Monday, July 15, 2019

Understanding emotional abuse and getting out of it. Part 1, "How can I tell if I am in an abusive relationship?"

Abused girl

I have a number of clients who seek to heal after having been trapped and hurt by abusive partners. There is a lot of secrecy over these matters, so let's have a good look at this.

Over the next five days, I'll post and blog about how this works and what you can do to leave, heal and get into a better place.

Here's the first one: "Do I have a problem?"

When you are right in the middle of things, it can be hard to get perspective. Are you moody? Or fighting all the time?

It may be that you're just going through a rough patch. However, if you are dealing with an abuser, then the methods they use to control you will create a kind of mental fog that prevents you from seeing what's going on.

So, if you're not sure, here's a short list of questions to ask.

·         Do you have to report on every single detail of your day?
·         Do you have to hide information about your day, like who you talked to, because they'll get mad at you?
·         Do you feel anxious if you get a call or text and you can't reply instantly?
·         Before you meet up, do you check to see what you're wearing and practice what you'll say – because they'll get mad at you if you mess up?
·         Is it too much trouble to go out with your friends because of the epic bitching and questioning during and after?
·         Are you frightened of switching off your phone?

If the answer to one of those questions is yes, it suggests your partner is abusive.

Heads-Up: nobody has the right to control you. It's not love; it's abuse.

If you can say no to all the questions above, have a look at exactly where you are sad or arguing. Common causes for trouble include: not being open in your communication, having different goals and needs, and having another hidden issue that's pushing on your relationship. Whatever it is, talking it out should help.

Note: be prepared that if your relationship is new (say less than 2 years) or has never been too hot, then being sad/quarrelling etc a lot may simply mean that you're not a match. That's sad but at least you know and can move on to find happiness.

NOTE: Image by cocoparisienne