The Two Most Fundamental Steps in Breaking Out of an Abusive Relationship

The Two Most Fundamental Steps
in Breaking Out of an Abusive Relationship

Dr. King



by Dr. Jeanne King, Ph.D.


People ask me what is the way to break the cycle of domestic abuse? Or, they say how do I interrupt the abusive dynamics I’m in?

I think there are two things, which by their nature, aid in breaking the fundamental ties that bind abusive relationships. And here they are...


The Most Fundamental Steps in Breaking Out of an Abusive Relationship

1.) Document Your Experience

Document, Document, Document! Susan Murphy-Milano’s work influenced my life in the 90’s when she so potently expressed the value in documenting the abuse. However, at that time, I heard her coaching as a means for me to display and/or evidence the abuse to order to protect my children and myself.

Fast-forward a couple of decades. Today, I add another profound value in documenting the abuse. Doing this one thing solidifies your understanding of your experience. Through the mere connecting personal events chronologically, you can step out of the river and experience the flow of water with detached awareness. (please read that again)

Through this perspective, you can more objectively assess your circumstances and options. And moreover, from this place you are open to insights expressing your higher good...your best interest...what’s most right for you.

You have a platform within you that shows you your truth...just because (that’s how healing works). The natural tendency is to return to homeostasis. The human psyche is charmed by health and well-being.

If you are in an emotionally abusive relationship, I invite you to step out of the FOG (fear/obligation/guilt) engendered through the emotional exploitation and bask in the light.

2.) Break Your Silence

Never underestimate the power of your speaking your truth. You hear it for what it is when you speak of it outside of the relationship itself.

So for example, when you open up the abuse dialogue to your healthcare provider or when you go to the police, or you go to your clergy or you confide in a family member or friend, your understanding of the domestic abuse can transition from confusion to clarity.

In some respect, this action in and of itself also aids in your stepping out of the river. Your perspective is through a lens created that is untainted by the direct influence of the abusive relationship itself.

Another way of saying this is: the toxicity within it becomes clearer to you, because you are interfacing with it through non-intoxicated eyes that participate in it through “love,” “habit,” “blindness” or some conscious and/or unconscious “need.”

It’s my gift to you if this article inspires you to document the abuse and break your silence. As always however, when in an abusive relationship be mindful of safety first. Seek counsel through professionals knowledgeable about domestic abuse when implementing any strategies to end it.

For more information about the dynamics of intimate partner abuse, visit or and claim Free Instant Access to The 7 Realities of Verbal Abuse. Dr. Jeanne King, Ph.D. helps people worldwide recognize, end and heal from domestic abuse.

© Dr Jeanne King — Domestic Violence Prevention and Intervention

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.