During the holiday season it is common place for families to gather together regardless of time or distance. Being a female that has been in an abusive relationship in the past I am aware of the changes that happen within the family as a result of this unhealthy relationship.
One thing families can do to help is to be aware. If you suspect your family member may be in an abusive relationship now is the time you may be able to know for sure. If your family member has consistently withdrawn from the family since the start of this relationship watch the dynamics between the couple. Often times if the abuse is verbal or emotional men do little to mask this. They may whisper their remarks, but they continue to be abusive especially when around family.
Also be aware that the first reaction to any allegation of abuse is denial. Whether it's from the man or the woman our first instinct is to cover and pretend everything is okay. This is why asking outright or even accusing will only drive your loved one away. This can only be handled with TLC and support.
Domestic violence and abuse are running rampant these days, and a side effect is alienation from the family and friends of the abused person. There is no quick fix. No one ever left their husband because one person pointed a finger. That just makes the gap grow wider.
The purpose of this blog is to raise awareness, as well as advise against an out and out intervention. Go slow and always let your loved one know how much they mean to you.
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