These clues are certainly not definite signs of an abusive relationship, only that there is the potential to become one. Much of the information that we have comes from already identified abusive relationships. We know that these relationships have all displayed some of these characteristics. There may be some who show these traits who are not batterers.
- Were physically or psychologically abused as a child
- Mothers were battered by their fathers
- Exhibit violence against other people
- Handle guns and use them to protect against other people
- Lose their tempers frequently and more easily than seems necessary
- Commit acts of violence against objects and things
- Drink alcohol excessively
- Abuse prescription or illegal medications
- Display an unusual amount of jealousy
- Expect their partners to spend all of their free time with them
- Become enraged when their partners do not listen to their advice
- Isolate their partners from family and friends
- Appear to have a dual personality
- Seem either overly cruel or kind, or put down or belittle their partners
- Have firm ideas of what people should do that are determined by male or female sex-oriented stereotypes
"Warning Signs," http://www.breakthecycle.org/warning-signs (last visited June 28, 2015).
Updated by Christina Uliano, Esq.