You would know if you were in an abusive relationship, right? It would be obvious, wouldn’t it?
Well, maybe not. Someone may recognize it pretty late that they were in an abusive relationship.
Physical abuse is easy to recognize, but emotional abuse in a relationship can be more cloaked, often going undetected by family members, friends, and even the victims themselves.
It can be difficult and painful to recognize when you or someone you care about is in a difficult relationship. When you love someone, its easy to sweep bad behavior under the rug. It is crucial to learn how to spot emotionally abusive behavior.
Robert A. Simon, Ph.D. is a Licensed Psychologist in the state of California, defines emotional abuse as “psychological and emotional violence that’s perpetrated in the form of control, manipulation, screaming, yelling and threatening.
These kinds of actions and behaviors are every bit if not more so as psychologically damaging and toxic as the kind of violence that leads to injuries in part; because they don’t show scars and emotional wounds don’t heal nearly as quickly as physical wounds.”
Dr. Simon is describing emotional and verbal abuse as scars that won’t fade easily fade away like physical abuse scars. In other words, if you physically abuse someone their bruises will fade away as time passes. But once you constantly keep saying hurtful things to someone, never apologizing for your behavior, and keep emotionally hurting them will have a lifetime effect on their emotional well-being.
Those words will leave a lifetime scar on their mind, causing them to doubt themselves and have low self-esteem and will be so afraid to the point where they will always think that all other people will be the same as them.
Victims of emotional, verbal, and physical abuse are more likely to always generalize. For instance, a woman that has left an abusive relationship will always think that all men will be abusive and will have the intention to hurt her and abuse her both emotionally and physically.
How does verbal abuse affect the brain and its wellbeing? Its effects can be very harmful to mental health, but the hope is always there, and healing is always possible. Because there is no specific treatment or a certain kind of medication to treat verbal abuse. It must be healed back with emotional love, care, respect, going on a vacation and completely isolating yourself from the abuser and blocking them on social media.
Even people that you think may be your friends, but they are always criticizing you and hurting your feelings. This is the time to pull yourself away from those people. Respond less or not at all to their phone calls and messages, show that you are happy and busy working on yourself and improving yourself. Don’t be available to hang out with the toxic people that you believe are giving you bad energy and vibes.
Victims of verbal and emotional abuse may reach out to their local authorities if their life is at risk. They can also reach out to their social worker, they will provide more information and resources. For recovery purposes, both a social worker and a psychologist can give tips and tricks about self-care and meditation.
– Madiha Amarkhil, BA Communication, George Mason University