As I promised in this post, I'm going to give you a few ideas about how you can help your daughter out of a bad relationship. I will admit that I do not have experience as a parent; I have, however, been in an abusive relationship myself.
One warning- all of this is *much* easier said than done. Your daughter will likely resist your efforts and may not even realize that her boyfriend is mistreating her. She may very well believe she deserves it or brought it on, which is very common for victims of abuse in a relationship. My use of the word 'daughter' and female pronouns isn't meant to imply that only girls are victims of abuse; I know for a fact that this isn't true. I only used that word because statistics have shown more female victims than male. I think these tips could work for both sexes.
- If at all possible, get her away from the situation. Either move away or send her to a relative who lives in another town-the farther away, the better. If he can't get to her, he can't hurt her again or convince her to take him back. If you do send her to live with someone else or she leaves home because you won't let her see him, let the person she's living with know the full situation so that they can help her cut off contact with him. I say 'full' because she may make excuses for him or he may being trying to charm his way back, and the people she's living with need to know why they shouldn't believe him.
- Do what you can to let her know that she does *not* deserve it and did not bring this on herself. It's very likely that he has her believing these things. Try to boost her confidence while at the same time showing her that this sort of behavior is not normal. Low self-esteem is often at the heart, so start with that.
- Try to get her to open up to you. If she doesn't feel comfortable talking to you, help her find another adult she can confide in.
- See if you can get her friends and/or their parents to stage an intervention with you. Chances are, they're worried about her too. When she goes to leave her boyfriend, she will need all the help she can get. They can also be a few extra eyes and ears to help keep her away from him.
- If he hits her, call the police.
- Get her into therapy, both by herself and with you. The therapist may have a few ideas.
Hopefully these ideas will help get your daughter away from an abusive boyfriend. This isn't going to be easy, but it's something that needs to be done. Above all-
She might be angry with or hate you for a while, but please remember that you are only looking out for her best interests. She will thank you later.