While abuse can be very complex and tricky to pin down, these checklists are intended to be a springboard for those of you considering the possibility that you may be in an abusive relationship.
• Frequently blaming, criticising or calling you names?
• Telling you that you cause or deserve the abuse?
• Isolating you from or making threats about your family or friends?
• Depriving you of things you enjoy or need? (Money, food, car keys)
• Threatening to harm themselves or others if you leave or somehow upset them?
• Pressuring or forcing you into sex or sexual acts?
• Accusing you of lying or cheating?
• Forcing you to (or refusing to let you) use contraception?
• Physically violent towards you, or threatening physical violence?
• Destroying or throwing objects when angry?
• Holding you to unrealistic standards and demands, and angry when they aren’t fulfilled?
• Suffering from mental or physical symptoms not otherwise explained by situation or illness?
• Putting other relationships, goals, interests and commitments at risk for your relationship?
• Taking risks or making sacrifices (or feeling like you ought to) to maintain the relationship?
• Feeling isolated from everyone but your partner, and feeling unable to reach out to others?
• Feeling sad, frustrated or upset with sexual encounters far more often than feeling happy? Or ‘zoning out’ or being predominantly passive during sex?
• Keeping sex, tension or emotional issues high and escalating to maintain the relationship, or to avoid or diffuse conflict?
• Feeling unable to have an independent sense of self outside of your partner?
• Feeling bad about yourself or your sexual relationship or behaviour?
• Doing things you don’t want to but feel you have to because of your partner? Or agreeing to things like when your partner puts you down?
• Having trouble discussing, making or enforcing limits and boundaries of your own and respecting those of others? Feeling like you’re always walking on eggshells?
• Making lots of excuses for yourself or a partner, and finding yourself the only one rooting for your relationship?
• Hearing concern about you and your relationship from people who care about you?
Lists adapted from here and here.