Serving Victims of Crime

Profile of an Abuser

Using Emotional Abuse

  • Putting her down
  • Making her feel bad about herself
  • Calling her names
  • Making her think she's crazy
  • Playing mind games
  • Humiliating her
  • Making her feel guilty

Using Male Privilege

  • Treating her like a servant
  • Making all the big decisions
  • Acting like the "Master of the castle"
  • Being the one to define men's and women's roles

Using Economic Abuse

  • Preventing her from getting or keeping a job
  • Making her ask for money
  • Giving her an allowance
  • Taking her money
  • Not letting her know about or have access to family income

Using Coercion and Threats

  • Making or carrying out threats to do something to hurt her
  • Threatening to leave her, to commit suicide, to report her to the welfare agency
  • Making her drop charges
  • Making her do illegal things

Using Intimidation

  • Making her afraid by using looks, gestures, or actions
  • Smashing things
  • Abusing pets
  • Displaying Weapons

Using Children

  • Making her feel guilty about the children
  • Using the children to relay messages
  • Using visitation to harass her
  • Threatening to take the children away

Using Isolation

  • Controlling what she does, who she sees and talks to,what she reads, & where she goes
  • Limiting her outside involvement
  • Using jealousy to justify actions

Minimizing, Denying, Blaming

  • Making light of the abuse and not taking her concerns about it seriously
  • Saying the abuse didn't happen
  • Shifting responsibility for abusive behavior
  • Saying she caused it

Common Characteristics of a Batterer

He may:

  • have low self esteem
  • believe all the myths about battering relationships
  • be a tradionalist believing in male supremacy and the stereotyped masculine sex role in the family
  • blame others for his actions
  • be pathologically jealous
  • present a dual personality
  • have severe stress reactions during which he uses drinking and battering to cope
  • frequently use sex as an act of aggression to enhance his self-esteem
  • not believe his violent behavior should have negative consequences

Symptoms of an Abused Female