Have you have ever wondered, “Am I in an abusive relationship?” “Is this normal?” “Do other people go through what I am experiencing?” “Why do I hate myself?” “Why am I so sad?” “What happened to my life?” “Why do I feel like I can’t do anything right?” “Why is he so nice to others, but not to me and the children?”
These may be some of the questions that you have been asking yourself just like I did. Your questions are perfectly normal and healthy. Learning to identify the signs of abuse in a relationship is the first sign to healing. You do not even realize that you are being abused. You know that you are not happy. You wish that things could be better, but you are not sure how to make that happen.
Here are some signs to look out for in your relationship. Being conscious and aware of you and your feelings are critical for you to identify what is happening in your life.
1. Do you find yourself walking on eggshells when your husband or boyfriend is around? Are you always on edge because you are unsure of what you should say or what you should do?
2. Are you constantly worried about how he will react? You never know if he will be happy or angry today. Every day seems to be another trial of whether he will yell loud or yell louder so you are worried all the time.
3. Do you find yourself anxious that he will catch you relaxing or reading a book. You are afraid all the time that he will get angry because you are not doing “something” that you are supposed to do. If he finds you relaxing he will get angry and you cannot risk that, so you are anxious your listening is heightened so that he does not catch you.
4. How are you feeling? Are you feeling tired and stressed most of the time? Do you find yourself unable to complete your tasks during the day because you are too tired? Do you find yourself cranky with yourself or the children? Do you find yourself unable to sleep at night because you are thinking too much? So you are not sleeping well at night and you are tired and stressed out during the day.
5. Are you wondering what is wrong with you? Do you hate yourself? Do you find yourself berating yourself with negative self talk? Are you angry with yourself because you feel like a failure? Do you think that you are the cause of all your problems in your relationship?
If you answered YES to two or more questions, you may be in an abusive relationship. Start observing your behavior. Go online and do some searches about verbal and emotional abuse. This is an important step in your healing. You may also consider going to the library and getting some books on the subject.
Most importantly, listen to your feelings. Let them be your guide. You may be on to something important.