Are You Being Abused?

Warning signs

People who are abusive frequently exhibit “warning signs” of this type of future behavior. One or two signs do not make someone an abuser, but beware of someone who shows multiple warning signs.

These are some of the warning signs of controlling behaviors:

  • Criticism
  • Name-calling
  • Swearing
  • Mocking
  • Put-downs
  • Ridicule
  • Accusations
  • Blaming
  • Humiliation
  • Lying
  • Withholding information
  • Infidelity
  • Unreasonable jealousy
  • Withholding money or use of the car
  • Interference with work
  • Intimidation
  • Threats of violence
  • Destroying possessions

Does the person you love...

  • Threaten to hurt you or your children?
  • Say it's your fault if he or she hits you then promises it won't happen again (but it does)?
  • Put you down in public or keep you from contacting family or friends?
  • Throw you down, push, hit, choke, kick, or slap you?
  • Force you to have sex when you don't want to?
  • Threaten or intimidate you?
  • Threaten to have you deported?
  • Deny you access to your medicines?
  • Isolate you from friends and family?
  • Discourage any independent activities such as work; taking classes or activities with friends?
  • Accuse you of being unfaithful if you talk to a member of the opposite sex?
  • Expect you to partake in sexual activities that you are uncomfortable with in order to prove your love?
  • Withhold sex as punishment instead of communicating openly their displeasure?
  • Constantly criticize your weight, your looks, the way you dress?
  • Use the children to gain control by undermining your authority or by threatening to leave and take the children?
  • Control all the financial decisions, refuse to listen to your opinion, withhold important financial information and make you live on inadequate resources?
  • Make all major decisions such as where to live, how to furnish the home and what type of automobile to drive?
  • Try to prevent you from talking with people who can help you?

Just one "yes" answer means you're involved in an abusive relationship and perhaps have experienced sexual assault. If so, you're not alone and you have choices.


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