Emotional Blackmail is part of Domestic Violence
Do it just this once...for me!
One thinks of Domestic Violence and images of a bruised and battered woman come to mind. Usually poor, often illiterate, definitely not in control of her own destiny or life. This is the image that the media has formed in our mind.
The truth is that the smart looking lady before you at the billing counter is just as likely to be a victim of domestic abuse as any one else. Think I'm joking? No I am not. Domestic Violence does not have to be always physical violence.
Emotional abuse is just as bad for the victim. The worst part is that it happens so slowly that the victim is not even aware of the submission that has become second nature. It starts of with a tiny favor that takes you a little out of your way.
For instance, "Since you are going that way could you get my chore done?" is a really innocent request. No one will have a justifiable reason to say no to it. Yet if it becomes, "You have to go and do this chore for me again. It doesn't matter that you are not going that side. You can always take a trip that side today. I do so much for you and you can't do this one thing for me?"
The tone of the person has changed. The request is a command. It has become obligatory, but you think about it and say, maybe he was tired. What difference does it make? Let me go ahead and get the chore done. The next time it will be "I need to get some rest. So why don't you go and do the chore, then we'll go out for some fun." Notice the resistance is all but gone.
How to identify if you are being emotionally abused?
Do you get frustrated that your partner is palming of more than half the house hold chores on you?
Have you felt guilty about not being able to cope up with the huge load of work you have at the home and office front?
Do you feel that your partner needs to do more around the house and take you less for granted.
Do you offer apologies to your partner for not completing work that he had given you to do, which he is well capable of doing himself?
Do you find yourself drifting away from your family and friends as a direct result of the demands made on your time by your partner?
Do you feel that you don't have any choice in the manner he behaves with you?
Does his jealous streak leave you worried?
What should you do about it?
Sometimes the abuser is not even aware that he is doing it. Not always, but sometimes. So you should start a dialogue and tell him, that you are feeling abused.
Don't get confrontational. Just find a quiet moment and pass on the feelings to him. Don't talk for more than 2- 4 mins.
If he wants to talk more make sure that you have concrete situations that you can remind him about rather than general feelings and emotions.
If he does not want to talk, leave it at that for the moment and observe his next actions. Does he act guilty and try and change? If so he was unaware of what he was doing.
However if the demands now increase you have confirmation that he is emotionally abusing you. Now confront the behavioral patterns with him.
Refuse to be a victim. Don't do chores that he sets you which he should be handling himself. Let whatever monetary losses come be born by him. If he gets more abusive, you need to get help.
The first time he lays a hand on you to deliver physical violence walk out of the house and DO NOT RETURN.
You don't deserve this. The problem is with him, and not with you. Help is only possible when he seeks to make a change and not if you force him into therapy. Don't get trapped with the Lame Duck.