Signs of an Abusive Relationship

It’s not always easy to tell at the start of a relationship if it will become abusive.

In fact, during the early stages of a relationship, many abusive partners may seem perfect, almost too good to be true. Controlling and abusive behaviours usually occur gradually, as time passes. These abusive behaviours usually intensify as the relationship grows.

Below are some signs of an abusive relationship. If you can identify with one or more of these signs, you may be in an abusive relationship.


Signs of an Abusive Relationship:

• You are afraid of your partner.
• You are constantly ‘walking on eggshells’ because of his mood swings.
• You spend your time working out what kind of mood he is in and the focus is always on his needs.
• He loses his temper easily and over minor things.
• Looks at you or acts in ways that scare you
• He has hit you or almost hit you and/or your children.
• Your partner has been abusive in a previous relationship.
• He criticises your family and friends and/or makes it difficult for you to see them or talk to them on your own.
• He calls you names and threatens you and/or your children.
• He is jealous and accuses you of flirting and having affairs.
• He regularly criticises or undermines you in front of other people – including about the way you look, dress, and/or your abilities as a mother.
• Your needs are not considered important or are ignored, and he makes the decisions in the relationship.
• You find it hard to get time on your own. When you do spend time away from him, he demands to know where you were and who you were with.
• He controls your access to basic essentials such as the car, the family finances, food, the telephone and internet.
• He has forced you to do something that you really did not want to do.
• He has forced you to have sex with him or with other people. He has made you participate in sexual activities that you were uncomfortable with.
• He has threatened to have you deported because of your immigration status.
• He tries to control aspects of your life such as whether you work, and where; who you see and when; what you can spend; what you can wear; what you watch or listen to on the radio or television.
• He demands to know the passwords to you email account and social networking pages.
• Pressures you to use drugs or alcohol
• Threatens to report you to the Social Work Department
• He has threatened to kill you, or to kill himself, if you leave him.


You deserve to live a life free of abuse. We are here to help and support you.