As you may have heard, Rihanna, has just released songs in which she collaborated with her abuser, Chris Brown, in February, which is Teen Dating Violence, Awareness, & Prevention month, nonetheless.
Shame on her, huh? The abuse was not her fault—it never is. Yet if she intimately re-involves herself with Chris and gets hurt again, she is the one to blame.
If you are in an abusive relationship, I am not here to point a finger at you, but to encourage you to GET THE HELL OUT OF THERE. Once and for all. As soon as possible. Unhealthy, abusive relationships rarely get better in time, and in many instances they get much worse.
Physical, sexual, emotional, and verbal abuse is no joke. Dating and domestic violence is a tremendous problem that impacts men and women of all ages in both opposite-sex and same-sex relationships. Both males and females can be the perpetrators, but let’s be honest: There are a lot boys abusing girls and men abusing women out there. Something is very with the way boys are socialized and the way masculinity is displayed in this society, but that’s for another blog entry!
In this very moment, I want to help you to recognize abuse for what it truly is. Knowing how to identify the warning signs is the first step, and they aren’t always so obvious. Some of the smartest people become victimized. Many question whether or not their relationship should really be labeled abusive and wonder about what actually constitutes abuse. If you can relate and are unsure of whether or not your partner has the potential to become abusive, look for the following red flags.
Classic abusers display three warning signs of abuse you can’t ignore:
A need for control: Control can seem subtle at first. Does he or she tell you what to wear or who you should or shouldn’t be friends with? Does your partner call or text you constantly as well as check your outgoing calls and the inbox of your phone? Does she want to read your email and constantly police your Facebook page? Does he refuse to wear a condom or force you to do sexual things that you don’t want to?
Jealousy: A small dose of jealousy can help two people stay on their toes in a relationship, but extreme jealousy is a problem. An abusive person will make false accusations. Does she think you are always checking out other girls? Does he act up every time you mention a guy friend? Does your partner go off on jealous rants while intoxicated? Does he or she try to restrict the time you spend with other people or make you feel guilty when you can’t see him or her?
Violent Tendencies: Physical and sexual abuse is not limited to being punched, slapped, pushed, or raped as shown in a Lifetime movie. There is a fine line between engaging in a little “rough” sexual play and physically hurting someone in any way. Does she scratch or bite you? Does he pull your hair a little too hard or grab onto your clothes when you are trying to get away? Does your partner have temper tantrums or throw things at walls?
If you tell your partner to stop a physical or sexual behavior, and he or she does not, it is clear you are being abused—same goes for verbal and emotional abuse. Watch out for the one who is still constantly doing seemingly “innocent” things like tickling or wrestling you after you’ve expressed your frustration. A lot of abusers may show small signs of abusive behavior that will only escalate in time.
If you are dating someone whose behavior reeks of control, jealousy, and violence-not to mention alcohol-there should be no questions in your mind. You are or will be in an abusive relationship if you stay. You should plan your exit strategy immediately! If you don’t, you’ll be in for the hangover of your life.
For more information on intimate partner violence: Check out http://blog.loveisrespect.org/
For A Breakup Rx: Check out my free report “How To Get Over Your Ex & Be On To The Next—Italian-American Style” http://www.statusmakeover.com/sample-page/starting-over/
Contact me at Rachel@RachelRusso.com for help ending an abusive relationship today!