America, Are We in an Abusive Relationship?

OK America.  We need to talk.  I think we are officially in an abusive relationship with our commander-in-chief. And we need out.

I don’t say this as a joke.  I don’t say this to make light of anything.  I really mean it. Donald J. Trump is the embodiment of the abusive partner many men/women know.  Don’t believe me?  I took a quick look at a list of 21 Warning Signs of an Emotionally Abusive Relationship.  Let’s see how Trump stacks up.


1. Humiliating or embarrassing you.

Do we even need to delve too deeply into this one?  According to a new Marist Poll, 58% of Americans feel embarrassed by Trump.  And for good reason!  He has humiliated us publicly more times than we can count.  Have you seen his Twitter feed?  And a petition in the UK meant to stop Trump’s state visit got  1 million signatures. They stated that an official state visit would “cause embarrassment” to the Queen.

2. Constant put-downs.

His entire campaign was based on a put-down.  Literally.  His slogan is “Make America Great Again,” which comes with a direct implication that America is not already great.   He even goes so far as to put us on the same page as Putin and Russia.  If that’s not a direct put down, I don’t know what is.

3. Hypercriticism.

The most obvious example here is Trump’s constant and hypercritical attacks on the American media.   In addition, he has waged a war on women.  Whether he is body shaming beauty queens, railing against Meryl Streep, or slamming women’s march participants, he just can’t help but be crude, critical, and crass.

4. Refusing to communicate.

Now, this one is more complex, mostly because the dolt can’t keep his mouth closed.  However, if you think about it, does he really communicate?  Yes, he talks a lot, but that’s not the same as truly communicating.  He barely, if ever, actually answers a question directly.  He uses the same key phrases over and over.  It’s a mess.  And America is falling for it.

5. Ignoring or excluding you.

Here’s the thing: Trump’s vision of America is pretty scarily white.  So yes, he is excluding many of us.  His cabinet is full of white nationalists.  He is targeting and deporting immigrants of color. He is not interested in an inclusive America by any means and that should concern all of us.

6. Extramarital affairs.

Sigh. We all know he’s in bed with Putin and Russia. Cheating pig.


7. Provocative behavior with opposite sex.

Please see this post.  The pussy tapes, the rape allegations… it’s absurd.

8. Use of sarcasm and unpleasant tone of voice.

Listening to him speak is painful. It’s unclear whether this is because of what he’s saying, how he’s saying it, or both (Hint: IT’S BOTH!).

9. Unreasonable jealousy.

Trump’s jealousy is evident in his regular Twitter tirades.  He’s jealous of Obama’s crowds.  He’s jealous of the Women’s March crowds.  He’s jealous of Obama’s legacy.  It’s all a little ridiculous, but it is definitely NOT unreasonable.  Trump sucks and he knows it.  I would be jealous of Obama (and everyone else), too.

10. Extreme moodiness.

Trump is very much a loose cannon. His rage is one of the most disconcerting things about him.  It’s unpredictable and it could really get us killed.

11. Mean jokes or constantly making fun of you.

Well, this depends on who you mean when you say “you,” and whether or not we are going to extend Trump’s behaviors to those inspired in his followers.  The internet is full of Trump trolls making “jokes” and “making fun” of the rest of us.  Internet harassment is basic sport for them.  And it is, on a very basic level, the way that Trump has chosen to attempt to govern.

12. Saying “I love you but…”

Things he has, in some way, said:

I love you, but don’t be Muslim.

I love you, but don’t be black,

I love you, but don’t be brown.

I love you, but don’t be a refugee.

I love you, but don’t be an immigrant.

I love you, but don’t be transgender.

I love you, but only if you’re Christian.

13. Saying things like “If you don’t _____, I will_____.”

If you don’t agree with him and celebrate him, he will shame and humiliate you.  He will advocate for violence against you.  He will have his cronies take your coats and put you out in the cold.

14. Domination and control.

All of this is a desperate attempt at gaining complete control. Literally every piece.  He wants to control the media so he can control the narrative.  He wants to control the people so he can push his agenda.  He wants to control his image so he can feed his ego.  His failure in all of this is of paramount importance, but it is also what has been rendering him so increasingly dangerous.


15. Withdrawal of affection.

So this one is a bit more complicated.  I am interpreting this as a rollback of overall promises and praise previously piled on his supporters.  Trump, first and foremost, committed to draining the swamp.  However, as soon as he thought his supporters weren’t looking, he did just the opposite.  He also turned his back on his previous calls for violence against dissenters, calling his supporters violent for carrying it out.

16 + 17. Guilt trips and Making everything your fault.

These two can’t be separated.  Donald Trump is constantly trying to shirk blame for his failures.  He blames Obama for basically everything (most recently for a”tapp” on his phones).  He blames the military for a failed raid he ordered without ample intelligence.  He is constantly placing guilt on others rather than owning it himself.

18. Isolating you from friends and family.

No one wants to visit us anymore.  Seriously. Even our old friend Great Britain is like, “no thanks and actually don’t come here either…”

19. Using money to control.

Much of his campaign used money to control us.  He promised jobs.  He promised economic nationalism.  He frames foreign affairs as a direct economic issue (if you click that article, scroll to #7).  All of this is an appeal to much of the country’s economic instability.  Unfortunately, a lot of people fell for it.

20. Constant calling or texting when you are not with him/her.

Again, his early morning twitter tirades.  Like please, just stop.


21. Threatening to commit suicide if you leave.

We haven’t gotten to this point… but his supporters promised a revolt if he lost the election, so one could imagine things could get violent if he is removed from office.

So yes, DJT is our abusive, domineering, and dangerous partner.  And yes, we need out.  But as with any abusive relationship, the most dangerous point is the point right before the escape.  It’s when tensions are highest and fear is at its peak… so in the meantime, we must stay vigilant and prepared. Our world is in a volatile state right now, and DJT is a wild card.  There’s nothing more terrifying than that.


**If you or someone you know is in an urgent domestic violence situation, please call the National Domestic Violence Hotline at 1-800-799-SAFE (7233)**


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