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Are You Abusive?

Do you think you might be abusing your spouse, partner, boyfriend, or girlfriend?  If so, stop the violence – and think hard about getting some help.

If you’re not sure, these questions might help you determine whether or not what you’re doing is abusive. Do you…

  • Constantly check up on your partner? Do you call her at work off and on all day? Check the mileage on her car? Monitor received and dialed calls on her cell phone? Ask her where she’s been or where she’s going?
  • Tell her not to see certain friends or keep her away from family?
  • Try to keep her from going out – even to work or to school?
  • Put her down and criticize what she wears, what she does, what she says? Do you tell her – or try to make her feel – she’s crazy?
  • Believe she’s at fault for the things that go wrong in your life or your relationship?
  • Threaten to hurt her or people she cares about?
  • Make her do sexual things in ways or in places she is uncomfortable with?
  • Shove, grab, slap, strangle or otherwise physically abuse her?
  • Try to make her believe you didn’t hurt or scare her and that her concerns about your behavior are not real or valid?

If you answered yes to even one of these questions, you may be abusing your partner. If so, stop and get help:

  • Contact a state certified  Batterer Intervention Program. There are several in Maine. For information about the program at Acadia Hospital, click here.
  • Think about the impact of your abuse. Abuse hurts everyone – you, your partner, the children, other family members. It’s also against the law.
  • Leave the situation. Choose not to abuse. Take a walk. Work out. Visit a friend. Remember, this is only a temporary solution to part of the problem.

Get the help you need to really change your behavior.


If someone is abusing you, here are answers to some questions you might have about your abusive partner.

Remember, abusers can be men or women, old or young, and of any culture, education or socio-economic level. If we say “partner,” we mean current or past wife, husband, girl- or boyfriend. If we use the word “she,” you can substitute “he” if that makes sense in your situation.