Why do young people stay in abusive relationships?

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LavenderBlueSky88
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I can understand if you're married, co-habiting or have kids but I don't get why young people (especially those who still live at home) find it so hard to leave toxic relationships. They would probably have the support and protection of their family and friends and I'm sure if there were threats or violence the police would be involved. If the abuse is emotional then why are they wasting their time with these people? Even if their self esteem is so rock bottom, surely they can tell the difference between right and wrong, especially when their friends and family are on their side too and they really don't have anything to lose.

I just don't get it.
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llys
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Because they are "in love". Romantic fiction has a lot to answer for.
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Eboracum
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I think Alexandra Burke answered this question with her song 'Bad Boys'.
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neunundneunzig
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They might come from an abusive family and think it's normal to be treated badly? They might think that their partner will be nicer to them over time?
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Inazuma
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Sometimes you can't see the woods for the trees.

Also if you yourself have faults you will blame yourself partly, and figure no-one else will want you with those faults anyway.
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DeceitfulDove
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Fear. And the hope that things will change. Getting police involved is not an option.
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Autistic Merit
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It's not always so black and white. It's also not always physical abuse that they endure; it can often be psychological. There's a lot of adverts at the moment about domestic abuse.

Useful link:

http://www.domesticviolencelondon.nh...cal-abuse.html

It's only two paragraphs but sums up better than I can.
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Emerald.
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Well they are afraid of whats going to happen if they leave
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Sazzle4
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Generally, these relationships don't begin abusively. It tends to be gradual and by the time it reaches a point where everyone else is wondering why someone wouldn't just leave, this person either doesn't realise that there is anything 'not normal' about the way they are being treated or they have placed the blame upon their own shoulders.

There is also always the hope that the nice, caring person they fell in love with will come back and the abusive behaviour will change and stop.
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Swanbow
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I think naivety has a part to play in it. The amount of times I've seen a girl justify an abusive relationship with 'I love him' or 'I want to change him' is very disheartening. Also abusive relationships by nature are very hard to leave.

I think Offspring can describe the situation better than I can...
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qhuWek1jF-g
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Mankytoes
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(Original post by LavenderBlueSky88)
I can understand if you're married, co-habiting or have kids but I don't get why young people (especially those who still live at home) find it so hard to leave toxic relationships. They would probably have the support and protection of their family and friends and I'm sure if there were threats or violence the police would be involved. If the abuse is emotional then why are they wasting their time with these people? Even if their self esteem is so rock bottom, surely they can tell the difference between right and wrong, especially when their friends and family are on their side too and they really don't have anything to lose.

I just don't get it.
It isn't that simple, many people are scared of how the partner could retaliate if they told the police, or they'd feel guilty. If they're male, they often think the police won't take them seriously, or they're ashamed.

The thing is, there is a certain grey area here. Where does emotional abuse start? A lot of people who are in what others consider abusive relationships don't accept that themselves. They might blame themselves for problems.

Plus a lot of abusers use manipulative tactics, "I love you, I wish you didn't make me do that", that sort of thing.
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TheGameOfScience
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(Original post by LavenderBlueSky88)
I can understand if you're married, co-habiting or have kids but I don't get why young people (especially those who still live at home) find it so hard to leave toxic relationships. They would probably have the support and protection of their family and friends and I'm sure if there were threats or violence the police would be involved. If the abuse is emotional then why are they wasting their time with these people? Even if their self esteem is so rock bottom, surely they can tell the difference between right and wrong, especially when their friends and family are on their side too and they really don't have anything to lose.

I just don't get it.
from a psychological standpoint i think its because of the amount of investment put in by the partner, for instance if they had children then the partner who is getting abused would stay because of the children, i learned this in psychology class also even if they didnt have kids they still invested in the relationship quite a bit so if they just left then it would be a wasted investment all that time and energy put into that relationship will be lost
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SuperWolfPaws
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'They would probably have the support and protection of their family and friends'

The word here is 'probably'.

' I'm sure if there were threats or violence the police would be involved'

You won't go to the police if your scared of your partner, who could be a manipulative lair.


'If the abuse is emotional then why are they wasting their time with these people?'

emotional abuse can become 'normal'. the victim wrongfully believes this is what they deserve, the abuse can create an unhealthy psychological attachment to the abuser. Moments when the abuser shows shallow regret of behavior or care towards victim, reinforces ideas that he/she is really a good person, so it must be me.

'Even if their self esteem is so rock bottom, surely they can tell the difference between right and wrong'


Yes but, if you have no self esteem and/or depressed, making decisions and truly knowing it's wrong is hard if not impossible.




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russellsteapot
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Young people are probably more impressionable, more susceptible to going for abusive types (less experience, so perhaps they won't spot if someone is a **** until they've become emotionally attached).

- young people tend to have lower self-esteem than adults

- more difficult for young men to admit being a victim, if the woman is the aggressor (also an issue for older men, but 'saving face' tends to be a young men's game)

- excusing abusive behaviour on the basis that someone is 'usually nice', or confusing aggression and anger for desirable masculinity

- more likely to be influenced by media normalisation of violent relationships, and celebrity violent relationships

I also wonder if younger women find it harder to admit to being a victim, and shrug it off more in the interests of not appearing weak? I've known a few women in the past who have taken a "oh, it's not so bad" attitude to violence in the same way people would talk about having a cold; the emphasis has been on "I can sort it myself". Usually they're very outwardly independent types.

