The Truth About Abusive Relationships

There’s a lot of misconceptions about abusive relationships. The truth is that many people in abusive relationships might not always know that they’re in one. They might believe it’s their own fault. And they might dismiss emotionally abusive behavior simply because it’s not physical violence.

The truth is that possessiveness, jealously, threats, and psychical abuse can be just some of the signs of an abusive relationship. If you suspect that you may be in such a relationship, it’s important to realize that you are not to blame for your partner’s abusive behavior.

“I think both women and men should respect themselves and each other,” says EHS student Samantha. “Abuse has no place in love, but the sad truth is that in today’s society, abusive relationships can happen early on your teen years. Your partner should be the person who you trust the most and someone who treats you with love and respect.”

“I hear people in the media say to ‘just leave’ and they can not understand why we can’t just walk out the door,” says domestic violence advocate Gee Bailey. “But what they don’t realize is that when you look outside the door, it’s black. You can’t see any light nor do you know what’s going to happen to you.”

Below are three warnings signs that might indicate you’re in an abusive relationship. If any of these warning signs apply to you, please be sure to keep reading for three tips that could help you get out.

Warning Signs

Possessiveness

Abusive partners try to control where you go and who you see. They get angry if you don’t do what they say.

Put-downs

Abusive partners blame you for all the problems in your relationship, including their violent outbursts. They say things like “No one else will want you.”

Physical or Sexual Violence

Abusive partners often push, shove, hit, or grab you. They may force you to have sex or do other things you don’t want to do.

How To Get Out

Recognize the Signs

The first step in leaving a toxic partner is to recognize the fact that you are in an abusive relationship. Denial can keep you in a toxic situation far longer than is safe or necessary.

Disengage

Experts suggest disengaging from your partner in the most low-key way possible. Announcing that you are leaving a toxic partner can make the situation escalate. Or, on the other hand, it might cause the abuser to act like the perfect partner for a bit in order to lure you into feeling safe. This “new partner” act usually tends to end a few weeks later, when he’ll begin abusing you again.

Get Help

Toxic partners will often try to cut you off from your support system. Finding people you can trust, whether in-person or online, can be a helpful reminder that you are not alone.

This article was co-written with Ashley Madrigal of The Eastside Times.