He’s Begun Abusing Me Again. What Are My Options?
You and your boyfriend have always had a stormy relationship. There have been many times when he’s called you nasty names. When he started hitting you, it was time to get out of the relationship. You broke things off with him but he continued to harass and stalk you. Finally, you had to get a restraining order against him.
A few months go by and you really miss your boyfriend. A few friends say he’s a changed man. Despite the restraining order, you decide to meet him and it does seem like he’s seen the error of his ways. Things begin to heat up and you decide to remove the restraining order. But that was a bad move. A week after the FRO is lifted, your boyfriend begins to get abusive. He hit you and is stalking you whenever you go out with friends. He hasn’t changed at all and you’ve had enough. What can your next steps be?
Unfortunately, the cycle of domestic violence is very similar to this scenario. According to the National Coalition Against Domestic Violence, the cycle of abuse can be broken down into three parts:
- At first, it’s calm and normal relationship. There are no signs of violence. Your abuser may express remorse for past behavior and try to exhibit a loving, kind behavior. This is the abuser’s attempt to show you that the abuse will never happen again and leaving is an exaggerated response.
- Things begin to heat up. The relationship becomes tense as the abuse begins to build up. At first, it may be verbal but soon turn to violence. The victim may try to appease his/her abuser by giving in or just try to avoid the abuse. But these actions will not stop the abuse.
- Finally, the abuse is at its worse. Violence will erupt. There may be a trigger, such as an external event or just the abuser’s current emotional state. This can an unpredictable event and nothing you can do can stop the abuse.
And then the cycle of domestic violence begins all over again, usually getting more and more intense as time progresses. It can extremely difficult to break the cycle, especially since feelings and possibly children are involved.
But there are ways you can stop the abuse. A restraining order should be one of your first steps. Even if removed, you can still file for a new TRO. It is also best to contact an experienced domestic violence attorney begin any legal processes against your abuser, such as filing for divorce, setting up child custody and support, and, if the abuse was serious enough, file criminal charges.
It’s not easy to break the cycle of domestic violence, but it can be done legally. And we’re here to help. Contact the Law Offices of Anthony Carbone today for a free consultation.