Emotional abuse refers to a behavior that deliberately controls, isolates, punishes and/or punishes others using fear and humiliation. Although it is just as dangerous as other forms of abuse such as sexual or physical, emotional abuse can be more difficult to identify and define. Therapy for emotional abuse can help mental health professionals reach out to clients faster, while having the convenience of working from home and the freedom of managing as many clients as you want simultaneously. Online therapy Calmerry will help you make more money and achieve a better life balance.
Emotional abuse refers to when one person uses their power to control, shame, criticize or blame another person. This can be done through words or behaviors. It can start slowly and then escalate over time. Emotional abuse can occur in conjunction with other forms of abuse or as the sole form of abuse.
How common is emotional abuse?
Emotional abuse can be common. Most people will experience it at some point in their lives. The dynamics of the relationship where this might occur will vary depending on cultural and individual differences. Emotional abuse can take many forms and can be seen in different contexts. It can also change in the family dynamics of parents and children over time.
Are Emotional Abusers Violent?
Abusers use a variety manipulative tactics so it is possible that emotional abusers will resort to physical abuse. These abuses are often rooted in deep insecurity and a need to control and have power over others. The severity of abuse can increase over time if the abusers don’t get their way.
Examples of emotional abuse
There are many types of emotional abuse. Emotional abuse serves two purposes: to control and isolate. The emotional abuse can lead to self-doubt and loss of self-esteem over time. This increases the perpetrator’s control ability.
Here are some examples of emotional abuse:
- Silent treatment
- Name calling
- Remaining in love
Emotional Abuse vs Normal Conflict
Conflict is part of every relationship. Healthy conflict can help strengthen relationships and improve communication. It is possible to have a disagreement and find a solution without creating rifts in the relationship. Many relationships benefit from having a set of guidelines for fighting fair. Emotional abuse does not fall under the purview of normal conflict.
Signs of emotional abuse
Every relationship experiences conflict from time to another. Emotional abuse, which is far more severe than normal conflict, involves an imbalance in power and an attempt at control.
These are signs that you could be in an abusive relationship.
Your partner makes you feel controlled
This is the most common form of emotional abuse. Controlling spouse/partner can limit the victim’s freedom and independence. Control can include time, money and actions.
These are examples of emotionally abusive control behavior:
- Management of the finances, not allowing easy access
- Limits on the people you can spend your time with or when/where they can be found
- You can track your activities via the internet, or by using GPS to locate you.
- Taking car keys
- Work limitations
Your partner constantly criticizes you
Criticizing can also be a form of emotional abuse. A person’s self-confidence and sense of self can be eroded by constant criticism. The victim might lose their ability to trust themselves or perceive what is going on through the criticism. Emotionally abusive criticism differs from feedback and is not constructive.
Some examples of emotional abuse in criticism include:
- Name calling
- Remarkable decreases in achievements
- Criticizing beliefs, points of views, and actions
- Character attacks
There are a variety of patterns in denying and accusing others.
In emotionally abusive relationships, there may be denial and accusations. Accusing means to accuse the victim of doing something wrong, such cheating. The victim may feel defensive and even be forced to think about their actions. Denying is when the perpetrator denies the validity of their actions and/or behavior.
This type of emotional abuse is illustrated by:
- Refusing to acknowledge the abuse
- Trivializing other people’s feelings
- Infidelity or abuse accusations against the victim
- Your partner has unrealistic expectations of you
- Some emotional abusers might have unrealistic expectations for you, including:
- You are always wrong
- Consistently prioritizing their needs over yours
- You are not given autonomy in any decision or actions
- Accepting that they should be respected and listened to
- Continue to make impossible requests of yours
Your partner uses emotional blackmail against you
You may also be emotionally abused by emotional abusers. Emotional Blackmail is when someone tries to control your thoughts and behavior by manipulating your emotions. Although it may seem subtle, this can make you feel guilty and shameful. This can appear as guilt-tripping or dissatisfaction, shame, etc.
Emotional Abuse and its Impacts
Victims and survivors of emotional abuse can suffer serious consequences. Emotional abuse can have serious consequences for the victim/survivor.
Emotional abuse can lead to the following:
- Trauma and relationship PTSD
- Depression, anxiety, and other mental health issues
- Isolation can cause a breakdown in relationships with family and friends
- In a relationship, codependency
- Stress can cause problems at school or at work.
- Asking for their experience and ability to accurately evaluate them.
- Trauma bonding is where victim and perpetrator have an emotional connection