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Look over the following questions. Think about how you are being treated and how you treat your partner. Remember, when one person scares, hurts or continually makes fun of the other person, it’s abuse.
Does Your Partner…
• embarrass or make fun of you in front of your friends? family? teachers?
• put down your accomplishments or goals?
• make you feel like they are smarter and that you are unable to make decisions?
• use intimidation or threats to get their way?
• tell you that you are nothing without them?
• treat you roughly—grab, push, pinch, shove or hit you?
• call you several times a night or show up to make sure you are where you said you would be?
• use drugs or alcohol as an excuse for saying hurtful things or abusing you?
• blame you for how they feel?
• pressure you sexually for things you aren’t ready for?
• make you feel like there “is no way out” of the relationship?
• prevent you from going or doing things you want—like hanging out with your friends or wanting to be by yourself?
• try to keep you from leaving after a fight? Or leave you somewhere after a fight to “teach you a lesson?”
• make you feel like everything that doesn’t go right is your fault?
• sometimes feel scared of how your partner will act?
• constantly make excuses to other people for your partner’s behavior?
• believe that you can help your partner change if only you changed something about yourself (i.e., how you dress, who you talk to, or how you show you care)?
• try not to do anything that would cause conflict or make your partner angry?
• feel like no matter what you do, your partner is never happy with you?
• always do what your partner wants you to do instead of what you want?
• stay with your partner only because you are afraid of what your partner would do if you broke up?
If any of these are happening in your relationship, talk to someone. Without some help, the abuse will continue to happen.