What You Should Know About Avoiding An Abusive Relationship

Empowerment mug by Avon; 100% profits went to their "Speak Out" foundation
Empowered Caffeination

For my purple challenge post today, I decided to share a picture of my special coffee mug {bought from Avon} in all its purple glory. Avon donated 100% of their profits made from purchases of their Empowerment mug to their Speak Out Against Domestic Violence Foundation. I bought this mug as a reminder that I am a strong survivor who, through a lot of hard work and determination, escaped a dire situation. A friend dubbed me “Warrior Woman” years ago and I feel blessed to be away from the dysfunction that made my daily life hell.

I have written many posts addressed to people in abusive situations. Today, I want to talk to those who aren’t yet in relationships and are on the dating scene, looking for “the one”. I want to ask an important question.

Would you recognize subtle abuse and/or red flags even during the “honeymoon phase” of a new relationship?

I ignored more red flags than I care to admit because I once believed that I needed a relationship at whatever cost. Ignoring the subtle {and not-so-subtle} signs of abuse seemed easier than admitting it was happening. Unfortunately, I made a lot of excuses and allowances for incidents that should have had me running a mile in the opposite direction. In retrospect, I feel sad that I was that desperate for a relationship; my current self would have shaken some sense into the person I was. The redeeming factor of that relationship is my daughter. If I’d run, I wouldn’t have her and I wouldn’t change a thing. Having said that, I want everyone reading this to listen closely and if you take nothing else away from this article, remember this: Educate yourself until you can spot any kind of abuse and all red flag behavior, and be prepared to walk away.

Don’t ignore the signs. Don’t make excuses. Don’t believe it’s a one-time thing. Don’t fall for profuse apologies ESPECIALLY if they come with lavish gifts, romantic gestures, and promises that it’ll “never happen again”. Don’t accept blame, ESPECIALLY if you hear, “If YOU hadn’t done {this}, I wouldn’t have lost my temper” {YOU are NOT to blame for someone losing their temper}. Don’t blame stress, booze, or drugs. Don’t believe it’s love because it isn’t and never will be. Don’t believe that being “with someone” is better than being alone or that you’ll never find anyone else.

A relationship with an abusive person always, always, always comes at a very high cost and you will spend years of your life paying for it with your health, sanity, and your children’s well-being. Although it may seem hard to walk away, in the beginning, trust me when I tell you that it’s far easier to walk away before you can’t walk away without risk, expense, and years of healing.

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Remember: October is National Domestic Violence Awareness Month. Be a part of our purple challenge by sharing your stories, photos wearing purple, and/or details about what you’re doing to raise abuse awareness. Make sure you use the tag #cafesanctuarypurplechallenge for your blog posts, Instagram photos, Flickr photos, and tweets so that we can see what everyone’s posting. Spread the word! We still have a couple of weeks left in the challenge and we want to see how many posts we can do before the end of the month.

As always, we’re here to help.  ❤

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