Warning Signs

The following are some common signs that a person is or may turn out to be abusive to his intimate partner. Answering yes to one or two questions below does not necessarily mean a person is abusive. However, if any of the questions below are true to your partner, you should be cautious in this relationship and seek help and support.

Is My Partner A Person Who…

  • Was abused by a parent or parent figure?
  • Grew up in a home where an adult was abused by another adult?
  • Got very serious in our relationship very quickly – said “I love you” very early in the relationship, wanting to move in together or get engaged after only a few months, or pressured me for a serious commitment?
  • Comes on very strong, is extremely charming and an overly smooth talker?
  • Is extremely jealous?
  • Isolates me from my support systems – wants me all to themselves and tries to keep me from my friends, family, doing things that interest me and are outside of what we do together?
  • Attempts to control what I wear, what I do or whom I see?
  • Is abusive towards other people, especially his mother or sisters?
  • Blames others for his own misbehaviour, mistakes and choices?
  • Abuses drugs or alcohol?
  • Has unrealistic expectations, such as expecting me to meet all of his needs and be the perfect partner?
  • Is overly sensitive – acts hurt when not getting his way, takes offense when others disagree with his opinion, gets very upset at small inconveniences that are just a normal part of life?
  • Has ever been cruel to animals?
  • Has ever abused children?
  • Has ever hit or been controlling to a girlfriend in the past?
  • Has ever threatened violence, even if they said later it wasn’t a ‘serious’ threat.
  • Calls me names, puts me down or swears at me, even if he apologizes later?
  • Is extremely moody and switches quickly from being nice to exploding in anger?
  • Believes women are inferior to men or that men and women have certain roles just because of their gender?
  • Is intimidating, for example, uses threatening body language, punches walls, or breaks objects?
  • Holds me against my will to keep me from walking away or leaving the room?