Red Flags to an Abusive Relationship
- Wants to be with you constantly.
- Accuses you of cheating all the time.
- Follows you around or frequently calls during the day.
- Odd behaviors like checking your car mileage or asking friends to check in on you.
- Pretends to be concerned for your safety or your productive use of time.
- Acts like you do not have the ability to make good decisions.
- Becomes extremely angry when late.
- Constantly questions who you spend your time with, what you did/wore/said & where you went.
- Makes you ask permission to do certain things.
- Six months or less before living together/engaged.
- Claims of love at first sight.
- Says you are the only one who can make her/him feel this way.
- Pressure for commitment.
- Compliments you in a way that makes you seem superhuman.
- Very dependent for all needs.
- Expects you to be perfect.
- Says things like: I am all you need, and/or you are all I need.
- Tries to cut off all your resources.
- Puts down everyone you know.
- Friends are either stupid, slutty, or you are cheating with them.
- Family is too controlling, don’t really love you, or you are too dependent on them.
- Refuse to let you use car or talk on the phone.
- Makes it difficult for you to go to school or work.
Blames Others for Problems
- If there are problems at school or work, it is always someone else’s fault.
- You’re at fault for everything that goes wrong in the relationship.
Blames Others for Feelings
- Makes you responsible for how they feel:
- You made me mad.
- You’re hurting me by not doing what I ask.
- I can’t help being angry.
- You make me happy.
- You control how I feel.
- Easily insulted.
- Sees everything as personal attacks.
- Has a tantrum about the injustice of things that happen to them.
- Totally goes off about small irritations.
- Looks for fights.
- Blows things out of proportion.
Disrespectful or Cruel to Others
- Punishes animals/children cruelly.
- Insensitive to pain and suffering.
- High expectations of children beyond their abilities.
- Tease children or younger sibling until they cry.
- Doesn’t treat other people with respect.
Playful Use of Force During Sex
- Little concern over whether you want sex or not; and uses sulking or anger to manipulate you into compliance.
- Makes sexual or degrading jokes about you.
Rigid Sex Roles
- Believes women are inferior to men.
- Unable to be a whole person without a relationship.
Dr. Jekyll & Mr. Hyde
- Sudden mood changes–like they have two different personalities.
- One minute nice/next minute exploding.
- One minute happy/next minute sad.
- You may hear the person was abusive to someone else they were in a relationship with.
- They may deny previous abusive behavior by saying: it is a lie, their ex is crazy, and/or it wasn’t that bad.
Breaking or Striking Objects
- Used as punishment.
- Breaks cherished possessions.
- May beat on tables with fist.
- Throws objects at/around/or near you.
Any Force during an Argument
- Physically restrains you from leaving the room.
- Pushes or shoves you.
Questions to Ask
- Are you in a relationship in which you have been physically hurt or threatened by your partner?
- Are you in a relationship in which you felt you were treated badly? In what ways?
- Has your partner ever destroyed things that you care about?
- Has your partner ever threatened or abused your children?
- Has your partner ever forced you to have sex when you didn’t want to?
- What happens when you and your partner disagree?
- Do you ever feel afraid of your partner?
- Has your partner ever prevented you from leaving the house, seeing friends, getting a job or continuing your education?
- If your partner uses drugs/alcohol, how does he act? Is he ever verbally or physically abusive?
- Do you have guns in your home? Has your partner ever threatened to use them when he was angry?