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10 Signs You Are in an Emotionally Abusive Relationship

Updated on November 27, 2017

Every individuals caught in the middle of one remembers saying this will never be me.

Verbal abuse will lead to physical abuse nine times out of ten

It is not good for any person's well being to have relationships using emotions as a weapon. These kinds of abusers are the ultimate manipulators.
It is not good for any person's well being to have relationships using emotions as a weapon. These kinds of abusers are the ultimate manipulators. | Source
Lots of mental health professions admit emotional trauma experienced in this manner is as damaging as physical kinds of mistreatment, if not more.
Lots of mental health professions admit emotional trauma experienced in this manner is as damaging as physical kinds of mistreatment, if not more. | Source

Never look to someone else as a guarantee for personal happiness.

This is a true statement. Never look to someone else to make you happy. You and another are certainly capable of sharing it.

Some people believe happiness is relative. Others say it is not always a state of being, but more like a general state of being. No matter the belief, it is an emotion craved by every man, woman and child. Find a great person to share those wonderful moments with and enjoy life. It really is extremely short.

Emotional abusers are men and/or women.

Signs of emotional abuse characteristically begin subtly. Though, there are instances where the onset is aggressive. Being aware of signs and capable of identifying this is an unhealthy aspect to a relationship is the road to looking and feeling better.

The sooner this action is caught the more likely it becomes to remain together as a couple. The longer this goes on, the more difficult it becomes to change for the better. Doing something different is a necessary step to a healthier relationship.

There are times when it takes quite a while for someone to admit this is taking place. This is one of the most difficult things to do. No one sets out to be a casualty of such a thing.

Choices to be made

There are individuals with a need to attempt to salvage and repair the feelings initially experienced before the nightmare began. Usually those people who have been together a substantial amount of time or with children take this road. An attempt is not a guarantee things work out well in the end.

Other outcomes include ending the relationship in order for a sufferer to maintain emotional or mental health. Having an unhealthy outlook mentally on life is a usual consequence. Scars from this type of violence are lifelong for countless individuals.

These are some signs and symptoms of an abusive situation and what any person is able o do to make a change for the better.

Define it

This type of treatment is more than being rude or bad manners in public. This is a sadistic attack on another persons emotions for the ultimate reward of personally feeling good. If psychologically attacking or hurting a loved one or significant other via words or deeds feels good it is not. In fact, the persons at the other end of the such a tantrum define it as a form of betrayal.

The condemnation is not relegated to a single event or time. Whenever a personal slight or insult is felt, real or imagined there is an act lashing out. A great way to put the words into this category is when the reaction is over the top.

Folks living in this situation confess it starts when the abuser feels there is a snub or affront. These are imagined or a perceived and rarely real. This is not the correct way events played out. In fact, innocent suggestions or conversations soon turn into World War III without provocation.

Insecurity and fear is the underlying emotion accounting for a lot of these types of abusers "broken" outlook on life. It is not something a non professional mental health worker is capable of fixing.

Getting the ugly confrontation going is only the beginning. If there is no interaction from a sufferer there is more anger. In other words, there is a need to have things escalate to the point of justification of why the abuser acts in a certain way.

Severing other relationships

Unfortunately, a casualty of this type of life discovers personal relationships outside of the couple are severed. These includes family as well as friends.Visits away from the home become more infrequent. Visits coming into the home tend to end in disaster in one way shape or form.

Phone calls are rarely made or not returned. Messages are lost or not delivered. There is no privacy for phone calls or texts. Asking for it leads to innuendos and accusations.

The action of separating a person to this degree is generally managed by bad mouthing other individuals or even sabotaging plans. Asking to be nursed in the middle of family reunions is an example.

There is a need to be part of other plans where initially there was no invite. Insertion is a way to wrangle an argument or fight with a spouse of even others who attempt to intervene.

Worse case scenarios are having an entire event ruined for everyone in attendance. If this does not work, making others attending it miserable or uncomfortable to put an end to things. There is no such thing as embarrassment for these sorts of folks.

Understanding is non existent when it comes to feeling a desire for a life outside of the relationship or why there is any sort of affiliation with others. Examples include circumstances were a standing doctor appointment is resented. This is citing some extreme cases, but these do take place. Forget about lunch with a brother or a birthday party for a best friend since childhood.

What makes sense

It is healthy and normal to have other interactions in social settings and with people outside of this single circle. It is extremely healthy to want one. Friends, family and even friendly hellos and smiles to strangers add improvement to life overall.

This association or connection formed with another person in a face to face interaction, telephone conversation and generally spending time with someone other than a spouse is okay.This does not mean a romance is developing or there is a sinister reason behind it.

