Domestic Abuse can happen to anyone- it can happen to women and to men; it can happen in a heterosexual relationship or a homosexual relationship; it can happen at any age, to any race, and at any economic background. If there is a belief that a person may be a victim of abuse, here are some signs of an abusive relationship to help one assess and get help.
The biggest telltale sign of an abusive relationship is that a person lives in fear of their partner. Normal relationships do not revolve around fear, but abusive relationships do. A person may be afraid of their partner and what he or she might do. A person may walk on eggshells around their partner and is not able to openly voice their feelings. No matter what the individual does, he or she, cannot do right by their partner, and there is a belief that the individual deserves to be punished by their partner for their mistakes. Overall, feelings in the relationship may be that of fear and helplessness.
The other common sign is that a partner often belittles the other. They criticise attempts at self expression and embarrass and humiliate him or her in front of others. They yell, but also squarely blame the other for their behaviour. They invalidate opinions and beliefs and treat the other more like property than a human being.
Most abusive relationships are about control. If a partner limits the use of things like the family car, the internet, or money, or if they control the other’s movements, external relationships and public speech, then there is a high likelihood that abuse is occurring. If a partner is constantly checking up on the other and if there is exertion of control on behaviour, the relationship is likely an abusive relationship.
Finally, another big sign of an abusive relationship is a partner’s violent and threatening behaviour. If a partner threatens to hurt the other or their children, or threatens to take the children away, it is a big warning sign that an abusive relationship is in existence. Similarly, if they threaten to or engages in unwelcome sexual activity, this is abuse.
If anyone reading this feels that they may be living in an abusive relationship please reach out. Phoenix Legal is here to help to empathetically take back control with all of the support that may be required. Read more about the options here.