Rough Seas

#1
Psychological & emotional abuse 12
  • UPD: 03-17-14
  • AWH
  • 4082349

Psychological and emotional battering, through verbal abuse, kills your spirit. It cripples your self-esteem and your sense of self-worth. In many ways, this type of abuse does far more damage and long-term devastation than do physical blows.

Unfortunately for the victim survivor, this type of abuse can't be recognized as easily as a black eye, a bruise or a broken bone - and it almost always occurs behind closed doors.

Because they have not witnessed him acting abusively, friends and family members often do not understand or believe. Abusers are usually excellent actors, therefore, many people outside your home may only know him as a "wonderful person" or a "really great guy." Little do they suspect how cruel and spiteful your partner truly is.

Closed door abuse, in whatever form it takes, breaks hearts and spirits. We are left alone to wonder... Why does he treat me like this? Why only me? Why not anyone else?

When we are abused in any way, our self-esteem and self-worth begin to wither and die. We may think there is something "wrong" with us. We may begin to feel that we are not likeable or loveable. We may turn to drugs or alcohol to help us cope. We feel shamed - eventually we may feel angry and enraged.

Be aware:   When anger is hidden or buried or turned inward it can often make itself known through "depression." We may think, feel and honestly believe that we are suffering with depression, but in truth, we are quietly eating ourselves up with repressed rage over feeling hurt, humiliated and isolated.

Verbal Abuse: Psychological & Emotional Battering

Nobody has the right to abuse anyone else, ever.

Many women think or believe, that if they are not being physically harmed by their partner, then they are not being abused. This is far from true. If you are in a relationship which is draining something from you... you might not have recognized that he's eroding your self-esteem and happiness through verbal, mental, emotional and other forms of abuse.

The following is a list of ways to tell if you're being abused without being physically touched:

  • Withholding:  Does he stop speaking to you when he's displeased?  Ignore you?  Withdraw affection in order to punish you?
  • Countering:  Does he tell you you're wrong if you don't agree with him?  Argue against your every thought?  Tell you your feelings are wrong?  Tell you that you don't know what you're talking about?  Does he forbid you from having your own opinions?
  • Ridicule [Verbal Abuse Disguised as Jokes]:  Does he make fun of you?  Ridicule you regarding subjects about which you are particularly sensitive?  Does he seem to enjoy it?  Does he accuse you of not being able to take a joke?  Does he use sarcasm to put you down?
  • Blocking and Diverting:  Does he change the subject when you try to bring something up?  Divert serious discussions by accusing you of various things?
  • Accusing and Blaming:  Does he blame you for everything that goes wrong?  Accuse you of hurting him when you tell him your feelings?  Does he accuse you of having affairs?  Is he jealous?
  • Trivializing:  Does he belittle what you say?  Dismiss your feelings or accomplishments?  Insult you when you express pride in your own abilities?  Does he act as if your work is no big deal?
  • Under-mining:  Does he squelch your enthusiasm with insensitive comments such as, "You wouldn't understand", or "You'll never make it"?  Does he sabotage your ideas by pointing out all the ways in which they might fail?  Interrupt you when you need time alone?
  • Threatening:  Does he threaten you, overtly or covertly?  Threaten you with violence?  Threaten you with emotional pain?  Does he threaten you with knives, guns or some other weapon?
  • Name-calling:  Does he use vulgarities to insult you?  Call you cruel names?  Use terms of endearment with intense sarcasm?
  • Forgetting:  Does he make a promise and then "forget" to keep it?  Does he pretend not to remember certain incidents or discussions?  Pretend not to remember prior agreements?
  • Ordering:  Does he order you to do something instead of asking?  Demand things?
  • Judging and Criticizing:  Does he find fault with everything you do?  Does he tell you that you "ought to" or "should" do things a certain way?
  • Denial:  Does he deny that certain things happened?  Does he tell you that he didn't say something or that you never saw something occur?
  • Abusive Anger:  Does he erupt into a rage when she's angry?  Does he scream, yell, or shout?  Hurl obscenities?  Does his body language become more aggressive?  Does he stomp, strut, hit things, or hit you?  Become red in the face?  Throw things?

    Does he physically get in your way, or follow you from room to room?  Snap at you?  Is he usually irritable?  Does all of this usually take place in private, when you are alone?  [ It's a sure sign things are escalating if he attacks you in public. ]

  • Refusal to Accept Responsibilty:  Does he blame you for his anger?
Destruction of Property and Pets

Another type of abuse manifests itself in the form of destruction of your property and harming or threatenting to harm pets. Unlike physical or sexual violence, this form of battering is done without actually physically attacking or ever touching your body. It is, nevertheless, an assault on you. With this type of abuse, the destruction is not random.

The abuser exhibits anger by destroying your favorite possessions by smashing them or throwing them against the wall - perhaps it's a gift he gave you during courtship. He may kick a pet. Maybe your family heirlooms are destroyed, etc.

He purposefully chooses to destroy only the objects he knows will hurt you emotionally - using these demolition derbys as a demonstration of his power and control. In actual fact, they are a demonstration of his emotional immaturity and selfishness.

Occasionally the objects destroyed are selected randomly, but the destruction is still purposeful. To make a point, objects are thrown or destroyed and you never know when the assaults on property will turn into physical assaults on you.- this creates fear and terror. As is consistent with battering and abuse of any type, you are usually blamed for causing the outburst or destruction of the property.

This type of violence normally does not stay contained within the area of property and pets, but eventually escalates to include violence directed physically toward you. Don't ignore the warning signs and dangers of this type of abuse!

