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Friend in Abusive Relationship

"My Friend Is in Abusive Relationship"

This question is from a Group Therapy post in our TrèsSugar Community. Add your advice in the comments!

I'm very concerned for the physical safety and mental health of my friend. She started seeing this guy about five months ago. Two months into their relationship, he cheated on her. She accepted this and justified this because she had moved away for school (only an hour away) and he was convinced she was cheating on him. Shortly after discovering his infidelity, she learned he had been in prison for five years for aggravated assault. He won't tell the exact details but on her own she has uncovered some very unsettling things. He raped a 58-year-old woman and put someone in a coma and yet, these things don't seem to scare her the way they scare me and my friends. Recently I was at her house and she was changing in front of me and I saw a big, mottled green bruise that looked suspiciously like fingerprints. When I asked her about it, she said she fell down the stairs. I'm not stupid, but I didn't pry. Yesterday, she was changing again and I saw bruising all down her arms and back. She finally admitted that he had started beating her. She said she asked him why he did it and he laughed and said, "Because you deserve it. You are worthless." I've known for some time he is verbally abusive; he calls her things like "dumb c**t" and "stupid b***h".

I've only met him three times and find him highly antisocial. He refuses to make eye contact or converse with anyone. On top of that, he has told my friend he hates me because the first time we met we were at a bar and I had been drinking. If she so much as has a sip of an alcoholic beverage, he freaks out on her and tells her she has no control.

She has talked about this situation in depth with myself and a few friends. We have all been frank and told her we're worried for her safety and that this relationship is abusive. She is aware of the perils she is putting herself in by staying with him but refuses to take any steps that might help her leave him. She says she is scared of being alone but she doesn't feel happy with him. We've pleaded with her to leave him but she won't. Today we finally told her we couldn't listen to this anymore because she knows how wrong this is and justifies his behavior and further instills his mantra of her worthlessness by staying with him. I feel like that was the wrong thing but I am so worried about her. I really feel like he is dangerous and honestly, I don't even feel safe with him in my life. Is there anything I can do?

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