Leaving an Abusive Relationship: Victim's Power under and after the Altercation


Dr. King

by Dr. Jeanne King, Ph.D.

When is the best time to grab a victim out of an abusive relationship? There are two points of intervention. That is, there are two times when she/he is MOST amenable to leaving the abusive relationship.

What are these times?


1) Before she/he settles into the relationship and becomes part of the dynamic, and...

2) Immediately after an altercation, whether verbal or physical.


The first is obvious. It’s always easier to end something before it begins, right? That’s why we say, prevention is the best cure.


The second may seem simple and obvious. However, it is quite complex and not as clear to most people.


Immediately after an altercation, the victim is empowered! Now this may sound ridiculous, as she/he has just been victimized by the assault. Yes, this is true and assault does hurt. There’s no question about that.


But just outside and beyond that pain is a profound knowing that what just occurred is WRONG! And from here, the victim is shaken awake out from the confusion of their abusive relationship.


She/he is shaken awake holding all of the power in the relationship. And in that moment of empowerment, she/he can truly see other options for her/himself.


Empowerment after the Altercation


At the core of our being is a knowing that we are whole and we deserve to be honored as such, rather than broken down into pieces …shattered into pieces, as we adapt to being an extension of another overpowering us.


If you are in an abusive relationship, stop and look at this moment of empowerment as your entry into your exit from your abusive relationship. If you are a friend or family of someone in an abusive relationship, recognize this is your best point of intervention.


For more information about how to break the cycle of abuse and leave an abusive relationship, visit Domestic Abuse Dynamics: Breaking the Cycle.   Dr. Jeanne King, Ph.D. helps people nationwide to recognize, end and heal from domestic abuse. ©2008 Dr. Jeanne King, Ph.D.

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© Copyright 2008 Dr. Jeanne King, Ph.D. www.PreventAbusiveRelationships.com

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.