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Top 23 Reactive Abuse Quotes

Reactive Abuse Quotes

This post contains some of the best reactive abuse quotes.

What Is Reactive Abuse?

Reactive abuse is a term used to describe a situation in which a person who has been repeatedly subjected to emotional, verbal, or physical abuse, responds with aggressive or abusive behavior toward their abuser.

The person who was initially abused may become triggered and lash out against the abuser, often resulting in further abuse and escalating the tension between them.

Reactive abuse typically occurs as a result of long-term exposure to abusive behavior from someone else, such as a partner or family member.

The person being abused may feel helpless, powerless, and trapped in the situation, with no way out. They may eventually reach a breaking point and respond in a way that is out of character for them.

It’s important to understand that reactive abuse is not an excuse for abusive behavior, and it’s never okay to abuse anyone under any circumstances.

However, it’s also important to recognize that reactive abuse is often a symptom of a larger problem, such as ongoing abuse and the need for safety and support.

Reactive Abuse Quotes

1. “Anger, resentment and jealousy doesn’t change the heart of others– it only changes yours.” ― Shannon Alder

2. “But inevitably, when I can’t harm the people who harmed me, I just end up harming the people who love me. So maybe retaliation or holding on to anger about the harm done to me doesn’t actually combat evil. Maybe it feeds it. In the end, if we’re not careful, we can actually absorb the worst of our enemy and on some level even become them.” ― Nadia Bolz-Weber

3. “Stronger than lover’s love is lover’s hate. Incurable, in each, the wounds they make.” ― Euripides, Medea

4. “Returning insult for insult is justice, returning injury for insult is injustice.” ― Amit Kalantri

5. “The greatest form of retaliation is not loving your enemy but ignoring them.” ― Bongha Lee

6. “When you are constantly reacting to having been wronged (or perhaps to what you may regard as a wrong); when you are always giving in by practically living to defend, retaliating one time after another, again and again, you then spend double that time trying to prove the whole story: because to third parties, you will frequently appear to be on the attack, and therefore potentially receiving attacks once more – henceforth an unending pattern of misunderstood retaliations.” ― Criss Jami

7. “Vengeance is a monster of appetite, forever bloodthirsty and never filled.” ― Richelle E. Goodrich

8. “Hate springs from fear. Violence is released hatred. Behind every hateful crime and act of human brutality is an admission of fearfulness.” ― Kilroy J. Oldster

Related: Can Abusers Change? Top 17 Myths About Abusive Men That Make Women Stay With Abusers

9. “Wise men are not pacifists; they are merely less likely to jump up and retaliate against their antagonizers. They know that needless antagonizers are virtually already insecure enough.” ― Criss Jami

10. “In it’s purest form, an act of retribution provides symmetry. The rendering payment of crimes against the innocent. But a danger on retaliation lies on the furthering cycle of violence. Still, it’s a risk that must be met; and the greater offense is to allow the guilty go unpunished.” ― Emily Thorne

11. “Vengeance, retaliation, retribution, revenge are deceitful brothers—vile, beguiling demons promising justifiable compensation to a pained soul for his losses. Yet in truth they craftily fester away all else of worth remaining.” ― Richelle E. Goodrich

12. “Sweet revenge always turns bitter eventually.” ― Richelle E. Goodrich

Related: How To Break The Cycle Of Abuse? Top 10 Powerful Strategies To Stop Being An Abusive Person

13. “Vengeance doesn’t taste quite how you imagine it will, even after twenty-five years. It leaves a mark.” ― Rebecca Ross

14. “Replace retaliation with forgiveness” ― Charmaine J Forde

15. “A society built upon a foundation of vengeance is a society doomed to destroy itself.” ― Richelle E. Goodrich

16. “Retaliation retards your excellence. Nelson Mandela would not have been named as a great man if not for his courage to forgive those who schemed and plotted it for him to spend those 10000 bitter days in prison.” ― Israelmore Ayivor

17. “Vengeance would have us assault an enemy’s pride to beat him down. But vengeance hides a dangerous truth, for a humbled foe gains patience, courage, strength, and greater determination.” ― Richelle E. Goodrich

Related: Covert Verbal Abuse: What Is It & How To Recover From Verbal Abuse

18. “We retaliate instead of reflect, and we burn hot in the flames of revenge rather than cool our heels in the pool of patience.” ― Craig D. Lounsbrough

19. “[T]hat’s the way of torturers of every age, to put the blame on the victim, especially when he strikes back.” ― Orson Scott Card

20. “Self defense is not just a set of techniques, it’s a state of mind that begins with the belief that you are worth defending” –Rorion Gracie

Related: Am I Being Verbally Abused Quiz

21. “It is true that a victim who fights back may suffer for it, but one who does not almost certainly will suffer for it” –Jeff Cooper

22. “If you are not capable of cruelty, you are absolutely a victim to anyone who is” –Jordan Peterson

23. “Safety is something that happens between your ears, not something you hold in your hands” –Jeff Cooper

Related: Emotional Abuse In Relationships Quiz

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How to Deal With Reactive Abuse

Here are some suggestions to help deal with reactive abuse:

1. Seek support: Consider reaching out to a therapist, support group, or trusted friend or family member to discuss what you are going through. This can provide a safe space to talk about your feelings and help you develop strategies for coping more effectively.

2. Practice self-care: Take care of yourself by engaging in activities you enjoy, getting enough sleep, eating well, and exercising regularly. Taking care of your physical and emotional needs can help you feel better equipped to handle stressful situations.

3. Learn to recognize triggers: Pay attention to situations or behaviors that may trigger reactive abuse. Try to anticipate these situations and practice calming techniques, such as deep breathing or mindfulness exercises, to help you respond more calmly.

4. Set boundaries: It’s important to set clear boundaries with your partner and communicate them assertively. If your partner continues to act abusively, consider seeking professional help or ending the relationship.

5. Remember that reactive abuse is a response: It’s important to remember that reactive abuse is a response to ongoing abuse. While it’s important to take responsibility for your own behavior, it’s also important to address the underlying cause.


Reactive abuse can be a challenging situation to handle. Reactive abuse is when someone who has been repeatedly subjected to abuse from their partner finally reacts in a way that is aggressive or abusive themselves.

If you or someone you know is experiencing abuse, it’s important to seek help. You can contact a local domestic violence hotlines to get help and support from trained professionals who can provide confidential assistance.

By Hadiah

Hadiah is a counselor who is passionate about supporting individuals on their journey towards mental well-being. Hadiah not only writes insightful articles on various mental health topics but also creates engaging and practical mental health worksheets.

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