6 Signs Of Economic Abuse And What You Can Do About It

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In this day and age, women are already considered equal to men in almost all aspects. Women are now exercising their rights to vote, to get a degree and to earn money for themselves. Fact is that a considerable percentage of the working population is composed of women, in which some are leaders in their respective fields of specialization. Despite this achievement, there are some issues underneath that oppose women’s success, one of which is economic or financial abuse.

 

In a separate view, economic abuse happens when women (some instances, also the men) are made to compromise with the situations they are into despite their capability to earn money. This type of manipulation and repression is not discussed because of shame and the thought that problems involving money are very sensitive. But how can one identify that such abuse is endured?

“There are many types of toxic relationships such as a controlling or manipulative, negative, self-centered or narcissistic, dishonest, insecure, abusive, blaming or demanding and competitive, and secretive, and dramatic.” – Catherine Jackson, a licensed clinical psychologist and neurotherapist

Below are some clear signs:

 

No Choice Career-Wise

 

Women have no choice but to forget the career they wanted and compromise with the one that is available and convenient for the partner or spouse. Some may have full-time jobs, but in the end, they are forced to resign since their spouse or partner is not in favor of it.

 

Every Penny Tracked

 

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In this situation, every cent handled by the woman is computed and tracked. If something went off with the accounting, emotional or physical abuse would follow.

 

No Accounts

 

Women experiencing economic abuse don’t have their own personal bank balances, debit cards, credit cards or any other form of financial account. The woman here is left entirely dependent on her partner who has the sole control of the household finances.

 

Threats

 

Darlene Lancer, JD, LMFT said, “Power exists in all relationships. Having power means to have a sense of control, to have choices and the ability to influence our environment and others.” When a man threatens a woman to leave her and cut off his financial obligations with her, it is a sign of economic abuse. This form of intimidation pushes a woman to be vulnerable and to be in total control by the man.

 

The Lazy Bum and The Slave Worker

 

The woman, in this situation, is the one who is working and is the breadwinner of the family, but she has no control over her salary since the man is doing it for her. She is striving to provide for the family, and the man spends the money she earns. The woman is also forced to work overtime and even take more jobs to cover their needs, pay their bills and of course, her partner’s luxury.

 

Family Obligation

 

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The woman or wife is always pregnant. Child-bearing and rearing will keep her from work, and compel her to become entirely dependent on her partner or husband.

 

How to Overcome This Situation

 

Leave Him. If things are unbearable and abusive, you must leave him. Plan it out carefully. Relationships like this are not worth keeping. As Jason B. Whiting, Ph.D., LMFT explains, “For many women, the safest choice is to just leave. As the brave women in our study shared, by finding courage and seeking out support from loved ones, victims of intimate partner violence can break free of abuse and build a life of dignity and safety.”

 

Reach out. Get help from your family, friends, and people close to you. Tell them what is happening so that you have support for when you decide to leave your partner or husband.

 

Secure Your Education. To start with your new life, take a new venture. Enroll in an online school or finish the degree of your choice through a college or university.

 

Save Up. Save money whenever you get the chance. Once you’ve ascertained that your cash on hand is enough, you can make your exit.

 

Get A Job. Find a decent-paying job that you like to do. Keep it low key, though. As they say, let your success be the noise.

 

Establish Credit. Apply for a credit account and have it safeguarded in loved ones or a friend’s house.

 

Research. Research how you can get help from the government with your situation. You will need their assistance until such time you are finally able to stand on your feet again.

Building Yourself Up After An Abusive Relationship

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Someone who is in an abusive relationship will most definitely be depressed, distressed, anxious, sleepless or insomniac, and will manifest physical problems. It is also highly likely that your self-esteem is injured as you receive abuse, be it verbal, physical, financial, emotional or mental. This state of mind is never healthy and hearing all the time that you are a “loser,” “disgusting,” “fat,” “stupid,” and other hurtful words can lead you to doubt your worth.

