Emotional abuse is elusive. Unlike physical abuse, the people doing it and receiving it may not even know it’s happening. It can be more harmful than physical abuse because it can undermine what we think about ourselves. It can cripple all we are meant to be as we allow something untrue to define us. Emotional abuse can happen between parent and child, husband and wife, among relatives and between friends. The abuser projects their words, attitudes or actions onto an unsuspecting victim usually because they themselves have not dealt with childhood wounds that are now causing them to harm others. In the following areas, ask these questions to see if you are abusing or being abused:
1. Humiliation, degradation, discounting, negating, judging, criticizing:
- Does anyone make fun of you or put you down in front of others?
- Do they tease you, use sarcasm as a way to put you down or degrade you?
- When you complain do they say that “it was just a joke” and that you are too sensitive?
2. Domination, control, and shame:
- Do they treat you as though you are inferior to them?
- Do they make you feel as though they are always right?
- Do they belittle your accomplishments, your aspirations, your plans
3. Accusing and blaming, trivial and unreasonable demands or expectations…
- Are they unable to laugh at themselves?
- Do they have trouble apologizing?
- Do they blame you for their problems or unhappiness?
- Do they continually have “boundary violations” and disrespect your valid requests?
4. Emotional distancing… isolation, emotional abandonment or neglect:
- Do they use pouting, withdrawal or withholding attention or affection?
- Do they play the victim to deflect blame onto you instead of taking responsibility for their actions and attitudes?
- Do they not notice or care how you feel?
5. Codependence and enmeshment:
- Does anyone treat you not as a separate person but instead as an extension of themselves?
- Do they not protect your personal boundaries and share information that you have not approved?
- Do they disrespect your requests and do what they think is best for you?
By Maria Bogdanos http://psychcentral.com/blog/archives/2013/02/20/signs-of-emotional-abuse/
She will cry and get over it,
she will hate you
then love you again,
but one day she will leave
and won’t come back.
There are people who are never content, never appeased, forever dissatisfied; who continually look to what escapes them, convincing themselves that if only they could attain that one desire outside of reach, they would be happy. It seems almost pointless to give to these people because their eyes immediately shift from the gift to stare miserably at the portion held back. Their wants, demands, expectations, appetites are never satiated, thus, they refuse to be happy. And you cannot make them so. Richell E. Goodrich
Millions of couples out there practiced the art of sadomasochism every day, without even realizing it. They went to work, came back, complained about everything, insulted their wife or were insulted by her, felt wretched, but were, nonetheless, tightly bound to their own unhappiness, not realizing that all it would take was a single gesture, a final goodbye, to free them from that oppression. Paul Coelho
The only thing that feels worse than being stuck in a situation that makes you unhappy is realizing that you are not ready or willing to change whatever it is. Ashly Lorenzana
For a torture
to be effective,
the pain has to be
it has to come
at regular intervals,
with no end in sight.
A growing body of research… suggest that self-compassion, rather than self-esteem, may be the key to unlocking your true potential for greatness. Self-compassion is a willingness to look at your own mistakes and shortcomings with kindness and understanding – it’s embracing the fact that to err is indeed human. When you are self-compassionate in the face of difficulty, you neither judge yourself harshly, nor feel the need to defensively focus on all your awesome qualities to protect your ego. It’s not surprising that self-compassion leads, as many studies show, to higher levels of personal well-being, optimism and happiness and to less anxiety and depression. People who experienced self-compassion were more likely to see their weaknesses as changeable. Self-compassion – far from taking them off the hook – actually increased their motivation to improve and avoid the same mistake again in the future. Why is self-compassion so powerful? In large part, because it is non-evaluative – in other words, your ego is effectively out of the picture – you can confront your flaws and foibles head on. You can get a realistic sense of your abilities and your actions, and figure out what needs to be done differently next time. When your focus is instead on protecting your self-esteem, you can’t afford to really look at yourself honestly. You can’t acknowledge the need for improvement, because it means acknowledging weaknesses and shortcomings – threats to self-esteem that create feelings of anxiety and depression. Here’s an unavoidable truth: You are going to screw up. Everyone – including very successful people – makes boatloads of mistakes. The key to success is, as everyone knows, to learn from those mistakes and keep moving forward. But not everyone knows how. Self-compassion is the how you’ve been looking for. So please, give yourself a break. Taken from “Forget Self-Esteem” by Heidi Grant Halvorson, Ph.D http://www.psychologytoday.com/blog/the-science-success/201209/forget-self-esteem
If you had a friend who spoke to you in the same way
that you sometimes speak to yourself, how long
would you allow that person to be your friend?
