There is NEVER a good reason for a man to emotionally and physically abuse a woman! One out of every three women will be abused at some point in her life.
There is NEVER a good reason for a woman to emotionally and physically abuse a man! It is estimated that one in six men will experience domestic abuse at some time in their lives.
The bottom line is that abusive behavior is NEVER acceptable, whether it’s coming from a man, a woman, a teenager, or an older adult. No one deserves to be abused and there is no justification for violent crime in the case of physical abuse.
Tell them to, “Hit the road, Jack… and don’t you come back no more, no more…”
“There are many signs of an abusive relationship. The most telling sign is fear of your partner. If you feel like you have to walk on eggshells around your partner—constantly watching what you say and do in order to avoid a blow-up—chances are your relationship is unhealthy and abusive. Other signs that you may be in an abusive relationship include a partner who belittles you or tries to control you, and feelings of self-loathing, helplessness, and desperation.” ~ Source: HelpGuide.org
Abuse is rarely ever a “one time” thing! Most domestic abuse is systematic and premeditated, not a momentary loss of self-control. Most experts agree, abuse is repetitive and predictable. Often when it happens once, it will happen again. Partners caught up in the relationship may not agree because their partner “promised” to never let it happen again and because they don’t believe, they may continue to stay in the relationship rather than leave.
Abuse is a systematic pattern of control and intimidation. Apologies may be another form of coercion and do not provide evidence that he/she has taken responsibility for the abuse and means to keep their promise that it will never happen again.
Victims of abuse – emotional and/or physical – hear me loud a clear… It is not your fault! I don’t care what the abuser tells you.
What is emotional abuse? It involves a regular pattern of verbal offense, threatening, bullying, and constant criticism, as well as more subtle tactics like intimidation, shaming and manipulation. Emotional abuse is used to control and subjugate the other person, and quite often it occurs because the abuser has childhood wounds and insecurities they haven’t dealt with — perhaps as a result of being abused themselves. The victim of the abuse quite often doesn’t see the mistreatment as abusive. They develop coping mechanisms of denial and minimizing in order to deal with the stress.
Emotional abuse is every bit as serious a problem as physical abuse. In fact, its consequences can be deeper and more wide reaching. Almost always, the effects of emotional abuse can take longer to heal than all but the very worst of physical injuries.
What is physical abuse? Do we really need to provide an answer to that question? Physical abuse is the only reason you need to leave the relationship. What is going on is illegal and help is available. If an abuser tries to pick a fight or win an argument, don’t engage with anger, over-explaining yourself, or apologies to try to sooth him/her. Recognize that you can’t fix them, keep quiet and simply walk away. A long way away.
“The only difference between emotional abuse and physical abuse is, you cannot see the scars upon the heart!” ~ Larry James
People who have been abused in several ways often say that it was the emotional abuse that had the most effect on them. Being constantly undermined, criticized and humiliated can turn someone who was once confident and outgoing into a nervous, anxious person.
Why Do Adults Stay In Abusive Relationships? ~ Nothing is more damaging to your confidence and self-esteem than being in an emotionally abusive relationship. Partners with low self esteem in abusive relationships have varying reasons for remaining in them.
1. Some abused people feel they cannot leave their relationships because they are economically dependent on them.
2. Other abused people stay because they believe that is the proper thing to do, given their religious or cultural background.
3. Still other abused people may rationalize staying in abusive relationships because they think it is the right thing to do for their children. (My opinion: The children may be in fact far more damaged by staying in proximity to an abusive father than they would be by being raised by a single mother). Statistics show that in 50 to 70% of homes where men assault women, children are abused as well.
Find support. Talk to trusted friends and family or a counselor about what you are going through. Get away from the abusive person as often as possible, and spend time with those who love and support you. Seek a shelter. Begin to develop an exit plan. You can’t remain in an emotionally and/or physical abusive relationship forever.
If finances or children or some other valid reason prevents you from leaving right now, make developing a plan for leaving as soon as possible be your highest priority. Begin saving money, looking for a place to live, or planning for divorce if necessary so you can feel more in control and empowered. There is only one way to “control” an abuser: Take away their ability to control and harm you by putting lots of distance between the two of you.
Need help? Here are three resources. Visit WomenShelters.org list of shelters for women in Phoenix, AZ. There are very few shelters for men, however, visit HomelessShelterDirectory.org to begin your search. CALL highly-trained advocates who are available 24/7 to talk confidentially with anyone experiencing domestic violence, seeking resources or information, or questioning unhealthy aspects of their relationship. Visit TheHotLine.org or call 800-799-7233.
BONUS Articles: Domestic Violence and Abuse: Signs of Abuse and Abusive Relationships
Why Do Adults Stay In Abusive Relationships?
Are You Emotionally Abusive? Questions for Men to Ask Themselves
Understanding Verbal Abuse
Too Miserable to Stay, Too Frightened to Leave
Domestic Violence Sucks!
Copyright © 2015 – Larry James. This idea is adapted from Larry’s books, “How to Really Love the One You’re With: Affirmative Guidelines for a Healthy Love Relationship,” “LoveNotes for Lovers: Words That Make Music for Two Hearts Dancing” and “Red Hot LoveNotes for Lovers.” Larry James is a professional speaker, author, relationship coach and an award winning nondenominational Wedding Officiant. He performs the most “Romantic” wedding ceremony you will find anywhere. Something NEW about relationships is posted every 4th day on this Relationships BLOG.
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