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Out with the old, in with the new

Updated: Apr 11

The following experiences are usually mundane until there is a constant violation of multiple behaviours listed below.


They are Hyper-Critical or Judgmental Towards You

It's human nature to critique or judge, but in emotionally abusive situations, someone takes it to the next level. This can look like someone is:

1. Putting you down in front of others

2. Humiliating or embarrassing you purposefully

3. Using sarcasm or “teasing” or “jokes” to make you feel bad

4. Having an opinion about a lot of what you say, do, or think

5. Upset if/when you don’t agree (e.g., how you dress, how you spend your money, who you spend time with, what you are interested in)

They Ignore Boundaries or Invade Your Privacy

We all have the right to our own physical and emotional space. Sometimes it can be tricky to distinguish between the rush and thrill of any new relationship or connection and a violation of your space because you may feel that you want to spend all of your time with this awesome person. This can look like your partner:

1. Wants to move a relationship faster than you are comfortable with either emotionally or physically (e.g. saying “I love you” very quickly and pressuring you to do the same, pushing you to engage in sexual activities, pushing you to move in together)

2. Checks your texts messages, email or social media accounts without your permission

They are Possessive and/or Controlling

They may try to restrict your behavior through unreasonable jealousy (resentment) such as:

1. Monitoring your actions

2. Constantly calling or texting when you are not around

3. Getting upset when you want to spend time by yourself or with family or friends alone

4. Isolating you from other people in your life and/or activities you enjoy or work

5. Demanding access to your phone, email, or social media accounts

They are Manipulative

An emotionally abusive person may try many things to get you to do what they want or feel badly, such as:

1. Withdrawing affection when you’ve done something they have judged “wrong”

2. Ignoring or excluding you

3. Guilt trips

4. Make you doubt yourself

5. Deny something you know is true

They Often Dismiss You and Your Feelings

They might try to play down your emotions or feelings by:

1. Saying you are too sensitive or calling you crazy

2. Making fun of your achievements or hopes and dreams

3. Refusing to talk about or take responsibility for their actions

4. Blaming you or someone else for their actions (it’s never their fault)

5. Being indifferent or insensitive to your feelings


Don’t despair but try to identify the behaviour when it does occur. If you can deal with one at a time and find a resolution through negotiation and clarity of how it is a violation, then you are validating and honouring your feelings. If you recognize that the abuse is too big for negotiation or resolution, ask someone you trust for help in creating safety for yourself.



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