I’d like to expand on last week’s topic, the cycle of violence. There are three phases of this cycle: tension building, the abuse or explosion, and honeymoon period.
This week I’ll focus on tension building.
As tension within a relationship builds, the victim tries to keep the abuser calm. A few examples of how the victim attempts this are: she gives in to arguments, stays out of his way or ignores the behavior, apologizes for getting him angry, or rationalizes the increased stress. She will try to placate him in any way possible.
At this point, the abused feels the control slipping away and she is constantly ‘walking on eggshells’. The relationship becomes more stressful and communication is strained.
The abuser starts to yell more. Gets angry easier. Distances himself emotionally. Nitpicks and criticizes. The abuser might become moody and irritable.
She needs to leave. The inevitable is coming: the abuse, the explosions. But she holds onto hope that she can stop it. This is a cycle and she cannot stop it.
We will continue to discuss the cycle of abuse next week.
Remember, if we can help just one person, we’ve done our job.
I’ve used female as the victim, but the victim can be either female or male.