Am I Being Abused?

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  • Written By: N. Madison
  • Edited By: Niki Foster
  • Last Modified Date: 21 November 2019
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Abuse has many faces. It can be overt or covert, but it is always hurtful. If you are consistently being hurt physically, verbally, or emotionally, the first step towards freeing yourself is recognizing the signs of abuse.

One type of abuse is verbal or emotional in nature. This type of abuse is stealthy and can be very difficult to identify. If you are being subjected to continuous personal put downs, repeated criticism, blaming, or name calling, it is likely that you are being verbally abused. If you are being subjected to threatening gestures, including reckless driving, destruction of property, or verbal threats, you are being abused. Controlling and isolating behavior is also common in a verbally or emotionally abusive situation.

You are being abused if you are subjected to unwanted physical contact. Physical abuse includes pushing, slapping, pinching, biting, and kicking. Restraining, spitting, or using a weapon on another person is also considered physical abuse. You are being abused if you are subjected to any of these behaviors, even if you cannot see scrapes, cuts, or bruises and no blood is drawn.


You are being sexually abused if you are subjected to unwanted sexual behavior or advances. Any form of rape is sexual abuse. You have the right to refuse the sexual advances of anyone, including your spouse. If someone refuses to take no for an answer, he or she is sexually assaulting you. Using threats or coercion, in the form of guilt or anger, to obtain sex is sexual abuse as well.

Intercourse need not take place for sexual abuse to occur. Any type of unwanted sexual touching can be considered sexual abuse. Likewise, using sexual words to humiliate is sexual abuse. Additionally, exposing a minor to inappropriate sexual information or images can be considered sexual abuse.

Another type of abuse is financial abuse. You are being financially abused if your money or property is being used without your consent. You are being abused if your spouse or life partner prevents you from having access to household money or financial records. Even the mismanagement of finances, which leads to the neglect of household needs, is considered abuse.

If you think you are being abused, seek help immediately. If you are being physically or sexually abused or have been threatened with violence, call the police immediately. For other types of abuse, contact an organization that assists victims of abuse in ending the abusive situation or relationship. Enlist the help and support of family members and friends. Above all, do all you can to get away from the situation as quickly as possible.

Remember, abusers don’t stop or change without professional help. Sometimes, years of therapy are required to bring about real change, and many abusers never fully stop their abusive behavior. To end the abusive relationship, you must take steps to remove yourself from the situation right away.


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Post 4

Wow, this is an eye opening post.

For eight years I lived with an alcoholic, left him seven times - this being the seventh time and he is insisting that I return. Says he's quit drinking and loves me.

I am also exhausted and have no energy, I always hurt and feel bad. Thought this was just my health, but as the last poster pointed out, much could be emotional. My doctor did finally tell me that much of my health issues were a direct result of him. They are real, and they exist, but they are from the stress of living with a controlling lunatic.

However, things in this article that are considered abuse are things that I never considered

. Granted, five times he has physically assaulted me, that I knew was abuse. But, he has always controlled the money (to the penny). Any money that I earned online working had to be hidden; I couldn't use it buy clothes or anything else. In the eight years we've been together I bought two pairs of used jeans off ebay, otherwise all the clothes that I have bought consist of about $300, and this includes maternity clothes. If I bought make up or perfume or hair products, I had to sneak it. Not because he didn't want me to have it, but he always wanted to justify me spending it; the money could go to more useful things. With all this, he'd never consult me when he'd buy his beer or new tools for his work.

One time he was drunk and forced sex on me, but I didn't look at this as abuse, just for the fact that I kept telling him no and to get off me and it was like he was too drunk to listen. Most of the time he'd sleep on the couch until he wanted sex, then he'd wander into the room. If I turned it down he'd get hateful. Throw himself over on his other side, lie there for about two or three minutes and then get up and stomp into the living room, saying he couldn't sleep with sex on his mind.

He would say or do things and then deny them. I figured, since he was drunk when he did it he didn't remember.

He'd lie on the couch the days that he didn't have work and me and the dog would have to tip toe around (in the living room no less) because any noise would disturb him and he'd be really ugly. He finally beat my dog so bad that I turned her into the SPCA. By the grace of God they had a safe haven program and allowed me to re-adopt her once I left him. She has since passed away and I am haunted with guilt that I couldn't protect her.

I could go on and on, but I do agree that the first sign of controlling behavior is a red flag to run and run fast.

For me, I don't know what will happen. I am finally away from him and making it on my own. He's pestering to reestablish the relationship, and doing so in such a manner that I am tempted to give in. I think I need counseling.

Post 3

Dear - anon127688: Do yourself the biggest favor of your life (and your precious children's lives) - think and pray a lot before deciding to marry someone who is abusive in any way.

I have been married for just short of a year and my husband started his verbal and emotional abuse after the first two months. I have to fight exhaustion and depressive feelings, I constantly feel burnt out from the fighting - he doesn't even see what he is doing - when I try to tell him, he blames me.

It feels helpless sometimes and then I pray and regain my strength, but it is very hard, and I would caution you not to go down that road. Marriage can only be worth it if it is mutually uplifting - otherwise, I believe singledom would be better. Ask me, I know. And you have your kids to consider as well, even more reason to run a thousand miles. anon.

Post 2

i think I've been verbally abused by my boyfriend. In the 15 months I've been with him i have had quite a few verbal angry attacks from him now. He is also showing signs of controlling behavior which is a big turn off when I am trying to become independent after a marriage break down.

Last week he told me to bleep off after another angry outburst where I tried to talk to him about why he was upset. I didn't raise my voice at all. Actually I'm pretty numb to these outbursts of his. He is a nice guy and everyone sees this. So by me complaining it looks like I'm lying. I'm really in doubt about continuing this relationship. I have children to think of too.

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