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12 Signs of an Abusive Relationship


Hello All, today we are going to look at the 12 Signs of an Abusive Relationship.  This can be by anyone we know.  By relationship, I don’t just mean your husband, wife, boyfriend, or girlfriend.  In contrast, this article is about all kinds of relationships even friendships and between family.  Business relationships, professional relationships etc.

By relationship, I mean this as a broader term.

Within any relationships, there are different types of abuse that can happen.  For example, you can be physically or mentally abused.  At work, by your family, from your friends, and the list goes on.

Abuse is not always as obvious as being beaten up or pushed around.  Being called hurtful names or being told off in public.  In fact, it can be very well hidden from others and be very subtle at the beginning of a relationship.

You may feel very confused about what is actually happening.  It can also affect the way you feel about other normal relationships.  This is the kind of abuse that often creeps up on you as you become more involved with these people.

What we are talking about here is psychological abuse, which is also known as mental or emotional abuse.

Mental abuse happens when the dominant person in the relationship tries to control information available to you with the sole purpose to manipulate your sense of reality. They want you to understand what is acceptable and unacceptable in their eyes, and to show you who is in charge.

Mental abuse often contains ways to emotionally manipulate you, such as threats made to force the victim to do what the abuser wants.

All forms of abuse are designed to make you lose your self-esteem and to feel worthless. The abused person starts to lose confidence in their own abilities and feels hopeless. In addition, most mental abusers are very good at convincing the victim that the abuse is their own fault. Somehow, the victim is responsible for what is happening.

A very clever form of emotional abuse is called “gaslighting.”  This happens when the wrong information is presented to the victim with the sole purpose of making you doubt your own memory and sanity.  Examples may range simply from the abuser denying that previous abusive events ever occurred to setting up bizarre events with the intention of confusing their victim.

12 Signs of an Abusive Relationship

Table of Contents;

  1. Humiliating or Embarrassing You.
  2. Constant Put-Downs.
  3. Withdrawing Affection
  4. Constant Calling or Texting When You Are Not with Them.
  5. Excluding you or Ignoring you
  6. Provocative Behavior with Opposite sex.
  7. Use of Sarcasm and Unpleasant tone of voice.
  8. Unreasonable jealousy or Rage.
  9. Extreme moods
  10. Mean jokes or constantly making fun of you.
  11. Saying “I love you but…”
  12. Not letting you have money

1# –12 Signs of an Abusive Relationship

12 Signs of an Abusive Relationship

i.)  Humiliating or embarrassing you in front of your family and friends for one is designed to make you feel small and helpless in front of others.

ii.)  Constant put-downs to control the situation and to make you feel stressed out as a result.

iii.)  In the case of a romantic relationship or family relationship.  The abuser may be withdrawing affection to make you feel lonely and isolated.

iv.)  Keeping tabs on you by calling or texting when you are not together.  So they still feel in control.

v.)  Excluding you from pre-arranged events or ignoring you if you do go.  Then making you feel guilty, and in the wrong as a result.  Even undeserving say if you are going out to have a good time.

vi.)  In a romantic relationship provocative behavior with others.  Purposefully to make you feel jealous and ugly.  Then manipulating you to think you are paranoid and mentally unstable if you challenge them.

vii.)  Being sarcastic and raising their voice at you are designed to make you think you are under their control.  To show you who is boss.

Unreasonable jealousy and rage, when you have been together all the time. This will eventually lead to you doubting your own mind.

Extreme mood swings are very common in the abuser, this makes you unable to relax and never know where you stand, feeling like you are constantly walking on eggshells.

Mean jokes and constantly making fun of you, will empower the abuser and leave you feeling very emotionally upset.

Saying I love you but, you need to do this or that for my love to continue.

Not letting you have any money, so it’s virtually impossible for you to leave.

2# – The Good Times

12 Signs of an Abusive Relationship

Abusers all over the world will show you a good time now and then.  People in this situation will often say that their partner was “nice to them” “giving out compliments,” “buying flowers or small gifts,” etc. as if it should make up for all the bad treatment.  

But, you need to understand that this is part of the cycle of abuse.

