How Do You Know When You Are Being Abused?
One of the hardest things about verbal abuse is figuring out if you are being abused. That was my biggest problem. I didn’t have any bruises or broken bones to point to. My husband was so good at turning every argument around that I thought, “Maybe that was my fault”, or “Maybe my expectations are too high.” And sometimes, things went pretty well: he would be nice to me, buy me nice presents, take me on nice trips – maybe I just needed to lower my expectations, and look past the “bad’ times.
Are you in a similar situation? Are you not sure if you are being verbally or emotionally abused? Kyria magazine recently printed an article entitled, “Hard Versus Bad Which Marriage Is Yours?” by Elisabeth K. Corcoran. Click here for the link.
In this article, Ms. Corcoran lists several examples of regular “hard” marriages versus “bad” marriages. In most of her examples, I would substitute the word “abusive” for “bad”. For example, if your spouse doesn’t speak to you for a week, your marriage is probably abusive. If your spouse unplugs your dishwasher because he thinks you don’t know how to use it properly, and therefore you don’t have a right to use it, you are probably in an abusive relationship. If he takes all the money from your joint account, and cancels your credit card without telling you, you are probably being abused. If you have to explain every purchase you make at Target, like Q-tips, you are most likely being abused.
Would you like some other examples? Take a look at my What Is Domestic Violence? page. I list several examples of Physical, Sexual and Verbal abuse there. And, on my Get Help page, I have links to several great websites that will help you answer the question, “Am I being abused?” Also on that page I list some great books that will help you answer this question. I will continue answering this question in my next blog. If you want someone to talk to, I recommend you call the National Domestic Violence Hotline at 1−800−799−SAFE(7233) or TTY 1−800−787−3224. Or, you can Facebook me.
But what does God think?
God does not want you to be treated this way. You are highly valued in His eyes. God knows the number of hairs on your head (Matthew 10:30), and he sent His only son to die a terribly painful death so that you could live with Him forever (John 3:16). Please remember these things while you are figuring out what is really happening in your home.