Understanding The different types of Abuse
Previously: Jealous Jaws, Jealousy In Relationships
The Shark that Isolates It’s Prey.
Isolation is a technique used to control what a partner does, where they go and who they see. In an abusive relationship, a partner may use this technique to control every aspect of their partner’s life. When one seeks to isolate their partner, they are reducing the chances of others recognising an imbalance of power within the relationship.
When one’s outside involvement is limited and their contact with friends and family reduced this can result in the victim of abuse becoming more dependent upon their partner, thus allowing the unhealthy relationship to continue on.
Some of the Isolation techniques abusive partner’s use are as follows:
Stopping a partner’s friends and family from coming around
Ignoring the partner’s friends and family
When a partner damages or takes away your cell phone
Locking a partner in a room or cupboard
Forcing the partner to stay home and refusing to let them go out
Never coming home and always going out
Hiding the car keys
Disapproving of friends
Letting down car tyres
Controlling the internet and phone
Isolation was a technique which was used in many forms against me during my first and second marriages. The first Shark in my life was extremely Isolating. He would go out for an hour yet not return till the next morning. I was never allowed to go anywhere with him. Shark one used excuses like, ”people just don’t get you” and he’d often say things like,”your just not social enough”. Sometimes Shark would return home and buy me KFC and chocolate to say sorry for leaving me behind. He constantly fed me, bought me movies and DVD’s to watch to try and bribe me whilst he went on his escapades.
At other times, the Shark would simply ignore me and tell me to shut up and be quiet while he played games, hung with his mates and watched sports. Twice during my marriage we travelled overseas and stayed with Sharks family. On both occasions, instead of taking me to see sights, meet his friends and have fun, he simply left me at the family home and took off for days at a time, leaving me with food and television to keep me company.
Even on our wedding anniversary Shark went out with his mates and did not come back until the next day.
The thing that hurt the most was that the first Shark tried to turn me against my own family. He would often tell me my family didn’t love me and that my parents loved my siblings more than me. Whenever an incident occurred or I had different views to my parents, he would say ”see I told you they don’t love you”. I eventually began to believe and became withdrawn and spent less and less time with my family members.
The second shark in my life also used Isolation techniques in a somewhat different way. He was very controlling; he sent me off to work, dropped me off and picked me up. I never went anywhere without him. Shark two got extremely angry when I talked to my family members or did anything to help them.
When I was eight months pregnant, Shark was so angry that I had been talking to a family member, that he left me in an area, far from home, with no food and no money. It got to a point I could not talk on the phone without the shark being extremely angry. When I talked to my mother, he would throw clothing and other items at me. He cut up my cell phone charger, threw the television and the day before I left the second Shark, he swung my five-month-old baby over my head, saying ‘‘kick mummy in the head”.
The second shark, controlled my showers, he would not let me close the door when I went to the toilet. He did not let me do anything I wanted to do. Surprisingly he allowed me to go to the library one day, but after ten minutes, he rang the library up and told me I had to come home because his mother thought I should be at home and not out enjoying myself.
It was not until I reached out to friends and family, telling them what was happening that I was able to leave the situation and get the support I needed to leave. It wasn’t an easy process and there were many factors to consider before I escaped the marriage.