Are you or someone you love here in East Texas trapped in an abusive relationship?

First of all, if you know you're in an abusive situation and you may be in danger. Stop reading and call the East Texas Crisis Center's 24 Hour Hotline: 903-595-5591.

Research shows that domestic violence increased fairly dramatically during the time of Covid-19. However, even if we see those numbers drop down some, any number of people experiencing domestic violence is too many.

It's heartbreaking to consider that so many, probably people you know, find themselves in a situation that is not necessarily a safe one.

And yes, more women than men find themselves in these situations. BUT, men are in abusive relationships, too. And they may be even less likely to get help. Please reach out.

At some point, you may have discovered some dark truth about your relationship with a loved one. If so, please know you are not alone. You are not trapped. And you are not crazy. 

There is help for you right here in East Texas.

How do you know if the situation you're in is merely unpleasant and extra-challenging right now versus abusive in nature?

Here are some of the most common red flags, courtesy of the East Texas Crisis Center

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'Destructive Criticism/Verbal Abuse

Name-calling; mocking; accusing; blaming; yelling; swearing; making humiliating remarks or gestures.

Pressure Tactics

Rushing you to make decisions by “guilt-tripping” and other forms of intimidation; sulking; threatening to withhold money; manipulating children; telling you what to do.

Abusing Authority

Always claiming to be right (insisting statements are “the truth”); telling you what to do; making decisions; using “logic.”


Interrupting; changing topics; not listening or responding; twisting your words; putting you down in front of other people; saying bad things about your friends or family.

Abusing Trust

Lying; withholding information; cheating on you; being overly jealous.

Breaking Promises

Not following through on agreements; not taking a fair share of responsibility; refusing to help with child care or housework.

Emotional Withholding

Not expressing feelings; not giving support, attention or compliments; not respecting feelings, rights or opinions.

Minimizing, Denying & Blaming

Making light of behavior and not taking it seriously; saying the abuse didn’t happen; shifting responsibility for abusive behavior; saying you caused it.

Economic Control

Interfering with your work or not letting you work; refusing to give you or taking your money; taking your car keys or otherwise preventing you from using the car; threatening to report you to welfare or other social-service agencies.

Self-Destructive Behavior

Abusing drugs or alcohol; threatening suicide or other forms of self-harm; deliberately saying or doing things that will have negative consequences (e.g., telling off the boss.)


Preventing or making it difficult for you to see friends or relatives; monitoring phone calls; telling you where you can and cannot go.


Making uninvited visits or calls; following you; checking up on you; embarrassing you in public; refusing to leave when asked.


Making angry or threatening gestures; use of physical size to intimidate; standing in doorway during arguments; out-shouting you; driving recklessly.


Destroying your possessions (e.g., furniture); punching walls, throwing and/or breaking things.


Making and/or carrying out threats to hurt you or others.

Sexual Violence

Degrading treatment based on your sex or sexual orientation; using force or coercion to obtain sex or perform sexual acts.

Physical Violence

Being violent to you, your children, household pets or others; slapping, punching, grabbing, kicking, choking; pushing; biting; burning; stabbing; shooting, etc.


Use of weapons; keeping weapons around which frighten you; threatening or attempting to kill you or those you love.'

(Source: East Texas Crisis Center website)

Please know you do not have to live this way. I understand how hard it can be to break that bond that was formed with another person, no matter how toxic it can be. But you deserve better. Your life doesn't have to be this way.

Please stay safe. For you, for your children. That number again is 903-595-5591.

The East Texas Crisis Center is dedicated to helping you right now. If you know someone who needs this info, please share.

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