4 Ways to Recognize the Signs of an Abusive Man

Table of contents:

4 Ways to Recognize the Signs of an Abusive Man
4 Ways to Recognize the Signs of an Abusive Man

You've met the perfect man, but something seems odd about him. In the past, maybe you've dated a guy who abused you and you're suspicious it's something you can repeat. Even if an abuser tries to hide his real behavior at first, it is possible to see his real face and protect yourself. You deserve to feel loved and supported by a partner, so never accept an individual who doesn't treat you well.


Method 1 of 4: Knowing Relationship Warning Signs

Recognize Signs of an Abusive Man Step 1

Step 1. If the relationship is progressing too fast, slow down

A burning passion may seem like a fairy tale, but in most cases it's just an illusion that could be a sign of violence in the future. It's normal for abusive men to seem like the perfect match at first, as they try to make women fall for them. See if the individual is forcing something more serious early on or declare too early that he loves her. These are warning signs, which indicate that something is wrong.

  • For example, he may demand exclusivity after the first date or ask her to marry him after only a few months of relationship.
  • Another clue is to notice that he is referring to you as “my love” or “my wife” even if you have only recently met.
Recognize Signs of an Abusive Man Step 2

Step 2. Another warning sign is constant jealousy

Many people think that jealousy is a sign of passion, but actually it comes from insecurity; It's okay to have this feeling from time to time, but the abuser will demonstrate this “control” over you constantly. Pay attention if he overuses the word “jealousy” or gets angry when other men talk to you. Also, be careful if he keeps “bombing” you with questions about what he's doing when the guy isn't around.

  • He might say: “I get jealous when other guys talk to you”, “Why is that man looking at you? He needs to take care of his life” or even “Who was it on the cell?”
  • Making excuses such as being jealous because you love her or blaming you for his envy are common. However, the man's aggressive behavior demonstrates otherwise.
  • Jealousy may not be very uncomfortable at first, but it is likely to cause manipulative behavior in the future.
Recognize Signs of an Abusive Man Step 3

Step 3. Pay attention to negative responses to criticism, even when constructive

Everyone makes mistakes and there is always room to grow; however, abusive men can be very sensitive to disapproval and easily offended. In this way, analyze how the boy reacts to criticism, advice and even jokes or jokes; constant irritation can turn on the warning signal.

For example: let's say the man is late to pick you up and you said "I was getting worried". A normal response would be "Sorry, traffic was hell and cell phone battery ran out." However, an overbearing individual will respond “Damn, you are ungrateful! I am a busy man”

Recognize Signs of an Abusive Man Step 4

Step 4. Monitor your feelings to assess whether or not you are afraid of him

Any partner should serve as a comfort, so it won't be very pleasant if he keeps scaring you. Do you feel that you don't have the freedom to share honest thoughts with him or that you need to keep secrets? Likewise, analyze whether your own behavior is altered when you approach the subject, especially not to irritate him. It's clear evidence that there's something wrong with the relationship.

  • Let's say he asked you out on Saturday night, but you've already made plans with your friends. If you're afraid that the guy will “burst out” with nervousness saying he can't see you, it's a possible sign that he's scaring you.
  • Another example is when you feel forced to hide something, however simple, like working with a guy in the office, or forced to agree with the abusive man, even if you don't have an equal opinion or want to do something else.
Recognize Signs of an Abusive Man Step 5

Step 5. The aggressive person always blames others and plays the victim

Everyone makes a mistake at some point, but an individual like that will always try to place the blame in someone else's lap. Notice if the man says that his relationships didn't work out because of his ex-girlfriends, or if he's always unlucky at work, in studies or in his personal life. Soon, he might start blaming you for treating you badly, which is very unfair.

  • He will say, for example: “I'm not lucky at all”, “It's just that my boss hates me” or “I'm just yelling because you don't listen to me!”
  • When referring to past relationships, you'll hear: "My ex was crazy" or "I wasn't happy with my ex."
Recognize Signs of an Abusive Man Step 6

Step 6. Analyze whether he feels entitled to be superior to others

In healthy relationships, partners are the same; however, an abusive man will judge himself better than anyone else, including you, his girlfriend or wife, even if he doesn't say so. Perhaps it is possible to notice this superiority complex by paying attention to certain signs, such as when noticing that he feels entitled to have things he did not deserve. See if he gives any justification for taking or winning something he wouldn't necessarily be entitled to.

The authoritarian might say “I don't know why they promoted Alex. I deserved more”, “I'll try to get a free drink for myself. We've already spent a lot and they can give it to the track” or “I can't believe my mom gave me less money for my birthday this year”

Method 2 of 4: Identifying Controller Behavior

Recognize Signs of an Abusive Man Step 7

Step 1. See if there are any signs that he “follows” your every step

Even when in love, you have every right to your independence and your partner shouldn't know where you are at all times. Be wary of noticing that he is always aware of your location or questions your attitudes; it is quite possible that it is a way of controlling her, indicating that he is an abusive man.

