In this new article, you’ll find out how to tell if you’re in an emotionally abusive relationship.
It should be emphasised that identifying whether or not you are in an abusive relationship is not at all times a straightforward process. This is particularly true if you are right in the middle of an unhappy relationship where the lines between abuse and other sources of your unhappiness are blurred at every turn.
Dealing with the truth of an unhappy relationship is commonly a source of serious confusion, even if at times it may feel as although you are to blame.
How to recognize an abusive relationship:
When you try to blame yourself for your partner’s abusive actions, you are clearly already in an abusive relationship and most likely knew it, but there are various more signs you can look for to help you determine precisely what constitutes an abusive relationship.
You should not blame yourself for somebody else’s impolite behavior. No matter what you may or may not do, and no matter how bad the relationship gets, there’s never any justification for one person to abuse another, in any way.
What precisely is abuse and more particularly, what precisely is an abusive relationship?
Because people differ in so many ways, one person’s perception of harassment may differ barely from another’s, so the finer details of defining harassment will finally be up to you as an individual.
But on a broader scale, abuse is when you’re deliberately made to experience bad treatment—when your partner deliberately treats you badly in one or several alternative ways, including physical, sexual, or even emotional abuse.
Some examples of abuse in diverse guises can include experiencing your partner’s deliberate attempts to try and control your behavior, threatening you with violence, hurling insults at you, publicly humiliating you, making you feel scared, being overly jealous, and even belittling. you in any way.
Harassment doesn’t at all times only include ill-treatment directed at you and can even involve your partner threatening the one you love with violence, or threatening your property with the malicious intention of causing physical harm.
Your partner may even be financially abusing you, through something like purposely withholding your pre-approved access to the funds you need for your basic livelihood. If a child is involved, the abuse may even take the form of your partner trying to turn the child against you.
In short, any experience of intentional ill-treatment from your partner constitutes abuse and you’ll typically know you are being abused if you’re made to feel extremely uncomfortable physically or emotionally.
It’s important to be capable to tell the difference between fighting lovers and an abusive relationship. As with any healthy relationship, you’ll fight (nothing physically has to be done) and you’ll argue.
Sometimes you may even have heated and passionate arguments, but knowing where the line between bickering/fighting and abuse is hinges on your ability to identify the key signs of an abusive relationship. The main signs of an abusive relationship can be essentially grouped into five categories, including:
- Physical Violence & Sexual Harassment
- Excessive and Unreasonable Jealousy
1. Physical Violence & Sexual Harassment
Perhaps the most easily identifiable form of harassment is physical abuse, but this doesn’t mean that it’s the only form of abuse that exists or is, in fact, the worst form of harassment. Any form of abuse can make your life hell for you as a victim, but physical abuse makes you physically sick and uncomfortable.
Extreme cases of physical abuse in a relationship where your partner beats or hurts you, but if your partner pushes, grabs, shoves, or even hurts your members of the family and pets, that’s also physical abuse.
Similarly, sexual assault as a form of physical violence is not only an extreme case like relationship rape, but if your partner forces you to have sex or perform sexual acts that you do not want to, that’s also a form of sexual harassment.
If you end up experiencing great physical pain or discomfort as a result of your partner’s intentional actions, you may consider yourself to be in a physically abusive relationship.
While physical abuse in a relationship is the most visible of the signs of abuse, emotional abuse in its diverse forms can be just as upsetting if not more damaging to your well-being.
If you are continuously forced to live your life in fear of what your partner threatens you with, think of yourself as the victim of some form of emotional abuse. If your partner threatens you with violence, threatens your loved ones with violence, yells at you and threatens to deliberately destroy some of your valuables, this is a form of emotional abuse.
If someone claims to love someone else, or at least claims to care about someone else, the last thing she or he wants to do is deliberately instill fear of any kind in that other person.
If your partner really loves or cares about you, you’ll really be made to feel safe in any way possible. It is important that you understand this because the worst threats can easily escalate into actual threatening actions, often with dire consequences.
It’s not at all good to live in fear (1) of some danger that befell you if your partner went all out the next time and truly carried out the threat. You do not want to find yourself physically harmed in such a way that the damage is permanent, or even fatal, to you, your loved ones, or even your property or livelihood.
Sadly, being subjected to threats is probably the most tolerated forms of emotional abuse that people endure and continuously relinquish. They are misled by the fallacy that because their partner has not committed the abusive act they threatened, this threat doesn’t in itself constitute abuse.
