How Abuse Begins?


 

Violence in intimate relationships develops gradually. This is a learned behavior. There are signs to determine if a relationship will be violent in future. If these signs are repeated, be aware you have stepped into an abusive relationship that can be dangerous in future.

The abuser’s aim is to keep the victim subjugated by the use of force. This force can be emotional, mental, economic, physical and sexual. In some cases body language, facial expression and eyes (stares) are used to control the victim. Relationship abuse is executed in a planned manner.

Abusive Expections:

The abuser makes unreasonable demands on the victim for attention. The abuser can never be pleased to know matter how much time and attention victim gives them, it is never enough. Hence victim is subjected to constant criticism and berating because they did not fulfil all of the abuser’s needs. Example, “I just asked you to keep the house clean, you can’t even do that,” “You are using those expressions to gain sympathy from others” etc. In the end victims end up doubting their competency. Usually victims of this type of abuse “pleasers” by nature. They are so bent on pleasing others that they ignore their own needs and anger. Such victims can benefit from assertiveness training, which helps them to learn to say no and to stand up for themselves when others put pressure on them.

Abusers are not violent in all relationships; often they are very popular with other people. They praise you to others thus making you doubt your feelings. They may tell everybody “I love her so much that I can’t even imagine life without her.” But when you two are alone they may say “I just can’t stand being in your comapany.” They have two sets of expressions, one for public and the other is reserved for you in the privacy. Every body likes him so you doubt how come you have problems with him. Most of all how will you put it in words because no one is going to believe you.

They avoid discussing their past relationships. On probing they give elusive responses. “I don’t believe in discussing the past. I want to make my today better.” “She dumpped me what can I say about that.” If you ask “why” ? The response is like she found someone else or she agreed to marry someone of her parent’s choice.

Emotional Blackmail:

It is one of the powerful ways of manipulation by consciously or unconsciously playing on a personal fears, guilt or compassion they are coerced to do things that abuser wants them to do. Abusers either distance themselves or threaten to end the relationship until victim gives into doing what they want. Do not go to visit your friends or family, be with me or if you don’t it means you don’t love me. I’ll not talk to you. They wont return your phone calls or emails. If nothing elese they start hurting themselves like drinking, punching walls or breaking the stuff around them.

They use fear tactics to get the victim under control. They play on victim fears, sense of obligation and guilt to achieve their goals. If you have been dating in secret because you are not very sure of the relationship so your family and friends are not aware of this relationship. He’ll threaten to expose this relationship to all and try to spread rumors. Do X or I’ll commit suicide. The threat of suicide is the ultimate form of control. Usually they do not make serious attempts, it is just a mechanism to keep you in the relationship. But if they are successful then they’ll burden you with this horrible fact for rest of your life. When he threatens suicide for the first time GET OUT OF THERE ASAP.

They’ll also recruit allies to convert you to their side. Some well wishing aunty or didi will tell you he is good at heart doesn’t have any malecious intent. The idea is to make you feel what you are thinking is dubious and does not have any basis.

Victims are usually “codependent” having an excessive need for approval, an intense fear of anger, a need for a peace at any price, a tendency to tilt too much responsibility for other people’s lives and a high level of self-doubt. Victims need to understand it is not their job to fix and take care of other people all the time. They are responsible for their own feelings, they should work towards addressing their fears, guilts and need for being love and cared for.  They need to rescue themselves than others.

It is difficult for an abuser to keep up with good behavior for a long time so they try to rush the relationship from one stage to another. After few meetings they start talking about marriage and spending life together. It is understandable that in Indian context young people of different genders usually meet for the purpose of getting married so they are already in a rush. But watch for clues where the other person is forcing you to have undesired physical contatct, kissing, fondling, non-penetrative sex etc. What ever is non-consensual and is making you uncomfortable is abusive. “Now that we have decided to get married lets have sex and seal this relationship.” Presurring the person to do something against their comfort level is a mind game. It is abusive. 

Abusers avoid taking any responsibility for their behavior. They blame others for all their problems generally the world at large. Like, “so and so instigated me,” “I just came into his talks,” etc. “If the world hadn’t treated me bad I would have been a different person.” “I am this way because X did this to me or X happened to me.” They cannot express their frustration in a constructive manner.

Unpredictable Responses:

The abuser uses drastic mood swings, sudden emotional out bursts for no sensible reason or gives inconsistent responses to same phenomena every time it occurs. This keeps the victim in uncertainity of the abuser’s reaction. It is like walking all eggshells as victim is never sure how the abuser will respond. Such as, the abuser liked you in the red dress. You wore the same dress next time expecting his favorable reaction but he claims he hates it.  So next time you’ll not know what to do and what to expect. This type of behaviour is proved demanding, anxiety provoking, frightening unsettling to victim’s emotional health.

Usually, pleasers and co-dependants are victims of this type abuse. Their fear of their own anger and that of the abuser’s is so over powering that they try to buy peace at any cost. They seek approval for everything they do, to meet the abuser’s unpredictable responses. They lose self-esteem and ability to distinguish between reasonable and unreasonable demands. They need to take an inventory of their own needs and concepts of what is reasonable or not. They should work on their own self-esteem and go for assertiveness training, where they can learn to say no.

