Warning signs can include but are not limited to:
• Firm belief in male privilege.
• Disrespects boundaries.
• Belittles others for fun.
• Excessively charming.
• Verbal abuse.
• Breaks objects.
• Abusive to animals or others.
• Quick involvement.
• Past battering.
• Is easily insulted.
• Blames others if things go wrong.
• Tries to hide behavior from others.
• Sudden mood swings
• Threats of violence.
• Controlling behavior
• Any use of force in a disagreement.
Remember, you are not a counselor and cannot fix a batterer or the situation. These behaviors are warning signs that a person could be abusive.
Remember abuse is a crime but the decision to report domestic violence is up to the victim. It is always a good idea to learn about the mandatory reporting laws on child abuse and elder abuse of your area before you need the information. Find out what the hotline numbers are for your state. Keep this informaion in a referral list and update it at least yearly.
NEVER TRY TO TALK WITH AN ABUSER AND A VICTIM TOGETHER.
If counseling is needed for either the abuser or the victims always refer to the appropriate agency or mental health center. Victims may need emotional support. Abusers need to be referred to a Batterer’s Intervention (or similarly named) group. Research these numbers and add them to your reference list.
It is always up to the victim whether or not to leave the abusive situation. There are many reasons why a victim may not choose to leave. The victim is the one who knows the situation best and has developed coping methods to deal with an abuser.
Information taken from Clergy Training Materials provided by Hope for Healing.Org.that was written by this author. All Rights Reserved