Men are not immune

Jim writes: "Even though she didn't return to my office that night, she did go on a rampage when she got home. She went into my home office and gathered my personal papers, threw them into the bathtub, and burned them. Then she destroyed my personal property.

Of all the property she destroyed, the care-bear was the hardest to tolerate. I have two care-bears that are about 2 feet high that sit on my dresser. They are stuffed bears made from the dresses of my two deceased grandmothers.

My Wife took a steak knife from the kitchen and impaled the crime victims card given to us from the police on to the knife, and then stabbed the care-bear through the heart. My son found the care-bear the next morning."

Other Abusive Acts and Behaviors

Financial Abuse or Exploitation:  Does he control how you spend money, where you work and what property you buy?  Spend all family income including your money or savings?  Use credit cards without your permission; destroying your credit rating?  Force you to turn over your paycheck or your benefit payments?

Spiritual Abuse:  Does he put down or attack your spiritual beliefs?  Not allow you to attend the church, synagogue or temple of your choice?  Force you to join or stay in a cult?

Sexual Abuse:  Does he touch you or act in a sexual way that you don't want?  Force or pressure you into sexual acts?  Not let you have information and education about sexuality?  Infect you with HIV or other sexually transmitted diseases?

Neglect and Isolation:  Does he not let you see a doctor or dentist?  Take away TTY, hearing aids or a guide dog?  Lock you in the house without a phone?  Not allow you to take courses such as ESL (English as a Second Language) or other educational classes?

Verbal, Emotional & Psychological Abuse

The signs of psychological abuse can be seen in many ways and can be manifested in many behaviors. Psychological abuse also includes social, financial, spiritual and sexual components. Here are some verbal examples of emotional and psychological abuse:

  • Your body is so flabby it feels like spam.
  • You're so cute when you try to concentrate! Look at her, geeze, she's trying to think.
  • That isn't at all what I meant. You'll never understand how much I love you.
  • If you don't train that dog I'm going to rub your nose in its mess.
  • I'm more capable and better educated than you - I'll get the kids.
  • Grow up. You're just being childish and paranoid.
  • I'm not going to explain it to you because you'd never understand.
  • I used to think there was something really special between us.
  • Sure. Everything is always my fault isn't it? It's never about you.
  • Ohhhh...I'd love to smack you right now!
  • Stop acting like such a bitch. My friends are asking me if I let you behave that way when I'm around or if it's just something you do on your own.
  • In what world does buying that make sense?
  • You handle the finances for now; I'll step in when things go to hell.
  • How dare you talk about our personal business with _______. (fill in the blank)
  • I used to be really physically attracted to you.
  • Let me do the talking; people listen to me more than they do to you.
  • You took a vow in front of God and everybody and I expect you to honor it!
  • Keep your stupid beliefs to yourself; our children don't need you to confuse them.
  • There's no such thing as a "good woman."
  • Don't take this the wrong way, but there are times I wish I'd never met you.

It's important to remember that any of these examples of psychological abuse can happen to either a man or a woman. Abusers are everywhere. They are co-workers, employers, neighbours, relatives, professional people (doctors, lawyers, clergymen etc.), from a stranger at the local flea market to any one of your relatives and friends.

[ Examples of emotional & psychological abuse by Kelly Holly from verbalabusejournals.com paraphrased and additions made by A Woman's Heart. Thank you for making this information available. ]

 
See also:

Quiz: 93 indicators of abuse - Check the box if you have experienced the listed item even one time or if you have "thought about it" or "felt it" even once. If it has occured once, it has likely happened many times under different guises.


A random selection of posts from our site:

Help for abusive men » Men who batter often do not accept full responsibility for their violent behavior. Instead, they blame their partners, stress, alcohol/other drugs, anger, loss of control, an unhappy childhood, or someone or something else ...

Detecting lies » - Many abusers have a specific body language. It comprises an unequivocal series of subtle - but discernible - warning signs. Pay attention to the way your date comports himself - and save yourself a lot of trouble ...

Empowering women » - Self-empowerment through setting personal boundaries. Learning how to set boundaries is a vital part of learning to own yourself, of learning to respect yourself, of learning to love yourself ...

Leaving - think ahead » - Always remember: Safety First. Leaving an abusive partner is a very difficult thing to do. It frequently feels like you are failing, or destroying your family, or not trying to work things out, or not giving your partner a second chance. It hurts, and it's scary ...

Smart legal decisions » - Be aware before you make legal decisions. Unfairly so, abused men are often placed into the position of making life influencing legal decisions while they are still adversely affected by the abuse they have survived ...

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Our Day - Mar 8th

Mark Twain

"Never argue with stupid people. They will drag you down to their level and then beat you with experience."

Courtesy of Political Humour About

National Help Lines

These people are here for you. Call them. Explain your situation honestly and openly. This is not the time to defend or protect him or to downplay the extent of abuse you are living with. The bottom line is that abuse is abuse - you don't deserve it.


If you need immediate help contact your local police department or emergency services. Hold him accountable for his actions. DV laws protect everyone. This includes you and all abused women. Claim your rights.

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    Read about the real man and how he came to be - Jonathan Goldsmith "The World's Most Interesting Man"

International Days

A random global spin is sharing this day with you:

Aug 12  International Youth Day

There are no passengers on spaceship Earth - we are all crew. Let's make our cruise the best it can be for all sentient life and the world's biodiversity - for the air, the earth and the oceans.

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