10 Warning Signs Your Partner is Isolating You
One of the things that we know abusers will do to their intended victims is to isolate them from family and friends. The abuser will slowly weaken and sever ties to all others except to themselves. In this manner, the abuser is able to exert power over the victim, but he also protects him/herself from being found out! The isolation separates the victim from their family and friends. This makes them more dependent on the abuser and makes the victim easier to manipulate.
Isolation in a relationship is always unhealthy, even if the relationship is otherwise not thought to be abusive! Healthy relationships allow both partners to have relationships outside of themselves, allowing both partners to retain their individuality.
Isolation in and of itself can be considered an early sign of abuse.
Signs To Watch For
Below I have listed several warning signs that indicate your partner is trying to isolate you. I believe that if you know what to look for, you can protect yourself, so please read the list below.
1. Your partner insists on spending lots of time alone with you. This one is tricky because it is normal at the beginning of a relationship to want to spend lots of time alone with each other as your feelings are just starting and growing.
2. Your partner comes up with excuses to not spend time with your family and friends. Most people when starting a new relationship will want to meet and make a good impression on your family and friends, not avoid them.
3. Your partner comes up with reasons why you should not see and spend time with your friends and family. This might at first look romantic but watch for a pattern of behavior.
4. Your significant other uses jealousy, guilt, or other emotions to manipulate you to behave as they want you to. They might attempt to make you feel guilty for wanting to spend time with friends, saying things such as, “why do you want to spend time with Tom?” “I’m the only one who really understands you”.
5. Your partner has you check in with them constantly. Or, conversely, they check in on you constantly via phone calls, texts, checking your social media, etc.
6. They insist on knowing all your passwords so they can check up on what you are doing and who you are talking with. This effectively controls your communications with the outside world and is very controlling in general.
7. They find ways to create drama when you hang out with friends. This might include picking an argument, giving you the silent treatment, or stomping around the house because you were with your friends.
8. They criticize your family and friends in an attempt to lower their worth in your eyes.
9. They make it uncomfortable for your friends and family to see and hang out with you. In this way, they make it so your friends no longer want to see you and drift out of your life.
10. They inflict passive-aggressive punishment on you when you do see your family or friends. This includes giving you the silent treatment, slamming doors, laying guilt trips, starting arguments, or generally making it impossible for you to enjoy time spent with others.
If you notice many of these items going on in your relationship, it might be time to talk about this with someone you trust or a mental health professional. If you’d like to talk with me further about this, or seek trauma treatment, follow the link. I’d love to hear from you!