If a personal life has become living with resentment whenever talking to anyone or spending time with them, this is probably an abusive state of affairs. There is a need to do something about it in order to better living conditions or prevent even further.

Using verbally abusive language "as a joke"

Calling an individual derogatory names is not a joke. Even if a spouse who says it playfully. No one finds this funny. This is simply another ploy at attempting to get away with negative acts. People who care about others never intentionally use hurtful language as levity knowing the emotion pain it causes.

Any attempts this is a vehicle used to keep a person “in line” is a sure sign of something is wrong with the condition of a relationship. If not able to use the joke excuse the go to answer is accusations this person is unable to take a joke like everyone else.

Once uncovered whatever was said unnerved or saddened the individual, the abuser will likely use it again and again. The ultimate goal is to make a person feel uncomfortable, but most of all bad for no apparent reason.

What a person needs to realize

Even if a joke is the initial reason specific language was used, once understanding it was hurtful to a person's spirit, a loving gesture is to refrain from using it ever again. Most folks admit even anger at the thought of anyone else ever using it. An immediate stop is made and it is never to repeat the process.

This is not a situation of being too sensitive. If a gut feeling says this was not an intentional joke, it most likely is not. This is not the way to be treated. There is nothing beneficial for the emotions in any loving union. This is a way to be manipulative and an attempt to create feelings which do not exist or are not reasonable.

The innocent party mistakenly accepts fault and tries to laugh it off as normal behavior for all couples. This is not true.

Always being blamed for everything

Being responsible for another person's failings and shortcomings gets old quick. Accountability for our actions is a normal part of growing up. Missing appointments because another failed to remind an individual is a great example. Get an alarm clock instead of using a girlfriend or boyfriend as one.

Listen carefully to the tantrums and verbal attacks and the way blame seems to not extend to anyone else. Everything bad in life is not the fault of one.

Then there is the guilt trip pushed out. In other words, no one else would put up with this behavior. Therefore, be thankful this relationship even exists. This is basically a pity date. Why do even put up with it? Why does this person stick around? All of these questions are not ever deemed worth a reply. Answer ability is redundant. It is always the same. Abusers blame others for shortcomings no matter what the task.

What is important to note

Everyone takes responsibility for personal own actions. They will never admit to being at fault and will generally turn their shortcomings into your mistakes and imperfections.

No one is perfect. Though, some are better than most when it comes to defects. One of the biggest found in any individual is the inability to own up to personal flaws. Once this has been performed, working on elimination or improvement is easier. An abuser will never do this. In a sick way imperfection is only in others. This is especially true when it comes to any one else. The abuser is perfect and the only weakness in character is the relationship.

Not all misuse drugs and alcohol-most of them do

Not all verbal abusers use an excessive of drugs or alcohol. However, there certainly an increased chance of it. Abusing these leads to emotional abuse and unwholesome interactions with others.

The exploitation of controlled substances is characteristically seen as self medicating mental health issues or concerns. A valid diagnosis needs to be confirmed by a mental health care professional after careful assessment.

Addiction to drugs or alcohol likely leads to irrational behavior or an excuse. This is used as another mechanism for not accepting responsibility for personal actions. This is the first step from verbal to physical abuse in most situations.

The process typically speeds up when drugs and/or alcohol is added to the mix.

What to do with this info

Do not become a user or addict of these mental coping mechanisms as well. Any illegal activity leads to legal problems or bad experiences with the law. Financial instability and other issues characteristically follow as well.

Let this be an issue to be personally addressed by the person who has the problem. This is not a healthy environment for adults and even more so for children.

Avoid becoming co-dependent and holding up as a rock when the right thing is allowing a good fall on the rear end for accountability. Along with drugs or alcohol look out for gambling too.

Fear is not found in a healthy give and take

Feelings of being afraid of someone is not okay. This is especially so if this person professes to be in love with you. The normal evolution of a bond does not involve this emotion.

Emotional abusers use this along with intimidation of violence to keep control when there is no right to it. It is a tactic to scare with the intention of making a person perform a task or do things which is normally avoided.

There are those few who are up front with it. The threat of violence using fist or other objects like knives or guns. Others hint at it in order to deny it was ever discussed. This is how it is possible to state was a misunderstood prank or joke.

The maneuvering goes as far as capitalizing on the fact children are in the home. Subtle hints of violence against kids are made when it proves more frightening.

Lots appear to be weapon collectors. Guns or knives are a favorite. This does not mean all hunters fall under this umbrella. Though, there are those who use the guise of being one to hide.

Weapons for power and aggression are not the sign of a healthy mental status. A red flag is any sort of use with emotions of hostility or cruelty behind it. This is a sign of an unstable mindset.

What to do in this circumstance

Living under this threat level leads to stress and anxiety. Physical health issues are known to be related to extended periods of anxiousness. Once physically ill, the act of getting better means discovering ways to mend with the help of the right kind of health care professional. Depression is the most common.

