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Should I warn my abusive boyfriend’s new girlfriend?

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I was abused by my ex boyfriend. He was aggressive and on drugs. We have broken up for 3 months now. I heard that he has got a new girlfriend and right now I am worried about the girl who’s dating him. I do not want history to repeat itself. I need advice on what should I do. Whether I should inform the girl or not. I’m so lost, and I hope that he won’t hurt the girl.

Should I warn my abusive boyfriend’s new girlfriend?

Answered by on -

A.

“Abuse is the weapon of the vulgar”
Samuel Griswold Goodrich

I am very sorry you had to endure abuse from your boyfriend and am glad you were able to leave. You did the right thing.

But you are going to be too enmeshed with him still if you have to track down each of his new girlfriends to warn them. How long will you follow him? This entangles you with him and depletes you of emotional resources that you will need for your own growth.

If he has done something to you that is illegal you can report that if you haven’t already. That is the most universal way of identifying an abusive person. Beyond that I would direct your attention toward therapy. Resources can be found at the top of this webpage under the “Find Help” tab.

In therapy I would try to understand the reasons you were drawn to him in the first place. This will be the best anecdote for your future relationships. As you said, you don’t want history to repeat itself.

Wishing you patience and peace,
Dr. Dan

Should I warn my abusive boyfriend’s new girlfriend?

Daniel J. Tomasulo, PhD, TEP, MFA, MAPP

Dan Tomasulo Ph.D., TEP, MFA, MAPP teaches Positive Psychology in the graduate program of Counseling and Clinical Psychology at Columbia University, Teachers College and works with Martin Seligman, the Father of Positive Psychology in the Masters of Applied Positive Psychology (MAPP) program at the University of Pennsylvania. He is Director of the New York Certification in Positive Psychology for the Open Center in New York City and on faculty at New Jersey City University. Sharecare has honored him as one of the top 10 online influencers on the topic of depression. For more information go to: http://www.dare2behappy.com/. He also writes for Psych Central's Ask the Therapist column and the Proof Positive blog.

APA Reference
Tomasulo, D. (2018). Should I warn my abusive boyfriend’s new girlfriend?. Psych Central. Retrieved on January 23, 2019, from https://psychcentral.com/ask-the-therapist/2010/05/18/should-i-warn-my-abusive-boyfriends-new-girlfriend/
Scientifically Reviewed
Last updated: 8 May 2018
Last reviewed: By a member of our scientific advisory board on 8 May 2018
Published on Psych Central.com. All rights reserved.