While I was having my hair coloured at the hair dressers today, I stumbled across an article in a woman’s magazine about a lady who was nearly killed by her boyfriend. As she traced back through their early dating relationship she built a picture of his escalating changing behaviour.

They were definite early warning signs and I jotted them down to show you how Mr Right turned to out to be Mr Horribly Wrong:

He started off being handsomely charming, intoxicating her with gifts, holidays and romantic nights out

She spent more and more time with him until her family complained that they hardly ever saw her

When she tried to reconnect with her family or talk to other people at their local pub he sulked or shouted at her

When the shouting and sulking didn’t work, he then became verbally abusive calling her all sorts of derogatory names down the phone

At this point the victim saw the and ended the relationship

He became regretful and apologised saying he would never to be like that again, she took him back

But he did do it again ….and again. The scenario of obsession and apologising continued for 2 years.

After 2 years the victim fled her home hoping she could break the cycle and start over.

Her abuser found her and demanded she pay back every penny he had ever spent on gifts. Too afraid to say no she made the payments.

Then silence.

Then a text message: I am going to work aboard, please meet me for lunch, one last time.

She said yes.

They met. He carried on like everything was fine between them. They were meant to have lunch at the park but he drove to the moors.

He beat her until she lay lifeless.

He thought he killed her. But she survived. He was sent to prison for 2 years.

Now this might seem like an extreme case but everyday but 1 in 4 women in the UK suffer domestic violence and 2 women each week lose their lives.

Early Warning Signs

There are always early warning signs and there are things you can do to protect yourself.

Romance is good but stay balanced and learn about the person who is having such a mushy affect on you! Who is romancing you is more important than the romance itself!

Stay connected to your friends, family and activities. Involve your date in your life, don’t spend every night on your own with him. If he has a problem with having a life and seeing your friends and family you need to know that sooner than later and you can find out by arranging to have date nights in groups and by telling him sorry but I am washing my hair tonight. Mr Wrong does not like hearing no but Mr Right will love to you have some independence, it will attract him even more to you! Mr Wrong will dislike your freedom very much!

If he sulks and throws tantrums don’t give into his behaviour. Set some limits on it. Let him know that if he wants to date you, then he will have to get use to you seeing your friends and having some independence. He will either keep throwing tantrums and sulking, in which case, do you really want to stick around and be with someone that demands you give all your time and attention to him? Or he will realise he is being unreasonable and change his ways

If he starts running you down and name calling I would see some very serious red flags. Nip disrespect in the bud. If you are going to give him a chance to turn around then set your limits immediately. Tell him the relationship cannot go any further until he learns to respect you. Deal with the disrespect. Keep seeing your friends and have a life of your own.

Mr Wrong won’t be able to deal with you taking care of yourself and may walk away looking for someone else who he can be obsessive and controlling with. Mr Right but not right now, may have to do some growing and learning before you can have a relationship with him but Mr Right will already be happy to be your friend and allow you to blossom. He will want you to have supportive friends and family.

Learn to tackle the red flags as they appear, it is a lot easier than trying to do this two years later when your self esteem has gone because of his dominance and control!

So what does this mean for you?

  • It means you have a support network
  • It means you can say no
  • It means you feel good about yourself and that you know you deserve to be respected
  • It means you can express your feelings, opinions and ideas
  • It means you can face discomfort and conflict in a relationship

It means that you know you are loved by God and that all your needs are met in Him. It means you believe that if you have to let this one go, you have faith in that God that He has something better up the road for you.