  • At first, he may appear to be sweet by saying "What are you going to do tomorrow?" or "Tell me everything you did today!" Then, these endearing phrases can turn into “Where are you? Or “Take a picture of where you are”, always with a harsher tone.
  • It's okay to be interested in what your day will be (or was). On the other hand, pressuring her to tell her everything and tell her where she is every minute is inappropriate.
Recognize Signs of an Abusive Man Step 8

Step 2. Watch out if he starts telling you what to wear or do

Again, it can be nice and cute when the guy asks his girlfriend to wear certain clothes or suggest things you should do. However, it is a situation that is likely to deteriorate quickly, indicating that the man may be abusive; don't let him control your dress, schedule, interests, or anything else you do.

At first, he might say “I like your look when you're wearing a dress” or “I want you to put on a dress when we go out”. More examples: “I don't think you should go to graduate school right now” or “Why try to get promoted and have to live far away from me?”. Again, as cute as it sounds, it's better to look more broadly and reconsider whether the boy is really the right person for you

Recognize Signs of an Abusive Man Step 9

Step 3. Beware of men who make you feel guilty because they didn't get what they wanted

It's okay to make small sacrifices for someone you love, but don't throw it all away so that guy is always satisfied. It's sad, but the abusive ones will try to manipulate you into doing what they want, blaming you. Don't allow this to happen by having your own opinions, thoughts and attitudes.

For example: he wants to go out on Saturday, but you already have plans. A possible response from the guy will be “I don't think you love me enough” or “I didn't think I would have to spend my nights alone anymore, it feels like I was wrong”

Recognize Signs of an Abusive Man Step 10

Step 4. Don't allow the individual to isolate you from friends and relatives

They are your support system and they only want your good, which is a threat to an abusive man, because they will help you to “disengage” from him. It is better to reconsider the relationship if you detect it in yours; you must continue normal contact with friends and family.

  • First, he'll start talking bad about these people: “Your friends are very annoying to you”, “I don't like how your mother constantly questions our relationship” or “It seems your sister is jealous of you and doesn't want your happiness”. The intention is to create wear and tear between loved ones and you.
  • In the future, he will be able to create rules and define which people he can contact or talk to.

Method 3 of 4: Detecting Verbal and Emotional Abuse

Recognize Signs of an Abusive Man Step 11

Step 1. Yelling is not always a good sign

A valued companion will converse with respect; talking loudly is not right, regardless of whether they are fighting or not. Tell him this to see if the guy is willing to fix this problem; in case of a negative answer or he denies that he screams, it is very likely that the subject is abusive.

  • Say, for example, “You may not realize it, but you scream a lot when you're frustrated. This scares me a lot and I would like you to tone it down.”
  • It doesn't matter what he screams; if you're raising your voice, it's a problem.
Recognize Signs of an Abusive Man Step 12

Step 2. Say it hurts your feelings

Your partner should be cheering you up on bad days, celebrating your achievements, but an abusive man will criticize your looks, interests, achievements, and talents. Defend yourself immediately if he says something that hurts you; if the behavior continues, it may be better to end the relationship because you are not being treated well.

  • He might say “You don't look good in that outfit”, “Wow, you're getting fat, huh?”, “I don't know how you waste time with this” or “This is the easiest entrance exam. Paid, entered."
  • Criticisms can be communicated as compliments, but they are not yet appropriate. For example: “I love your fat thighs”, “I don't care what others say, I think you sing really well” or “I'm proud of you for taking a job no one wants”.
Recognize Signs of an Abusive Man Step 13

Step 3. Ask the man to stop cursing you in any way

This is unacceptable in a relationship and is considered verbal abuse. Maybe he tries to dodge, saying he was nervous, but it's still not acceptable. Consider this a warning sign for abusive behavior if it occurs during a fight. Also, if he gave you a nickname you don't like or hurt, speak up.

  • Example: the boy calls her a “bitch” or worse during a fight.
  • On the other hand, the “loving nicknames” may refer to some physical characteristic of you or a pop culture character that you don't like; if this happens and you feel you don't add anything to the relationship, let the man know. Say that you feel hurt when you hear this “affectionate name” and ask them to stop; otherwise, the boy is not respecting your emotions.
Recognize Signs of an Abusive Man Step 14

Step 4. Get his attention if you feel embarrassed, even after a joke

The partner needs to be your defender and under no circumstances should you put you in a “fair skirt” at your expense or reveal something personal just to “make fun”. Although it doesn't seem like it at first, it's a form of verbal abuse; talk to the man after the first time he does this so he's aware that you didn't like it. If it happens again, maybe it's time to end the relationship.

  • Suppose you are at a dinner party with his friends. It's not cool for the individual to share stories that embarrass him just for the fun of the group (even more so if you trusted him not to say anything). Secrets must remain confidential.
  • Think of the embarrassment you will experience if he says "I can't take this one for ice cream, because afterward the car smells like fart!"
Recognize Signs of an Abusive Man Step 15

Step 5. Watch out for physical threats against you or anyone else

It's important to always feel safe with your loved ones, but a man who verbally abuses you can make threats. Watch out for signs of violence, which could indicate the subject is dangerous. Even if you don't attack her, you can never accept these manipulation tactics and psychological pressure.