 

“Being in an abusive relationship is incredibly confusing, and multiple myths about abuse can make it difficult to identify when it happens to you.” Brandy Parris, MA, LMHC said. You may have experienced such emotional and mental damage, and for some, it is challenging to overcome. But yes, it can be surpassed, with proper care and persistence to getting better.

 

5 Steps To Reclaiming Your Self-Esteem

 

Step 1 – You Must Include Positive Assertions About Yourself Every Day.

 

Some people read empowering passages or a quote of self-esteem every morning as they wake up. These assertions are encouraging statements that you can read and say to yourself over and over again to remind you of your worth. You can put the quote by your bedside, on your dresser, refrigerator door, bathroom mirror, your diary, and in any other place.

 

For example, you can say to yourself repeatedly – I AM BEAUTIFUL. I AM WORTHY OF LOVE. I AM RESPECTABLE. I AM FULL OF DIGNITY. I DESERVE ALL THE GOOD THINGS. I AM A GOOD PERSON.

 

Step 2 – The Most Effective Way To Gain Back Your Self-Esteem Is To Love Yourself.

 

“Self-love is not simply a state of feeling good. It is a state of appreciation for oneself that grows from actions that support our physical, psychological and spiritual growth.” Deborah Khoshaba Psy.D. said. Take care of your body, mind, and heart. You may be fragile now, and it will stay that way if you don’t do something about it. It is a must to repel negative thoughts and feed your mind and heart with only right beliefs.

 

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As for your body, you have to eat healthy foods daily. Rest at least 8 hours at night and if you can, exercise at least 30 minutes each day. You must also have regular checkups with your doctor to prevent the onset of physical illnesses.

 

Another way to love yourself is by engaging in fun and stimulating activities like writing, listening to music, reading self-help books, and the likes. Some love it when they are pampering themselves in a way like putting on makeup, doing their nails, soaking in a bubble bath, aromatherapy at home and more.

 

As for other people, you need to establish boundaries. What attitudes and acts offend you most? You must never allow others to overstep those boundaries again. It will be a challenge especially since your self-esteem is still low and recovering, but you have to put your foot forward. In time, you will be able to nourish your self-worth.

 

Step 3 – Find Support From Family, Friends, And Mental Health Professionals.

 

It is possible that your abusive partner or spouse “commanded” you to stay away from your family, friends, or to anybody who attempts to care for your emotional well-being. Well, this is the time to repair that connection and rebuild yourself. “If you have had significant issues around trust, safety, or stability in relationships previously, I think it’s important for people to have other sources of support outside of their partner(s). This support can come in various forms such as friends, family members, clergy, and even a therapist.” Jor-El Caraballo, LMHC said. Abusers are used to doing that because they have a hold on their partners or spouses, and in return, there is a dependence on the abuser.

 

Well, reach out to your loved ones right now and tell them what happened to you. You can also join religious groups for soul enrichment. It is also beneficial to speak with a counselor or therapist specializing in abused people so you can successfully restore yourself.

 

Step 4 – Avoid Abusive Relationships In The Future.

 

You have to see the red flags for yourself and decide not to get into a relationship with this type of person. There are warnings signs to know that your partner is abusive – short temper, excessively jealous, control freak, stalking types, and many more. If your feelings are hurt, if you are physically hurt, and if you don’t feel safe due to your partner’s behavior, then you are abused.  Avoid it.

 

Step 5 – Be Brave Enough To Move On.

 

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Separating from an abuser is tricky. Some women submit after a few weeks and go back to their abusive life cycle. You just have to be brave enough to leave him (or her) out of your life from now on. Plan your life well and if you need help doing that, get that assistance. You have a chance at a new life. You must take it.

 

Learning More About Physical Abuse

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Physical abuse is the act of inflicting pain on another person which then results in minor or major injury or injuries. In relationships, it starts out with pushing, pulling or grabbing, something not too violent at first. It then escalates to slapping, punching, or kicking the other person. If the abused won’t do something about it, it will worsen over time.

