How To Help a Male Friend In An Abusive Relationship
Have you ever thought about the intricacies of a romantic relationship?
Fights are often inevitable in these relationships. However, when things turn abusive, it will always be best to walk out.
Unfortunately, most men do not; as there are various factors that could keep a guy from doing so.
Kids can be a huge factor. Trauma bonding can be another reason. The social stigma of leaving her may also be a factor.
Understanding when and how to help such people will often be a sure way of giving them a new lease of life.
Whenever there is such an issue, it would be best to strategize on how to get him out of it because emotions can really make things more challenging.
Fortunately, we have a few tips on how to help male friends in abusive relationships.
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How To Help a Male Friend In An Abusive Relationship
1 – Talk To Your Friend
Nothing could be as vital as effective communication. Usually, talking to your friend helps you understand what he is going through.
A few insights into the abusive elements he faces in the relationship could ensure that you develop a better solution to his predicament.
However, it will always be important to know how to talk to your friend.
Any slight miscommunication could jeopardize the situation even further.
For instance, such will be the time to avoid calling his partner names. Instead, show your concern for his safety.
Prove to him that you value his relationship, but his safety should be a priority.
Reassure him that he can only share whatever he feels comfortable with.
This reassurance creates a safe space for the victim, allowing him to open up as much as he can.
Once you are sure of what he is going through, start planning an exit strategy.
2 – Get Him Professional Help
Sometimes, convincing your friend to open up about his relationship could be a little challenging.
If this is the case, ensure that you let a professional handle it. Suggest to him a good therapist and why he should consider the therapy.
Unless he is comfortable with this arrangement, do not pressure him. On the other hand, you could consider virtual assistance.
This option assures you of multiple resources at your disposal. For instance, you could rely on the National Domestic Violence Hotline for professional help.
It provides excellent therapy sessions online.
If he would like to speak with a professional therapist, then Online Therapy is a great option as you not only can speak with a professional, but get worksheets to help better manage your negative intrusive thoughts.
3 – Maintain An Open Mind
Having an open mind during such instances often helps you to see things in multiple dimensions.
A limited focus on given experiences could hinder the seamless process of healing or strategizing an exit plan or in some cases push your friend away instead of pull him out of the relationship.
Usually, ensure that you are cautious enough not to be vulnerable to specific stereotypes about his relationships that may potentially make him side with the narcissistic partner.
Any judgment could turn you into an enemy. That is because your friend is already in pain.
4 – Know When To Reassure Them
Most often, it would be best to let your friend feel safe. Let them know that you understand their pain and that they are not to blame for how the relationship has turned out.
It is your role to point out the flaws in the abuser and remain empathetic to the victim. Victims are often conditioned to believe that they are at fault.
And they can start to believe that when they lash out that THEY are the bad guys. This is called reactive aggression and they have every right, EVERY RIGHT to lash out when they are being abused.
The abuser is often aggressive enough to shift the blame and make the victim vulnerable. Your friend is no exception.
He is likely to judge himself and take the blame that he should not. Ensure that you show utmost respect when handling this part.
Point out the vice in his partner and highlight how bad it is for a relationship.
For instance, suppose your friend’s partner is not comfortable with him spending time with friends.
You could say how such a controlling and jealousy behavior is wrong and why she needs to reconsider her standpoint.
Let your friend know that he deserves respect in the relationship. It is his right to enjoy an equal say in every matter concerning the relationship.
Besides that, he must know that he is not the inferior in this relationship but instead an equal partner.
And that to be an empathic male is not a sign of weakness but of strength to care for someone outside yourself with the SAME love you have for yourself.
5 – Provide The Support He Needs
Ensure that your friend gets all the support he needs. That should not mean that you allow him to engage in activities that could even further compromise the situation.
Instead, remind him how valuable he is and how much you are willing to see him through this phase (The Discarding or No Contact Phase).
Let him know that he has a shoulder to lean on at any time. During this period, let your conversation not be preachy. Instead, focus on maintaining a friendly conversation.
This way, you will be emotionally accessible, allowing him to pour out his heart.
Never derail your engagement with non-issues. Prioritize your friend’s situation.
Remember not to act as a therapist but as a good friend.
Sometimes, just having someone listen to what you’re going through can do WONDERS for them.
He may be the one, while venting, who will uncover all that he has been going through by saying it out loud.
“Wow! Saying this out loud really makes me see what I have been dealing with.”
6 – Decisions Are Personal
It is not in your place to make any decision on behalf of your friend; even if you have the BEST OF INTENTIONS.
While you can point out why he should or should not leave the relationship, let the final decision be his.
Provide him with all the solutions he could consider and give him time to identify which one is the best.
However, if there is imminent danger, take all the necessary steps to ensure that he is safe.
In such situations, make a decision that will protect his integrity, health, and life.
You can also encourage him to take some time off and rethink his life decisions.
Whether you go with him on vacation or arrange a small dinner, time with friends will be invaluable in his healing process.
In conclusion, males are vulnerable to abusive relationships too. If your friend is in such a situation, ensure that respect, loyalty, and enough support suffice.
Professional help comes in handy too.
Sign up with my affiliate link above and get 20% off your first month’s session. This could be a good gift for him, so that he can hear what he is going through, and FROM HIMSELF.