Emotional abuse is a way in which an individual controls another person by using emotions such as:
In general terms, a relationship is considered emotionally abusive when people constantly doubt their perceptions and reality. Emotional abuse is classified as domestic violence. There are different kinds of abuse, but it is always about the abuser gaining power and control over their victim. This can take form as physical abuse, sexual abuse, and emotional/mental abuse.
Signs and symptoms of emotional abuse
The majority of us are well educated and aware of the obvious signs of emotional and mental abuse. However, it can be easy to misinterpret or blindly ignore abusive behavior when you are a victim. Emotional abuse involves the abuser attempting to control, isolate and frighten their victim to the point where they will never leave their abuser. When you are a victim of emotional abuse, the love you believe you feel for the abuser allows you to think that they will change over time if you keep trying to keep them happy.
Often, the abuse will take form as a romatic partner or your spouse. Other forms can be a business partner, caretaker, and parent. No matter who it is or how much you may love them, you do not even deserve to be emotionally and mentally abused, and it is in no way your fault for why it is happening.
Below our medical professionals have written a few questions to help you identify if you are experiencing domestic abuse or are currently in an abusive relationship. If you answer yes to any of the following questions, we advise you to reach out for help.
- Put you down or belittle you?
- Deny that the abuse is happening?
- Stop you from going to school, work or college?
- Accuse you of having an affair or flirting with individuals?
- Isolate you from your friends and family?
- Blame you for the abuse?
- Make unreasonable demands for your attention?
- Monitor your social media?
- Share images videos of you with either friend or on social media without your consent
- Demand you have your GPS on so they know where you are?
- Control your financial assets?
- Tell you what to wear, where and when you can go out, what you think and who you are allowed to see?
- Read your text messages emails or open your post
- Threaten to hurt or kill you or themselves
- Invade your personal space
When you decide to leave
The first and ultimate step to escaping an abusive situation is realizing that you are not alone, there is help out there, and it is in no way your fault that this is, unfortunately, happening to you. Before you decide to leave, when you have some time alone without your abuse, try and get advice from organizations such as:
Be extremely cautious of who you tell if you are ready to leave your abuser. The abuse mustn’t know what you are about to do or where you are going. If they find out, they will attempt to stop you without a doubt. This could end up in a physical altercation, with the victim getting badly hurt the majority of the time. You mustn’t tell anyone who has a good relationship with the abuser as they may be why the abuser finds out about your plan.
The National Domestic Violence Hotline has valuable information about making a safety plan to apply to both women and men in these awful situations.