 

Often, this is the case, especially in domestic settings. By law all over the world, hurting someone physically is a human rights violation. Thus, if you have been physically abused, here’s what you have to do:

 

Signs Of Physically-Abused Persons

 

Being afraid of your partner or spouse

 

“Many women came to a breaking point when the fear and the pain simply became overwhelming,” Jason B. Whiting, Ph.D., LMFT said. Since you already have that fear in you, you tend to avoid things and topics that might trigger your partner’s anger. As a result, you are too careful to the extent that your mental state is near paranoia. Walking on eggshells is the best way to describe your state.

 

Everything is just wrong. An abused person has this mentality that everything they do is wrong. You will lose your confidence, and you seem to live in distress all the time that you will fail your partner or spouse.

 

Kinds Of Physical Abuse

“Examples of physical abuse are behaviors like pushing, shouting over you, screaming in your face, physically taking things away from your grip, grabbing you tightly, squeezing, pinching, hitting, slapping, punching, biting, kicking, shoving, forced sexual contact, restraining, and destroying your property,” –Christine Scott-Hudson, MA MFT ATR

Scratching. Inflicting harm on someone with the use of fingers, causing scratch marks and even wounds on any part of the body.

 

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Biting. Causing wounds on any part of the body with the use of teeth.

 

Slapping. This means hitting the injured party with the use of a forceful hand, usually on the face.

 

Kicking

 

Choking. Putting hard pressure on the injured party’s throat which causes difficulty in breathing.

 

Throwing. Getting things and tossing them around. This act can facilitate in hitting the offended party and cause physical injury.

 

Food Deprivation. The abuser is not giving or allowing the abused party food to eat.

 

Forced-Feeding. Forcing the injured party to eat.

 

Using Deadly Materials. Threatening the injured party with the use of materials that can cause harm.

 

Physical Restraining. Examples of this act are pinning against the wall, bed or floor.

 

Reckless Driving. Putting the injured party’s life at risk by driving dangerously to put fear on the person is a sign of abuse.

 

The Aftermath Of Abuse

 

The Blame Game

 

The abuser would reason out that you triggered the anger in him and it leads to the “situation.” Some would even reason out and attribute their behavior due to alcohol or drugs.

 

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“I Am So Sorry, I Promise…”

 

After the attack, most abusers feel guilty for what they have done. They will apologize and promise not to do it again. The apology may be genuine, but you have to remember the following:

 

  • Their behavior is out of your control. It is their responsibility.

 

  • Abuse is not justifiable. No reason in the world can make the act of violence right before the law.

 

What to Do When Abuse Takes Place

 

“It can be hard to talk about abuse, as nobody wants to think of themselves as a victim.” Nicole Tammelleo, LCSW-R said. But once abused or if you believe that you are a victim of abuse, it is advisable that you should report the incident at once to the authorities. If you can’t do that, tell someone like your friends and family so that they can help you. Support groups and services are very much willing to assist the victims when it comes to intervention and mental health healing. Upon receiving a distress call, they would act on it at once to save the victim from further abuse.

 

The Seven-Year Itch: It Is Bound To Happen

 

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Falling in love is one of the most anticipated moments of almost every person on this planet – the romantic bliss, butterflies in the stomach, rapid heartbeat, and sparkly eyes. At some point, we all dreamed of having someone to spend the Valentine’s Day with, someone to greet on every special occasion, and someone to share every laugh and heartbreak. But at least for a while. All these feelings tend to lessen over time.

Why do relationships end? Why do love and happiness fade? Why does something that was once great turn into hate or merely nothing?

 

What Is A Seven-Year Itch?

It is the term used to indicate that when couples reach their seventh year together, happiness and excitement, if not lost, start to fade. They have grown tired of the situation, and their minds begin to wonder what could be waiting outside of the relationship. As Marie Manly, PhD explains, “There are many types of toxic relationships such as a controlling or manipulative, negative, self-centered or narcissistic, dishonest, insecure, abusive, blaming or demanding and competitive, and secretive, and dramatic,”

 

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What Factors Can Trigger ASeven-Year Itch?

