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think my sister in law is being abused.

by my sister.
My sister has been in a relationship with a woman for about 13 years now and I really do think that my sister is abusing her. emotionally at the very least.
this girl barely wants to leave the house, will hardly look you in the eye anymore, and when she talks in particular she keeps looking to my sister as if she's checking to make sure what she says is ok.
and when she does say or do something that appears to irritate my sister (trust me EVERYTHING irritates my sister!) she cringes like a dog that is waiting for a beating.
sorry, I know she's my sister and all but right is right, and something is VERY wrong with the way my SIL is acting. and I'm looking for support and suggestions on this in my area.

don't suggest I speak to our mother. like most things, she's blowing off the idea that I could be right, and only says 'no one would believe you! '
typical response for someone covering for a abuser.


Asked by Anonymous at 11:19 PM on Jul. 10, 2010 in Relationships

This question is closed.
Answers (7)
  • She IS being abused and you can be the one to help her. This is not being shy as someone else said, This is classic signs of emotional abuse and there could possibly be physical abuse as well. Encourage her to get out now, before it's too late. She can call a domestic violence shelter or hotline number and they will help her formulate a safe plan to leave. Leaving is the time where the abuse esclataes and where a death can occuer. Again, this is NOT shyness but abuse, severe emotional abuse.

    Answer by tyfry7496 at 9:59 AM on Jul. 12, 2010

  • I agree with the other posters. Spend more time with your SIL and try and build a trust relationship, if there isn't one already there, and see if you can get her to open up about anything. Let her know that you are on HER side and if something is going on, you want to get her help. Its a hard situation because if she is being abused, she's probably going to be scared to tell you what's going on because you are the sister of her abuser. Anyone would think you would take your own sister's side you know? But either way, if you can get her alone and talk to her about it, that's your best bet.

    Answer by Ash9724 at 11:29 PM on Jul. 10, 2010

  • If she feels she's in danger, tell her to call the police. (Yes, state the obvious, because those who are abused are first isolated and mentally beaten down, so that she wouldn't likely think to call the police.) Also, she can go to First Step or a women's shelter if she needs to, and I THINK, even without leaving your sister, she could go to First Step for anonymous counseling. They have resources for her as well. Lastly, I'd suggest her going to Al-Anon meetings. I don't have a clue if your sister uses alcohol or drugs, but even if she doesn't, Al-Anon will help your SIL to regain control of her life, feelings, and emotions thru a wonderful 12-step program. Good luck!

    Answer by doodlebopfan at 11:28 PM on Jul. 10, 2010

  • I have seen this with some friends I used to know. I agree that you should offer her your support and suggest that she go to the police or a battered women's shelter. If you've noticed this change in her behavior and personality over time, it does at least suggest emotional abuse.

    Answer by Iamgr8teful at 11:33 PM on Jul. 10, 2010

  • Maybe she's very shy. If she is being abused, all I can say is spend more time with her.

    Answer by txdaniella at 11:20 PM on Jul. 10, 2010

  • talk to her about it. like txdaniella said spend more time with her.

    Answer by jennifer588 at 11:25 PM on Jul. 10, 2010

  • This is how i acted when i was with my ex husband and he beat me 24/7 if it is going on i hope she gets out!

    Answer by DeeMarie87 at 11:29 PM on Jul. 10, 2010