Recognize When You Are Being Abused–This is Domestic Violence.

VIDEO: Domestic violence is serious. Unfortunately people who are being abused often either minimize the reality of abuse or ignore it all together. In this video we discuss some of the characteristics of an abuser as well as the patterns of abuse. If you see yourself in this situation…GET HELP. If you know someone or have an inkling that someone is dealing with this issue please forward them this video. Nobody is being helped if we all stay silent.

This video was prompted by a letter we received from a young lady who appears to be in an abusive situation where domestic violence is ruling her life. Our prayer is that she receives what we have to say. For all those who watch this and realize these words apply to you too—nothing happens on accident. Our belief is that you are watching this right now for a reason. Get out! Get out! Get out!

To determine whether your relationship is abusive, answer the questions below. The more “yes” answers, the more likely it is that you’re in an abusive relationship.


Your Inner Thoughts and Feelings

Do you:

-feel afraid of your partner much of the time?

-avoid certain topics out of fear of angering your partner?

-feel that you can’t do anything right for your partner?

-believe that you deserve to be hurt or mistreated?

-wonder if you’re the one who is crazy?

-feel emotionally numb or helpless?

Your Partner’s Belittling Behavior

Does Your Partner:

-humiliate or yell at you?

-criticize you and put you down?

-treat you so badly that you’re embarrassed for your friends or family to see?

-ignore or put down your opinions or accomplishments?

-blame you for his own abusive behavior?

-see you as property or a sex object, rather than as a person?

Your Partner’s Violent Behavior or Threats

Does your partner:

-have a bad and unpredictable temper?

-hurt you, or threaten to hurt or kill you?

-threaten to take your children away or harm them?

-threaten to commit suicide if you leave?

-force you to have sex?

-destroy your belongings?

Your Partner’s Controlling Behavior

Does your partner:

-act excessively jealous and possessive?

-control where you go or what you do?

-keep you from seeing your friends or family?

-limit your access to money, the phone, or the car?

-constantly check up on you?

If you find yourself in a situation where Domestic Violence is occurring—get help. Reach out. You can start by calling the National Domestic Violence Hotline at 1-800-799-7233.

Aiyana Ma’at, MSW, LCSW-C is a licensed clinical social worker and psychotherapist. However, the professional advice given here does not substitute for professional advice given by a licensed clinician in your state.

9 replies
  1. Tia L
    Tia L says:

    I was in an abusive relationship for over 4 years. I was confused and was no longer sure of myself. He called me dumb and other names. He was controlling when it came to every aspect of the relationship (money and making important decisions). I became afraid of him. Everything was about making me feel inferior and eventually I stopped doing things I loved and being around family and friends. I was choked several times when I started to try to take up for myself. It has taken me years to finally decide to divorce because I brain washed into thinking it was my fault that he choked me and mistreated me. Thank you so much for this article. It has helped confirmed some things for me.

  2. Cynthia
    Cynthia says:

    My prayers go up for this young lady. If you are reading this, please understand the impact it will have upon your children. I am an adult child of domestic violence. Not only did I witness my father beat my mother, I witness the use of firearms. My brother and I spent almost our entire adult lives sorting through the affects of the foolishness our parents put us through. I am not saying end your marriage but you should really, really consider removing yourself and your children from that environment immediately. Once things settle, with professional help, you can then decide what you want to do about the marriage. (And keep in mind it takes two to build a healthy marriage) Your mental and physical health should be your highest priority right now. Keep in mind; our children become who we are not who we tell them to be. God be with you in this journey.

  3. La'Tiya
    La'Tiya says:

    So if for no other reason, PLEASE do it for the children. Trust me; no matter how little they are at the time they know what’s going on. My oldest son is 12 years old now but he was 4 when I got out of my abusive marriage and he came to me one night and said “mama why did daddy choke you like this” and he demonstrated by putting his little hands around his neck. And I vowed right then that I would never put my self or my children in a situation like that again.

    • La'Tiya
      La'Tiya says:

      I know that you don’t want your marriage to fail but from what you’ve said, you’ve done everything that you could to save your marriage. If you continue to stay in this violent situation, he’s only going to continue to play on your feelings because he knows that you love him, therefore he feels that he’s got you right where he wants you…stuck at home, taking his abuse. He’ll constantly apologize after the abuse, telling you that he loves you, promising not to ever do it again, buying you gifts or even temporarily changing his behavior for a few days by pretending to be the man that you want and need him to be. But LOVE IS NEVER SUPPOSED TO HURT nor can it ever be expressed through violence and abuse. So at the end of the day there’s nothing that you can do to change him, HE has to WANT to CHANGE. It’s not healthy to stay in a violent relationship. Your little babies need their mother way more than he’ll ever need you as his wife. Sister-Friend all it takes is one wrong hit for him to take your life and then what? There will be no amount of apologies to bring you back to life.

  4. Cecil
    Cecil says:

    I am guilty of some of the patterns of behavior. I love my lady but at times I lose control. I'm currently in counseling for anger management. It's difficult to break the cycle because as a child I too was abused and i feel RAGE. I'm sorry.

  5. K.O.
    K.O. says:

    We can all say what we wouldn't put up with or what we would do in a situation like this, but unless you're in the situation and understand the dynamics of abuse, it's hard to speak on it. I've been down this road, so I don't even play the shoulda woulda coulda's. That mind set doesn't help someone going through abuse. So thank you, Ma'ats…for coming from a place of love, and addressing this issue! And if this young lady is reading, I would like to recommend a book…it's called, "Why Does He Do That, Inside The Minds of Angry and Controlling Men." It's written by Lundy Bancroft, a guy who created one of the first programs to treat abusers in the U.S. I read this when I was leaving a relationship of domestic violence, and it helped me understand what it was that I was experiencing, and the different techniques that abusers use. You are in my prayers, and I pray that you have the courage and the strength to leave and to make it out safely.

    • Ayize
      Ayize says:

      Thanks for the transparency K.O. One of the things that i noticed in the movie we saw yesterday is the fear that is evoked by the abuser in the person that is being abused. As the girlfriend was trying to leave her insecure boyfriend in the middle of the night she was very frightened and terrified about the possibility of being caught. It was a different type of fear….she was afraid for her life. thanks again K.O.
      My recent post Recognize When You Are Being Abused–This is Domestic Violence

  6. Dominique
    Dominique says:

    I hope this woman takes this advice. She has children to think about. It's selfish not to think about what's best for your kids. I don't understand why people stay in craziness like this!

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