Isolation:

In an abusive relationship the victim is systematically isolated from all those people who can help her. Her movements are tracked, who she meets, where she goes, what she says, etc. Her personal belongings are searched and too many questions are asked. To escape constant scrutiny she finally cuts herself off from her supporters. Another example is, if you two are at a public event he’ll constantly monitor your every action what you said, how you said etc. Then either he’ll take you to a corner and tell you what you are doing wrong or when you return back he’ll tell you how disgusting you are. Under such circumstances you’ll start cutting yourself off from people. You’ll start feeling like a child once again living with a parent.

Abuse is systematic in nature. The abused is emotionally manipulated by making them feel guilty for denying the abuser happiness. The abusers portray their dependence on the abused thus making them feel obligated if it doesn’t work then they play on abandonment fears, “or else I’ll leave. ” The abused is purposively confused and isolated from all possible support. A soon as the abused starts questioning these behaviors, the emotional abuse turns into physical assault.

 Identify abuse and understand emotional abuse

 

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41 Responses to “How Abuse Begins?”

  1. vishvanaathjee July 17, 2013 at p07 #

    DG,

    “K” wrote to me a long email complaining about your comment on IHM’s blog (external plumbing and Mommmy, comment) and also against my “chuckling” after reading your comment.

    I replied to him as best as I could hoping to pacify him.

    He was not convinced and he sent me an even longer email on this subject.
    After reading his second email to me, I realised that there can be no meeting point and any discussion with him is pointless.

    I have written to him stating that I will not discuss the matter any further wish to close the subject.

    This is just for your information.
    Regards
    GV

    @GV,
    Welcome to GGTS, a safe space.
    Thank you for standing up for DG, this person is a troll and has ample of time to stalk blogs.
    @IHM told me she received same email from him. Starving him of attention is the best solution.
    Your support is much appreciated.
    Peace,
    DG

    Like this

  2. non-desi bahu July 16, 2013 at p07 #

    I’m not desi but married into a desi family. DG has been a huge support for my down times living in the extended family setting. I agree with everything that she says though I’d say that some issues also exist in other cultures as well, just not to this extreme maybe.

    I personally think that DG is being very accurate and assertive in making her points and describing the real situations. I’m shocked to realize, at least in my own case, how family members actually instigate and backbite, set no boundaries or limits, take each other for granted; how mothers emotionally manipulate and blackmail their children especially sons (though desi mothers gain the credit for cooking, cleaning, and dressing up nice to gain the “reputation” for the family); how protective they are toward their own blood; how double standards prevail in the extended family setting under the rule of the mother usually.

    All this is very foreign to me and after being overly nice to the situation and accept it quietly, I stood up finally and made my points clear. I feel lucky that my husband is not one of the squids who just stay quiet. He actually stood up for me every single time – which of course drives his mother crazy. BUT, reality is always gonna be reality. However much people try to hate you or frame you into somebody else, you’re still gonna stay who you are if you stick always to your values. That’s what I chose to do – make clear to them how I feel, what I want and don’t want, and if they keep up the crap, I will just ignore it.

    One thing I’d say though, I doubt if any parent really doesn’t want to see their children happy with the spouse. MILs could be jealous from time to time or differ greatly from how we handle things, but if we can just tolerate it more and try to remember their goods things and praise their good points, I think any human being should have this much shame and understanding to reflect on themselves. This is what happened to me too.

    Good luck to all the bahus…The journey is not easy.

    @non-desi bahu,

    Welcome to GGTS, a safe space.
    Glad DG could help.
    Please share this message of hope with anyone who may benefit.
    Peace,
    Desi Girl

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  3. K July 16, 2013 at p07 #

    @ DG

    And, here’s some more.

    Though I may have still ignored and forgiven you, treating your atrocious remark as an isolated/singular event of sense gone haywire, but I feel there’s more to it.
    It reveals the larger prejudices that you seem be harboring for a long while now, thinly disguised under the veil of ‘your kind of feminism’.

    Other feminists need not take offence, because I have great respect for all of you who use it sincerely to work for women’s empowerment, but not those who fake it (in order to serve their own personal ulterior motives)

    Like this

    • non-desi bahu July 16, 2013 at p07 #

      I don’t quite understand why you’d accuse DG of all these.
      Most women or any human beings would not have the capacity to identify the issues/patterns so clearly and DG has been doing a great job identifying the problems with us.
      We all need to stay strong, don’t we? What do you mean by personal ulterior motives? What can a young bahu want? come on…

      @non-desi bahu,

      Thank you for having DG’s back.
      Much appreciated.
      Peace,
      Desi Girl

      Like this

  4. K July 16, 2013 at p07 #

    So, you felt you can secretly share my comment with a fellow blogger but which you think was inappropriate to,make an appearance on your blog.

    Valuable enough to be shared secretly but embarrassing enough (for you) to be published openly.

    Great!

    @K,
    There is no secrets here because secrets bread isolation. Your comment was answered as soon as DG read it and it was made public that same minute. New comments first go to moderation and once approved the next comment immediately becomes public on wordpress for your kind information. So don’t feel you are being treated differently than anyone else here.
    Peace,

    DG

    If you think she’ll go around gossiping you are wrong it is open and out

    Like this

  5. K July 16, 2013 at p07 #

    Oh really, you think are deserve to counsel those women who are abused, when you are the one who herself abuses and has little respect for women. You gave a wonderful answer to a question asked at a blog, much to the delight of many other like-minded fellow bloggers/readers.

