Post # 1
My friend has been in a relationship with a guy for over a year. Four or five months in they went on their first “break” and subsequently have broken up a few more times (she always initiates the break-up and then gets back together with him). At first the break-ups were due to his own insecurities and petty behavior. He manipulates and puts her down and even complains about the money he’s “wasted” on dates (they split everything).
Recently she shared that he has sworn at her and called her some awful names (c-word, etc.), grabbed her arms and given her bruises and threatened to hit her. I was horrified and told her to dump this guy for good. I point blank asked her what she likes about him and all she could say was that he’s “there for me”. She seems to know she’s in an abusive relationship but she won’t (can’t?) stop talking to him or break up with him. I know some of you may say this is none of my business but I’m really concerned about her. Anything I can say or do to get her to see the light and remove herself from this awful relationship?
I’ve told her that I don’t want to hang out with him anymore (I rarely get to spend one on one time with her – he’s always with her). Am I an awful friend to say that I refuse to see her if she’s with her boyfriend? I just can’t imagine looking him in the eye and acting civil knowing the things he’s done to her. Any advice would be welcome.
Post # 2
ukitali: I would stay out of it. If you push your friend away from this man, then chances are you’re going to lose your friend. Tell her what you think, and then back away.
If there is physical abuse where you think your friends life is at risk, or to the point where he is leaving marks on her, then you report the man. Otherwise, there’s not much you can do about it.
Good luck to your friend!
Post # 3
ukitali: Please do not abandon your friend. As easy as it looks to you from the outside to leave, it is a million times harder from the inside.
Don’t drift away, let her know you’ll always be there for her if she needs a place to stay. I know it can be frustrating but she isn’t going to ever leave him if she loses all her friends.
Post # 4
I would reiterate the point that your friend needs support at a time like this. Perhaps you could seek advice on the matter from woman’s aid. But be aware there is nothing you can say or do that will make her end this relationship asap.
It is a signifcant step for her to make these disclosures to you. If she does not have you to speak to in the future, she will be less likely to speak about her experiences- which will lead to her internalising her feeling and not give her the opportunity to process she is not to blame.
Considering a key factor in domestic abuse cases is the isolation of victims from family and friends- I would highlight how important it is for you to be supportive, but not condone the relationship. otherwise who will help her with a safety plan when the time comes to leave the relationship, as domestic violence relationships are the moSt dangerous when the victim attempts to end the relationship.
i understand what you are saying about not wanting to spend time with this man and that supporting your friend puts you in a difficult situation. I don’t mean to sound like I am telling you what to do etc , as I know the situation is always more complex than it sounds.
Btw if you are wondering where I am pulling my information from lol, it is from my own memories as a victim
of violence, but also from my professional training.