I do think younger people overall have a greater likelihood of escaping violence, and many of the above issues also affect adults. The primary reason is probably the same as in adults - people don't think rationally when they're 'in love'.
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buchanan700
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Abusive relationships are gradual. I got a great email from a friend of mine who has been in violent, abusive relationships when she was a teenager, as a warning to me, as my Ex had started to display signs. This is the summed up version.
-First the abuser secures the relationship - everything's perfect.
-Then they start a system of control - checking phones, keeping an 'eye' on the partner, displaying signs of jealousy. The partner may interpret it as being 'sweet' or 'a little protective'.
-This graduates to possession. The abuser slowly starts to cut the other off from other influences. This may include demanding they get rid of male friends. That they don't go out alone. They might make hurtful comments about the partner's friends and family, to convince them they don't need anyone but the abuser.
-They will start to take away self-worth. Mentally abusive comments; 'you're gaining weight', you wouldn't have a chance with any one else.' 'I'm the only person that loves you'. Because by now the partner may have little or no other support (she/he can't contact friends family without the abuser knowing), they will start to believe that they have nothing better to look forward to if they leave.
-After a long while of this, the physical abuse might start, if it was going to. The abuser will inevitably blame the partner which (because of lack or self-esteem) they are likely to believe. The abuser will often beg for forgiveness, possibly reinforcing that they are the only one that loves the partner.
- It is then the vicious cycle continues. After only one, fear may begin. Along with everything else, the partner knows that telling anyone could lead to serious harm as she is likely to have been reminded.
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Chihiro95
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Perhaps because when you're young you find it more difficult to assert yourself and know your self-worth.
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pamplemousse1
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(Original post by LavenderBlueSky88)
I can understand if you're married, co-habiting or have kids but I don't get why young people (especially those who still live at home) find it so hard to leave toxic relationships. They would probably have the support and protection of their family and friends and I'm sure if there were threats or violence the police would be involved. If the abuse is emotional then why are they wasting their time with these people? Even if their self esteem is so rock bottom, surely they can tell the difference between right and wrong, especially when their friends and family are on their side too and they really don't have anything to lose.

I just don't get it.
I was in one before I got out.

  • The change was very gradual. I was infatuated with this person so I struggled to see their faults (the warning signs).
  • When something happened the guy manipulated in order to make me feel that it was my fault. It ended up with me thinking I led him on to do it and I needed to change.
  • When I finally had enough, I felt too scared to leave as I felt that giving up would be giving up on him. I did still feel something for him and I didn't want to give up that easily.
  • I was also afraid of being alone. Sometimes when you are young, you tend to become a little bit too clingy and dependent on one person. Especially in my case where I had a low opinion on myself and all my friends had left because I spent all my time with this one person. I felt that he was still there for me because there were some nice times amongst the bad.


I hope that clears some things up
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Tyrion_Lannister
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(Original post by Sazzle4)
Generally, these relationships don't begin abusively. It tends to be gradual and by the time it reaches a point where everyone else is wondering why someone wouldn't just leave, this person either doesn't realise that there is anything 'not normal' about the way they are being treated or they have placed the blame upon their own shoulders.

There is also always the hope that the nice, caring person they fell in love with will come back and the abusive behaviour will change and stop.
(Original post by Mankytoes)
It isn't that simple, many people are scared of how the partner could retaliate if they told the police, or they'd feel guilty. If they're male, they often think the police won't take them seriously, or they're ashamed.

The thing is, there is a certain grey area here. Where does emotional abuse start? A lot of people who are in what others consider abusive relationships don't accept that themselves. They might blame themselves for problems.

Plus a lot of abusers use manipulative tactics, "I love you, I wish you didn't make me do that", that sort of thing.
Both of these. I was in an abusive relationship, and it's not as simple as "leave". Everyone else was really confused why I was with him, but I didn't realise it was abusive - I thought it was my fault for doing things he didn't like and that he cared about me

Emotional abuse is really hard, because it gets in your head. You don't even realise it's abuse. Abusers are clever, they manipulate you
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Tyrion_Lannister
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(Original post by pamplemousse1)
I was in one before I got out.

  • The change was very gradual. I was infatuated with this person so I struggled to see their faults (the warning signs).
  • When something happened the guy manipulated in order to make me feel that it was my fault. It ended up with me thinking I led him on to do it and I needed to change.
  • When I finally had enough, I felt too scared to leave as I felt that giving up would be giving up on him. I did still feel something for him and I didn't want to give up that easily.
  • I was also afraid of being alone. Sometimes when you are young, you tend to become a little bit too clingy and dependent on one person. Especially in my case where I had a low opinion on myself and all my friends had left because I spent all my time with this one person. I felt that he was still there for me because there were some nice times amongst the bad.


I hope that clears some things up
Also this, especially the first three. You kind of fail to believe the person who was once kind, charming and funny has turned into a massive prick
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