When many people think of abusive relationships they typically think of romantic relationships and they assume the survivor is often a heterosexual woman. However, our romantic relationships, family relationships, friendships, employment relationships, etc., can become abusive. Any person can become a survivor of abuse. Abusive relationships affect all ages, races, ethnicities, genders, sexual orientations, and socioeconomics statuses.
Prior to beginning therapy or even in the beginning of therapy, many people who have been survivors of abuse may have difficulty recognizing that they were or are currently in an abusive relationship. And even after recognizing that we are experiencing or have experienced an abusive relationship, figuring out what we want to do next can feel overwhelming.
Therapy can assist you in recognizing the specific patterns and behaviors that encompassed the abuse you experienced. You can also gain productive coping skills to help you manage triggers and trauma reactions. You can learn to recognize relationship red flags and increase confidence in your relationships. Therapy assists with learning about how to implement and maintain boundaries. Your life can feel like yours again. You can rediscover who you are and develop the healthy, loving relationships you want in your life. And most importantly, you do not have to do it alone.
Deciding to end an abusive relationship is not an easy decision nor is it the only option available to survivors. At Pegasus Counseling Services, we meet you where you are at in your journey and if you are not ready to leave, we will not pressure you to. In some circumstances, leaving an abusive relationship may increase the danger level for the survivor. If you do decide to end your relationship, it can take time, planning, and support from a support network to assist you in leaving in a way that does not compromise safety.
There are multiple types of abuse you may have experienced: physical abuse, sexual abuse, financial abuse, verbal abuse, emotional/mental abuse, digital abuse, spiritual abuse, and stalking.