Don’t Ignore the Warning Signs

Most individuals enter relationships with intimate partners fully trusting that things will work out well. We tend to ignore the negatives signs and warnings that are presented early on in the relationship. We find the terms of endearment that are spoken not quite yet bothersome, perhaps a bit intriguing at first. Why? Because the words spoken and actions taken cause one to feel that they are loved, adored, and cherished; not realizing the coercive tactics being used to establish and maintain power and control over your life little by little.

Unfortunately, we seldom discuss the characteristics of the often-narcissistic partner who is kind, charismatic and able to control their anger around others. They present themselves wonderfully to the world, incredibly convincing, yet they are able to withhold their anger in public, able to make the choice later in private to wield their power and control over their partner – very much in control of their actions.


When you are in this type of negative relationship, I, from my own experience, admit it’s difficult to discern; but acknowledging the status of your relationship and recognizing any type of abuse is the first step. This first step is quite challenging, because the skill in which the abuser “abuses” is masterful whether it be physical, emotional, physiological, sexual, verbal, financial or even cultural. And before you know it you are entangled in the web of deceit.

According to the National Coalition Against Domestic Violence website there are distinct warning signs that you should not ignore if you feel you are in an unhealthy and often abusive relationship.

Listed are the “warning signs” of an abuser to familiarize yourself with (

Red flags and warning signs of an abuser include but are not limited to:

  • Extreme jealousy
  • Possessiveness
  • Unpredictability
  • A bad temper
  • Cruelty to animals
  • Verbal abuse
  • Extremely controlling behavior
  • Antiquated beliefs about roles of women and men in relationships
  • Forced sex or disregard of their partner’s unwillingness to have sex
  • Sabotage of birth control methods or refusal to honor agreed upon methods
  • Blaming the victim for anything bad that happens
  • Sabotage or obstruction of the victim’s ability to work or attend school
  • Controls all the finances
  • Abuse of other family members, children, or pets
  • Accusations of the victim flirting with others or having an affair
  • Control of what the victim wears and how they act
  • Demeaning the victim either privately or publicly
  • Embarrassment or humiliation of the victim in front of others
  • Harassment of the victim at work

Your honest assessment and acknowledgement of these warning signs could save your life. And truthfully accessing the condition of your relationship is the starting point. If you feel that these warning signs apply to your relationship, there is help available. Whether you or someone you know is being hurt, you can have hope!

The most important thing is that you are able to escape before it’s too late. And it’s important to take advantage of all the resources available to you to help you heal. There are both local and national organizations on Domestic Violence that will provide information and resources you need in order to make the best choice for your life! Whatever you do… DON’T IGNORE THE WARNING SIGNS!

For anonymous, confidential help available 24/7, 

call the National Domestic Violence Hotline at 1-800-799-7233 (SAFE) or 1-800-787-3224 (TTY) now.


Dr. Renee Denise Fowler Hornbuckle 

Passionate About Empowerment 

Dr. Renee’s passion in life is to make an impact in the global world empowering others. 

She is an award-winning multi-book Published Author (Thomas Nelson); Dale Carnegie and John Maxwell Certified Speaker, Teacher, Trainer; Media Personality; Founding Pastor and Overseer; Entrepreneur; Strategist; Consultant; Cause Advocate, a Life Transformation Advisor, and a Recipient of The Barack Obama President’s Lifetime Achievement Award for her service. 

Utilizing her experiences from the corporate, non-profit and faith sectors – she specializes in helping others gain clear perspectives in every area of life. With expertise in leadership and personal development; change, crisis and performance management and executive coaching; she leaves no stone unturned in guiding others. Whether collaborating with clients one on one, a team, or an organization to level up or move them from crisis to a comeback, she gives practical, solid, and powerful wisdom on leveraging every aspect of life! 

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