Not only is money involved with recovery after falling ill, but there is also a blow to the rest of the household. Friends and family are some of the first to notice a change in personality which is a sign of mental illness like depression. Asking for help is difficult, but not impossible.

Physical intimidation such as threats of violence against a person are against the law. Any one believing a person will cause physical harm will do well to contact the police for further assistance.

Healthcare professionals now assist most patients with getting to the agency needed. Help and advice are both found in a doctor's office if needed. There are legal avenues available as well in order to feel safe after the relationship is over or in the process of ending one.

Being punished for spending time away or alone

This action does not warrant a punishment. Who wants to be with another person every spare minute available.A well rounded couple has separate interest as well as those shared.

If it does take place this is definitely not to be ignored. Ignoring it or pretending it is not an issue makes it appear as if everything about it is okay.

Along with isolation, being interested in an activity which does not include the relationship counterpart is considered scheming. Expect to be met with shouting, insults or even threats of violence.

The abuser has a sensation of being out of control. This is reflected in anger. The imagination loses control and all sorts of things are possible. An incident at work has the possibility of losing a job and much needed income.

Accusations of infidelity and worse. Eventually there are time limits set for events such as grocery shopping on going to and from work. How about not meeting the specified time frame for a visit to the dry cleaners or market.

Failure to be done with events, permitted by the abuser, results in this person following a significant other to a location. There are incidents of excessive calling or an intense verbal attack upon returning home.

What to do in this circumstance

The old saying "absence makes the heart grow fonder" is true in many ways. Couples do have personal interests and hobbies. Time away from one another is a good thing. No two people are exactly alike, even twins. Pursuing things on an individual basis is great for the union.

Suppose both parties like to shop or go bowling. Though, only one likes scary movies. Going to see the latest flick at the theater with sis is not a big deal. Lunch with mom and dad is no reason for over the top ranting and raving.

This is not the same as declining an invite. For this to be wrong it comes down to planning a date outside of the home and and not following through simply because another says no. Another example is not going as far as setting up any plans because of backlash due to the act of attending as a single rather than a couple.

Being in a couple means two individuals coming together. Even a loving couple is two separate people. Similar interests do exists, this is part of what brought two hearts together. It is okay to want to do things as a single rather than a double.

Feels entitled being waited on

It is nice to get extra attention from another. This does not mean it is an entitlement is owed. There is no reason or absolute right making it necessary to wait on this person hand and foot. No law exists to show undivided attention. It is okay for those persons who do choose to do it.

Do not become embarrassed not to be at beck and call or grateful for the privilege. This person will have unrealistic expectations. There is the assumption you handle everything without anything offered in return. Reciprocation is unheard of and never wait. The chance of getting it is slim to none.

Countless abusers need a mommy or daddy figure and you have been chosen.

What you need to survive

What you do and give to another is out of love. Never is this a must have or must do, especially for an adult. The only person warranted this type of focus is a child unable to do things.

If mom and dad did an awful job of raising an individual from infancy to adulthood, it is not the responsibility pf anyone to make up for it. Give what you want to a person and never what is demanded.

Extreme jealousy for anyone

Abnormal jealous feelings are displayed. This is toward everyone showing any attention to you. Countless users in this situation have a unwarranted sense jealousy with people known and even unknown. Nothing is there to provoke it or understand a reason for it. The feeling is characteristically always unfounded and not within reason.

These feelings extend to ideas, desires and ambitions. A rage occurs over things commonly intangible. There is no way to put into words and feelings why these feelings are there. A number of professionals indicate this is due to a lack of control in control in personal life decisions.

What to do about this

Mental impressions of jealousy are actually envy or other misplaced emotions. Countless cannot even identify reasons for it.

A loving relationship contains a spouse happy for accomplishments and singing accolades when warranted.

Just because a hello was returned to the guy bagging groceries on Tuesday afternoon does not mean an affair is going on.

Get out now. This is commonly a trait which never goes away. There is help in the mental health community. Professionals are capable of sorting out confused and misguided feelings.

Another person's emotions are in control

These are individuals who understand the art of ultimate manipulation. There is a way to control without physically force. Blame is rampant, but placed in the wrong spot.

Things are sabotaged by everyone else. No one wants to see this person happy for whatever reason is made up on any given day. There is an idea of how things actually are and how these same outcomes are perceived.

Any excuse is a good one as far as this person is concerned. Feeling unhappy due to another's actions hurts even more.

They want you to experience sensations when approved or allowed. Not only this but also which ones are appropriate and when. A guilty feeling is there when no rational exists for one.

