Before we get to the signs of an abusive relationship, I think it is very necessary that we first of all, get a clearer view of the term.
According to www.wiktionary.org, ‘abuse’ refers to an unjust or wrong treatment of something or a person by another. From the given definition, it can be said that abuse isn’t only physical — it can be emotional as well. The reason I’m dwelling on the true meaning of abuse is because I know that there are a whole lot of people out there who are were at one point abused and who are currently being abused by the people in their lives — either their partners or their family, without them realising it. For most people, when ‘abuse’ is mentioned, what easily comes to mind is physical molestation, but it goes beyond that actually. Abuse comes in non-physical form as well. So it is very important that this is taken cognizance of.
Now, with that out of the way, let us get to the subject of this post, proper. What are the signs of an abusive relationship?
1. YOU LIVE IN FEAR OF YOUR PARTNER
An ideal relationship is one that is devoid of fear and emotional distance and filled with love, care, and total understanding between a couple.
In an abusive relationship, however, the very opposite is what you find. Instead of feeling close to your partner emotionally, you feel distant because you’re too terrified of your partner to get close to them and let your emotions flow. You find that you cannot even express your opinions about certain issues because you’re not sure how they’d react (this is especially so, when your partner has shown tendency to be violent or shouted you down in the past).
If you’re in this situation, you’re definitely being abused, and perhaps, should let go.
2. YOU FEEL WORTHLESS
Abusive people like to make those around them lose every ounce of self-worth in them — and this is so they can continue to control you.
Rather than tell you that you’re beautiful, an abusive partner would tell you ‘you ain’t shi*’. They’ll make you feel very insecure about yourself and your abilities, so much that you have no confidence left in you. But in reality, none of their opinions of you is actually true — they’re all made up fallacies just to keep you in their grip and control. Abusive people feed off your insecurities and fears.
3. YOU’RE CONTROLLED
If you’re in one of those relationships where you (feel you) cannot do anything without express permission from your partner, you may want to give that relationship a rethink. I mean it’s one thing to seek your partner’s opinion and suggestions on issues or steps you’re about to take, but taking permission from them is totally absurd and wrong. It is a free world, and you’re both adults. You have the right to do anything and take decision on your own as long as it doesn’t threaten anyone’s well-being.
If you are in this sort of relationship, you must get out of it quickly because you’re definitely being abused. No matter how ‘harmless’ it seems, it is totally wrong.
4. YOU FEEL DISTANT AND ISOLATED FROM FRIENDS AND FAMILY
Like I said, abusive people like to be in complete control of those around them. An abusive partner would try to keep you from having close allies (friends and family) because he/she feels that it would threaten their hold on you. They’ll pick up quarrels with you over issues relating to your friends and family just to cut you from them. He/she won’t let them visit, and you won’t be allowed to visit them either. This is a strong sign of an abusive partner, and shouldn’t be ignored.
5. YOU’RE DEPRESSED
When you have a partner that you live in constant fear of; who makes you feel insecure and worthless about yourself, will not let you make moves of your own, and who tries to isolate you from the company of friends and family, what you have is a complete breakdown, and you become depressed and unhappy about your life (life in general).
Run as far away from that relationship, if your partner makes you feel this way. Love is not sadness; it brings happiness and joy unlimited.
Please, note that those were mostly the non-physical signs of abuse.