    Quote:
    He brings external plumbing and mommy.
    Peace,
    DG

    May I ask how different are you from those (please, don’t assume ‘all’) women whose prime target always remains their husband/boyfriend’s mother despite there being no connection between the guy’s mother and their own imagines (or real?) woes.

    external plumbing and mommy – the two are quite comparable (aren’t they??) and by bringing together the man’s ‘external plumbing’ along with ‘mother’ in the same sentence just highlights the strong bias & perversion that the remark reeks of.

    SHOCKING INDEED, a comment of such depraved nature has been made by you when you claim to be a feminist.

    You could have responded to the Q in a proper, civilized manner but you chose otherwise.

    What would you like to say about a similar answer (I have been compelled to phrase it for you) with regard to a WIFE:

    May be she brings her p**** and daddy to the table.

    (or you can use a euphemism in the above case too if you think that renders it polite & acceptable)

    Oh! you might say that that it is totally irrelevant here because the guy was one who asked inane questions but had it been a woman instead (mind you not a mil but some dil who’s always right), then how would have dared to offer such an answer or have dared to address it in this manner.

    Moreover, what actually shocks me that you believe that they can target women in the offensive manner, by comparing her to the male phallus. (or that too with a selective bias, for such comparisons are only reserved for a woman in a role of mother of an adult son/as a mother-in-law of a woman)

    It just sounded like a perverse statement made by some jealous, desperate woman who found it hard to tolerate the love that a son can have for his mother because she imagined post-marriage that it should have either withered/should wither away or at least lessened/should lessen in intensity.

    By unnecessarily dragging the ‘mommy into all of this even when she isn’t remotely connected with this issue, and bringing her in the same line as some inanimate object, has certainly laid bare of the hearts and minds of these feminists here and their brand of ‘feminism’

    Feminism is never a problem but comments like these surely are because they make a mockery of feminism

    And, is a son’s mother, not a woman or does the rule book (if at all there exists one) of feminism exclude her from their definition of ‘women’?

    How can you demean a woman in such a way just because she happens to a mother to a guy?

    Would you do that to a daughter-in-law or a guy’s wife or a daughter’s mother? (& no, doing that also doesn’t make it anyway better)

    Do others get a license to seek & enjoy cheap thrills & frills at the expense of the letter writer’s mother just because he happens to be a male?

    Seriously, ponder over it. And, please don’t even make a mistake me for a ‘woman’ …..oop! a ‘mommy’. I am a guy.

    Nor you should make any assumptions that I don’t believe in woman’s liberation/real feminism but many others including I certainly doubt the validity/authenticity of the ‘feminism’ when it used simply as means of venting out their frustration arising out of their own petty mindedness/feelings of jealousy with obviously no rationale backing it as has been proved in the above case.

    This is when I doubt if it is ‘real’ and you laid bare the idea of ‘feminism’ as you have come to understand it.

    Shameful!

    @K,

    Welcome to GGTS, a safe space.
    Ah, you asked, what qualifies Dg to counsel women?
    Answer she never counsels anyone she only gives her opinion.
    Now about the comment you are talking about, thank you for jumping to conclusion without knowing the context, people who are commenting or hitting like on it do know the context it is male preferance in patriarchy and selective glorification of women as mothers that too only mothers of sons not daughters.

    You chose to read perversion into it, that is your choice, sorry can’t help.
    If you are reading perversion into it then please know the technical term is “parentification” and “emotional incest,” where children are expected to fulfill the adult emotional needs of affection and confidentiality without actual incest.
    About a woman and her daddy; a young bride is asked leave her natal family behind, at times even her name and identity so bringing daddy along in every conversation is not an option. There are instances where a woman “may say in my natal family we did this in this manner… or my dad always said…. and she is snubbed immediately that forget it now you are hear follow our (marital kin’s) rules it is our home. So bride’s daddy and her family that she was part of for larger part of her life are snatched rather erased from her lexicon as soon as marriage is solemnized.

    Patriarchy has survived for eons just because it has women as it’s foot soldiers. In patriarchy not all women are oppressed at all times but some are selectively rewarded with (only mothers of sons) to oppress other women and young men to teach them how to serve patrairchy.

    https://girlsguidetosurvival.wordpress.com/2010/08/02/633/
    https://girlsguidetosurvival.wordpress.com/2009/11/28/desi-in-laws-wedging-a-psychological-warfare-against-bahus/

    In order to serve patriarchy young men are expected to both rever and oppress women at the same time, if mother is revered the wife is seen as a lesser being just by virtue of her gender. Men benefit either way so why should they make efforts to change the system?

    https://girlsguidetosurvival.wordpress.com/2011/05/13/desi-sons-victims-of-their-mothers/
    https://girlsguidetosurvival.wordpress.com/2011/05/14/desi-sonsvictims-of-their-mothers-ii-modus-operandi/

    https://girlsguidetosurvival.wordpress.com/2011/04/08/desi-sex-ratio-and-marriage-nirmala-1925-to-2011/


    And about feminism, it explains why things are the way they are and here it is used to learn that and then make efforts to change the status quo.
    Thank you for visiting and taking time to leash out.
    Peace,
    Desi Girl

    .

    Like this

    • sexy indian July 16, 2013 at p07 #

      the fact that you started jumping up and down and spit venom on her blog tells that you have been rubbed a wrong way . She tried to put humor to a serious situation but irony of irony is that you neither get the seriousness of mommy interference nor the humor. Stay away from this blog and have your own mommy supporters blog if you want to.

      Like this

    • K July 16, 2013 at p07 #

      Ok, so you answered it here.

