Who Are The Abusers
Many people think of domestic violence abusers
as being out of control, crazy, and unpredictable, the contrary is
often true. The violence used by abusers is controlled and
manipulative. Domestic violence abusers have been described as having a
"Jekyll and Hyde" personality, often experience dramatic mood swings.
They may be loving one minute, and spiteful and cruel the next. Abusers
are frequently characterized by those outside the home as generous,
caring, and good, and behave drastically differently in their home
Anyone can be an abuser. While most abusers are men it is important to
remember that women can be abusers too.
While LifeWire does not provide services for abusers, it is important for
an abuser to understand that there are steps they can take to diffuse a
volatile situation and get help.
Stop the Violence and Get Help
If you're feeling angry toward your partner and
you feel frustrated and upset, remember that you have choices. To stop
the cycle of violence, get treatment from a specialized treatment
provider. Here are some immediate ways to stop the violence.
If you are in danger or at risk of hurting
someone else, call 9-1-1.
- Leave! Go somewhere safe and peaceful to calm down and
collect your thoughts.
- Focus on something else: take a brisk walk, listen to music
- Talk to someone outside of the situation, such as a
counselor at a crisis line – tell them that you need to cool down and that it
helps to have someone to listen to you.
- Tell a friend you trust what you are doing to slow down and
- Remember that alcohol and drugs get in the way of making
- Get help.
If You Know An Abuser
Yes, it is your business. Maybe they're a relative, a friend or a
co-worker. You’ve noticed they interrupt their partner, yells or scares
them. You hope that when they’re alone, it isn’t worse. What you see
makes you uncomfortable, but you don’t want to make them mad or lose
their friendship. What can you do? Say something. If you don’t, your
silence is the same as saying abuse is okay. They could hurt someone.
Because you care, you need to do something … before it is too late.
What Can You Say?
Draw attention to it
Tell them what you think
- “Do you see the effect your bad words have? It makes them feel bad.”
- “Did you mean to be so rough? That’s not cool.”
Express ideas about loving behavior
- “I am really worried about their safety.”
- “I am surprised to see you act that way. You’re better than
- “I care about you, but I won’t tolerate it if you abuse
- “This makes me really uncomfortable. It’s not right.”
If their behavior is criminal, tell them so
- Offer suggestions or solutions.
- “Loving them doesn’t mean abusing them.”
- “Good partners don’t say/do those kinds of things.”
- “No one should ever hit or threaten the people they love.”
- “Kids learn from their parents. Is this how you want your
kids to treat their partners some day? How would you feel if your kids chose
someone who acted like this?”
- “Call me if you feel like you’re losing control.”
- “Maybe you should try counseling.”
Domestic violence is everyone’s business and when we see
it, we must step-up to stop the cycle of abuse.
- “Domestic violence is a crime. You could be arrested
- “You could end up in jail if you don’t find another way
to deal with your problems. Then what would happen to you and your family?