Posted in Musings on life

Emotional abuse

Emotional abuse is much more insidious than physical abuse. Psychological bruising may not show up on your body but its devastating effects are indirectly observed in victim behaviour. It is important to remember that signs of emotional abuse are not as well defined as in physical abuse and tolerated much too often as acceptable behaviour. If you experience any of the below treatment from anyone, please stop putting up with it and either keep your distance or cut them off from your life immediately.

1. They humiliate you, put you down, or make fun of you in front of other people.

2. They regularly demean or disregard your opinions, ideas, suggestions, or needs.

3. They use sarcasm or “teasing” to put you down or make you feel bad about yourself.

4. They accuse you of being “too sensitive” in order to deflect their abusive remarks.

5. They try to control you and treat you like a child.

6. They correct or chastise you for your behavior.

7. You feel like you need permission to make decisions or go out somewhere.

8. They try to control the finances and how you spend money.

9. They belittle and trivialize you, your accomplishments, or your hopes and dreams.

10. They try to make you feel as though they are always right, and you are wrong.

11. They give you disapproving or contemptuous looks or body language.

12. They regularly point out your flaws, mistakes, or shortcomings.

13. They accuse or blame you of things you know aren’t true.

14. They have an inability to laugh at themselves and can’t tolerate others laughing at them.

15. They are intolerant of any seeming lack of respect.

16. They make excuses for their behavior, try to blame others, and have difficulty apologizing.

17. The repeatedly cross your boundaries and ignore your requests.

18. They blame you for their problems, life difficulties, or unhappiness.

19. They call you names, give you unpleasant labels, or make cutting remarks under their breath.

20. They are emotionally distant or emotionally unavailable most of the time.

21. They resort to pouting or withdrawal to get attention or attain what they want.

22. They don’t show you empathy or compassion.

23. They play the victim and try to deflect blame to you rather than taking personal responsibility.

24. They disengage or use neglect or abandonment to punish or frighten you.

25. They don’t seem to notice or care about your feelings.

26. They view you as an extension of themselves rather than as an individual.

27. They withhold affection as a way to manipulate and control.

28. They share personal information about you with others.

29. They invalidate or deny their emotionally abusive behavior when confronted.

30. They make subtle threats or negative remarks with the intent to frighten or control you.



26 thoughts on “Emotional abuse

  1. Reblogged this on mawrgorshin and commented:
    Most of these apply to my family, and to my experience of them. They have done most of these things to me at least once, and many of them many times, many regularly.

  2. Most of these thirty points apply to my family, and to my experience of them. They have done most of these things to me at least once, and many of them many times, many regularly.

  3. I’ve had to deal with most of the things listed but only just recently started to admit it and draw boundaries. Thanks so much for this post.

  4. Thank you for your comment, Rabia. Realizing that these are things you shouldn’t put up with is in itself a huge step. Yes, when in an abusive environment, your boundaries need to very strict. Sometimes, you might feel guilty for having them as you limit contact with loved ones but the alternative of lenient boundaries is not an option unless you want the abuse to continue. Strengthening your boundaries and self respect is the best way to handle it. After you put up boundaries, abusers might test them and be nice to you to get back their power and control over you. Remember to stay strong and don’t give in.

  5. Thank you so much for your response. It means a lot. I’ve definitely noticed that since I started to put up boundaries they’ve been nicer to me. You’re right I have felt guilty and have struggled with that. There’s a kid involved and while he isn’t mine I make sure I let him know I still care. I do know he’s been used to test my boundaries but like you said I must stay strong. Thanks so much

  6. Reblogged this on Viper Pit Memoirs and commented:
    I often feel like the reason I have trouble dealing with the ‘circumstances’ of my childhood (and beyond) is because I’m either ‘over-sensitive’, ‘weak’ or just generally flawed as a human being and I am usually questioning my own sanity whenever I feel the need to relay my experiences to others…this post though, I found extremely validating as I can literally put a check next to every single item on this list. So for those of you in a boat like mine-I hope this helps.

  7. Thank you so much for this post-there is literally not one item on this list that I haven’t experienced at the hands of my parents, my half-sisters and even my adoptive father’s extended family. It was very validating to see that this has been experienced by others, that is does qualify as abuse and that my feelings are valid. I’ve reblogged this post on my blog because I felt it so helpful and honestly would like to be reminded of that on a daily basis. <3<3<3<3<3

  8. I’m glad to have discovered your blog. I need to find more women in narcissistic relationships like mine. Emotional abuse is the worst and I go through it each and every day.

  9. Thank you very much for your comment and for linking it to your post. I decided to put up this post to make people aware of what constitutes emotional abuse as I realised that people receiving emotional abuse don’t even know they are receiving it. Some of these signs are not always recognised as forms of abuse and thus tolerated. The more people are made aware , the more we can prevent from being abused.

  10. I’m so sorry you have had to go through that, she. Read up as much as you can about narcissists and emotional abuse. The more you understand about the abuse, the easier it will be to begin the process of getting out of toxic relationships. Yes, emotional abuse sucks and I get it. I’ve been there. Please try to find a way to disengage and keep a distance from abusive personalities as that is the only way to heal ourselves.

    Here is a link to my pinterest board on narcissists if that helps.

    Big hug to you she. Stay strong. Bad times don’t last forever.

  11. Thank you so much for your comment and for helping to raise awareness on this important topic. I’m sorry for what you’ve been through. You are not alone and I’m glad my post has helped you. I know what you mean by having your feelings validated. Very few people take me seriously when I speak of the emotionally abusive behaviours I have experienced as it is not really seen as abuse. Not having someone who understands what you are going through and instead minimizes your concerns can leave you feeling helpless, unsupported and wondering if you are over reacting. You are right to have felt what you felt and right to have recognized abuse for what it is. I hope and pray that you have managed to put a healthy distance between yourself and your abusive family and begun to heal. Big hugs.

  12. People who tell you that you’re too sensitive are saying it because they don’t want to be held responsible for their actions when they mistreat you.

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