7. You think this is a normal relationship.
This actually touches back on reason #10. People who grow up witnessing abusive relationships between parents, caregivers, relatives, and anyone else in their lives as children—or who’ve only experienced such kinds of relationships overall in their lives—believe that this is a normal way for two grown adults to behave.
It is not. Real, loving relationships are based on mutual respect; people who love each other do not purposely hurt one another like this.
6. You are scared of him.
He’s threatened you, he may have beaten you, and he may say he will kill you if you leave him. But if you believe he will kill you if you leave, what’s to stop him if you stay? Women who fear for their lives in a relationship—as well as the lives of their children—can access help in many different ways, from family to local law enforcement to women’s shelters. To get help, you can contact the National Domestic Violence Hotline at 1-800-799-SAFE.
5. You think he’s not this way “all of the time.”
Your guy could be a real charmer most of the time. Maybe he’s super sweet and sweeps you off your feet with dinner, gifts, and lots of attention. Maybe he sucks up after you have a fight and is super nice. Maybe he buys you roses after he gives you a black eye. Even if he acts like Gandhi after abusing you, the abuse still occurred. No amount of niceness can make up for any amount of abuse, even if it’s “only” once a month—or a week, or a day… This kind of behavior typically escalates rather than diminishes. Even if he does seem like he’s being nice more often than mean, one abusive moment is too much.
4. You think you can change him.
Lots of women love to think that they can change a bad boy into a good man. The truth is that unless you are a doctor, psychiatrist, or other health professional, you probably can’t change him. And even if you were, treating your partner would be much more difficult than someone outside the situation seeing him. Should he get help? Absolutely. Is it your responsibility to help him? No. Should you continue trying to help him when it’s hurting you in the process? Absolutely not. All of that said, he cannot change until he is ready to do so himself.