How can you identify a non-violent abusive partner?
Of course, the relationship one shares with their abuser doesn't matter. They could be a boss, a partner, a 'friend', or a family member.
So how do you recognize them?
Some common traits of emotional abusers are:
- They say they care about you, but they don't appreciate your achievements.
- They make your goals seem less important than their own or other people's.
- You're dependent on them for money or some other form of wealth, and they spare no chance to remind you of that.
- When they say they're poking fun at you, they're actually exploiting your vulnerabilities. And they know these topics are sensitive.
- They don't seem responsive towards any attempt you make to explain how you feel about their behaviour and make no changes.
- They demand that you are available at their disposal whenever they like, but dismiss your problems when you ask to return the favour.
- They don't believe most of what you say and don't hesitate to ask for evidence for any claim you make.
If you see these preliminary signs, start planning your escape from the relationship. If you're afraid to do so, seek help from a friend, parent, or therapist - anyone you can trust.
It can often be very difficult to decide to leave but know that, while this kind of relationship can make you feel less alone, or more financially secure, the bigger goal is to be happy. And the constant presence of a partner or close companion of this kind can't bring you happiness, even if it brings you a temporary fix like money.