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The Abuse Began Just After We Started Going Out What Young Women Should Know About Abuse by Their Boyfriends actually the physical and emotional abuse started right after we first made love He was nice and sweet until he had secured me as his girlfriend Usually when we think of battering we think of physical assault That is when someone is kicked slapped punched and shoved around Physical assault may result in a black eye or bruise or in hospitalization for multiple injuries Women as young as thirteen are beaten by their boyfriends and have suffered injuries ranging from mild bruising to concussion broken bones and knife wounds Abuse is not just physical abuse There is also abuse that leaves no physical marks--emotional abuse Emotional abuse takes many forms It can be forced isolation being stopped from spending time with family and friends or being put down being told repeatedly that we are stupid ugly fat--all kinds of things that fill us with self-doubts and feelings of worthlessness When someone continually harasses us about where we have been and what we have been doing that is also a part of the abuse pattern Another way boyfriends emotionally abuse us is through threatening us with physical abuse if we refuse to do what they say Boyfriends who do these things are trying to control us and keep us from being independent Each of us as individuals has the right to decide for ourselves how we want to act I never talked to any of my friends because in the beginning they had told me not to get involved I never wanted to admit how un-great the relationship actually was Many men use psychological abuse to control the women in their lives One of the difficulties for both the abuse woman and the people around her is that because there are no visible signs it is harder to recognize that she
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