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Quarantining At Home? Watch For The Signs That You Might Be In An Abusive Household

today6 June 2021

(Trigger warning for physical
and psychological abuse.)


Abuse comes in many shapes and sizes, and you might not always realise it…until you do. For physical abuse, there are hard lines to help you identify the severity of the situation and the physical injuries will prove it. But the same can’t be said for psychological abuse. 


“Emotionally abusive relationships are more subtle,” said Dr Sherry Benton.


She added that,


“Each time, you’re getting more adapted to the negative patterns, so it gets more difficult to see—as well as to leave.”



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Benton also provided an apt analogy to help people understand how a situation may escalate without the victim even realising that they are being victimised, and inadvertently miss their cue to leave (if they have the privilege to).


“There’s this story that [says] if you toss a frog into a pot of boiling water, it will scramble to get out,” Benton explains. “But if you put the frog in while the water is still cold—and slowly raise the temperature—the frog will [stay] until it is boiled to death. The same kind of thing can happen in relationships.”



More often than not, victims are often gaslit into thinking that they are the problem and that they deserve the mistreatment that they are getting. Controlling behaviour from the abuser can be mistaken for “care and concern”, while possessiveness and extreme jealousy are often mistaken for “love”. THIS. IS. NOT. THE. CASE. Someone who truly loves you will build you up instead of tearing you down. They will give you the space you need to grow, and grow with you. 



And in times like these, even if a victim realises the circumstance that they are currently caught in, unfortunately not all of them have the financial and emotional resources to pack up and leave. So if you suspect a friend or loved one is in an emotionally abusive relationship, please be supportive without explicitly judging them for staying. Maybe they just don’t have a choice. 


If you or anyone you know 
are in need of emotional support, 
please do not hesitate to call
 Befrienders at 03-76272929.


*Cover image via Bianca Bagnarelli 

Written by: Farah Qistina

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