Don’t take your partner’s threats lightly. Being threatened is a form of abuse in a relationship and it’s reason enough to want to get out of an abusive relationship.
Threats are also part of your partner’s attempts to control you and, while every relationship inevitably comes with sacrifices and compromises, those sacrifices and compromises must be made of your own free will.
When you need to be threatened with violence or some other form of abusive behavior to behave a certain way, that just establishes one more reason why you should move on from a relationship that’s clearly not right for you.
Being belittled is another form of emotional (and verbal) abuse and it involves your partner’s deliberate attempts to make you feel bad about yourself. This could include direct insults hurled at you or it could take the form of your partner deliberately putting you down in private or in public.
Remember that it’s fully up to you, and it’s your tolerance for your partner’s insults that finally determines whether or not you interpret it as abuse.
Room for constructive criticism and honesty should at all times be made in any relationship, but there’s a difference between your partner teasing you a little and insulting your intelligence, abilities, looks, or mental well-being.
If you find that your opinion of yourself is being eroded by your partner’s actions, allow yourself to acknowledge the proven fact that you were the victim of emotional and verbal abuse in a belittling form. This belittling can even take the form of your partner making you feel as although you aren’t any match for some other person who you are continuously compared to, often very nasty and unfair.
It is while enduring humiliation from their partner, when many victims of abusive relationships find ways to blame themselves for the abuse, with the self-blame fueled by the partner also blaming them.
The abuser often blames you for all the problems you both have in the relationship and doesn’t accept any responsibility. Remember that you’re not to blame for your partner’s abusive behavior and harassment can never be justified in any way.
Make sure you understand that if your partner claims to be capable of doing far better than you, then she or he should move on and leave the relationship to pursue greener pastures that you do not seem to suit. You have the very same right to your freedom and you should not let yourself believe that belittling is just a harmless form of abuse in a relationship.
While every caring or loving partner naturally wants to feel as if their feelings of affection are reciprocated, you do not want to feel as if someone else owns you.
Possessiveness is another common sign of being in an abusive relationship, with the abuse being physically carried through by your partner actively trying to control who you interact with and where you go. In particular, they get angry when you disobey their controlling demands.
A good relationship should never feel like a jail sentence by any means and you can easily identify possessiveness as a form of abuse in a relationship through your partner’s attempts to over-examine you to see precisely where you are, who you are with and What are you doing.
In this case it can be very difficult to tell the difference between genuine concern and possessiveness. When you are not sure whether your partner’s efforts are really out of concern or whether it is a sign of possessiveness (2), simply evaluate how much freedom you feel in the situation.
Are your movements restricted in any way, even for fear of upsetting your partner? Do you continuously feel restless or agitated, knowing that the phone will ring at any second, with several direct questions with regard to your whereabouts and associated reasons?
If the answer is “yes”, then you need to take a closer look at the likelihood of being a victim of an abusive relationship, with indications of possessiveness.
5. Excessive and Unreasonable Jealousy
Excessive and unnatural jealousy is closely related to possessiveness as a sign of being in an abusive relationship. In fact, most extreme and unreasonable jealousy as part of an abusive relationship stems from possessiveness, where your partner has a feeling of entitlement over you.
If your partner tries to isolate you from family and friends and wants you to himself, all the time, the relationship quickly goes from “in love” to “possessive and jealous.”
The harassment factor kicks in when you start to feel as although you are being restricted or prevented from seeing your family and friends, even if just to avoid a confrontational conflict. You should naturally avoid acting to cause jealousy in your partner, but when you’re accused of things like infidelity or flirting for no good reason, it’s nothing but jealousy that’s part of an emotionally abusive relationship.
Listen to your instincts
The common signs of an abusive relationship described above serve as a tool that can be used to determine whether or not you are in an abusive relationship, and then whether you need to take steps to get out of it.
Reaching a conclusive perspective can be very difficult, particularly amidst the various factors that have contributed to your unhappiness in a particular relationship. However, if you are really having a hard time making up your mind, try to identify any real experiences you have had, such as those described above, that suggest you are in an abusive relationship.
Don’t try to make excuses for your partner, no matter how good the relationship was in the past. If you are wondering whether or not you are in an abusive relationship, at the very least, your instincts are telling you that you and you need to do something about it.