why does he keep coming back

Why Does He Keep Coming Back?

In a relationship for a while? Puzzled when your partner returns after a huge disagreement? It may seem like indifference, but there could be more. Let’s explore why they come back. Even after a heated argument? We’ll try to figure it out.

Understanding the Cycle of Abuse

Comprehending why a person stays with an abusive partner is crucial. To do so, one must grasp the cycle of abuse. This cycle is made up of various stages. They are:

  1. Tension building
  2. Incident
  3. Honeymoon
  4. Make-up

These phases define the pattern of behavior that recurs, elucidating why people may return to abusive relationships.

Definition of cycle of abuse

Lenore Walker coined the term ‘cycle of abuse‘ to describe patterns in abusive relationships. It is made up of three parts: tension building, acute battering episode and honeymoon phase. Knowing this cycle can help recognize when someone is in an abusive relationship and how it gets worse.

The tension building phase has verbal and psychological abuse that worsens and happens more often. This deters victims from speaking out and makes them feel unsafe. This can last days or weeks before physical violence.

The acute battering episode includes physical violence, fear, terrorizing, threats and strong emotions. This makes it hard to escape or fight back, and feelings of guilt and shame keep people in the relationship.

The honeymoon stage is when the abuser makes them believe they will change, but it only lasts for hours or days. Then it starts over again.

How it can lead to a pattern of behavior

When someone is abused, it can be hard to escape. People may think that if they remain in the relationship, things will improve. Sadly, this can begin a pattern of behavior that makes victims feel caught in the cycle of abuse.

This cycle has four stages: tension-building, incident, honeymoon, and calm. In the tension-building stage, small events (such as criticism or insults) take place. This creates a continuous atmosphere of fear and worry. It can lead to bigger incidents of emotional or physical violence.

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After the incident, the honeymoon stage begins. Feelings are intense, and apologies are offered. The abuser may give presents or kind words to stay in control of their victim. This leads to a calm period before tensions start to rise again. This cycle can repeat itself for months or years if there is no help. Each time it happens, it gets harder for victims to break free.

Those who know someone in an abusive relationship should understand how it can cause behavior patterns. This helps them to escape safely. Abuse usually gets worse if not stopped. Those leaving an abusive relationship should find trained domestic violence professionals. This helps guide them through the process, and provides safe accommodations so that no more harm is done.

Identifying Signs of Abuse

Confusing, isn’t it? When a relationship is abusive, but the person still keeps coming back. You may feel powerless to the pain, yet it’s essential to recognize the signs of abuse and why the person might keep returning.

List signs of physical and emotional abuse

Physical abuse can take many forms of violence. This includes hitting, slapping, pushing and using objects to hurt someone. Signs of physical violence can be seen through bruises, broken bones, lacerations or black eyes. Abusers tend to target weak areas of the body in order to cause more harm. These areas can include the face or genitals.

Emotional abuse can be just as dangerous. This is when an abuser attempts to control their partner’s thoughts, feelings, and behavior. The abuser does this through fear tactics such as verbal insults, criticism, and humiliation.

Signs of emotional abuse include feeling insecure in the relationship. Making decisions can become difficult and the individual may feel like they are walking on eggshells. Depression can lead to isolation from family and friends. This is due to the abuser not wanting the victim to have any source of help.

Explain the impact of abuse on the victim

Abuse brings serious and long-term effects. It’s especially intense for those going through domestic violence.

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Signs of abuse can include:

  • Psychological impacts: PTSD symptoms, depression, guilt, shame, self-harming, suicidal feelings, and substance use.
  • Physical impacts: Headaches, chronic pain, lacerations and bruises, broken bones, STDs, pregnancy, disfigurement, and death.
  • Social impacts: Victims may feel isolated due to decreased safety. They could also face financial strain if they lose their job due to injury. This could lead to poverty if family members don’t support them.

Understanding the Abuser’s Motivation

Abusers find it hard to end their relationships. They may be pulled to return to their partner, even though they’re engaging in hurtful behavior. Knowing why they keep coming back can help victims better understand their abuser’s actions. This can help them create healthier, safer relationships in the future.

The abuser’s need for power and control

Abusers feel the drive to control their victims. This feeling is deeply rooted in their own low self-esteem, insecurity, and self-loathing. They know what they are doing and so they try to overpower someone. This gives them a feeling of power. They don’t think of their partner’s feelings, only their own needs.

For example, they might threaten or belittle the victim. They may use money to control the victim, pretending it is out of love. They may also use violence, trying to make the victim feel weak and inferior. This gives them a false sense of superiority.

The reason behind the abuse is usually psychological or emotional. This can be stress, anxiety, fear, or even a lack of problem solving skills. The abuser may use fear and intimidation to maintain control. This leads to a cycle of abuse that is hard to break free from. It destroys trust between the two people.

The abuser’s need for validation

When examining an abuser’s motivations, it is important to understand what drives them. People with abusive tendencies often have an insecurity. This need for control is due to a fear of being exposed as vulnerable or weak. They may feel that they cannot receive genuine affection in a healthy way. So, they use fear and intimidation to gain approval and make themselves feel better.

In abusive relationships, the abuser uses provocative behavior to make themselves feel superior and manipulate others into feeling inferior. This tension can leave the victim feeling off balance. The abuser then renews hostility and manipulation to reestablish equilibrium.

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At its core, this cycle is a search for validation and self-worth due to insecurity. Control reinforces their own distorted needs for comfort and security, but harms another person’s sense of safety and well-being.

Breaking the Cycle

Falling into a repetitive cycle of bad habits can be tricky to escape. Especially when it comes to relationships. You might find yourself continually drawn to someone who isn’t good for you. And you keep returning to them.

The importance of seeking help

Breaking the cycle of unhealthy relationships requires self-acceptance and understanding. Asking for help is essential. Reaching out for support can provide insight into underlying issues and shifting dynamics. It also helps to manage emotions, develop healthy boundaries and improve communication skills.

Having a safe space to explore feelings and gain clarity on a situation can make all the difference. Mental health practitioners provide supportive environments with coping mechanisms that engage cognitive insights and behavioral modifications. This allows individuals to look at their experiences objectively while creating meaningful change.

Finding effective help that best aligns with your needs may take some research. However, it is worth it. Participating in therapy provides an opportunity for improved self-awareness, problem solving skills and breaking damaging cycles of thoughts, feelings or behaviors affecting your life.

Resources for victims of abuse

If there is suspicion that you or someone you know is in an abusive relationship, it is essential to offer resources. Victims of abuse must feel safe and supported to escape the cycle. Here are some resources for victims of abuse:

  • Hotlines & helplines: The National Domestic Abuse Hotline and RAINN (Rape, Abuse & Incest National Network) have free 24/7 hotlines. They provide crisis intervention, referrals and advocacy.
  • Counseling sessions: Professional counseling can teach victims the tools for healthy relationships, communication skills and a self-care plan. It is best to find a therapist experienced in domestic violence.
  • Socially distanced support groups: Batterer intervention programs provide centers or courses for perpetrators. Victims’ support groups give social or clinical services from professionals trained in working with domestic violence survivors. Government websites list services like temporary housing for those affected by traumatic incidents.

Domestic abuse is never ok. During difficult moments, it is important to offer help – whether counseling or shelters providing secure accommodation.


Concluding this situation ain’t easy. Try to determine why your partner keeps coming back. Have an honest conversation and contemplate the future of the relationship. Ultimately, you have to decide if you want to stay or not.

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