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on signs of abuse (repost)

(this is turning out to be one of my mega popular tumblr posts, so, archiving here)

so i’m seeing that go around. and all the people making points that sometimes these signs are useless because understanding your situation is abusive doesn’t do much if you lack the resources/support/ability to extricate yourself from the situation.

something that always strikes me about it

is that these lists don’t really address the fact that, for some of us, these abusive relationships started with our parents.

who, unfortunately, we were entirely dependent on for many years.

and who socialized us to believe that these kinds of relationships are normal

so once we get out into the world

those bullet points aren’t ‘signs of abuse’ but ‘qualities we are looking for in relationships’

so that maybe you look for someone controlling because that means they love you

that maybe you look for someone who crosses boundaries you didn’t even know you were allowed to have

that maybe you can only trust that person who puts you down all the time because they are the only one being honest with you (all those people who say you are great and deserve better are just fucking liars)

worse too, is that abuse culture is such that we are continuously exposed to media and narratives that actually confirm that abusive relationships are what we should want (twilight, anyone?)

so you make a list: these are the signs of abuse

when really, i’m looking for a partner/friend/lover/etc with those qualities.

how else will i know that i’m loved?