Physical violence is usually just one part of an abusive relationship. Listed below are a few examples of things an abuser may do to keep control of their partner and hold all the power in the relationship.
Coercion & Threats & Intimidation
- Making you feel guilty.
- Manipulating you and your children.
- Threatening to hurt you.
- Displaying weapons
- Destroying things, especially things that are yours.
- Using looks, gestures, actions to frighten you.
- Abusing your pets
- Not being responsible about money, keeping you in debt.
- Spending money on him/herself and neglecting the family’s needs.
- Keeping you from having money and/or having your own bank account.
- Giving you an allowance, but never enough for all your expenses.
- Controlling how all money is spent.
- Not letting you have a job; or causing you to lose your job.
- Threatening to take the children if you leave.
- Threatening to report you to Child Protective Services.
- Encouraging the children to disrespect you.
- Resenting time and attention you give to your children.
- Abusing your children.
- Threatening to harm your children.
Minimizing, Denying & Blaming
- Denying abusive behavior. Saying that it never happened or changing the story.
- Minimizing the abuse. Saying you are too sensitive, that it wasn’t a big deal. Accusing you of overreacting.
- Minimizing how it made you feel.
- Cutting you off from your friends and family by using guilt, intimidation or threats.
- Not allowing you to have a car or access to transportation.
- Not allowing you to have a phone or always checking your calls and messages.
- Not allowing you to have friends; deciding who you speak to or visit.
- Threatening or actually harming your family and friends when they try to help you.
Emotional & Verbal Abuse
- Playing mind games.
- Always jealous for no reason. Spying on you. Using technology to track you.
- Threatening to reveal your private information to others.
- Using put downs and name calling to make you feel bad or embarrass you.
- Criticizing your looks, weight, intelligence, etc. making you feel worthless.
- Not letting you get enough sleep.
- Telling you what to think and how to feel.
- Insisting on sex even when you don’t want to.
- Hurting you sexually.
- Making you do things you do not like or that makes you uncomfortable.
- Having affairs.
- Withholding sex and affection.
- Forcing you to have sex. Rape.