ABUSE: It's About Power and Control

That's right! If you are married to an ABUSER, that man you married for better or for worse, to love, honor, and obey wants to control your life! In fact, it consumes his thoughts every day! You can bet the ABUSER will hold you to your marriage vows in spite of the fact he has broken the "sacred" covenant with you multiple times. I bet you never thought anyone could be so single-minded about power and control. Normal people realize that total control of our environment is an illusion. The ABUSER lives for control of their whole environment! 

At some point, violence will occur or has occurred, but that does not mean the ABUSER will pummel you constantly although there are marriages like that. It usually happens when he feels he has lost complete control of a situation. The chart below illustrates the cycle of Abuse and Violence. Using any or all of these are ABUSE!!! Usually an ABUSER will try to get some small gesture like apologies or sexual advances to test your resolve before moving on to their next tactic to gain control. Do you see yourself in this endless misery? GET OUT! Every counselor worth their credentials will tell you the same thing!

Sandra Scott, In her book, Charmers & Con Artists &Their Flip Side summarizes the charmer and con artist this way:

“A healthy person seeks to be good. A Charmer seeks to be perceived as good because he desperately needs to believe he is a good guy, because he fears he isn’t.

A con artist seeks to be perceived as good a good guy in order to get what he wants.” 

Her warning should be taken seriously: “The con artist can rob you of your time, energy and money. The Charmer can rob you of your youth, your integrity, your self -esteem, your very soul. The con artist robs and leaves you sadder but wiser. The Charmer rapes your spirit and drags you with him into his own personal hell.”

In her book, Charmers & Con Artists &Their Flip Side, author Sandra Scott
identifies the following characteristics:

Here is a check list of traits that will help you identify what traits your ABUSER exercises over your life. That ABUSER you are engaged to or married to can have a combination of these traits:

Charmers . . .
 are often described as “the nicest
guy you could ever know,” but in
relationships they are very
controlling, self-serving, and
 seldom agree to therapy. They
don’t see a problem with themselves
so why should they change? If they
go to therapy, they try to charm the
 look good on the outside, but an
ulterior motive lurks on the inside
 see themselves as victims rather
than those they hurt
 believe they are special and entitled
to special behavior; rules that apply
to others do not apply to them
 have their own brand of logic and an
excuse for everything
 appear to be very giving, but there is
always a price to pay for their
 can apologize easily, but there is no
true repentance
 don’t feel love or guilt deeply, tend
to minimize the pain of those they
have hurt
 discredit their accusers when they
are confronted
 cope by making themselves the hero
in the worst situations
 are very clever, and often able to
keep from being caught
 have extreme shifts in personality,
may be kind and sarcastic in the
same instant
 are very needy, and blame others for
not being able to meet their needs
 appear to be very sensitive to others,
and use their sense of humor to
make others laugh or feel good
 shift attention off themselves onto
others to keep from being found
 depend on lies and deception to
maintain a good image
 need power and control to bolster
their low self-esteem and very
fragile ego
 have a distorted sense of shame,
and feel no embarrassment in
doing whatever is necessary to get
their needs satisfied
 are Narcissistic, and need to believe
they are superior to others! Look up 
Narcissistic Personality Disorder
 are intimidated by intelligent,
perceptive women
 live in constant fear of discovery
 find and use those who will
appreciate and adore them
 rationalize their behavior with no
remorse for the pain they cause
 are one frustration away from
 will not change as long as life
works for them and there are no
consequences to face
 are the center of their world and
need constant praise and adoration
from others
 know how to win the confidence of
others, and use personal
information against them later to
make themselves feel better or
 view their own thoughts and words
as ultimate truth
 use kindness as a smoke screen to
solicit silence or lack of
confrontation of their actions
 are master manipulators who zero
in on others’ point of weakness
 lay heavy guilt trips on anyone
who confronts their bad behavior
 twist the truth, lie, distract, accuse
and use irrational and irrelevant
arguments if confronted
 lack healthy shame
 mess with your mind to make
themselves look normal—twist,
distort, and tarnish your reputation
 know how to play the courtroom
game and come across more credible
than their victims

Con Artists . . .
 are motivated by greed for material
 choose those to whom they show
genuine love and affection, with the
capability of killing a stranger or
enemy without regret
 have a selective conscience with their
own code of ethics
 know right from wrong, but choose to
do wrong to get what they want
 seek trusting or na├»ve people to con
 often back off or move on to con
someone else when they don’t get
what they want
 will resort to violence when they
cannot escape
 make the conscious choice to do evil
 don’t mind hurting others as long as
they get what they want

Next blog we will talk about dealing with the abuser and COURAGE!!!
See you next blog,


  1. This is a scary long list of traits that are sometimes hard to recognize by the person being abused if they have been caught up in the cycle of power and control for a long period of time. In my situation, I had a strong, godly support system and was able to identify the danger and get out. I pray that others who find themselves in this cycle will gain more wisdom than emotional scars when they escape their abusers (see Ted's blog "My Physician" for guidance on healing). Ted, you are an awesome brother in Christ for sharing this extremely important information with desperate women who need to see it to recognize abuse in their own lives.
    God bless you!


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