Battering and Abusive Relationships –
5 Insights for Breaking the Cycle
of Domestic Abuse

Dr. King

by Dr. Jeanne King, Ph.D.

When you’re not serving up what your abusive partner desires, what happens? The tension grows...until he/she smacks you—emotionally, verbally or physically—as though to shake you awake and release the conflict within him/her. Sound familiar?

If you’re living in an abusive relationship with your intimate partner, your child, or some other family member or friend, you know these dynamics like the back of your hand.

Also note that having words for them is another thing. Read on to clarify these points of conflict in your abusive relationship so you may better cope with your own personal experience.

1) The assault is not about you. Rather, it is the other person’s maneuver to bring about comfort within themselves. In that moment, the battering person is seeking to resolve their own felt loss of control wherein they are not getting what they long to obtain.

2) The battering is truly a means to an end and not the end in itself. You may notice as the battering is delivered, it can be released without any relationship to the context from which the conflict emerged.

3) The batterer shows a marked release of inward tension following the assault. And you are left wondering why the heck this person is having the appearance of well-being…all in the face of your demise.

4)You feel violated and confused. You experience the hurt...the ouch...yet it’s complicated. Unlike stubbing your toe, wherein you know the connection between the blow and its impact, this hurt confuses you. You don’t know if you’re being punished, poorly treated or if something in you contributed to the delivered assault.

5) BOTTOM LINE: Beware not to assume responsibility for the battering. If you do, you are enabling the abuse dynamic. Why? Because it then becomes your “Job” to alter the state of affairs preceding the assault. And we know that state of affairs exists within the batterer.

If you do not assume responsibility for the battering, you can find your way back to your well-being and peace without fueling the destructive dynamics of abusive relationships. You will see your situation more clearly and this clarity will aid you in breaking the cycle of domestic abuse.

For more information about the nature of abusive relationships, browse our resources at and get Free Instant Access to Survivor Success eInsights. Dr Jeanne King, Ph.D. helps people recognize, end and heal from domestic violence. Copyright 2010 Jeanne King, Ph.D. - Domestic Violence Prevention and Intervention

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Dr. Jeanne King is a licensed psychologist and domestic abuse consultant. Feel free to contact us if you need help with physical and/or emotional pain, stress-related illnesses, or relationship abuse issues at home or in court. Contact Us to reach Dr. King.