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Characteristics of a Batterer

The following list points out some of the typical characteristics of a potential batterer. If your husband or boyfriend fits most of the descriptions below, it does not necessarily mean that he is, or will become, a batterer. But it suggests that he may.

  1. Does he "just" slap you? Has he beaten you up "only" 3 or 4 times?
  2. Does he call you derogatory names and analyze your personality in a belittling manner?
  3. After he abused you, does he then suffer intense feelings of guilt and remorse, apologizes profusely, and overwhelms you with gifts and promises to never again make you suffer?
  4. Is he extremely possessive, jealous of your involvements and relationships outside of your marriage? Does he phone you several times a day just to "check" on you and expects you to make him the center of your life?
  5. Does he become furious when you do not obey him, or sometimes, for no reason at all? Is he constantly finding fault with the way you dress, act in public, or show him love? Does he often accuse you of infidelity?
  6. Was he emotionally and/or physically abused as a child?
  7. Did his father beat his mother?
  8. Does he abuse alcohol, drugs, or other mood-altering substances?
  9. Does he destroy property or hurt pets?
  10. Is he angry at life in general? Does he feel cheated by society, his parents, his co-workers?
  11. Was he ever the victim of trauma, such as combat, multiple car accidents, or child sexual assault, for which he has not received professional help?
  12. Does he hold traditional ideas about male and female roles and adhere to these ideas inflexibly?
  13. Is there any possibility that you might be a battered woman? Even if you only slightly suspect that this might be the case, seek help as soon as possible.