When you love someone, it's hard to step outside of the relationship to view your situation objectively. This is why it's so hard for domestic violence victims to reach out for help.
However, every person who is in a toxic relationship needs to -- at some point -- draw the line, and realize that he or she is responsible for his or her own happiness. Is it time for you to draw the line?
How to know if you're the victim of domestic violence
Here's a typical scenario: Your spouse comes home from work every day. He is stressed and angry from work, and finds something you did wrong. He gets upset, yells at you and maybe even hits you. Meanwhile, you feel guilty because you did something to upset him. You also understand he's under a lot of stress and you love him.
It's so hard to step outside of the situation and really see it for what it is. Your friends may be telling you to break things off, but your love and compassion for your husband or boyfriend is getting in the way of you making this hard decision.
Here are a few questions you can ask yourself to gain some perspective:
- Do you ever feel afraid of your spouse or romantic partner?
- Do you refrain from discussing different topics so your partner won't get angry?
- Do you feel like you can't get anything right in your partner's eyes?
- Do you sometimes think you're crazy?
- Do you feel numb emotionally and do you ever feel helpless in your relationship?
- Does your partner belittle you, humiliate you, yell at you, put you down or criticize you?
- Does your partner treat you in a way that embarrasses you in front of your friends?
- Does your partner put you down or belittle your accomplishments?
- Does your partner blame you for his or her abusiveness?
- Does your partner treat you like an object or servant instead of a person?
Seek help immediately if you're a victim of domestic abuse.
Many spouses feel trapped in abusive marriages because they don't have the financial means to break free, because they're afraid they'll lose their children, or because they fear for their and their children's safety. These spouses need to know that the law is on their side. You can divorce from your abusive spouse, receive financial support from him or her, keep your children, stay in your home, and even receive police protection to prevent him or her from ever hurting you or your family again.