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What is the difference between abuse and someone who does something wrong?

(10 Posts)
Kattyscatty Mon 20-Mar-17 08:03:18

Just want to hear thoughts as we are all capable of hurting our partners. When is it abuse? And when is it someone who is just a human being who makes mistakes?

DevelopingDetritus Mon 20-Mar-17 08:08:30

To truly care that they have done wrong and admit to it, then to make changes to not do it again.

PhoenixJasmine Mon 20-Mar-17 08:09:03

Abuse is in the effect on the victim, not the intention of the abuser. Yes we are all capable of abusing others, whether we mean to or not. The humanity comes in recognising the consequences of our actions and rectifying them, accepting responsibility, not minimising, excusing or continuing once we realise what we have done.

Are you ok Katty, is something happening in your relationship you're worried about?

MorrisZapp Mon 20-Mar-17 08:11:03

That's a good point. If the person has behaved badly owns it and takes steps to ensure it doesn't happen again, then that's in the realm of forgivable.

If the pattern repeats or involves cruelty or harm, it's abuse.

SaltySeaDog72 Mon 20-Mar-17 09:32:00

Also I think when behaviour over time shows lack of respect and/or remorse. And continues. Or gets worse.

Or if the victim is changing her behaviour to appease the perpetrator. In order to continue, the victim has to either not notice a line been crossed (normally because of skewed boundaries/poor self esteem) or excuse it or feel powerless to deal with it.

People who apologise for mistakes and change their own behaviour to try not to repeat them are not abusive

SleepingTiger Mon 20-Mar-17 09:51:22

There also has to be an element of deliberate intent to harm even indirectly.

SaltySeaDog72 Mon 20-Mar-17 10:11:14

I don't agree re deliberate intent. Sometimes I think dynamics become abusive especially with two emotionally unhealthy people.

Offred Mon 20-Mar-17 10:17:27

Abuse is where there is a dynamic where one partner has power over the other as a result of their behaviour whether it is intentional or unintentional.

Offred Mon 20-Mar-17 10:21:32

I would say few abusers intend to be abusive as abuse is usually a result of the abuser believing they are entitled to behave in abusive ways.

MorrisZapp Mon 20-Mar-17 10:35:04

I agree. I had a boyfriend when I was very young who displayed classic abusive behaviour, including isolating me from friends and getting 'ill' whenever I had something important to do.

I honestly don't think he even considered his actions, or planned them. He just behaved the way that got him what he wanted, much as my small son does now.

He went on to have healthy relationships with other people and I dare say a more mature woman would tell him to go fuck himself if he tried his antics.

I believe he was abusive but didn't know it. I didn't know it either.

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