DISCLAIMER: This specific social theory to the cycle of abuse assesses and outlines a dynamic involving an abused female and male abuser/is hetero-centric and gender specific.
THE CYCLE OF ABUSE according to Clarksville, Tennessee’s, Domestic Violence Unit.
Using Intimidation: Making her afraid by using looks, actions, gestures. Smashing things. Destroying her property. Abusing pets. Displaying weapons.
Using Emotional Abuse: Putting her down, making her feel bad about herself, calling her names, making her think she’s crazy (i.e.: gas-lighting), playing mind games, humiliating her, making her feel guilty.
Using Isolation: Controlling what she does, who she sees and talks to, what she reads, where she goes. Limiting her outside involvement. Using jealousy to justify actions.
Minimizing, Denying & Blaming: Making light of the abuse and not taking her concerns about it seriously, saying the abuse didn’t happen, shifting the responsibility for abusive behavior, saying she caused it.
Using Children: Making her feel guilty about the children, using the children to relay messages, using visitation to harass her, threatening to take the children away.
Using Male Privilege: Treating her like a servant, making all the big decisions, acting like the “master of the castle”, being the one to define men’s and women’s roles.
Using Economic Abuse: Preventing her from getting or keeping a job, making her ask for money, giving her an allowance, taking her money, not letting her know about or have access to family income.
Using Coercion & Threats: Making and/or carrying out threats to do something to hurt her, threatening to leave her, to commit suicide, to report her to welfare, making her do illegal things.
All of this is integral to the abuser attaining and maintaining his sense of power and control.