Covert abuse can be extremely hard to identify – abusers use specific tactics to make sure that the abuse is hidden and victims may not even realize that they are being abused.
Have you asked yourself if you may be a victim of covert abuse?
Here are some questions you can ask to help you understand if your partner is covertly abusing you.
How do you feel when you associate with him?
Whether it’s the garage door opening when he comes home at the end of the day, his name showing up on your phone, or a visceral response when he touches your hand – how you feel when you associate with him is a huge indicator of whether or not you’re safe. Here’s what many victims in our community stated that they felt when they associated with the abuser, whether in person or through communication:
Does he play “The Victim”?
Abusive men love to be in the “victim” role. When they are able to play the victim in the relationship, they can continue their abusive and unfaithful behaviors while making the real victim, their partner, feel badly for them (as well as making family, friends, and others feel disdain for the real victim and pity for the abuser).
- How can you recognize if your abusive partner is playing the victim?
- Does he regularly say that you are hurting his feelings?
- Does he say that you don’t care about his feelings?
- When you are having a bad day, or feeling a negative emotion, does he mirror your feelings and require comfort and care?
- When you are in genuine distress does he seem “off”, angry, sulky, or distant?
- After he confesses, does he require comforting and forgiveness?
Can you articulate your thoughts and feelings to him?
Covert abusers make it very difficult for victims to feel valid, intelligent, and equal – generally without ever saying anything outright or doing anything outright to cause victims to feel this way.
Are you able to talk openly and freely to the abuser about important things, like how you feel and what’s going on in your life? Or do you feel tongue-tied, scrutinized, or invalidated when you attempt to talk with him?
BTR.ORG Is Here For You
If you think you may be a victim of abuse, please listen to your intuition. We are here for you. Attend a BTR.ORG Group Session today for connection and support.