Continued:
signs of a mentally abusive relationship

Part 1, Part 2, Part 3

What about you, your family and friends?
What do others think of your bad relationship?

Here are some further questions to help you judge whether or not you're in an abusive relationship.

Do you make choices based on what he/she might think, rather than what you would want?

Are you increasingly pre-occupied with avoiding the next 'onslaught'?

Do you frequently question yourself, worrying that you are the problem?

When your partner calls or walks up the path, do you feel 'edgy' or scared?

Have family and friends expressed concerns about your well-being in this relationship?

Have you found yourself defending him despite all of this - even when you were battered and bruised?

Have you stopped seeing your family or friends because they are so negative about your partner

Have you stopped contacting them because you suspect they can see all the signs of your 'bad' relationship, and you don't want them to question you about it?

Can you change him? Is there hope?

I so want you to understand that your partner is never going to behave any differently! Most of the signs I have mentioned aren't just those of a bad relationship - no, they are signs of an abusive relationship.

Yes, they're likely to promise that it won't ever happen again, they really won't do it again, this was truly the last time, etc. 

However, it is going to happen again! In any case - you shouldn't be waiting to see if it does.

No matter how hard you try to be the person he or she wants you to be, it's not going to get better. No matter how much you try to change them (if you even dare) or change yourself to prevent the next outburst, the situation is most likely to worsen over time.

Watch this video to help you strengthen your resolve:

It's not your fault

I know it can be a huge shock when you're confronted with all this stuff.

I can almost feel you crumpling up in a ball, too tired, beaten down (perhaps even literally) and low to take any action at all. Perhaps you've already experienced all of this before, in previous close couple relationships and/or in your childhood, though this by no means needs to be the case.

It can feel like you're 'broken' and that there's nothing left in you - your self-esteem and confidence are probably non-existent.

But, at the same time, perhaps it's a relief - you know you're not alone and you are not the only one this is happening to. Far from it!

I just want you to know that it is not your fault. You did not cause this man (or woman) to be abusive, aggressive or violent. Sure, you played a role in it all, just like each one of us does in all of our relationships/lives, but you did not deserve this and at any time you made the best decisions you knew how with the knowledge, awareness and understanding you had at any particular time. Al that whilst you live(d) in fear of 'being found out' - for even daring to breath it seems - even when the perpetrator is nowhere to be seen.

However, you know now the most important Signs of an Abusive Relationship and how an abusive man (or woman) behaves. All of this is regardless of age (though young women are most at risk), religion, nationality, level of education and income - it happens everywhere!

If it's happening to you, it is time to get help to get out. See below for a list of organisations that offer help.

Part 1Part 2, Part 3

Where to get help

For men and women

US and Canada - Domestic Abuse Helpline

For women

US - The National Domestic Violence Hotline
UK - Women's Aid
Australia - 1800respect

For men

Australia - One in Three Campaign
UK - ManKind Initiative

Also:

Learn how to delete your browser history (clearing evidence of having visited these pages)

Other interesting links

ScienceDaily.com - Report recommends way to break the cycle of domestic violence

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