If the alcoholic has more or less continued to hold down a job, he is politely called a “functioning alcoholic.” But he is an alcoholic nonetheless. He works much below his potential, he neglects or abuses his family and he may not live very long if he continues the self-abuse. Like all addicts he lies (bold-faced lies, lies of omission, cover-ups, minimization), he makes excuses, he blames others for his drinking, and he continues to seek out and use alcohol regardless of consequences. If there are children present, they copy the lying, justifying, blaming behavior which they see modeled. They also learn to keep family secrets and to cover for their alcoholic parent. In other words they join in the “dance of alcohol” and participate with their parents, learning how to be alcoholics or how to live with them when they grow up. If you are living with an alcoholic, there are steps you can take too. Perhaps more importantly at first, there are things you can learn to avoid so that you don’t further your partner’s alcoholism. Making excuses for him, for example, only makes things worse. By Neill Neill http://ezinearticles.com/?Youre-Married-to-an-Alcoholic—What-to-Do?&id=930249
That’s the problem with drinking,
I thought, as I poured myself a drink.
If something bad happens you drink
in an attempt to forget;
if something good happens
you drink in order to celebrate;
and if nothing happens
you drink to make something happen.
The approach of dissolving our image of perfection sounds contrary to our sense of logic about building confidence and esteem. This is because we have the belief that achieving the image of perfection will result in positive happy emotions and feeling confident with our success. We desire to feel these feelings and chase the image of perfection we have attached to them. What we may not be aware of is that achieving our image of success doesn’t effectively change our emotional state. It doesn’t do anything to permanently change the way the voice in our head speaks to us or what we believe about our self. Many times people have achieved their goals only to find themselves still unfulfilled. Your emotional state may briefly change in the euphoria if the immediate success. But the core belief of not being good enough and your long term habit of self rejection in the mind hasn’t been altered. The critical voice in our head is more likely to put a higher goal in front of us to achieve. The second belief to dissolve is that we are inadequate and somehow not good enough. These are the beliefs that create emotions of insecurity and fear. The emotions are not the problem they are just the resulting symptom of negative core beliefs. The “not good enough” image is a construct of our imagination. It is a belief about ourselves created by the mind concluding that we are “not good enough to meet the image of perfection.” A step to changing this belief is to recognize that we the one observing the “self” image. We can not be the “self” image we are looking at. We are the one doing the looking. This means the “self image we create is really a “non self” image. Taken from “Insecurity and Confidence” http://www.pathwaytohappiness.com/writings-insecurity.htm
I’m interested in the fact
that the less secure a man is,
the more likely he is
to have extreme prejudice.
Real Self Confidence and Esteem is based in emotion, not a self-image. To build self-confidence and overcome low self-esteem is to change how we feel emotionally about ourselves. To change our emotion requires changing two different core beliefs about self-image. The first core belief is obvious. It is the belief that we are not good enough. It may have a more specific association to how we look, how smart we are, money, or lack of confidence sexually. The second core belief to change is the image of success that we feel we should be. Changing this belief is contrary to logic, but is a must if we are to overcome insecurity and raise our self-esteem. When your mind has an image of success that you “should be” it associates happy emotions with that picture. I call that the image of perfection in our mind. The mind does a comparison between the image of perfection and how you see your self-image currently. The comparison results in judgment and self rejection for not meeting the image of perfection. The self rejection results in feeling unworthy and of low self-esteem. While the image of perfection appears to be a way for us to feel good about ourselves, it is actually causing us to reject ourselves which creates feelings of “not being good enough.” If you were to dissolve the belief that you should fit into the image of perfection you would eliminate the self rejection and feelings of unworthiness that result. Taken from “Insecurity and Confidence” http://www.pathwaytohappiness.com/writings-insecurity.htm
A man’s spirit is free,
but his pride binds him
with chains of suffocation
in a prison of his own insecurities.
The main reason that men are possessive is because they don’t feel worthy of the relationship and are afraid of losing the woman in their life. It may start out simple and harmless enough, with him preferring to keep you with him all the time. He may start trying to control your time and get upset if you go out socially with friends. Instead of going out, you may end up staying at home together all the time and he may even start coming up with situations where he needs your help that are merely lies to keep you there with him. In many cases, jealous and possessive men go a step further. They go on to alienate you from your friends and may begin criticizing you and working to lower your self-esteem so you won’t leave him. Then he may tell you that you are so lucky to have him, since he loves no matter what. In this way he builds up dependence in you, and you are left dominated and isolated within the relationship. Men who are confident and happy with themselves will not have these problems with jealously and being possessive. While he will definitely want to spend time with you, he will also be happy that you are independent as well. Relationships should be about being your own person but sharing time together, and trust is important as well. http://maryelena.hubpages.com/hub/Dealing-with-Jealous-and-Possessive-Men
Women marry men hoping they will change.