  • Seven years is a long time to have spent with someone. It is more than enough to know each other’s weaknesses that we often don’t discover early on. During this time, both parties are already comfortable with each other to expose all of their not so good qualities and habits, like picking their nose and farting. We usually don’t do this at the start of a relationship, but when we are accustomed to someone, we don’t think much of what we should and should not do in front of them. Subconsciously, we are still grossed out with these behaviors, but we are too adapted that we ignore them.

 

  • During this time, couples should have so many experiences already – disappointments and broken promises. Seven years cannot be all happiness. With all the expectations we set for each other, seven years have made us fail more than a few dozen times. We hurt each other, and the brain is made to remember. It keeps all our memories– the good and bad. The undesirable experiences and memories we had would trigger sadness that would make us feel unhappy and would make us think we are unhappy.

 

  • Our world is bound to change, and not all of us are thrilled by it. A relationship consists of two different individuals who may have two different perspectives about it. Changes could be the technology, environment, culture, and people. One may want to try to embrace change, try new things and feel excited about it while the other one may want to stay the same and is not comfortable with all that’s happening around.

 

  • We are naturally curious, and we don’t have satisfaction. We tend to think of the possibilities outside our relationship – What could I have become if we’re not together? Where could I have been if he wasn’t too lazy to travel? What if I was alone? Could I have done all this and that? What if we’re not together? Could I have been happier? All the “what ifs” are mind-boggling, and the need to answer them often overwhelms us.

 

  • Sometimes, we are blinded by what we call love that no matter how wrong it is, we wouldn’t mind because we are head over heels in love with someone. We give up our dreams and the people around us for the chance of being happy with the person we love. Later on, we realize that this choice had led us to a miserable life. It will make us wonder if we have made a mistake, and we feel horrible for being stuck in it.

 

  • If a couple has a child or children, it is the time when they are exhausted physically and psychologically. They have to change from being carefree into becoming responsible adults who need to think about all the necessities of their family. Sometimes, it is too much that one might want things differently and give up.

 

It is also the end of all exciting developmental milestones of the children, so during this time, parents would feel a significant change of being thrilled to become more subtle.

 

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How Can We Avoid A Seven-Year Itch?

  • Communication is the key to all relationships. It is important that our partners know what and how we feel. Sometimes, we are hesitant to open up because we know they are going to get mad, like if we want to try skydiving, and we know our partner wouldn’t allow. We would rather keep quiet and forget about our desires thinking it will pass, but situations like this happening repeatedly will suck the life out of anyone.

 

We also should be able to tell our partners our disappointments and pains regardless of who caused them, or especially if they’re the reason behind them. They should know that they have done something that hurt us, so they can have the opportunity to apologize and make up for it. Sometimes, some people are insensitive that they are not aware of the things that are happening around them. “Give yourself time to heal. We can be harder on ourselves than on any other person. Realize that fully overcoming the issues you had to face during your relationship may take time, and that’s OKAY.” Heather Edwards LMHC, NCC, BCC advises.

 

  • As partners, we should be able to compromise. Remember that even identical twins have differences, and we have to accept that the moment we get into a relationship, there will be times that we’ll have different opinions about a particular situation or decision. We must learn to give way, maybe talk about having a system of how to deal with situations like these. Talk about the issue and learn to compromise. Listen to what the other has to say.

 

  • Respect is important. No matter how attached we have become, we need to acknowledge the identity and existence of our partners by respecting their privacy and decisions. If your partner wants a night out with friends, let him be. You can’t lock him up forever. He needs socialization outside your relationship. Keep in mind that you are to spend a lifetime together, so making the other take a breath of fresh air is healthy.

 

Also, respect your partner’s decision. Never decide for him even though you think you are mostly right. You can talk it out, explain your thoughts, but never insist. You may be right, but that doesn’t mean his feelings aren’t valid. Learn to respect that.

