Am I a Victim?

Am I a Victim?

Many people who survive domestic violence and sexual assault have lived their entire lives in traumatic or dangerous situations. Others encounter it through a connection with a romantic partner, friend and sometimes a stranger.

For those who grow up in violent settings, it can be difficult to understand that their situation is not considered “normal” because it is the only way they have lived their lives.

For those who grew up in relatively “normal” environments, the shame of finding themselves in an abusive situation — and sometimes the confusion of finding oneself there — makes it difficult to determine, “Is this abuse, or am I just confused?”

Below is a checklist to help you determine whether or not you are in an abusive or dangerous situation*:

Do you:

  • feel afraid of your partner much of the time?
  • avoid certain topics out of fear of angering your partner?
  • feel that you can’t do anything right for your partner?
  • believe that you deserve to be hurt or mistreated?
  • wonder if you’re the one who is crazy?
  • feel emotionally numb or helpless?

Does your partner:

  • humiliate or yell at you?
  • criticize you and put you down?
  • treat you so badly that you’re embarrassed for your friends or family to see?
  • ignore or put down your opinions or accomplishments?
  • blame you for their own abusive behavior?
  • see you as property or a sex object, rather than as a person?

Does your partner:

  • have a bad and unpredictable temper?
  • hurt you, or threaten to hurt or kill you?
  • threaten to take your children away or harm them?
  • threaten to commit suicide if you leave?
  • force you to have sex?
  • destroy your belongings?

Does your partner:

  • act excessively jealous and possessive?
  • control where you go or what you do?
  • keep you from seeing your friends or family?
  • limit your access to money, the phone, or the car?
  • constantly check up on you?

For more detailed information, please review the entire article/information in this link:
Recognizing the Signs of An Abusive Relationship and Getting Help

What to do next?

If you recognize any of these behaviors in your relationship and you would like to talk to someone about them, or receive help formulating an individualized safety plan, please contact the Blue Water Safe Horizons Crisis Hotline at 1-888-985-5538.

If you are in immediate danger, please call 911.

*From the website,; Authors: Melinda Smith, M.A. and Jeanne Segal, Ph.D. Last updated: March 2018.