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Relationships

5 Signs You’re In An Abusive Relationship

There’s a common misconception about anyone in an abusive relationship. People think that it’s easy for the abused to know they’re in a bad situation. People assume it’s easy to move away from the abuser and start a whole new life.

Sadly, that’s far from the truth. Before we begin our article, there’s something important you have to remember. Abuse is all about manipulation and power.

Read on to find out whether or not you’re in an abusive relationship.

Signs You’re in an Abusive Relationship

Abusers are known for placing the blame on their victims. They create confusion and guilt, which they hide behind things like ‘protection’ or ‘playfulness.’

Does this feel like something you, or someone you love, are experiencing? If you answered yes, you have to realize this isn’t how a normal relationship should be.

Read the signs below. If you recognize any of them, it’s time to take action.

1. You Feel Pressured to Do Things

We all know the age-old love story of two people seeing each other’s eyes from a distance. Somehow, they know they’re meant for one another, and they can’t wait for their relationship to start.

An abusive relationship has traits very similar to that of this whirlwind romance. In the beginning, you’ll notice that an abusive partner is sweet and considerate. They’ll have plenty of nice things to say that make you feel like you’re special and truly in love.

You may feel that the words are nice, but they usually have a concealed urgency. This urgency is their way of gaining control over you as quickly as possible.

Do you feel like you’re getting pressured to start a relationship, get married, or have children? This can be a telltale sign you’re in an abusive relationship.

2. You’re Always in the Center of Their Impulsive Mood Swings

Mood swings are natural. We all have them for one reason or another.

What’s not normal is having to endure abrupt mood swings that come out of nowhere. Your partner may be sitting there all calm and nice. Then something triggers them off. They become insulting and furious for no reason.

After a few minutes, they return to their calm self. Not only that but they’re apologetic and swear to you they were only joking. These minute-to-minute changes in behavior create confusion and guilt.

There are two things to remember when you’re in a similar situation. One, this isn’t normal behavior. Two, this isn’t your fault in any way.

It’s important that you’re aware early on that this is dangerous territory. This is the time to take a step back and evaluate whether you want to continue with this person or not.

3. You Constantly Get Blamed for

Abusers accuse their victims of anything and everything that doesn’t go their way. They usually throw out accusations and blame without any thought or planning. As a victim, you get used to hearing these accusations on a regular basis. Soon, you begin believing it to be true.

Take note of whether this happens to you in your relationship. If you notice it happening often, you have to put an end to it.

Another thing you have to pay attention to is whether your partner keeps tabs on you. Do they want to know you are at every moment of the day? While it’s nice to have that kind of harmless attention, it’s a dangerous pothole to fall into.

4. You’re Made to Feel Isolated

One type of control abusers have is to keep you away from your family and friends. They give excuses like, “They’re meddlers” or “They’re trying to break us up.”

The whole point of doing this is that they want to make you feel isolated. They want you to feel dependent on them and only them.

Another way they isolate you is by gaining control of your credit cards or bank accounts. Or maybe you can’t go where you want without their permission.

All these force you to rely only on your partner. This gives them more and more power over you while making you feel less and less in control of your life.

Isolation in all its forms is dangerous and should be dealt with promptly.

5. You’re in a Constant State of Fear

Abusers will rely on intimidation tactics to frighten you. This keeps abuse victims are always in a state of dread and uneasiness. You’re scared of upsetting your partner, or that could insult you, or even humiliated in public. Then, there’s the fear of being physically assaulted.

Fear comes in varying degrees. It can even take a toll on your physical and mental health simply by eating away at your self-confidence.

It’s worth noting that even if your partner hasn’t physically abused you in any way, just being fearful is a bad sign. Fear shouldn’t be part of any healthy.

A Final Note

It’s not uncommon for abuse victims to play down the severity of the situation they’re in. Their abusive partners have drilled into their subconscious that they’re powerless and worthless. They wear down their self-esteem, until they truly believe everything is their fault.

If these five signs sound familiar, tell yourself that this behavior isn’t acceptable. You don’t have to put up with any of it.

That’s the first step. The second step is to try and salvage the relationship. Give your partner a chance to own up to their negative behavior. They could have it in them to change for the better.

If they fail to do so, it’s time to walk away. That may sound easier said than done, which is why reaching out to friends or professionals for support can help you make this transition more smoothly. By getting the right advice and having a reliable plan, you can feel safer about finding a way out.

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Fresh Start Relationships

How To Make Friends as an Adult

Who are your friends?