 

  • We should be open to change. It is, after all, the only permanent thing in this world. If our partner is hesitant about it, never move forward without him. Keep in mind that you’re partners. Instead of feeling slowed down, pause and try to help your partner understand and adjust. Sometimes, that’s all they need – someone to hold their hand while they walk through the changes. Maybe, they are just scared, and we are supposed to be there for them.

 

 

“Think about the old “seven year itch” and how the fact that even in times when marriage was deemed to be more sacred than it is now, a husband’s inclinations toward being unfaithful after a period of marriage was so pronounced that it merited its own name.” says Katrina Bilhimer, Ma, LMHC. Maybe a seven-year itch is just a term used when happiness and excitement weaken a relationship. It doesn’t necessarily mean that this will happen during the seventh year. It can happen on the first, third, or fifth. It may even occur later or never if we just know how to be in a relationship.

 

We are all humans. We are bound to make mistakes and be selfish sometimes, and a seven-year itch is just another bump in the road that mostly happens in 2,555 days of a relationship. It’s either you decide to go through it together or go on separate ways.

Psychological Warfare With In-Laws

 

There are several reasons for unsuccessful marriages, and it’s seldom about the in-laws. Most of us learned to be independent at an early age, especially when we have a family of our own. Only a few have to deal with their in-laws. How does it feel like for people who have to? What if you have no choice but to deal with the original Mrs. Robinson, but you just can’t get along? What should you do to not compromise your marriage with the issues surrounding you and your in-laws?

 

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Justin and I have been married for six years, and we have three beautiful kids. His parents have been helping us ever since because it wasn’t a good start for us. I got pregnant when we were 17, and we had no idea how to be adults, let alone to be parents.

Justin’s mom and dad have been helping us financially, but his mom has a say in every decision in our family. For six years now, I feel like I’m developing depression because I always have negative thoughts on how insensitive they are. I feel worthless and disrespected.

Two years ago, my husband’s parents separated, and we had to move in with his mom which I hated. Don’t get me wrong! She’s a sweet woman and all, but she’s just too intrusive and hands-on about everything, and I feel like she’s going way past her boundaries, or am I not in the position to feel this way?

She’s treating my husband like he was still a kid, her kid. I don’t know if it’s a bad thing that I hate it, but I do! There were times when we were talking about personal matters and giggling, and then his mom would butt in and ask, “Why?”

She sets rules for my kids which I find annoying. There was a time I told my son he could watch TV after he finishes his chores, but my son told me he’s grounded. Grounded! “Who grounded you?” I asked angrily. “Grandma did,” he replied. He said his grandma grounded him for causing everyone delay because he moves very slow.

I don’t know, and I don’t want to weigh the situation anymore, but I hate the feeling that she disregards my decisions when it comes to my kids. I don’t just sit around and wait for every meal. I work hard to help somehow raise my children financially, and I just find it so unfair that they let me feel this way, that I’m nothing! They don’t respect my right as a mother, as an individual!

 

Jor-El Caraballo, LMHC said, “If you have had significant issues around trust, safety, or stability in relationships previously, I think it’s important for people to have other sources of support outside of their partner(s). This support can come in various forms such as friends, family members, clergy, and even a therapist.” So I went to see a therapist because I don’t know how I’m going to deal with my emotions. I understand that  I hate her so much, and It’s not just because of the single incident but the continuous feeling of being disrespected and disregarded. I’m on my second session, but there are a few things I realized. I don’t know if I’m the only one experiencing this, but somehow, I want to share my experience. Maybe it could bring light to someone’s troubled mind who is in the same situation as I am.

 

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Keep In Mind That:

 

  • We all have a choice. If you’re stuck in a situation you’re in for a long time, don’t point your fingers at someone else. It was your choice to stay, and you can always get out if you want. Yes, there are a lot of factors why people remain where they are even though they are If you’re going to stand up for any consideration you’re holding onto, don’t complain.

 

  • Only you have the power over your happiness. “Happy people make healthier choices,” explains Scott Glassman, PsyD. You feel pain and stress because you allow them in your life. You have to admit that the solution to all your struggles is in front of you. You just won’t take it because you’re afraid to take a risk.

