How do you know when you are in an abusive and manipulative relationships?

When I was younger, I thought abusive relationships meant when the men hit the women. But it was far from the truth. Many abusive relationships have no physical violence in them. The violence and trauma comes from emotional, psychological abuse.

I have been in an abusive relationship for the past six months, with a man named Josh. If you ever want to read more on the topic, what abusive relationship involves and maybe understand why it is hard for some people (including me) to leave, visit my blog: 

Here is a list of abuse I have personally experience.

  • Does your partner belittle you, make fun of you and put you down?

Josh has a very stressful job, and when he comes home, he needs to relax and let go of the stress he is feeling. Very often, that means he’s going to “jokingly” make fun of me. He will say I’m “fugly”, wearing slut clothes, make fun of my European accent and say I cannot even speak properly English or call me fat. When I get mad at him for this, he says I need to relax, it was just a joke. But it’s not a funny joke, at all.

  • Does your partner tells you who you can see, and who you are not allowed to see anymore?

I stopped being a prostitute because it was incompatible with my relationships. However, through my work, I’ve made numerous friends, some of which were good friends. I am not allowed to see those people. Josh is not comfortable with me seeing them, because he thinks they will make me go back to this job. He obviously have very low opinion of me. He did not forbade me to see them, instead he was way more manipulative. The notorious guilt trip came back, and I cannot see those friends anymore.

  • Does your partner makes you feel safe, or uncomfortable, for long period of time?

That’s especially true when we talk about the argument Josh and I had in the car, in which he punch the car so hard out of anger he had bruises on his knuckles. I did not feel safe.

  • Does your partner makes you feel guilty of things you do, or things he has done for you?

Although I am working part-time, I do not earn enough money to pay for all my bills. Josh “jokes” very often about how I am a financial weight for him, and how I’m “robbing” him out of all the money he made.

  • Does your partner ignore your opinion?

Whether I want to do something or not, Josh keeps on ignoring my opinion. Do I want to stay in bed all day because I am sick? Yes. Does Josh want to go see his mom who lives 30min away from us for a couple of hours with me? Yes. Guess what we did?

  • Have you ever felt pressured by your partner to perform sexually?

Josh and I have had countless arguments about our sex lives, in which Josh was never happy because I wanted less sex. He put pressure on me to perform. He made me do stuff for him that I did not want. Josh came on my face one time, although I have told him I hated this. He laughed. After I got myself clean, he asked me if I liked it. I said no, and he asked me how it made me feel. Degraded was my answer. That did not stop him from doing it again a few days later.

Here’s a few point and example of “red flags”. They are from my personal experience and cannot speak for all relationships. Please, if you ever feel like your partner, boyfriend, girlfriend is acting like that, try to leave or seek counsel.

Published by Elisabeth Blue