Topic Monday: Domestic Violence Series—The Face of an Abuser

Last week, we discussed signs of abuse on which to be on the lookout.  However, what does an abuser look like?

Unfortunately, s/he does not go around wearing a shirt that says “I’m abusive,” so how do we know a person is an abuser?

This is often very difficult to see {especially at first} because the abuser is so charming.  Not only are you mesmerized by this individual, but so are your family and friends.

However, there are some common signs and attributed that most abusers have.


Quick involvement—the abuser wants to quickly accelerate the relationship to either live together or become engaged.  When asked to slow things down, s/he will make the victim feel guilty or add undue pressure.

abuser2Controlling behavior—at first this may come across as concern for the victim, but eventually this will escalate.  Usually the abuser will assume all control over finances to prevent the victim for leaving.

Extreme jealousy—often abusers equate jealousy with love, especially at the beginning of a relationship.  The abuser may be jealous of time spent with others, drop by unannounced, call often, refuse to let work, check phone, email or car mileage or ask others to keep an eye on the victim.

Jekyll and HydeDr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde personality—often this includes going from being very charming to extremely moody or explosive.  May switch roles/moods as soon as others are around {especially the abusers family/friends}.

Isolation—the abuser will attempt to sever all ties with the victim’s family and friends.  The abuser may refer to them as trouble makers or make up stories about them to keep you apart.  Usually this is when access to phone, car and internet is blocked.

Blames others—the abuser refuses to accept any reasonability for their actions, but will force the victim to accept all of it.  Nothing is ever the abuser’s fault, s/he refuses to apologize and always finds fault with others.

Hypersensitivity—the abuser is very sensitive, takes anything negative as an insult or attack.

Often you will see these characteristics in an abuser.  Unfortunately, the victim often doesn’t acknowledge them until they are already trapped in an abusive relationship with no way to get out.

Other factors to take into consideration is if there past shows a history of battering, threats of violence, a volatile temper, and also note how the individual treats animals and children.

What other characteristics have you seen that a person is abusive?



What does the face of an abuser looks like?

Characteristics to look for in an abuser

Do you believe someone may be abusive?  Check out these characteristics of the typical abuser.


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