Men marry women hoping they will not.
So each is inevitably disappointed.
A stupid man does not know who he is. He doesn’t know why he is the way he is, and he can’t figure out why he keeps committing the same mistakes over and over again all the while expecting different results. He runs from woman to woman thinking that he will find balm for his wounded spirit. He doesn’t know he’s an image, and he’s totally unaware how his thoughts, experiences and images have shaped what he is today. Most stupid men are codependent, and it shows in their behavior. Codependent behaviors… are those unhealthy behaviors we learned as children. Often, these behaviors are simply the tools we use to protect ourselves in our household environment, and they seem to help us cope with the disturbing experiences we suffered during childhood. But these unhealthy coping strategies are self-destructive. If they are not dealt with, they will ruin every relationship you have. One unhealthy characteristic of a codependent person is that they tend to find themselves attracted to needy people and needy people are attracted to them. Men, in their stupidity, seldom tackle their codependent issues. Why? Because they think they can fix everything, including themselves. As far as generalities go, men view women as weak, emotional, erratic, hormonal individuals in need of fixing. What they don’t understand is things are completely the opposite. Men are the ones terribly in need of fixing, but they will seldom reach out for help. By Larry Coleman http://www.girlsaskguys.com/Articles/Dating/How-to-Avoid-a-Stupid-Man-Look-for-Codependent-Behaviors.html
When you give another person
the power to define you,
then you also give them
the power to control you.
Codependency is a dysfunction that causes individuals to lose themselves in relationships. Codependents ignore their feelings, needs, and problems while obsessing on the feelings, needs, and problems of others. They possess an exaggerated sense of responsibility for others, and struggle with maintaining healthy boundaries. Thus, they experience relationships as stressful, and often suffer from anxiety, depression, guilt, and resentment. Codependency is born of growing up in a dysfunctional environment. Family dysfunction occurs when overwhelmed parents are unable to meet the needs of their children to a significant degree over a significant period of time. The parents’ problems may stem from addiction, alcoholism, mental illness, physical illness, poverty, overwhelming loss, or community disintegration such as gang violence or war. The key point is this: when parents become chronically overwhelmed by problems, the mental health of their children can be affected, sometimes resulting in codependency. When parents exhibit problems that bring chaos to a family, the children are forced to abandon being children and must enter survival mode. In survival mode, children can become hypervigilent – that is, they compulsively scan their environment to detect the next threat to their safety and well-being. These children quickly learn to ignore their feelings and needs because they perceive their caretakers as too overwhelmed to care about them. Or, worse, they have learned that they will be punished for expressing their feelings and needs. Thus, they reject introspection as a dangerous luxury that might interfere with being alert for the next external threat. Ultimately, these children learn to disconnect from their feelings. http://serenityonlinetherapy.com/codependency.htm
Believe in yourself!
Have faith in your abilities!
Without a humble but reasonable confidence
in your own powers you cannot be successful or happy.
Norman Vincent Peale
Self-esteem tends to fluctuate over time, depending on your circumstances. It’s normal to go through times when you feel down — or especially good — about yourself. Generally, however, self-esteem stays in a range that reflects how you feel about yourself overall. Overly high self-esteem. If you regard yourself more highly than others do, you might have an unrealistically positive view of yourself. When you have an inflated sense of self-esteem, you often feel superior to those around you. Such feelings can lead you to become arrogant or self-indulgent and believe that you deserve special privileges. Low self-esteem. When you have low or negative self-esteem, you put little value on your opinions and ideas. You focus on your perceived weaknesses and faults and give scant credit to your skills and assets. You believe that others are more capable or successful. You might be unable to accept compliments or positive feedback. You might fear failure, which can hold you back from succeeding at work or school. Healthy self-esteem. Healthy self-esteem lies between these two extremes. It means you have a balanced, accurate view of yourself. For instance, you have a good opinion of your abilities but recognize your flaws. When you understand your own worth, you invite the respect of others. Self-esteem affects virtually every facet of your life. Maintaining a healthy, realistic view of yourself isn’t about blowing your own horn. It’s about learning to like and respect yourself — faults and all. http://www.mayoclinic.com/health/self-esteem/MH00128
Too many people overvalue
what they are not and
undervalue what they are.
Malcolm S. Forbes