signs
Thoughts and Feelings
Consider how your relationship makes you think or feel to know if you’re in an abusive relationship. For example, if you feel like you always have to walk on eggshells around your partner, chances are your relationship is unhealthy and abusive. Other signs include a partner who belittles you or tries to control you, and feelings of self-loathing, helplessness, and desperation. Take a deep look at how you feel. Do you often feel afraid of your partner or avoid certain topics out of fear of angering your partner? Do you feel that you can’t do anything right for your partner? In addition, if your relationship makes you feel that you deserve to be hurt or mistreated, or wonder if you’re crazy, you may be in an abusive relationship. Feelings of being emotionally numb or helpless is not normal in a healthy relationship.
Your Partner’s Actions
Does your partner belittle you or blame you for his or her own abusive behavior? Paying attention to how your partner treats you or behaves is a good way to know if you’re in an abusive relationship. In fact, partners are supposed to be supportive and loving, not criticize you and put you down. Know that it is not normal if your partner is overly jealous or possessive, and controls everything you do. In the same way, it’s a warning sign if they control who you see, keeping you from family and friends.
If you or someone you know is in an abusive relationship, get help now. Know you are not alone. Thehotline.org is an excellent place to start. While it may not seem like it now, there is light at the end of the tunnel. Although it will take time, you will be able to heal from a bad relationship.