      About a woman and her daddy; a young bride is asked leave her natal family behind, at times even her name and identity so bringing daddy along in every conversation is not an option. There are instances where a woman “may say in my natal family we did this in this manner… or my dad always said…

      This lame explanation just doesn’t work because there are nuclear families too in India but you may argue that they still aren’t free from the guy’s parental ‘intervention’

      What about the very independent nuclear family system of west like America, some women do the same talk there too – talk about men with mommy issues and abuse their mothers using crass & vulgar language routinely online on several websites.

      How can then one use the system to justify personal attacks/vulagr comparisons which lack all rationale.

      I can’t believe that you can even defend a remark of such nature.

      In other words, many women are just using the cover of ‘feminism’ as an excuse to advance their own motives and offer a justification for jealousy for their husband’s/bf’s moms/families

      Please use feminism only as a means of women’s liberation/empowerment but not as means of camouflaging one’s jealousy.because when you do so, you disrespect the genuine ones fighting for genuine causes.

      @K,
      You are entitle to your opinions.
      Here is about women and their families
      https://girlsguidetosurvival.wordpress.com/2010/01/20/desi-parenting-raising-confused-daughters/
      https://girlsguidetosurvival.wordpress.com/2010/06/17/desi-marriage-eligible-or-ineligible-question/

      DG is done here, you may continue.
      Peace,
      Desi Girl

      Like this

    • K July 16, 2013 at p07 #

      oh please I didn’t read any sort of incest into it in any form neither physical or emotional ( the latter being a some sick term coined by some equally sick people just like oedipus or electra complex) Anway,, that calls for any discussion.

      What I am trying to say is that you made a very bad attempt by equating ‘the mother’ with the ‘male genitalia’ so to bring them together in a single sentence.
      It can’t get worse than this because it insults a mother who too is a woman.
      And, if you feel that (yes, it might be your feeling shared by a few others too at your blog or some other blog) that a son’s mother is rewarded in our society, you still don’t have any right to ostracize her by using crude language and it becomes all the more awful since you claim to be a ‘feminist’

      Moreover, your reference to the guy’s mother (even, if you hadn’t clubbed it together with a guy’s genitalia & merely mentioned her) was completely misplaced because mother was no where in sight in the letter writer’s (a guy) queries/comment.

      Your choice & act of unnecessarily dragging the guy’s mother amidst this mire and use her as a sacrificial lamb was in very poor taste and thus leads other to question your true motivations.

      Even if you feel that the guy/any guy for that matter might has some flaws as per your ‘perspective’, you have no rational reason to squarely blame his mom for all of it.

      Hold the guy responsible and not his mother.

      And, hey, feminists, what happened? So, when you make statements such as these, you believe the mother alone had been responsible for that son’s upbringing and not the father. It’s her duty only.

      Wow! You said it all.

      Like this

      • Huzaifa July 17, 2013 at p07 #

        K you seem to enjoy an expertise in selective analysis. What DG did was to point out the factors that catalyze abuse. Her response was aimed towards a particular section of abusers who rely on chauvinist ideologies promoted by the parents especially the mother (emphasizing on son as more valuable than daughter in law). the conjunction and is by no means a commentary on the conjoined nature of the two, rather the reference was metaphoric to represent a class of ideas. Mommy and male plumbing are two discrete objects and are used here only to show the workings of patriarchy. the rest is a figment of your ‘psychoanalytic’ imagination.

        Like this

  6. ramaniyam July 6, 2013 at p07 #

    Hi Desi Girl,

    I landed at your blog after I read a comment on IHM. I mtruly liked your posts and they have helped me get a perspective in life.. After reading this I am now able to differentiate between “love and concern” and “control and abuse” in people.
    Thank you and please continue writing..

    @ramaniyam,
    Welcome to GGTS, a safe space.
    Glad DG made a difference. Love is the most misappropriated and manipulated word and emotion. :)
    Please share this message of hope with anyone wh may benefit.
    Peace,
    Desi Girl

    Like this

  7. Trupti January 7, 2013 at p01 #

    i m glad to bump into ur blog and get pearls of wisdom….i m going for some rounds of counseling with my husband…but i think there is a serious shortage of sound counselors like u…i m beginning to wonder if there is any hope or possibility in expecting the abuser in my case husband to change…..just hoping if there is a ray of hope… coz everything that i read in ur blog has been spot on and unfortunately me not being a psychologist can figure out wats worng bu trained psychologists seem to be charmed by my husband and have given illogical advise….if u can make time from ur schedule and share ur id….i would like to request ur help. Thanks for a wonderful blog…atleast its consoling to know I m not alone going thru this…

    @Trupti,
    Welcome to GGTS, a safe space.
    Glad GGTS could help you realize you are not alone and you are not the first or last desi woman to go through this. Just know all behaviors are learned behaviors thus is abusive behavior so it can be unlearned too. The bottom line is the person has to be willing to unlearn abusive behavior and learn new productive behaviors. Abusers are charmers by trait. It is difficult to find a professional who understands psychological underpinnings of South Asian relationships.

