5 signs your teen may be in an abusive relationship

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Is your teen's partner overly possessive? Do they call and text all the time demanding to know where your teen is and who they are with?

What you need to know:

  • Your teen may probably in their first relationship and as a parent, you might wonder whether your teen is in a healthy relationship or is being abused.

Many teens are in abusive relationships and do not even realise it. Narcissists are known to be cunning individuals and teens can fall prey to their advances and end up feeling trapped. Teens will stay in such a relationship because they fear what might happen if they leave. This is a huge mistake that can lead to long-term mental health issues. Unfortunately, teens in abusive relationships rarely speak up about the issue, making it hard for their parents to know about it and offer much needed help.

Who is a narcissist?

A narcissist is someone who has extroverted and obtrusive self-centeredness with an intense desire for admiration. A narcissist also wants to be admired by others but cannot see or appreciate other people's thoughts, feelings, or viewpoints. Narcissists typically love and think of themselves as better than anyone else, while downplaying others.

Signs of a narcissistic partner

In an interview with Aunt Truphena, a counselling psychologist who writes for Nation Africa, she defines narcissists as follows:

·  Psychopaths: they have no feelings and are exceptionally good at pretending to feel and have a lot of empathy when it suits them. She states that the lack of empathy enables them to 'kill' quickly. They can be charming but also rude since the only person who matters is themselves.

·   Pathological liars: they will lie about anything to benefit themselves and are very convincing. They have a lot of charisma that draws people in, which is why it is easy for them to get away with their lies.

·   Dramatic: they are drama kings and queens as they exaggerate emotions to fit their needs. In other words, they will do something dramatic and then blame others for it.

·   Angry: they will explode and then blame it on something that happened months ago. As a result, they do not express their anger healthily.

·   Arrogant: their self-image comes before anything else, including their partner's feelings or emotional well-being. Narcissists usually have an incredible sense of entitlement, which means that whatever they want to happen must happen.

·   Most of the narcissists have a background of bad parenting or traces of drug abuse.

Identifying an abusive relationship

Your teen may probably in their first relationship and as a parent, you might wonder whether your teen is in a healthy relationship or is being abused. Here are some tips on how to identify if your teen's partner is abusive:

1. Your teen stops spending time with friends: they close themselves off from the world and become somewhat isolated. This often happens because the abuser does not want people to know what is going on.

2. Your teen stops wearing certain clothes: a wardrobe change could mean that their partner is telling them how they should dress, and it might be an effort for your teen to please their partner even if you do not see why they would need to do that.

3. Presence of physical marks indicating injuries: this might be a sign that your teen is physically abused. However, it could also mean they are emotionally and verbally abused as well.

4. Your teen's partner is overly possessive: the partner feels like they own your teen. They might start calling and texting all the time, demanding to know where your teen is and who they are with.

Pay attention to change in behaviour in your teen to save them from being victims of abusive relationships.


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