Signs of Domestic Abuse -
Happy or Hurting Over Your Pain

Dr. King

by Dr. Jeanne King, Ph.D.

Domestic violence victims know the thrill they observe in their partners over their demise. It’s as though their partner derives some pure pleasure from the fact that they are hurting.

It may even be the only time they are given human attention. It may be the time they get heard, all the while sensing a personal delight derived from their battering partner.

In contrast, they know how peculiar this is because, when they themselves are a witness to other people’s pain, they do not experience delight. To the contrary, they experience the other person’s pain as though it were their own.

So, you may conclude that batterers do not have the ability to empathize. Or they selectively empathize with others as it serves their own personal interest, that is, manipulatively.

Here are some clear signs of domestic abuse with respect to this one particular issue of empathy and the lack thereof...

1) When you are sick or in a weakened condition, your partner fails to express authentic concern for, much less appreciation of, your pain. You notice, instead, that he/she appears to be deriving some personal pleasure that has absolutely no basis in your predicament.

2) When you are compromised socially, your partner fails to embrace that which hurts you. And, adding insult to injury, he/she may even evidence punitive blaming and an air of conquest through your opposition’s victory.

3) When you are the target wounded by your partner’s direct assault, he/she does not stand in the space where you hurt, much less comfort you in your pain. Instead the abusive partner evidences “the look of glee.” It’s the smile that overcame the Columbine shooters’ faces during the murder spree.

If you are in a relationship wherein you observe your partner’s delight over or in the context of your pain, seek to understand domestic abuse dynamics. Learn the subtle signs of domestic abuse, as well as the obvious ones, before they spiral out of control.

For more information about signs of domestic abuse, browse our domestic abuse resources and get Free Instant Access to your 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.