    DG offers paid one on one consultation through emails and voice chat you can contact her on girlsguidetosurvival@gmail.com

    Please share this message of hope with anyone who may benefit.
    Peace,
    Desi Girl

    Like this

  8. Stephanie Beeken September 1, 2012 at p09 #

    I am the result emotional psychological abuse, I have received all of the situations mentioned in my relationship. As a result I am signed off work with severe depression, I have very bad anxiety which means I never want to venture out, I have no faith in myself, I blame myself for everything, I don’t think I am any good.
    He managed to get me to cut ties with my dearest friends and family, I have since got them back but now I worry that my actions will cause me to lose them again and I don’t believe them when they say they won’t.
    Everything you have put is 100% true but I have not seen it until now, just what he wanted to happen and ending in me looking like the problem in the public eye.
    Unfortunately he has played a big card in the fact that he is a Special Constable and brought his work into the situation by making me look like its my fault and to collect my belongings from the police station and that I will get into trouble if I contact them and have made sure that the force are on his side. I have my own flat in the town where he works but I am afraid to be there for getting into trouble or seeing him.
    I know receiving CBT is what I need and I am hoping to be referred but if not it is going to cost too much, I need the help in how to be able to think differently because I don’t know how to on my own.

    @Stephanie Beeken,

    Welcome to GGTS, a safe space.
    Sorry about what happened to you just know you are not the first and you won’t be the last to go through this. All behaviors are learned behaviors and they can be unlearned too.
    Just take one day at a time and work back your confidence, show some self love.
    Read around browse GGTS read through the comments you’ll find an answer, all tools are on the side bar on to the right in separate pages. Personalized support to identify problem areas, set realistic goals and learn new skills to resolve them is hereafter nominally charged to keep this space safe and free for all find her email id within the comments and write to her if you fail to find an answer on GGTS.

    Please share this message of hope with anyone who may benefit.
    Peace,
    Desi Girl

    https://girlsguidetosurvival.wordpress.com/all-about-relationships/your-rights-in-a-relationship/
    https://girlsguidetosurvival.wordpress.com/all-about-relationships/self-confidence/
    https://girlsguidetosurvival.wordpress.com/all-about-relationships/assertiveness-learn-to-say-no/
    https://girlsguidetosurvival.wordpress.com/all-about-relationships/feeling-and-expressing-your-emotions/

    Like this

  9. sarah moktar July 5, 2012 at p07 #

    This is how my dad treats me. I’m ofcourse Indian, and my description fits the codependent victim because I’m definitely not a pleaser. I used to be one when I was younger. I’m 26, and I want to get out of the household, and now my dad is using guilt trips, threatening with suicide, and threatening to take away my car and drivers license, health insurance, and how culturally this is bad for me to run away from home. I would love some advice please.

    @sarah moktar,

    Welcome to GGTS, a safe space.
    Glad you could identify with what is being done to you. Guess you did not read the homepage here is the link https://girlsguidetosurvival.wordpress.com/2012/07/04/it-feels-good-to-know-dg-made-a-difference/
    The guilt trips are dealt in this post https://girlsguidetosurvival.wordpress.com/2009/10/16/emotional-blackmail/

    Please browse around read comments carefully if you still need help with making exit plan and developing skills then contact DG her email is in comments or join her on FB.

    Please share this message of hope with anyone who may benefit.
    Peace,
    Desi Girl

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  10. Indian Homemaker December 28, 2011 at p12 #

    Congratulations :) This post in one of the winners of ‘Tejaswee Rao Blogging Awards – 2011′ (TRBA 2011). We would like to create an ebook with all the winning entries in 47 categories on Feminism and Gender Issues in India (and one category on Animals Rights). Please do let us know if you are fine with your winning post/s being included in this ebook. ( Please click here to let us know).

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  11. Carl September 4, 2011 at p09 #

    My ex is in a similar situation but I dare not say anything. He gas taken her away from friends and family and recently found out she had been talking to me. He went nuts. Now she has cut all contact with me. And been quite nasty to me too. She hasn’t blocked me on Facebook but I can’t send any emails or messages to her.
    He was in an abusive relationship before and I’m worried that it will escalate into physical abuse before long. They have only been together since April and got engaged after a month. Things don’t feel right to me.

    @Carl,

    Welcome to GGTS, a safe space.
    Sorry to hear about your friend, it is a very common scenario than werealize.
    If you are not able to communicate with the person directly then please put the link to this post on your facebook wall and subsequently you could post other posts about Cycle of violence, emotional abuse etc. Find out nearest domestic violence shelter in your community and speak to them about how you can help her. You can also get some information brochures from them and give it to her.

    Yes, you are right it is heading to a disaster at the speed of lightening.

    Please share this message of hope with anyone who may benefit.
    Peace,
    Desi Girl

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  12. Tracey June 14, 2011 at p06 #

    I am impressed with this article. Well expressed.

    @Tracey,
    Welcome to GGTS, a safe space.
    Please share this message with anyone who may benefit.
    Peace,
    Desi Girl

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  13. Londane paille May 5, 2011 at p05 #

    why do people abuse and when they do it they dont get in trouble because they have some type of problem thats so not fair

    @Londane paille,
    Welcome to GGTS, a safe space.

    why do people abuse?

    Because they want to and they know they can get away with it.

    they dont get in trouble?

    Because societies treat intimate partner violence as a minor spat in lovers nothing serious. If they were to abuse strangers on the road they’ll be rotting in the jails.

    Please share this message of hope with anyone who may benefit.
    Peace,
    Desi Girl

    Like this

  14. tice October 12, 2010 at p10 #

    I was wondering about what if you are with someone who was with an abuser in the past and is now friends with him?? Like about three years ago. He hasn’t any help with his abusing problem, but told her he was sorry about the way he treated her before. Now they talk, but one time she told him that she was going to text him back cause she was busy and the next day he texted her, he flipped on her and was being a jackass to her about it and then said he could be mad at her as it was a joke. I was wondering if you think he has changed or if he is the same guy still?? I need some advice. please!!!

