Friend in Abusive Relationship??

posted 3 years ago in The Lounge
Post # 3
432 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: May 2015

@Pralines:  Emotional abuse is still an abusive relationship. I have been in a relationship like this before and it was a disaster. I thought he was my soulmate (I was 19 so I knew everything) and we were together for almost 4 years when we got engaged. I call it off 2 months later because I realized I was not putting up with it. Our relationship started off pretty good, then he became controlling – told me who I was allowed to see and not allowed to see and basically how to dress. If a guy friend looked at me wrong then it was world war 3. if we did argue he would use his weight (he was well over 150 lbs heavier then me) to control me.

The relationship will not end well. It is starting off as an emotionally abusive relationship and will likely turn into a physically abusive relationship.

Post # 4
631 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: August 2014

@Pralines:  Many of the things you described indicate an abusive/controlling relationship. The obsession with who she is texting and calling, controlling who she hangs out with, isolating her, etc are characteristics often present in abusive relationships, whether the abuse is physical, emotional, or sexual. It is concerning that he seems to be willing to be physically violent with others, both in a social situation (like the party) and just in every day life attacking a stranger. If he can be physically violent with others, there is no reason to believe that he won’t eventually become physically violent with your friend.

Below is the power and control wheel – something we often use in domestic violence advocacy to show the characteristics of abusive relationships. This can be an eye-opener for a lot of folks when they see that what they are experiencing in their own relationship is actually so common there is a standardized diagram for it.


It is great that you are seeing these issues even if your friend currently isn’t. My best advice for you is to continue to be an emotional support for her because she may not be ready to admit that this relationship, which she has poured her time and heart into, is a dangerous one. If the opportunity presents itself, you can gently express your concerns and even share this power and control wheel with her if you think it is something she would be receptive to. It is very important that you have these conversations in person or over the phone rather than texting/emailing since it sounds like he is hell bent on tracking her every communication. If he were to get wind of all of this he may try to force you out of her life and leave her in an even more isolated and vulnerable position.

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