9 Signs That You Could Be In An Abusive Relationship


Women's Health |

Photography by PIxabay

The latest statistics are shocking… and unacceptable.

What if you woke up to discover you’d been sleeping with the enemy? That’s what happens to the three women in South Africa who are killed by their partners every day. The abuse often sneaks up, turning a happy home into a danger zone. The statistics South Africa National Crime Survey (NVCS) found that in 16.8 percent of the assault cases, the perpetrator was a spouse or a lover. And the scariest part: the same survey found the incidence of reporting abusive behaviour to the police is on the decline. If you don’t think it could happen to someone like you, keep reading…

Future Abuser?

Here are warning signs that a potential partner could be abusive:

1/ Constantly checking up on you.
2/ Isolating you by criticising close friends.
3/ Driving a wedge between you and family.
4/ Acting overly charming.
5/ Monitoring your social media accounts and pushing for access.
6/ Moving too fast in the relationship.
7/ Wanting to control the finances.
8/ Putting down your appearance.
9/ Dismissing your opinions quickly – or, worse, calling you stupid.

Read More: What Makes Smart Women Fall For Sleezy Men?

Is It Abuse?

In South Africa, domestic abuse includes:

1/ Sexual abuse – whether you’re married to the person or not.
2/ Physical abuse or assault – including slapping, biting, kicking, punching and threats of physical violence.
3/ Damage to property or anything you value.
4/ Stalking – when the person follows or approaches you or your children repeatedly.
5/ Economic abuse – when the other person withholds money to which you’re legally entitled, such as refusing to pay or share the rent or bond on the property you both live in; disposing of property in which you have an interest without your permission.
6/ Emotional abuse – degrading or humiliating behaviour, such as insults, belittling, cursing and threats.
7/ Any controlling or abusive behaviour that poses a threat to your well-being or safety.

Get Help Now

> If possible, pack a bag with clothes, cash, important documents (ID, driver’s licence, medical-aid card, bank cards, passport) and stash it somewhere safe, like your parents’ house or a friend’s place.

> Leave when your partner isn’t home – take your children with you and be sure to take a set of keys for the house and car.

> Visit your local Magistrates’ Court to apply for a protection order – you will need to fill in a form with your details and those of the abuser, provide an affidavit and any supporting evidence you may have, such as photographs of injuries or a doctor’s letter. In urgent cases you may be granted an interim protection order, which will protect you until the court date of your protection order hearing.

Who To Contact

People Opposing Women Abuse
POWA provides counselling and temporary shelter to women and their children who’ve experienced violence. Powa.co.za; 011 642 4234/5

LifeLine
Their toll-free Stop Gender Violence Helpline provides confidential, anonymous telephonic counselling and referrals in all 11 official languages 24 hours a day, seven days a week, including public holidays. LifeLineSA.co.za; 0800 150 150

Women’s Legal Centre
Use their Simplified Guide To The Domestic Violence Act to learn about your rights and what help the legal system can give you in a way that’s easy to understand. WLCE.co.za

Looking for more info? Here are three signs his Whatsapps are abusive, according to experts. 

Source: South African Police Service

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