    @tice,
    Welcome to GGTS, a safe space.
    People don’t change because you want them to or a lots of time has lapsed unless they want to change. Change is reflected in actions not in words. My 2 year old niece says sorry mommy and then goes back to making mess. It takes effort to be an adult in a relationship and treat anothers as an equal adult.

    If someone says they’ll change for you then believe me they’ll not. They’ll just camouflage into passive aggressive behavior or hold it on you that they changed for you so they need to be compensated for being good. In a relationship it is important both partners feel safe and valued. Good behavior in return is your right not a reward. These are two adults not a master and dog or an adult and a kid who needs to be given a treat for every good behavior.

    …was being a jackass to her about it and then said he could be mad at her as it was a joke…

    This is called minimizing. You hurt another person and then tell them they need to have more patience or sense of humor.
    If this person had broken up three years ago then what she is still doing with him? It serves him to keep her around that way he can control and manipulate her and went out on her and blow it into a joke. Abusers do not let go of their victims so easily. It serves them to keep them around.

    She has to explore her emotions why is she keeping him around even if as a friend? Where is this need for keeping him around is coming from. In the name of humanity? That is a good lable to compensate your lack of courage to say no. Is anything missing in her life that this abuser is making up for? I guess no. It only feels good to hear someone say they made a mistake and how good you are. It is basically an ego boost.

    If you don’t let go of past then how do you think you’ll make room for the new and present. If we refuse to learn lessons from our past we are bound to repeat it only with newer and different people.

    Hope this helps. Please share this message of hope with anyone who may benefit.

    Peace,
    Desi Girl

    Like this

  15. Sunray August 24, 2010 at p08 #

    DesiGirl,

    My first remarks were purely based on this comment (perhaps if Indians moved out of their parents’ homes by the age of 20 or at least by 25, I) like I had mentioned. It was never meant based on the article or the ‘Desi’ Word!!

    Another clarification.. when I said Good Reading.. I meant to say its so crisp and clear to read and understand.. and was not meant is a way of like reading a novel/book kinda reading.

    Have given the information to my friend

    @Sunray
    Thank you for the clarification. Go where. Even at 25 you are still in school or have just started your first job. You are not financially ready for an independent life. Even if you are, are you aware how single women who live on their own are treated by communities? Strange men not only make passes but break into their homes. If a woman tries to live independently she is bothered so much that she goes back to where she came from. Communities make sure that no other woman dare follow her lead. A tacit fear of sexual assaults is used to keep women in place. It is a vicious cycle but women are pushing in all directions and make a dent in the system.

    Thanks for supporting your friend, it will be long and hard work. She’ll even make decisions contarary to what we think is right but our job should be to be there for her and support her. Please be aware if you feel her or any other coworker’s safety and life is in danger due to that guy please go ahead and report it to your supervisor and HR. Often time intimate partner violence escalates and turns bloody.

    Peace,
    Desi Girl

    Like this

  16. Sunray August 19, 2010 at p08 #

    Hey DesiGirl,
    This is my first time here and I must say I’m impressed. But reading few comments, I wanted to say this first – This phenomenon is NOT just Indian. This is universal. We just assume/give impression that its only Indian girls/women go through such things. May be its the % population comparison that makes it look so worse. I’ve personally seen this kind of abuse happen to one of my friends who is a US Citizen (not Indian in any way!), well educated and has a good position in a well known company but goes thru such nuisances/abuses.. he keeps calling her every other hour to see what she is upto.. whom she went for lunch with etc.,

    Anyway.. back to you now :) I loved the way you’ve articulated and put your thoughts in such clear words. Makes a good reading.

    Like this

    • girlsguidetosurvival August 19, 2010 at p08 #

      @Sunray,

      Welcome to GGTS, a safe space.

      You are right intimate partner violence (IPV) is not limited to just India, anywhere there is patriarchy there is violence against women as it privileges men over women (remember not all women are opressed at all times some women do opress some men and other women :) Not all men opress women some are opressed by other men :) in the name of caste, class, religion, ethnicity, age and what not… :) ). IPV is not immune to any country, ethnicity, class, caste, religion or any category of human differentiation. Desi Girl is amused what gave you an impression that she thinks IPV is exclusively Desi phenomenon (here desi does not mean Indian, it is a collective political identity of South Asians).

      Enough ink is spilled and resources are there for westners and for that reasons GGTS is committed Desi issues and Desi taboos in a very desi language. :) Please be informed research has shown 95% of women experience gender violence in their life time and 90% experience IPV in various forms not just limited to emotional, psychological, verbal, financial or physical violence.

      …May be its the % population comparison that makes it look so worse… So abandon the % dirty apple myth :) .

      Your friend is in an abusive relationship that she is assuming she ended but her boyfriend refuses to accept the break up. Please help her seek help from nearest domestic violence shelter. They’ll help her get a protection order against him She can even call National Domestic Violence Hotline 1-800-799-SAFE(7233) to explore her options and available resources in her vicinity.

