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Abusers may manipulate victims into denying abuse

Domestic violence situations can be very complicated, in part because they often involve two people who had, at least for a time, a very close relationship. One reason that a person may deny that he or she is being abused, even if the evidence is very clear, is that he or she may still have strong feelings for the abuser.

Experts also note that abusers will sometimes attempt to manipulate their victims. They say that the whole thing happens as part of a five-step process, after charges have been filed:

1. First off, the two will argue about what happened. The abuser may deny the truth, while the victim does not back down.

2. Next, the abuser will start pleading and talking about how what happened was not actually that bad. The goal is often to earn sympathy from the victim. The abuser may talk about being lonely or depressed.

3. After that, the two will come together with an us-against-the-world attitude. They will talk about how others don't understand them and they'll actually grow closer.

4. In the fourth stage, the abuser will work to see if the manipulation paid off, asking the victim to consider dropping the charges.

5. Finally, the victim will take the legal step of recanting his or her claims. At times, the victim may say that he or she made the whole thing up.

This process was explored in multiple relationships and found to happen consistently. Researchers noted that abusers would do this to eliminate the charges, but it could also keep the victim in the relationship.

Those who are victims of domestic violence in Florida need to know how this often plays out so that they can avoid it and seek proper legal action.

Source: Domestic Shelters, "How Abusers Trick Survivors Into Denying Abuse," accessed March 04, 2016

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