Am I in an Abusive Relationship? Physical vs. Emotional
The signs of an abusive relationship aren’t always as obvious as bruises on the body. Stomping out the stigma of abuse begins with spreading awareness of all areas of abuse in relationships. Abuse can occur with anyone, not just with a significant other, but also between family members, friends, coworkers, and more.
Abusive Relationship: Physical vs. Emotional
Whether a person is in a physically and/or emotionally abusive relationship, the consequences are both as detrimental and grave. No individual deserves to be treated with disrespect, humiliation, or pain. Both physical and emotional abuse can cause long-term damaging effects and fear. These relationships often manifest themselves due to the abuser desiring control and power over the victim.
Physical abuse is defined as an individual causing physical harm to another through violent acts such as hitting, smashing, raping, shaking, pulling, pushing, shoving, burning, throwing, kicking, etc. This abuse literally poses immediate bodily danger to the victim.
Emotional abuse can go unrecognized by victims and even their loved ones. This type of abuse can arise when one person presses the other through demeaning actions that result in mental trauma, such as putting them down, being overly critical, having high standards, placing tight restrictions, etc. Abusers instill fear in their victims of emotional abuse by methods of intimidation, shame, and guilt.
Signs of an Abusive Relationship
Some of the most obvious signs of a physically abusive relationship include bruises, marks, and/or burns on the body. Victims may shrug off these physical indications of physical torment as “accidents.” Or if asked by others, simply state they are unaware of how they acquired them. There may be occasions they fail to show up to obligations like jobs or school.
Physical signs aren’t the only giveaway and don’t have to appear to signify abuse. Less visible signs can include victims appearing afraid in the relationship. And not discussing specific topics with their partner out of fear of arousing anger. Also, putting themselves down, and suffering from depression. A sign to watch out for that the abuser may be engaging in is known as. “gas lighting”, which is where the abuser manipulates the victim into thinking the abuse has been their own fault and that they deserved it.
Abuse Is Abuse: It’s All Wrong
The abuser’s intent for targeting the victim in emotional abuse is to gnaw at the core of their confidence and self-worth. People may have a tendency to think that physical violence poses the worst threat, but a person can be just as brutally damaged even if they aren’t physically marked.
Emotional abuse can leave long-term detrimental effects on the sufferer. If a person is uncomfortable in their relationship because they are concerned it’s become abusive in any way. And they don’t need to stay in the relationship. More than 1/3 of murdered women were victims of their own significant other. According to the 2012 FBI Crime in the US Report.
Women are at greater risk of abuse after leaving the relationship, but fortunately, police take domestic violence seriously and try to react quickly in these situations.
It can be difficult to recognize if you are in an abusive relationship when you don’t have the physical scars to prove it. But if any of the signs above sound familiar, you may need to get help and get out.
If you are unsure if you, or someone you love, are in an abusive relationship, please click here for more information.
There is hope and help for those struggling with abuse, so take the first step towards a better future, today.Tags: abusive relationships, domestic violence, emotional abuse, physical abuse, signs of abuse