      Encourage her to inform her supervisor about her stalking situation. The supervisor will contact the Human Resources department and they can help her through Workplace Violence Prevention Program. If she informs her employer, by law it will not be held against her. They will rather protect her by changing her worksite or screening her calls or visitors. This is a serious issue, personal violence can escalate into workplace violence and harm many people. Research has shown that it most dangerous time in a relationship is when a woman decides to leave an abusive relationship because the abuser feels he is loosing control over her. In order to maintain their control abusers use extreme force and it can be fatal, if they don’t see hope of begetting control they can even resort to murder -suicide.

      Please share this message of hope with anyone who may benefit.

      Peace,
      Desi Girl

      PS: GGTS was never intended for good read, it’s goal is to share evidence based best practices to nurture healthy relationships. :)

      Like this

  17. Gori Auntie August 3, 2010 at p08 #

    Desi Girl, perhaps if Indians moved out of their parents’ homes by the age of 20 or at least by 25, Indian society would change for the better. I know that many places do not rent to single, young women now, however, if there was mass moving out of home by the new generation, renters would accomodate. Afterall, they’d be making money.

    Like this

    • girlsguidetosurvival August 3, 2010 at p08 #

      @Gori Auntie,

      Where will these 20 something go and what will they do?

      It is so easy for a woman in India. Just walk out if you don’t like it. Go where? At 20 you are still in school or at 25 have just started your first job. You are not financially ready for an independent life. In an economy where second job or part time job is not an option. (Majority still lives under poverty line making $2.00 a day. So we are not talking about them we are just focused on middle class educated women here.) Even if you are, are you aware how single women who live on their own are treated by communities? Strange men not only make passes but break into their homes. If a woman tries to live independently she is bothered so much that she goes back to where she came from. Communities make sure that no other woman dare follow her lead. A tacit fear of sexual assaults is used to keep women in place. Read this to know what goes into making of a desi marriage
      https://girlsguidetosurvival.wordpress.com/2010/06/17/desi-marriage-eligible-or-ineligible-question/

      Desi women like always have been pushing all boundaries in all directions. some make it and some don’t but they do try.

      Peace,

      Desi Girl

      Like this

  18. Gori Auntie August 1, 2010 at p08 #

    Desi Girl, do you think the set-up where the daughter-in-law goes to live in the home of her in-laws itself is abusive? It seems that the in-laws do not treat their bahus like adults, but rather like children, keeping tabs on her movements.

    Like this

    • girlsguidetosurvival August 2, 2010 at p08 #

      Yes, the patriarchal set up society, polity, religion, family and every thing else is abusive to women and even men with less power.

      Patriarchy previleges men over women and some women over men depending on their class and caste status. In the west it was white men had more power (conrol over resources and decision making) than white women and men of color. Men of color had more power than women of color but less power than white women. Like wise white women had less power than white men but more than men of color. So most oppressed was the women of color.

      Now from this frame of reference study the desi household. New bahu would the woman of color. MIL will be the white woman who will have more power over both her son (man of color) and bahu. Yet she’ll have less power than her own spouse (white man).

      Women as mothers wield more power over younger men who are their sons and other junior women in the family. It is not just bahus but even sons are infantalized in some desi families. In rural context they can even decide if the couple gets to sleep together. Please refer my comment to Annie here
      https://girlsguidetosurvival.wordpress.com/2010/06/24/527/#comments

      I hope this helps.

      Peace,

      Desi Girl

      Like this

  19. girlsguidetosurvival July 31, 2010 at p07 #

    @Chakran,

    Welcome to GGTS, a safe space.
    Please refer my comment to Tara and follow the links. Kindly take a look around GGTS and then decide for your self.

    Please share this message of hope with anyone who may benefit from it.

    @anjugandhi,

    You are right most women do not even consider it as abuse because it is so pervasive in our communities hence it is taken as a normal part of spousal or in-law interaction. Each one of us knows someone who is going through what is mentioned on this page. So if some one even questions they have doubts about their judgement as no one else is complaining.

    Secondly, relationship abuse is executed in a planned manner. The abuser(s) systematically erodes the self esteem and self perceptions of the abused that he/she starts believing they are definitely wrong. And they like Stockholm syndrome start protecting the abuser by making excuses on his/her behalf. Like, he/she yelled at me because he/she was stressed due to X/deadline. He/she was mean to me because X/MIL instigated him/her against me and so on…

    Peace,

    Desi Girl

    Like this

  20. anjugandhi July 30, 2010 at p07 #

    i think most of the women have been victim of either of the types at some time or other in life and the best part is they even don’t realise that they are being emotionally victimized

    Like this

  21. Charakan July 29, 2010 at p07 #

    Though most abusers are male,I am sure some women also abuse their partner emotionally similar to the way you described

    @Chakran,

    Welcome to GGTS, a safe space.
    Please refer the comment below and follow the links. Kindly take a look around GGTS and then decide for your self.

    Please share this message of hope with anyone who may benefit from it.

    Peace,

    Desi Girl

    Like this

  22. girlsguidetosurvival July 29, 2010 at p07 #

    @IHM,

    Thanks for our support and encouragement. Desi Girl appreciates your kindness to link this page to your post.

    @Tara and @Sharmili,

    Welcome to GGTS, a safe space.

    Tara, you are right in your observation. Most information on GGTS is gender neutral but focus will always remain on women are more women than men deal with emotional manipulation in the name of love from their dear ones be it birth family or initimate relationships. Sometimes it is for love, other times it is family honor or tradition they have to guard by giving up personal spcae in rights.

