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Profile of the Abuser


·        Profile of the Abuser


There are different types of abusers and different levels of abuse.  Generally, abusers are people with a strong psychological or emotional immaturity, and probably, they have been a victim of abuse during their childhood or a witness of an abusive relationship, and they have not been able to learn better and healthier ways to interact with others.


Often times, low self-esteem, lack of self-confidence and frustration lead a person to feel he or she needs to control other people or constantly degrade them.


Among the most common characteristic of abusers, we can list the following:


§         They have a low level of tolerance, a volatile temper and any minimal incident triggers their negative reaction.

§         They are very insecure, excessively possessive and jealous. They feel a strong need to control others or restrict their rights.

§         They need submissive people willing to obey their rules.

§         Often, they have very superficial relationships with different partners.

§         They don’t commit.

§         They have unrealistic expectations.

§         They are very demanding.

§         They give orders, they don’t ask.

§         They have a great ability to deceive others and they also deceive themselves often.

§         They blame other about their own problems, or they blame the world, life, their luck or a particular situation.

§         They never acknowledge the harm they cause.

§         They are inconsiderate and never show empathy towards others.

§         Usually, they have a dual personality: they can be charming and cruel at the same time.


These are very general characteristics. We also need to remember that each person is unique, and an abuser may exhibit some personal traits that other abusers may not have.


Abusers may be either male or female, and they can also be parents, employers, teachers, law enforcement agents, friends, etc.


Here are other common characteristics of abusers and the different types of abuse:


§         The abuser makes the victim feel responsible for his emotions.

§         He threatens the victim.

§         He insults, humiliates, verbally or physically attacks the victim.

§         He makes the victim feel guilty so he can justify his abuse.

§         He needs to be the center of all conversations and needs undivided attention.

§         He refuses to apologize because he is always right.

§         Judges or criticizes the victim or what the victim does.

§         Uses punishments and rewards to emotionally manipulate the victim.

§         Invades the victim’s privacy.

§         Underestimates the victim, minimizes the importance of the victim’s needs and feelings, or ignores them.


Abusers usually have a sharp natural perception -most of the times they unaware of it- about the weaknesses of the victim.  Emotional abuse occurs when a person allows it to occur (expect for victims who are children, disabled people, or some elderly). We are not trying to justify the abuser, but it is very important to understand that the victim also plays a crucial role in the emotional abuse.