When we talk about abusive relationships, the first things that probably come to mind are bruises and black eyes. While abuse can certainly be in the form of physical violence, it can also be an assault without physical contact. In fact, emotional abuse is more common form of abuse in relationships today.
Perhaps, you won’t see it coming because these people often appear attentive, sweet and charming in the beginning. They will make you feel loved and appreciated that you won’t notice him/her discreetly manipulating you. But there are red flags you can watch out for during the early stage of the relationship to help you spot an emotionally abusive partner.
1. Being Casually Manipulative
Manipulation is an abuser’s way of communicating so they won’t be held accountable of their wrong actions. Gaslighting is the most common form of manipulation, which is when your partner communicates with you in a way that makes you question your own intention for the relationship. If your partner makes you feel guilty for your reaction towards his fault, you probably have an emotional abuser on your hands.
2. Being Entitled to All of Your Time
While it’s totally normal to want to spend a lot of time with your significant other, it becomes a problem when you need a little space and your partner finds it unacceptable. Usually, they insist to go with you or guilt you into ditching your plans. This is not love; this is control. Learn to stand firm on your decisions and do not feel guilty for setting boundaries to have time for yourself. If your SO doesn’t get that, then that person may not be the best partner to be with in life.
3. Their “Passion” for You Makes You Feel Bad About Yourself
Being with a passionate person is something we all want. It makes us feel loved and wanted. However, unhealthy things in the relationship can be masked with ‘passion.’ If your partner gets jealous easily if another guy or girl looks at you, and goes to say “I love you so much that it freaks me out when someone checks you out,” or he sees you wearing a dress and asks you to change because he loves you and doesn’t want you to look like a slut, then that is jealousy, and jealousy is never a compliment.
4. They Casually Put You Down
Abusers tend to attack their partners emotionally in a sneaky way. They will target your self-esteem because for them it is easier to manipulate you if you have lower self-esteem. When your partner makes casual negative comments about your physical appearance or weight, or consistently puts emphasis on your weaknesses, they are likely attempting to put you down so you’ll be dependent with their assurances.
You deserve better than this kind of people. It may be hard to end a relationship, but being in an emotionally abusive relationship will never do any good for you.