  • He might say "I'll force you into the car if I need to," "I'm afraid of what I might do if I see you and him together again" or "Don't make me work this out with my bare hands."
  • If you are part of the LGBTQIA+ community, he may try to use your sexuality against you, another abhorrent attitude. The threat to expose anything related to sexuality is to be abusive, so get help. Remember that there is nothing wrong with you and don't feel bad about who you are.

Method 4 of 4: Identifying physical and sexual abuse

Recognize Signs of an Abusive Man Step 16

Step 1. Notice if there are major changes in mood and personality

When they are abusive, you may feel that you are living in “Doctor and the Monster”; in good times he will be kind and loving, especially in public, but when he gets angry nevertheless, he will look like someone else, yelling at you and losing control. Be careful around a man who has these types of mood swings, even if he hasn't physically assaulted her.

  • For example, one day, he might praise you and give you flowers, stepping on those same flowers the next day for falling out with you.
  • The "monster" personality may appear with screams and insults at first, with physical abuse to come.
  • It's common for bossy men to act like they're gentlemen around other people so you can control what they think about your relationship. Do not trust this public “persona” of the individual if he or she acts otherwise when they are alone.
Recognize Signs of an Abusive Man Step 17

Step 2. Leave the room if he starts throwing or breaking things out of anger

It is normal to be frightened by these untimely attitudes, which are unacceptable and not your fault. Get to a safe place if he loses control and don't risk being hurt.

  • Say, for example, that you need to go to the bathroom and will be back soon. Stay there until the boy calms down.
  • When possible, call someone to come help or pick you up. Point out that the partner is being aggressive so that this person is aware.
  • If you want to stay with this man, ask him to do couples therapy with you. He needs to resolve this mood disorder, after all, it's unacceptable for him to act this way
Recognize Signs of an Abusive Man Step 18

Step 3. Go to a safe place if he uses force during sex, even if it is part of the act

Forcing sex or causing harm during intercourse is a type of sexual abuse; you choose when and how you want to have intimate contact. It doesn't matter that the relationship is consensual, as he can't pressure her to get laid or push her limits. It is important to report this to someone you trust and ask them to find a safe place to stay.

  • Included are acts such as biting her during intercourse, spanking her, or doing anything you make it clear you don't want. If you don't have your consent, it's wrong.
  • Reconsider your relationship with this man. He is not respecting your body or your limits.
  • Talk to a therapist about what happened so that you can recover. Experiencing this type of abuse is very complicated and specialized help may be needed.
Recognize Signs of an Abusive Man Step 19

Step 4. Seek help if he resorts to any kind of violence or physical abuse

Assaulting her, even just once, will make the man an abusive person; their excuses are unreliable and the situation is very likely to repeat itself. Do not tolerate violence against you.

  • Punching, slapping, pulling her arm, strangling or kicking her are all violent actions.
  • By using physical force, he can push her, use his own body to bring her down, or even hold her hands and feet.
  • Here, attitudes from the individual's past are included. If he admits that he's already beaten an ex-girlfriend, it's almost certain that you will also suffer the same in the future.
Recognize Signs of an Abusive Man Step 20

Step 5.Be prepared for the “honeymoon” phases where the man will apologize and promise to change

After being abused by your partner, the least you can expect is to hear an apology; however, in some cases, it is even capable of being kind and giving gifts. It's a very common tactic abusers use to keep victims from ending the relationship, so don't trust this promise that it will be different. If he is overbearing and violent, talk to someone you trust to get the help you need and stop relating to the man.

  • For example: the boy pushed her against the wall during a fight. Soon afterward, he apologizes and says that this is not the man he wants to be, bringing a bouquet of roses or hosting dinner at an expensive restaurant. Do not believe that it will change, but that it will repeat itself if you do nothing.
  • He may try to blame you, saying that he's pissed you off to the point of pushing you over the edge, or that he doesn't want to hurt you, but that something you said made him very angry. They are all lies; you are not responsible for the man's behavior and you do not deserve this kind of treatment.


  • Seek help as soon as you experience any kind of abuse. Even if the man apologizes and promises it won't happen again, it's probably not true. You have a right to be treated well!
  • It's never your fault; you only deserve love. Never blame yourself for something an individual does to you.
  • When deciding to leave the man, cut off all communications with him unless they have children and cannot do so legally. Trying to maintain the friendship can make the abuser not leave you alone.
  • It is recommended to talk and say that you will leave it in a public place. Tell someone where you are, and if you feel better, end the relationship over the phone. Everything will be fine, but it's always better to be safe than sorry.
  • Keep in touch with friends and family, even if he tries to avoid it. Loved ones are your support system.


  • Don't hook up with a guy when you suspect he's abusive. His behavior will only get worse and it will be more difficult to end the relationship as time goes on.
  • Be prepared for the abuser to get all fragile and apologize by acting like a different man. These are temporary changes, so stay tuned.

Popular by topic