This week I’d like to discuss how to handle a situation when a loved one is in an abusive relationship, has confided in you, but still stays in the relationship. This is a difficult position to be in for both the abused and the loved one.
If you find yourself in this scenario, what do you do?
I would suggest always supporting your loved one. Make sure they have a safety plan. Try to educate them on what abuse is and try to convince them to leave.
If they decide to do so, help them. Make sure they are safe. If the abuser has a key to her home, change the locks. Stop the abuser from contacting them through blocking their texts and phone calls. Help her cut them off completely. Get her psychological support.
What if she goes back to the abuser?
This can be an especially difficult situation for the loved one. They know what type of relationship she is in and how damaging it is. She needs counseling. She needs to leave—again. But for some reason she doesn’t.
We still need to support her, but do not need to condone the abusive relationship. We shouldn’t welcome the abuser with open arms. He can’t get the impression that we are okay with the abuse and she can’t think that it is acceptable in our eyes. It is not. We can’t let her think this relationship is healthy.
Ultimately it is her choice to stay or leave. I’ve gone through many reasons why women stay in previous blogs. A few reasons include: manipulation and control, hope, money, children, and commitment to marriage.
We need to be there for her when she is ready to leave.
Remember, if we can help just one victim, we’ve done our job.
Have a great week.