Friday, July 26, 2013

Emotional Abuse In A Marriage

While saving your marriage is important, it is equally important to escape from an abusive one. Physical abuse is no doubt the most highlighted one, but the most common form of abuse is emotional or psychological abuse. This is because it leaves no visible scars and always needs a trained eye to identify the victim.Often, victims suffer from trauma for years before they even realize that they are being abused. Because of this, the abusers usually go unnoticed and unpunished. As they face no confrontation, they have the time to hone their psychological prowess to an extent which enables them to completely destroy their victim's emotional well-being. So is it impossible to identify the signs of emotional abuse unless the victims realizes themselves? Sadly, that is the reality in most cases as victims tend to maintain the facade of a normal life.

Why It Goes Unnoticed? 

Silence on the part of victims can be because of one of the below reasons but not limited to them
  • Fear of embarrassment or loss of face
  • Complete but artificial dependency on the aggressor
  • Unwillingness to let parents know of their trauma lest they are impacted
  • False hope that things will get better 
  • Fear of getting separated from children if they initiate any action

Let me be clear that I don't intend to present only women as the sole victim. Men are just as likely to suffer. Unlike physical abuse which in most cases leave women as victims, emotional abuse is far more wide reaching.

Signs That You Are Emotionally Abused 

  • Your partner makes you feel guilty for everything under the sun. Somehow your partner thinks you are more powerful than god. Why else would they blame you for each and every thing that goes wrong? A bad day, a sleepless night, an upset stomach, irritation, mental agony, you somehow are responsible for everything. Why did you cook such spicy food.Didn't you know it causes gas? Why did we have to go for a late night movie. Because of that I was late for office. Why have your parents come? Couldn't you hold them off for some more time till this important assignment got finished? Why did you fall sick? You don't take care of your health and I have to suffer when I can't go to work.
  • You are afraid to speak up your mind. You never know how your partner might react. It might be one of the most trivial things but it leads to long drawn quarrels and accusations. You prefer to remain silent to avoid such ugly situations.
  • You hesitate to do something for your parents,siblings or friends. Your partner always creates a scene when you do something for your friends or family. Your partner treats your family members as financial burdens and expects you to get rid of them,saying the future of your children will be at stake if you go on supporting them.
  •  You avoid taking independent decisions. Because your partner gets angry for not consulting him/her. Your partner blames you for listening to other's advice and not bothering to check with them if they are ok with your decision.

  • You are held accountable for every penny you spend. You feel like you are always on a tight leash on financial matters. While your partner might splurge, you are always reminded not to misuse money, as if you are a born financial illiterate

  • You are wary to invite your friends over. You never know when your partner might go into one of his/her moods and end up insulting your friends and embarrassing you. 
  • Your partner uses emotional blackmailing tactics like storming out of the house, giving you the silent treatment or talking to your parents how you have changed a lot. Such actions force you to think if it is you who is wrong.
  •  Your partner tries to paint a negative picture of you in front of mutual friends. This is a classic scare tactic to force someone into submission
I can go on and on as each person is different and emboldened by the silence of their victims, they devise new ways to emotionally cripple them. If you have been facing a lot of criticism lately, or if you always have to reluctantly agree to something during a discussion, it is time to take a good look into your marriage. It might be that you are being emotionally abused, or it might be that your partner is just an insensitive fool. If it is the second reason, your problems will slowly start going away as you discuss more openly. However, if your partner is indeed a manipulator, you might experience more of emotional terrorism if you try to discuss what is affecting you. In such cases, you know what to do best. Remember, emotional abusers are only as strong as your hesitation. You hesitate more, they try to corner you more. Show them your tough but correct stance, they usually slink away. Because they are always cowards.