Domestic violence is an unfortunate reality that plagues our society. Here are eight common behaviors of abusers that are sometimes overlooked by the victim as truly being considered “domestic violence.”
4 Examples of Emotional Abuse
- Disrespect, attacks on your self-esteem. The person may call you derogatory names or criticize the way you look and what you do in a destructive way. They make you feel that you can’t do anything right. When something goes wrong they make you feel as if it is your fault. They yell at you, and make humiliating, embarrassing or belittling remarks in front of others. They erupt into tirades or violent fits of screaming anger.
- Pressure, manipulation and control. The abuser refuses to listen or take anything you have to say seriously. They twist what you say and turn it around against you; they tell you what to do, trying to make you feel bad or wrong if you don’t do what they say. They “pout” if you do not do what they want and they “know what’s best for you” thereby replacing your judgment with theirs.
- Economic control and isolation. The offender refuses to let you work or undermines or interferes with your work (this is often subtle or overt); they refuse to let you go to school or start a career; they control the money, refusing to give you any; they take your car or car keys, preventing you from getting around; they control your time and who you spend time with, telling you who you can see and where you can and cannot go, making you account for your time.
- Harassment, repetition, hounding. They make uninvited visits or calls; they refuse to leave when you ask them to; they follow you; they embarrass you in public.
Often these examples of emotional abuse lead to physical abuse.
4 Behaviors Leading to Physical Abuse
The following behaviors may be leading up to physical abuse:
- Physical menacing or intimidation: Making angry or threatening gestures; towering over you in a menacing way; standing in the doorway or cornering you during an argument, thereby blocking your escape; driving recklessly while you are in the car; throwing or breaking things, punching walls or kicking doors.
- Threats: The person threatens you or your family. These threats must be taken seriously.
- Pushing and shoving: This is the beginning of more direct physical violence. During this phase, the abuser is testing the limits. If this phase is tolerated, the violence will escalate.
- Sexual pressure or assaults: The abuser forces you to perform sexual acts that you feel are degrading; forcing you to have sex when you don’t want to.
Are You Experiencing Abuse?
If you or a loved one are experiencing any of these behaviors from a spouse or significant other, first and foremost, please consider calling your local police department. Your safety is top priority.
An attorney can help keep you safe by coordinating protective orders, representing you in court when the offender is charged, and providing guidance on the necessary steps needed to begin the journey away from domestic violence.
Contact the experienced NC domestic violence attorneys of Alexander & Doyle, PA, today.