The biggest misguided one is guilt. There is also selfishness for being assertive for what is right. Twisting the truth comes in the form of saying things will change. Apologizing for what is happening now, but things will change. It’s the same old song and dance because the tune never changes.

What to know

You are always your own person. Own personal emotions and permit other folks to do the same. Feel happy, sad, mad or even glad whenever. This type of yo-yo existence is not mentally healthy for anyone.

In conclusion

For those people found in emotionally abusive relationships things usually turn to physical abuse. Things begin to go from bad to worse subtly. For most this is how the emotional abuse began, very slowly.

According to all signs and stats things eventually escalate until the victim of a physical abuser emerges. This is true if those who break and throw things during the verbally abusive episodes.

These are people who also seem to get into physical altercations with others more than the norm. Eventually this display is a physical force with you.

What to know about this circumstance

Whether the person you love is physically abusive or making certain decisions are not your will. These are unlawful acts and need the attention of law enforcement.

Remember there are people able to help in these situations. You are not alone. Get away from a verbally abusive relationship. The odds are not in your favor for a positive outcome.

Love doesn't hurt. Although all couples certainly never agree one hundred percent on all subjects. It is never okay to strike or berate in order to inflict pain simply because of it.
Love doesn't hurt. Although all couples certainly never agree one hundred percent on all subjects. It is never okay to strike or berate in order to inflict pain simply because of it.
It is possible to carry the same attitude in connection with verbal mistreatment from generation to generation. This includes ignoring it or condoning it.
It is possible to carry the same attitude in connection with verbal mistreatment from generation to generation. This includes ignoring it or condoning it.

Award winning documentary of a woman terrorized for fifteen years by a spouse.

No one is perfect. If you are not perfect it is insane to expect it from someone else.

Well being or health is impacted in countless cases.

An emotionally abusive relationship in lots of instances is just as damaging to some people as physical abuse.

No matter which one of you is verbally cruel, violent or vicious to the other, it is not healthy. Physical ailments have been recognized in a number of studies as developing or a prior existing one getting worse.

Although the characteristic is generally associated with men, it is possible to see women as part of the statistic as well.
Although the characteristic is generally associated with men, it is possible to see women as part of the statistic as well.

© 2011 smcopywrite


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    • Francis Jason profile image


      yes this article relates to my life

    • smcopywrite profile image

      smcopywrite 4 years ago from all over the web

      Eruthpatton1960 thank you for sharing that wonderful sentiment

    • profile image

      Edith 4 years ago from Orange County/LA County California

      Each and every one of us are different in a very unique own special way but one thing is UNIVERSAL in all languages and ways to show it and that something is LOVE. If somebody don't show you or give you love in any way just leave! ....... " You are a very special child of GOD and GOD is love and he wants us to be happy ".

    • jantamaya profile image

      Maria Janta-Cooper 5 years ago from UK

      This is truly well written article. I can imagine that your article can be very helpful for somebody living in an abusive relationship. Well done. Congrats! Voted up and shared.

    • The Frog Prince profile image

      The Frog Prince 6 years ago from Arlington, TX

      Fascinating. I wasn't keeping score but I know someone who should read this. Cups whizzing by, threats of deadly force, having other friends in your life and only friends, feeling entitled...

      I think I'll stop. As I said, "I wasn't keeping score!

      The Frog

    • b. Malin profile image

      b. Malin 6 years ago

      Well Smcopywrite, looks like you've covered all the Abusive Bases and then some. Good Timely Hub...How many of us will see ourselves? Good One my Friend.

    • smcopywrite profile image

      smcopywrite 6 years ago from all over the web

      this type of abuse is a heads up for many would be troubling physically abusive situations. i wanted to point out that men as well as women can heap this type of abuse on their spouse. a man or a woman should not stand for it.

    • prasetio30 profile image

      prasetio30 6 years ago from malang-indonesia

      Very inspiring hub. Thanks for share with us. I learn much from you. I'll bookmark this one. Well done and vote up!


    • profile image

      Family2011 6 years ago

      Informative information as usual. Many teens do not really understand the importance of setting standards on to when to step up and leave the situation, it gets to a point that situation would escalate into physical one.

    • Dr Bill Tollefson profile image

      Bill Tollefson 6 years ago from Southwest Florida

      smcopywrite...Extremely useful Hub for individuals who question whether they are being emotionally abused. Emotional abuse is just as harmful to a person as every other type of abuse, sometimes more because there are no visible signs. Keep up informing others with your insightful writings.

    • Ardie profile image

      Sondra 6 years ago from Neverland

      This is a very important topic to discuss and I applaud you for writing about it. Too many people, especially young people, find themselves trapped in an abusive situation. Sometimes it can be so subtle you don't even realize what is happening until your self worth is in the gutter. I am voting this up so hopefully many more people will read it.