The Isolated, Controlled Young Victim (Woman)

She didn’t realize she had isolated herself from family and friends until she stopped hearing the phone ring.

The older gentlemen didn’t fully comprehend what he had done when he told his Significant Younger Other things like: “Stay home with me sometime…”, “You go out too much,” “Miss you,” “Can’t get enough of you…”  When the young woman dismissed what he had said, questioned, or ignored his concerns, he punished her with silent treatment for weeks.  He understood somewhat that his guilt-tripping her was upsetting.  However, he felt justified in doing so because he didn’t like feeling uncomfortable when she was gone away.  Further, he didn’t like her reasons for wanting to enjoy herself without him periodically.

In time, she learned how to do what he wanted to “keep the peace,” “to keep him from giving her the cold shoulder,” and “to get along, because the stress wasn’t worth it.”  The victim believed she was compromising and building a healthy relationship, but was she?

The controlling man had won!  Although at times the victim felt alone, confused, and didn’t feel like she could do anything right, she shrugged her emotions off.  The concerns about her leaving grew into other issues the older man felt he needed to manage.  He wanted her to be more generous with her finances.  Then the abuser expected her to meet household needs like: grocery shopping and cleaning.  While his demands increased, her self-esteem decreased.

Isolation keeps others from knowing exactly what is going on in one’s relationship.  A victim learns to grow dependent on her controller and less independent.  Insecure abusers, who also have low self-esteem, feel a sense of importance when they are able to manipulate their victims into giving up their freedom.

Nicholl McGuire is the author of Too Much Too Soon Internet Dating Blues and Laboring to Love an Abusive Mate.

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