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A domestic abuser may use children to control your relationship

It can be difficult and frightening to try to make a clean break from a relationship in which there is domestic violence. And if the abusive party is also your child's other parent, the situation is that much more daunting. The fact is, even after you are able to extricate yourself from your partner, child custody issues will keep the two of you connected for some time to come.

Unfortunately, it is often the nature of abusers to try to control their victims even when it is clear that their relationship is effectively over. According to two studies presented by the American Bar Association, abusers may actually find ways to use their children as a way to intimidate the child's other parent. Often people who have been subjected to domestic violence are emotionally vulnerable, and an abuser can take advantage of this by threatening to take the children away or by seeking unreasonable child custody terms.

Breaking the cycle of abuse is vital if you want to protect yourself and your child. Anyone who is on the receiving end of domestic violence is liable to suffer from emotional distress and even depression. However, it is possible to leave this unfortunate stage of your life and begin anew. But no one should try to make it through the process alone.

If you have been a victim of domestic violence, one important step you can take to improve your situation is to contact an experienced family law attorney. If necessary, the attorney can help you file a for a protective order that will prohibit the abuser from being in your physical proximity. The attorney could also represent your interests in matters pertaining to child custody and visitation.

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