See other articles in PMC that cite the published article. . Overall, emotional abuse within intimate relationships is common in the United States (US) and is. It doesn't have to be physical, like in verbal abuse. But in a verbally abusive relationship, it's particularly harsh and . Article resources. Emotional abuse precedes violence but is often unnoticed and rarely discussed. article continues after advertisement. Other aspects of the relationship may work well: The abuser may be loving between abusive episodes, so that you deny.
These feelings then lead to the second stage of the cycle, which is where the actual abusive behavior occurs. If the cycle stopped here and stayed constant, most victims would find it very easy to leave and not endure abuse for long periods of time. However, shortly after the abusive event occurs, the abuser frequently expresses remorse or guilt and wants to apologize. The abuser will swear, "It will never happen again" and may shower the victim with gifts and demands that the victim forgive him or her.
There may be so-called "makeup sex" which can be quite pleasurable and provide the victim with a sense that he or she is valued, and really loved. Following the guilt and making up stage comes a "honeymoon" or latency period during which things are good for a while between the partners.
Inevitably, in truly abusive relationships, the latency period ends with the beginning of another abuse episode; the abuser again feels angry, disrespected or treated poorly in some way and the cycle starts all over again.
Dr. Alison Block | Verbal Abuse in a Relationship: Know the Signs
Though such cyclical abuse is repetitive and predictable, it is also intermittent, and the rest of the relationship might be perceived as good enough or even loving.
In this context, victims often rationalize that they aren't really being abused, that their partner really loves them despite being abusive and that makes it okay, that the abuse really isn't all that bad, and other similar statements.
They may believe that they are so damaged that they would only pick another abusive partner anyway so why not stay with this one? They may believe that they don't deserve any better than to be beaten or raped on a semi-regular basis.
Verbal Abuse in a Relationship: Know the Signs
Life can be challenging with its financial, emotional and social stresses, and the people who surround and support us at home help us to feel relaxed and comfortable. However, for some, the home is not a sanctuary of love and acceptance; instead, it can be a stressful place where conflict is played out in heated arguments, hurtful words and manipulation.
The verbal abuser leaves no physical scars, but his or her behavior can be just as painful and damaging. Partners in verbally abusive relationships are often codependent, and neither partner may be fully aware of the depth of the verbal abuse.
Many times, codependent partners grow up in dysfunctional families and are repeating the behavior patterns that they have learned from inappropriate role models. Sarah and Tom have been married for 13 years. Sarah cares for three kids under twelve, drives them to and from school and extracurricular activities, helps the kids with homework, cooks three meals a day, manages the finances, keeps the home looking beautiful, and the list goes on and on.
When they first decided to start a family, the couple mutually agreed that Sarah would stay home to care for the children and Tom would take on more responsibility at work. Although they made this decision as a couple, Sarah feels alone, unappreciated and belittled as Tom verbally abuses her daily with his angry comments and sarcasm.
10 Patterns of Verbal Abuse
The types of personalities at play in the verbally abusive relationship, however, are often the same. The abused often has a dependent type of personality, where he or she is afraid of being alone and feels unable to stand up to the verbal abuser. His or her submissive personality makes it difficult to express disagreement with the verbal abuser for fear of loss of the relationship or disapproval.
The verbal abuser is threatened when not in control, a feeling that may stem from feeling unjustly treated in life, and then takes out his or her built-up anger on the submissive partner. The verbal abuser could also have anxiety that causes him or her to be over controlling.
Because partners in a verbally abusive relationship have usually adapted to their situations, it may require the intervention of a professional in order to change the learned behavior. They employ humiliation and shame to degrade you and eat away at your confidence.
Who else would want you? Make no mistake about it: But a verbally abusive person blames you for their behavior. They want you to believe that you bring verbal abuse on yourself. Without a word, they storm out and sit in the car, leaving you to explain and say goodbye to your hosts. Gaslighting is a systematic effort to make you question your own version of events. It can also make you more dependent on the abuser.
You recall an event, agreement, or argument and the abuser denies that it happened at all. But abusers will reignite that old argument again and again just to push your buttons, never intending to meet in the middle. Your job requires you to put in overtime without notice. Every time it happens, the argument about your tardiness starts anew.Verbally Abusive Lovers
Outright threats can mean that verbal abuse will escalate. A lot depends on your individual circumstances. Reasoning with an abuser is tempting, but unlikely to work. But you can set boundaries.