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Recognizing Red Flags

Dating violence is about power, control and manipulation. This list describes some of the typical behaviors seen in an abusive relationship. 

One “red flag” behavior does not mean someone is abusive; but many red flags should send a clear warning about the person’s motives and behaviors. Controlling and abusive behavior usually increases over time.

 Boundary Problems

  • Does s/he talk about the intimate details of his/her life almost as soon as you meet?

  • Does s/he always stand too close?

  • Is everything wrong in his/her life someone else’s fault?

  • Does s/he take and take until you have nothing left to give?

  • Does s/he expect you to read his/her mind?

  • Does s/he think s/he can read yours?

  • Is s/he clingy?  Are they always asking you to solve their problems?

Cruelty and Selfishness

  • Is s/he pushy, demanding, or whiny about getting what s/he wants?

  • Does s/he think it’s funny when somebody else is hurting?

  • Does s/he believe that they deserve to have anything they want?

  • Is violence a major method of problem solving?

  • Does s/he consistently accuse you of doing things you haven’t done?

  • Does s/he find other people’s problems uninteresting, even irritating?

  • Does s/he put his/her own needs ahead of everyone else’s, just about every time?  

  • Does s/he seem incapable of feeling guilt?

  • Does s/he find violence entertaining or attractive?

  • Does s/he believe that honesty and brutality are the same thing?

  • Are you worried of what this person might do if s/he got really angry?

Control Tactics

  • Does s/he try to get sympathy by being upset all the time?

  • Does s/he check up on you constantly or monitor your activities/friends?

  • Is s/he extremely jealous or insecure?

  • Does s/he deliberately act inappropriately?

  • Does s/he think somebody’s out to get him/her?

  • Does s/he check your cell phone, email or social media sites without permission?

  • Does s/he change the subject when s/he senses that you’re winning an argument?

  • Does s/he seem to lead two lives – or more?

  • Does his/her life just seem to be one crisis after another?

  • Does s/he threaten suicide if you do or don’t do something?

  • Does s/he think it’s possible to be too honest?

  • Does s/he lie at least as much as s/he tells the truth?

  • Is s/he always drawn to shy, insecure people?

  • Is s/he really good at finding your weak points, then using them against you?

  • Does s/he enjoy intimidating you?

If you have questions or concerns and you want to talk with someone confidentially, call our toll-free 24/7 help line at 866-522-2725

LACASA Staff Insight

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