Signs of An Abusive Relationship


In previous posts, we explored the relationships between abusers and their victims. However, abusive relationships extend beyond just an abuser and their victims. Because the abuser manipulates and controls every aspect of the victim’s life, the relationships victims have with their friends, family, and coworkers are affected as well.

Love shouldn’t hurt

Although it is impossible to tell what goes on behind closed doors, there are ways to tell if a loved one is being abused by his or her partner. If you notice any of these warning signs of abuse in a loved one, it is important to not ignore them and take them very seriously.

General Warning Signs of an Abusive Relationship

  • Fear and anxiety of partner. If your loved one seems afraid of his or her partner, this may be a sign he or she is an abusive relationship. He or she seem may seem eager to please their partner as well.
  • Overly agreeable. It is normal to have things in common with your partner, but people in abusive relationships often agree and go along with everything their partner says or does. It’s as if they are unable to have thoughts and opinions of their own.
  • Constant check-ins. If your loved one constantly check ins with his or her partner then he or she may be in an abusive relationship. On the flip side, if your notice his or her partner is constantly calling or asking where they are, this may be a sign of an abusive relationship.

Physical Warning Signs of an Abusive Relationship

  • Change in Dress.  If your loved one used to wear clothes that would show off their body (skirts, short sleeves, dresses, tank tops, shorts, etc.) and suddenly starts wearing clothes that covers themselves up, there may be abuse going on. Also look for clothing that seems out of place such as long sleeved shirts in the summer time or sunglasses indoors or at night.
  • Accidents. If your loved one is suddenly having many “accidents” that result in bruises, welts or other injuries, then he or she may be in an abusive relationship.
  • Absences.  Constantly missing work, school or social outings without any valid explanation, may indicate that there is abuse going on

Psychological/Emotional Warning Signs of an Abusive Relationship

  • Changes in Personality. If your loved ones starts acting of character, he or she may become a victim of abuse.
  • Depression and or anxiety.
  • Change in Self Esteem. If your loved one suddenly has a change in self esteem, he or she may in an abusive relationships.

Financial/Economic Warning Signs of an Abusive Relationship

  • No Control over Finances. If your notice that your loved one’s partner withholds cash or credit cards, gives an allowance, or withholds food, clothes, medicine, and shelter, then he or she may be in an abusive relationship.
  • Keeping track of Spending. You may notice your loved one’s partner checking receipts or constantly checking the bank account to make sure how much money he or she is spending and what it’s being spent on.
  • Stealing. If your loved one tells you that his or her partner takes money from him or her, they may be in an abusive relationship.
  • Work Restrictions. Your loved one’s partner may prevent him or her from choosing their own career path or get them fired by constant disruptions or forcing them to miss work.

If you notice any of these warning signs in a loved one’s relationship, it is important to take it very seriously. DO NOT ignore them and be sure to let your loved one know that you are there for them should they need anything.

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