Synopses & Reviews
Profile of an Abusive Partner Low self-esteem. At the same time this person may appear cocky and boastful on occasion.
Trouble trusting others, particularly you. In spite of this, they may say that they know you would never be unfaithful.
Jealous and possessive. Initially, the abuser may say others were coming on to you. Eventually, thought, you will be accused of being attracted to other people, flirting, or being unfaithful.
Controlling. Sometimes this can be subtle. You may be changing your behavior without realizing why. For example, you may " decide" not to see your friends too often because you don't want your partner to get mad.
Usually comes from a family where there was violence, although they may deny this.
Passionate! This abusive relationship is intense and passionate. There is usually a Romeo and Juliet quality, which may be noticed by your friends. This intensity does NOT mean you are fated lovers. It means someone is holding to too tightly.
Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde personality. The abuser can be loving and supportive one minute and cold and hostile, accusing or distant, the next.
Mood swings or explosive temper. You think everything is going fine, and suddenly your partner is furious.
Macho or super masculine. This is sometimes present in male abusers. This boyfriend will have strong opinions about how a man and woman should behave.
Rigid. You may find yourself saying, " Well yes, this happened, but there are reasons why it happened." The abusive partner will not accept reasons or explanations. Everything is black or white.
Isolating.These partners may want to isolate you from your friends or family. They may always want to be alone with you. Often they will start trouble between you and your best friend. They will be threatened by any relationships you have with members of the opposite sex and may attempt to destroy those friendships by criticizing your friends or pointing out ways in which they, your friends, have wronged you.
Emotionally and verbally abusive. Sometimes there is no physical abuse until a commitment is made, i.e., you go steady, have sex, get pregnant, or cut off your friends and family. It could also be as simple as your agreement not to date others. You don't have to have bruises to be in an abusive relationship.
Denial. This partner will attempt to minimize the violence or behavior by saying:
" I barely touched you."
" I was just messing around."
" You can't take a joke."
Blamer. Abusive partners will blame others for their mistakes or problems. Again, it may be subtle. They will blame others for fights if they can saying any of the following:
" You make me crazy."
" You know what makes me mad and you do it anyway so it's your fault."
" If you weren't so beautiful, I wouldn't be so worried about losing you."
" Your friends are trying to break us up."
" That person was coming on to you."
When you have a fight, they may try to blame outside stressors saying the following:
" My parents are making me crazy!"
" My teachers are making me crazy!"
" I feel like I'm under so much pressure."
" You don'tunderstand me. Nobody does."
These are pressures and feelings with which we all must cope. They are not an excuse to be violent or abusive.
Alcohol or drug user. This partner may abuse alcohol or drugs. If so, he or she has a built-in excuse. Remember that many people abuse alcohol and drugs and never become violent or abusive. If you are dating a substance abuser who is violent that person has two problems that need to be addressed, the substance abuse and the abuse. Look for statements like the following:
" I was totally wasted."
" I don't even remember this. Did I really do that?"
" I'll quit drinking."
" I'll quit drinking tequila, shots, whiskey, beer, whatever."
One night will
change her life . . .
Annie McGowan is eighteen years old, smart, wisecracking, fun-loving . . . a typical teenager. Yet circumstances force Annie out of the security of high school and into a world of problems all her own. Faced with an unexpected pregnancy and a turbulent, violent relationship with her boyfriend, Kevin, Annie's life begins to spiral out of control. And though her worst fears about Kevin are realized, in the heat of the moment, she finds the courage to fight back.
First-time author and domestic violence expert Kathryn Ann Clarke brings clarity and compassion to an often hotly debated issue. In this inspiring debut novel, one remarkable young woman faces the most difficult odds and emerges on the other side -- whole.
The Breakable Vow features a special educational Classroom Guide section in the back of the book that discusses: How to Recognize the Danger Signs of an Abusive Relationship, Safety Planning, Break-Up Planning, Cycle of Violence, Questions to Ask About the New Person in Your Life, and much more.
"The Breakable Vow" transforms a one dimensional scenario of dating violence into a riveting and real-life experience. It tells the story of a young high school girl who becomes a victim of this abuse.
About the Author
Kathryn Ann Clarke has extensive experience in the field of domestic violence. She has worked in the criminal court system for fifteen years, assisting battered women. As a national speaker and instructor, Kathy has trained thousands of police officers, judges, states attorneys, and counselors.
A former victim herself, Kathy brings realism and clarity to an often confusing issue. In recent years she has shifted her focus to prevention, providing consulting and program implementation to schools, churches, and womens groups. She currently resides in County Cavan, Ireland, with her husband and six children.