How To Deal With An Abusive Marriage
Marriage can be difficult and sometimes it becomes abusive. You’re in an abusive marriage if you are being physically hurt, sexually assaulted, or emotionally manipulated by your spouse. Over time, this causes incredible stress, physical deterioration, and psychological damage. For many people, the only way out is through a divorce.
But before you take this drastic route, take the following steps:
Step One: Identify the Nature of the Abuse
Abusive marriages take several different forms. The abuse could be:
EMOTIONAL: Your partner is playing with your feelings and making you feel upset, angry, frustrated, or depressed. They throw insults to put you in a low mood.
ECONOMIC: Your partner has taken control of your money and manipulates your behavior. They deny access to funds as a punishment and use your own money as a reward for obeying them.
PHYSICAL: Your partner is violently towards you. They punch, slap, kick, or hurt you with hot, sharp, or blunt objects. If your partner has left you in physical pain or left any bruises or scars on your body, then this is considered physical abuse.
SEXUAL: Your partner forces you to perform sexual acts even when you don’t want to.
It’s important to understand the nature of the abuse. It may be one or a combination of these forms of abuse. Identifying the problem is the first step to resolving it.
Step Two: Spotting the Signs of an Abusive Partner
Sometimes, it’s possible to spot that your partner will become abusive, even if the abuse hasn’t yet started. The earlier you spot it, the sooner you can put an end to it.
Signs of an abusive spouse include:
- They move too fast in the relationship.
- Perhaps they want to move in or get married before you’re ready.
- They are too demanding of your attention.
- You’re not allowed to live your own life, but have to serve your partner.
- They have extreme mood swings.
Your partner may seem happy and easy-going one minute, then suddenly angry and controlling. They may also act differently when alone with you compared to when around other people.
They are jealous and competitive. An abusive partner may not let you spend time with family and friends, instead of wanting you all to themselves. If you notice any of these signs, you need to consider taking action before more serious abuse begins.
Step Three: Understanding the Long-Term Effects of an Abusive Marriage
In order to motivate yourself to make the changes to end the abuse, it’s important to understand how you’re being affected by it. This will encourage you to end it.
Abusive marriages affect you in the following ways:
You may feel terrified and become psychologically unstable. This can be a result of experiencing traumatic stress. You may become depressed. You could end up living with permanent sadness. You will become a weak partner. After being abused, you won’t have the patience or tolerance to maintain a successful marriage.
Step 4: Understand the Causes of the Abuse
The next step is to identify the causes of the abuse so that you can rectify it. You can do this by:
Seeing a therapist. They will be able to talk problems through with you and your partner. Your partner may be able to reveal more to a psychiatrist about their behavior than they can to you.
Assessing your own behavior. Is there something about your habits that upsets your partner? Try to develop habits that form positive reactions from your spouse.
Communicating openly. Only your partner truly knows why they act abusively. However, they may not realize the harm they are doing to you. Try to spend more time mentioning the abuse and encourage your partner to change.
If you love your abusive spouse, then you need to take steps to overcome the abuse. Otherwise, the only option is divorce. Open communication and understanding is the only way to find solutions. It will take time, but an abusive partner can learn to be kinder and you can return to a comfortable and happy marriage.
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This information is not presented by a Marriage Counsellor and is for educational and informational purposes. This content is not intended to be a substitute for professional marital advice. Always seek the advice of a Marriage Counsellor or other qualified individuals who would be happy to advise you accordingly.
Never disregard professional marital advice or delay in seeking it because of something you have read.
I do hope that this information will help you to focus on your marriage and take the necessary steps to reconcile with your partner. Wishing you all the best with your decision.
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