Are you struggling to make friends as an adult? This can be especially difficult if you have relocated, or if you are an empty nester.

A recent survey has determined you might not have a lot of close relationships in your life. In fact, the number of people who claim to have more than three solid friendships in their lives is only 37% or one-third of the population. Even more discouraging is the idea that fully 27% of adults say they have no close relationships at all.

As an adult, the thought of trying to make new friends is a daunting idea. For one thing, we’re swamped. We get caught up on our personal responsibilities and business goals that frequently we don’t make time for a social life outside of loose connections with our children’s friends’ parents and professional networking. Who has the time?

Thankfully, you do. It actually takes less time than you think to discover the joy of adult friendships. You can start with these five simple tips:

#1 Start with the Old

Why reinvent the wheel? Instead, ask yourself who your friends used to be. Is it possible you can rekindle some old friendships? In this era of social media, tracking down your best friend from high school is easier than ever. Why not shoot someone a quick message or text to open up the conversation all over again?

#2 Become a Listener

When in groups of new people, rather than working hard to be the life of the party, why not take a step back? Making a point to actively listen to people makes you more attractive to those around you (everyone loves a listener) and puts you in the position of discovering the things which intrigue you most about the others. It’s a simple way to learn about shared interests, so you can strike up a friendship.

#3 Take it to the Next Level

Have acquaintances but aren’t quite ready to call them friends yet? Try opening up a little. Being vulnerable forges intimacy with others and deepens the friendship, taking it to the next level. 

#4 Stay in Touch

Worried about how to hang onto the friends you have? If you want to keep people from falling off the radar and becoming distant, make a point to check in with them once in a while. Send a text, make a call, set up a chance to get together. By checking in, you’re telling the other person they’re important to you and worth your time. A general rule of thumb? Connect about every two weeks.

#5 Make a Group

Even better? Start putting your friends together in one place by creating a group of friends. There’s nothing more fun than hanging out in a gathering of people who enjoy each other’s company. Start simple, with a lunch date or drinks after work.

We would love to hear your comments below with any tips you have for making new friends as an adult. Many people are feeling even more isolated than ever before due to the current global events, so let us know how you are coping with maintaining longtime friendships as well as making new friends.

And remember…..”A true friend is someone who thinks that you are a good egg even though he/she knows you are slightly cracked”

Bernard Meltzer

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Relationships

Is Your Own Negativity Affecting Your Friendships?

You will find a lot of information online about how to eliminate negative friendships from your life. However, what if the source of negativity is coming from you? 

It isn’t always easy to recognize when you are being negative. Some people have no idea how their negativity is impacting others. So, if your friendships have been suffering lately and you aren’t sure why, it could be down to your own mindset. 

Here, we’ll look at how your own negativity could be affecting your friendships and what you can do about it.

Are You a Negative Friend?

It isn’t always easy to identify negativity in ourselves. Many people are unaware that they are projecting negativity onto others. So, how can you identify if you are a negative friend? Here’s a few signs to look out for:

  • You find it hard keeping friends
  • You make plans knowing you’ll cancel them
  • You don’t check in first or see how your friends are doing
  • Most conversations are about you
  • Your friends don’t seek you out for for emotional support

Now, some of these signs may not be down to your own negativity. For example, you may not check in first with your friends because it used to always be you initiating contact. In that case, you wouldn’t necessarily be a negative friend.

Many people find it hard to keep friends. However, if you generally find it easy to make friends and not keep them, there may be a problem. Assess your friendships, including those from the past. Is there a pattern and could it be down to your negativity?

Life gets busy and it isn’t always easy to keep in touch with friends. However, if you literally never contact anyone first, this is a sign you are a negative friend. Remember, friendships are a two-way street. Your friends need to know you care about them too. 

Similarly, if you make plans knowing you’ll cancel them, and make all conversations about you, these are also negative friend traits. 

The Impact Negativity Has on Friendships

So, why is it important to be a more positive friend? The main one is that negativity can literally kill friendships. After all, who wants to spend time with someone who is always negative. It brings down their mood, leading them to feel more depressed or drained after they have been around you. 

Another way negativity impacts friendships, is that it is bad for the heart. Studies have shown that negative friendships affect our heart health. So, you could unintentionally be causing your friends health issues with your constant negativity. These are just some of the problems you can cause if you are a negative friend.

When you bring negativity into your friendships, you won’t have strong relationships. Healthy friendships are important for our health and wellbeing. So, if you do identify as a negative friend, now’s the time to start working on adjusting your mindset. It might not be easy; but, doing so will ensure you have much healthier and happier friendships.