Abusive relationships have become common in the world we live in today. This is because our world has no respect for the thoughts, feelings, and lives of individuals. In a relationship, both parties ought to coexist with respect and reference for each other, but societal norms and individual differences have made abusive partners to dominate most marriages today.
WHAT IS AN ABUSE?
Abuse is the wrong use of a thing. For instance, a relationship or marriage exists to advance the lives of couples financially, emotionally, spiritually, and physically. This relationship becomes abusive when one party begins to use the relationship to advance his/her selfish gains and desires at the expense of his/her partner.
The abuser might decide to hurt his/her partner emotionally, physically, psychologically, sexually, financially, verbally, etc. For more details on types of abuse, visit here.
Whatever form the abuser decides to operate in, or manifest through, leaves the abused with a whole lot of consequences hazardous to his/her physical and mental health.
These consequences could be long-term or short-term depending on the scenario. However, those who suffer from these consequences don’t even know that they are in an abusive relationship. Let’s closely look at signs of an abusive partner.
HOW TO IDENTIFY AN ABUSIVE PARTNER?
You may not know that the reason why you struggle so hard to be happy in a relationship is simply that you have an abusive partner. Well, let me show you the signs to look out for in an abusive partner.
- Violence: If you have a partner who beats you and throws anything within his/her range at you when they are angry, you are in an abusive relationship.
- Verbal abuse: If your partner doesn’t beat you but continuously insults you and talks you down at every given opportunity, you are in an abusive relationship because your self-esteem is at stake.
- Controlling behavior: If in your case, he/she doesn’t abuse you verbally, but looks for every opportunity to control and boss you around, then you have an abusive partner. If they always state the rules, neglect your opinions, and expect that you just follow like a figurehead, then your partner is abusive. Yes, he/she is abusing your right to expression and its long-term effect is bad.
- Extreme jealousy: Your partner may not boss you around, but if he/she react unreasonably to your relationship with friends and colleagues at work, you may have an abusive partner in your ship. If he questions your every move, closely monitors your calls, chats, and messages, and suspects every friend of yours, then you have been entangled with an abusive partner.
Other signs of an abusive partner include gas-lighting, constant fear, and the inability to handle criticism.
HOW TO HANDLE AN ABUSIVE PARTNER?
If your partner possesses some or all of the signs listed above, here is what you can do to manage the relationship:
Abusive relationships can make you lose your essence in life. So, be intentional about yourself, take good care of your physical and mental health. Don’t allow the things the abuser says about you, become true in your life. Choose you first!!
KNOW YOUR RESPONSIBILITY
Know your responsibility: Your responsibility is to yourself and your kids if there are any. Don’t accept responsibility for the abuse by reasoning with your abusive partner. If you do so, the abuser will never see the reason to change.
Don’t suffer alone or in silence, look for a reliable person to talk to. Network with friends and relatives who are matured enough to help you.
In the case of verbal and physical abuse, you may need to set boundaries between you and your abusive partner, so that you don’t lose your life in the relationship. Avoid getting involved in an argument with the abuser, it could cause you more pain.
VISIT A COUNSELLOR
Look for the right opportunity, to suggest the idea of visiting a counselor to the abuser. If he/she agrees you can encourage them to go for sessions frequently. After each session, follow up with them with the necessary questions.
SHOW THEM LOVE
An individual may become abusive as a result of certain past experiences he/she went through. Showing the abusive partner love will help them see things differently and bring them to a point of change.
EXIT THE RELATIONSHIP
In the worst-case scenario, walk away from the relationship, don’t stay there, and die. Give yourself a break, take out time to heal, it will help you greatly.
Change is only possible if the abuser is willing. You deserve better than being a victim, so make your choice wisely.