Spotting the Signs of an Abuser

Abusers will demonstrate certain types of behaviour, including:

Dominance – Abusers have to be in control and will often make decisions for you.

Humiliation – Abusers will go out of their way to make their victims feel bad about themselves. Insults, name calling, shaming and public criticism are all forms of humiliating behaviour.

Isolation – Abusers will often cut off their victims from family, friends and even the outside world. Control must be sought from the abuser for what to do, where to go and who to see, for example.

Threatening Behaviour – Abusers will often use threats to discourage their victims from leaving. These can be threats to harm or commit suicide or to press false charges against the victim.

Intimidation – Intimidation is designed to scare their victims through gestures, violent actions (such as smashing things) or threats to hurt the victim’s loved ones. This is designed to make victims feel as though there will be violent repercussions if the abuser is not obeyed.

Denial/Blame – Abusers will usually blame their actions on external circumstances (such as a bad day or their childhood) or even on the victim. This is intended as justification for their behaviour.

Abusers Can Control Themselves

Abusers do not abuse everyone around them; instead, they are very selective with who they target. They will turn on the charm with other people and will often appear completely normal to everyone but their victim. They are not out of control and can stop their abusive behaviour when they choose and when it is not in their interests to act like this.

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