    Please check other posts and pages you’ll see what educaated, employed middle class women go through in every day life. They are literally doing tight rope walk on traditioanl yet modern outlook. :)

    Check Desi Girl’s response to Bikram
    https://girlsguidetosurvival.wordpress.com/2010/07/19/desi-parents-what-do-you-know-about-your-single-30-something/

    Check DG’s response to White on Rice
    https://girlsguidetosurvival.wordpress.com/2010/04/12/aren%e2%80%99t-you-the-curry-n-rice-girl/

    Sharmila,
    You are right, it becomes so ingrained in everyday life in one’s life and even those around us that if a woman questions it she is made to feel abnormal and unreasonable. “You are not special, it happens to every one why do you have to make such a hue and cry about it.” Being labled trouble makers in the family and relationships scares many women from confronting the intimate relationships.

    Please check other material on GGTS may be you’ll find something use ful for someone you think may need it.

    Please share this message of hope with any one you think may benefit from it.

    Peace,

    Desi Girl

    Like this

  23. sharmila July 29, 2010 at p07 #

    Hey,wandered in your space through IHM’s blog :-)Thought provoking article there!It’s unbelievable how many women take mental abuse on a daily basis from their seemingly loving family..After a while they no longer feel it is abuse and take it as way of life or even if they do believe,they choose to ignore it :(

    Like this

  24. Tara July 29, 2010 at p07 #

    What you have written is bang on in terms of the abuser and victim, however what I do not agree is the fact that you have used female gender for the victim.. I know for a fact that there are cases of abuse with reversed genders as well… and I would want all such abusers to read this and realize the damage they are doing intentionally or unintentionally to their own loved ones.

    came here thru IHM’s blog..

    Like this

  25. Indian Homemaker July 28, 2010 at p07 #

    Neatly put. I am linking this to my post on Emotional Atyachaar.

    Like this

  26. Sneha July 16, 2010 at p07 #

    Hi Desi Girl,
    Excellent blog and rather frank and to the point solutions, no easy ones though!
    You’ve got me interested in your quotes of the Sis Ganj Sahib on Shail’s blog. Please email me some quotes if you know !
    Would be awaiting your feedback.
    Sneha

    Like this

    • girlsguidetosurvival July 17, 2010 at p07 #

      Sneha,

      Welcome to GGTS, a safe space.

      Thanks for your kind words. Will definitely email you the quotes from Sis Ganj Sahib that changed the direction of my life for better. I am doing some personal research on those quotes if you are interested I can even send you that.

      Please share this message of hope with anyone who may benefit.

      Peace,

      Desi Girl

      Like this

  27. nnn June 17, 2010 at p06 #

    I wonder how do you know for what I have going through it so well done said.
    It feels like i wrote my own diary.. can’t believe I can survive at that time but ending feeling like being insane.. after a year… I am on the recovery still thou.. Good Job !!!

    Like this

  28. Meghann Bonesteel May 4, 2010 at p05 #

    You must know, your post goes to the center of the issue. Your clearness leaves me wanting to know more. merely so you know, i will instantly grab your feed to keep up to date with your web site. Sounding Out thanks is purely my little way of saying bravo for a wonderful resource. Accept my nicest wishes for your inflowing article.

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  29. iphone insurance comparison January 22, 2010 at p01 #

    Hey this is one of the best articles that I have read till date. I m really very much impressed with your work. It has been a pleasure reading this article of yours. I never knew that there was so much to learn in this subject. I am glad to have read your article.

    Like this

  30. GadwayFerry January 2, 2010 at p01 #

    I’m always looking for new infos in the WWW about this subject. Thanks.

    Like this

Trackbacks/Pingbacks

  1. Hey IHM, I love your blog. But all the horrible news is making me a misanthrope… | The Life and Times of an Indian Homemaker - May 6, 2013

    [...] and what is non-negotiable, understanding personal boundaries and understanding how abuse begins [How Abuse Begins] is empowering. [...]

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  2. RESULTS: Tejaswee Rao Blogging Awards – 2011 | The Life and Times of an Indian Homemaker - December 26, 2011

    [...] How Abuse Begins? – Desi Girl [...]

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The Life and Times of an Indian Homemaker

My life and everything that touches it....

Kafila

media | politics | dissent

"कुरुक्षेत्र"

मेरे विचारो का

समाजवादी जनपरिषद

वैश्वीकरण विरोध हेतु

Own your relationships. Don't let them own you.

A Desi Girl's Guide to Relationship Survival

Own your relationships. Don't let them own you.

W.S.S.A @ UWindsor

Women's Studies Student Association @ University of Windsor, Ontario

संजीव तिवारी . . Sanjeeva Tiwari .. Chhattisgarh

हमको मालूम है जन्नत की हकीक़त लेकिन, दिल को खुश रखने को ग़ालिब ये ख़याल अच्छा है

Own your relationships. Don't let them own you.

Beyond The Second Sex (स्त्रीविमर्श)

Own your relationships. Don't let them own you.

नारी , NAARI

Own your relationships. Don't let them own you.

Own your relationships. Don't let them own you.

Sparsh

Own your relationships. Don't let them own you.

Zerqa Abid

Own your relationships. Don't let them own you.

Sex And The Indian Cities

love, friendship and life in the Indian cities

THE PCOS DIVA

FINALLY FEELING FIT, FERTILE AND FABULOUS

NightLife

Chronicles of Less Urban Living, Fresh from In the Night Farm

आराधना का ब्लॉग

'अहमस्मि'- अपनी खोज में

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