In fact, it is rare for abusive relationships to not have these moments of feeling good, very sincere apologies or attempts to make up for abusive behaviour.

The victim clings on to hope when these moments occur and the abuser knows this and takes full advantage of it.

Over time the good times can become less and less.

3# – Using Your Insecurities Against You

signs of emotionally abusive relationship

One very important thing for you to remember is that it is in no way your fault. Abusers are experts in the art of manipulation with a way of getting you to believe that the way you are being treated is your fault.

These people know that everyone has certain insecurities in their lives, and they use those insecurities against you.

Abusers can convince you that you do not deserve to have better treatment or that they are treating you this way to “help” you.

Some abusers even act quite normal and are nice to you in public, so that others have a good impression of them.

But, then In private, it is often a very different story.

This can make it very difficult to talk to others about the abuse.  Which can make you feel like no one is going to believe you because others normally see a different side to the abuser.

4# – Does This Describe Your Situation

what is psychological abuse

If you see yourself in this situation, please know that there is little to no hope for your relationship to change or improve. It would take a huge amount of effort for the abuser to change and unfortunately, this will rarely if ever happen.

If you are in an abusive relationship, I urge you to get out. Often the first step when leaving the abuser is to seek some professional help and to get some counselling in order to rebuild your confidence and your life.

You stay in the relationship because you still “love” this person and you find yourself defending their behavior, but that they do not “love” you or respect you. I can assure you that in time you will get over this person if you leave.

Although this will be very difficult for You to do, please know that in the long term you will be making the right decision.

My Final Thoughts

Being abused is a terrible situation to find yourself in. Just because you are not covered in bruises doesn’t mean it is not happening to you.

How many times does your Abuser have to keep saying sorry and promising you that they will change?

Begging you not to leave them.

If the abuser really did care about you and the children they would do everything in their power to change the situation, the mere fact that they don’t should tell you everything you need to know.

Your family and friends will be there to support and help you. They will have seen the signs and will have a pretty good idea of what is happening to you. Abusers think they can hide what is happening and that nobody knows anything about it. This is not the case most often.

The hardest decision is to leave, because of your fragile state of mind. You are a lot stronger than you think.

YOU CAN DO IT, You know deep down it is the right thing to do especially if there are children involved.  Your children don’t need to grow up in this situation and believe that is a normal way of life.

Read more here:  Emotional Abuse Help, Support and Recovery | HealthyPlace

I hope you have learned something from the 12 Signs of an Abusive Relationship.


I, wish to thank you for taking the time out of your busy day to read this article.
You can leave a comment or question below and I will be very happy to get back to you.
If you know anyone else who would benefit from reading this article then please feel free to share it.

Take great care of yourself because you are worth it.

Stay Dynamic x

Alex B. Chivers

Information Source:

#1 https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Abuse

About Author


0 thoughts on “12 Signs of an Abusive Relationship”

  1. Thank you for sharing the 12 signs of an abusive relationship. We all sometimes do not know that we are in one because we are so in love with that person and overlook all these signs.

    I am vary familiar with all of them in both my past and current relationship. I usually have to remind him that it is not okay to behave this way, especially humiliating me in front of other even though it is driven by mood. We are adults. I think it is important for anyone to think first before we take actions, the consequences can actually damage the relationship.

    As long as you stand  your ground, communicate with the other person and if things do not improve then move on. None of us deserve to live in the abusive environment. Is Verbal abuse better than physically? Yes, but why choose? We do not need to tolerate both. 

    Remember to love yourself first and stand your ground. It is time to go over pros and cons. I usually give a person a chance to make it better but if nothing gets better, I usually walk away.  

    • Hello,

      Thank you very much for the great comments.

      I agree about giving the person a chance or two to change their ways. Some who are abused are not strong enough to stand their ground. People handle situations in different ways.

      Kind regards 


  2. A very good article. I think mental abuse is the worst. And usually men practice it. You’re right that sometimes they make gifts, flowers. perfumes, chocolate. But this happens in youth. As I get older, the situation changes and gets worse. It’s just that sometimes it’s too late to break up.

