Myth #5: Once we (fill in the blank), he will no longer abuse me.

weddingabuseFACT: A common thought or vain hope amongst victims of intimate partner violence is that once the couple experiences a major life event together such as getting married or having a baby, then the batterer will no longer abuse. As if magically, things will be better and he or she will no longer behave so poorly. When in fact, the opposite is true.

Typically batterers push for moving in together, buying a house together, getting married, getting pregnant, etc as means to propel their need to control the victim more effectively. Consider it a red flag when your partner wants to rush into a life event after only knowing you for a short period. Countless victims have testified they were beaten on their honeymoons or after buying a home together or even after becoming pregnant. The more serious the commitment, the more the batterer tends to reveal his or her true ideologies of power and control.

For better or for worse, a batterer will use whatever means necessary to gain power and control.

Myth #3 : Abuse only constitutes physical injury.

FACT: In order to maintain power and control, domestic violence, also known as intimate partner violence or domestic abuse, can present itself in a variety of forms, not just physical injury. In an abusive relationship, one partner will use whatever methods he / she needs in order to maintain such power and control rather than sharing a mutually respected relationship. Batterers exhibit patterns of behavior through means such as harassment, put downs, neglect, intimidation, withholding,  force, or manipulation.  Abuse presents itself in many forms, such as sexual, physical, verbal, emotional, financial and even spiritual. Commonly, batterers seek to isolate the victim from family and friends. They may threaten to harm the other partner, other family members, pets, or even themselves should the victim attempt to leave the relationship. Abuse, in whatever form a batterer chooses to manifest, is designed to dominate and control the other partner.

power and control wheel2