You may have met them online or in person. It really does not matter. What does matter is how the relationship starts and the early warning signs of a potential abuser.
You are the best thing that has happened to me.
Abusive relationships often start out as whirlwinds. He has never met anyone as beautiful as you are. She has never met anyone as caring and compassionate. You are the best person on the planet. Your date cannot get enough of you and does not want to lose you to someone else.
Just the two of us.
It may seem complimentary at first. The person you are dating wants to spend all of their time with you. He is like a shadow that never leaves your side. He needs you. She does not seem happy when you do something by yourself or visit friends and family alone. Strange emergencies will suddenly develop that prevent your visit or call you home very early.
This person will demand your attention and find increasing ways to have a crisis that only you can solve. In some cases, she may not want to go with you to see friends and family. This situation develops when the individual realizes that they are unable to charm your support group. All of a sudden, you realize you are alone.
You just cannot do anything right.
I was just joking. That will be the response the first few times you indicate that your date hurt your feelings with an unpleasant comment. The comments will also be vague. Do you have to wear that outfit? You are not sure what your date means but you change anyway.
As the abusive remarks escalate, he may tell you that you are just too sensitive. Really, she just tells you these things for your own good. After all, without them, you would be nothing.
The mental or psychological abuse starts slowly. It creeps up, barely noticeable at first. Listen to your gut reaction. Step back and take a close look at the little details of your relationship. If something does not feel right, it probably is not right. There are many support groups and services available. The sooner you recognize the situation, the better your chances of escaping unharmed.