15 Undeniable Warning Signs Your Relationship Is Abusive

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15 Warning Signs Of An Emotionally Abusive Relationship
Expert
Heartbreak

No one plans to enter physically or emotionally abusive relationships.

In fact, many survivors of domestic abuse swear to themselves after they've escaped that, now that they know the signs of an emotionally abusive relationship and potential violence, they'll never enter another abusive relationship again, only to find the cycle repeating itself with the next man.

According to the National Domestic Violence Hotline, "On average, it takes a victim seven times to leave before staying away for good."

RELATED: Why Do Women Stay In Abusive Relationships — And How To Leave Safely

It's easy for others to ask why women don't just avoid entering into an abusive relationship in the first place, but detecting early signs of abuse can be far more difficult and complex than it seems.

(Important note: Though females are the primary victims of Domestic Violence, it's not always the case; males can also be victims of emotional, physical and sexual abuse.)

The Women's Center, a non-profit organization which provides mental health counseling, support, and education to women, men, families, young adults, and children in Virginia and Washington, DC., distributed a version of the following list of red flag behaviors for women seeking domestic violence counseling to be aware of.

A path to a safer, healthier and happier life often starts with a bit of knowledge.

If your partner displays the following behaviors, they may be signs you're in an abusive relationship:

1. He pushes for quick involvement.

He comes on strong, claiming, "I've never felt loved like this before by anyone." You get pressured for an exclusive commitment almost immediately.

2. He's constantly jealous.

Your partner is excessively possessive, calls constantly, or visits unexpectedly.

3. He's controlling.

He interrogates you intensely about who you talked to and where you were, checks mileage on the car, keeps all the money or asks for receipts, and insists you ask for permission to go anywhere or do anything.

RELATED: The Truth About Whether Abusers Can Ever Change & Stop An Abusive Relationship

4. He has highly unrealistic expectations.

He expects perfection from you, and for you to meet his every need.

5. He isolates you.

He tries to cut you off from family and friends, deprives you of a phone or car, or tries to prevent you from holding a job.

6. He blames others for his own mistakes.

The boss, family, you — it's always someone else's fault if anything goes wrong.

7. He makes everyone else responsible for his feelings.

The abuser says, "You make me angry," instead of, "I'm angry," or, "I wouldn't get so pissed off if you wouldn't..."

8. He's hypersensitive.

He's easily insulted, and will often rant and rave about injustices that are just part of life.

9. He's cruel to animals and children.

He kills or punishes animals brutally. He also may expect children to do things beyond their ability or tease them until they cry.

RELATED: Why You Feel Trapped In Your Toxic Relationship (And How Abusive Partners Stop You From Leaving)

10. He uses force during sex.

He enjoys throwing you or holding you down against your will; he finds the idea of rape exciting, not only in fantasy. He intimidates, manipulates or forces you to engage in unwanted sex acts.

11. He subjects you to verbal abuse.

He constantly criticizes you or says cruel things. He degrades, curses and calls you ugly names. He will use vulnerable points about your past or current life against you.

12. He insists on rigid gender roles in the relationship.

He expects you to serve, obey and remain at home.

13. He has sudden mood swings.

He switches from loving to angry in a matter of minutes.

14. He has a history of battering others.

He admits to hitting women in the past, but states that they or the situation brought it on.

15. He threatens violence.

He makes statements such as, "I'll break your neck," but then dismisses it with, "I really didn't mean it."

RELATED: A Step-By-Step Plan For Fleeing Domestic Violence During Coronavirus

If you or someone you know is in an abusive situation, there are resources available in your state, as well as the 24/7 National Domestic Violence Hotline (1-800-799-7233).

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Wendy Kay is a Life Strategy Coach and author of Mastering the Art of Feeling Good, an inspirational and practical guide on enriching one’s life by learning how to feel good at will.