    • Hi Carmen,

      Many thanks for sharing your thoughts today. I have to say I don’t agree with your last point. It is never to late to get away from Abuse.

      Every one is entitled to their opinion, but not everyone has to agree with it.

  3. Very informative post, thank you for sharing it.

    As a mom of 9 young adults, I will be sharing this with all of my kids. While I know that we usually consider abuse to be against women, I know of a couple of men who have had to deal with it in relationships, too. In their care, they thought they were saving the young woman from a bad life. In reality, in each case, the woman (different women but same type of problem) was manipulating them very harshly. In one case, the man was physically abused and refused to fight back so she had him arrested for abuse.

    One of my daughters narrowly escaped from one early on, too. He was trying diligently to keep her away from our family. Fortunately, he made some mistakes and she realized the situation before it became more serious.

    Thankfully, in both these cases the family of the men were able to step in and help him get out.

    Since knowing of these cases, I have cautioned all my sons and daughters about abusive relationships. It’s sad that we have to worry about it, but good to be armed with knowledge.

    • Hi Diane,

      Thank you very much for commenting.

      You are so right that abuse not only affects women but men as well. We have 4 daughters and we spent a lot of time with them on this subject.

      I’m happy you found it informative and have shared it with people who can learn from it.

  4. Hi Lisa, I quite understand your point of view and suggestion that the victim of abuse should leave the relationship. The emotional and psychological damage could be grave. You also have a good point regarding the negative effect the abuse may have on the children because they could grow up to believe that that is the norm. As a result, the cycle of abuse may continue in their relationships.
    However, I am of the view that the victim may decide to maintain a positive attitude and refuse to be put down by the abusive behaviours of the partner. This is on the condition that the abuse does not include battering. My point is that while the victim may not attempt to change the abuser, he/she has control over the damaging effect the behaviours have on him/her.

    • Hi,

      Thank you very much for leaving a comment.

      Mental abuse can lead to much worse problems for the victim, staying around is always an option if they have a modicum of control. If they don’t then in the long term it is not advisable.

      People deal with abuse in different ways, as people are all different, no one solution fits all.

  5. Nice article. Whenever people hear the word abuse most think it has to do with a physical thing not knowing it does not end there. Physiological abuse is way worse than physical abuse because it messes up your mental health and recovery is most times much  harder. Some people do not realise early that they are being abused,  that is why we need to pay  attention to the signs you gave in this article.

    • Thank you very much for leaving a comment, I do appreciate it.

      You raise a valid point. Some people do not realize it’s happening until they are deeply entrenched into the relationship.

  6. Hello, thanks so much for sharing such a remarkable thought on the topic helping people to become healthier I was not so sure of the sincerity of this site when I came across it online but to my surprise it really holds quality information I have carefully read through your article the (12 ) signs of an abusive relationship .

    I think you did a thorough work in providing them they are helpful tips that can help us avoid becoming a victim of abuse in relationships thanks for providing such educating information to us all 

  7. this is indeed such an informative review on 12 signs of an abusive relationship I must say it will be of great benefit to  everyone in the one relationship or the other. ,I am looking forward to sharing your link with like-minded people as I know they will be interested in joining you here to interact and share stories about these unique post on signs of an abusive relationship…

    thanks for sharing

  8. Hey nice article you have there, your thoughts are indeed invaluable. Abusive relationship is not something one will wished to encounter in a relationship. However, knowing the signs that is associated to one is necessary towards determine the future fate of that relationship. Nevertheless, I would love to know, if this symptoms can be corrected if detected earlier 

    • Hey,

      Thank you very much for sharing your thoughts.

      To answer your question the symptoms can be kept to a minimum if you follow 

      The recommended advice. Depending on the severity of the condition as to what 

      The advice would be.

      Hope that helps 


  9. hellooo dear, thanks alot for sharing such an amazing post with us all,  really i must say you are on  point with these posts , i believe these signs you talked about is what really happened to me and my girlfriend, i left for 2 months and i got no calls from her, i was always the one doing the calling, thats how our relationship ended, thanks alot for these info.


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