 

  • If you’re having trouble with your in-laws, talk to your husband not them. It is unwise to deal with the problem by confronting the people who should not be involved. They may be the main reason for your hardships, but it is because of your husband that you have to deal with them. And remember that they are just parents to there, once, kid.

 

  • Someday, you’re going to be a mother-in-law yourself, so right now, be someone who you want your son to marry and, one day, someone who your daughter-in-law, present self, would love.

 

  • If you’re at your in-laws’ territory, there’s no way for you to get things the way you want them. Remember that! If you’re going to be the queen of a castle, build your own. There could never be two queens in one kingdom.

 

 

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Silently fighting over whose power is higher between a mother-in-law and a daughter-in-law is a never-ending emotional abuse. There’s always going to be psychological warfare especially when you’re living together. A wife has a right and obligation to speak up about anything that’s making her uncomfortable, and the husband must protect her wellbeing. That very much includes her feelings and emotions. “Give yourself time to heal. We can be harder on ourselves than on any other person. Realize that fully overcoming the issues you had to face during your relationship may take time, and that’s OKAY.” Heather Edwards LMHC, NCC, BCC said.

To Stay Or To Go – What To Do?

I always blamed my mom for our broken family. Don’t get me wrong – she didn’t cheat on my dad. But in my mind, she never gave him a chance to repent and be a good husband to her. I was ten at that time. My brother Marcel was three or four years old, and the twins (my sisters Neemah and Neelah) were a little over one year old when it happened. She just took all four of us and decided to leave my father after one indiscretion.

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Continue reading “To Stay Or To Go – What To Do?”

Suffering Is A Choice

[Forms Of Abuse A Woman Suffers]

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Every abuse that happens over and over is with consent. If women have been hurt for the first time, it is always their choice to stay and be harmed again, but why do abused women stay? It is because of hope. They find a way to justify what their husband did and sometimes end up blaming it to themselves. “Maybe, I talked back,” is what they keep saying in their heads. Nonetheless, no one has the right to hurt anyone, especially a husband who vowed to love his wife through thick and thin.

Continue reading “Suffering Is A Choice”

Marriage 101: The Sad Truth About Verbal Abuse

 

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When you are in a marital relationship, you know that love isn’t supposed to hurt. As much as possible, it should encourage a positive overall development that keeps your mental, emotional, and behavioral aspect healthy. Therefore, there is no room for any types of abuse, especially verbal ones. Not all marriages have a fairytale moment, and parts of the struggle require an effective intervention so that it can still hold onto its core values. There is always an effort in determining the connection of verbal abuse to your emotional and psychological health.

 

It isn’t Just About Yelling – “Emotional and verbal abuse in a marriage is a grey area.” Dr. Chantal Gagnon PhD LMHC said. We often consider the relationship with verbal abuse whenever a raising voice is present. However, it’s not always about yelling and shouting. It has something to do with your significant other’s behavior towards you. The verbal abuse somehow supports the bad behavior of your partner and pushes you do doubt your own beliefs. It tries to manipulate the situation by using a louder voice that somehow threatens and degrades you.

 

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The Painful Comparison Matters – Verbal abuse can also come in a mild conversation where your partner tries to hurt you with words by comparing you to another person. It usually starts with a small complain and then escalates into more significant blame. Your abusive partner will continuously humiliate you and disregard your capabilities. He will tend to ignore your feelings and would instead continually point out your mistakes and blame you for things you can’t even control. For him, there is always someone better than you and that you are not worthy to receive recognition.

 

Below The Belt Criticism – Learning to accept your flaws is essential in marriage. However, when your partner tends to criticize your work, salary, ideas, strength, the way you dress, and even your body type without complementing your positive sides, you can expect a verbal abuse in that situation. According to Christine Scott-Hudson, MA MFT ATR, “Emotional abuse could also look like repeated criticisms about personal vulnerabilities you’ve shared with them in the past, such as abuse histories, phobias, fears, or sensitive information about your past.” It will merely create an effect on your psychological aspect because you’ll always think about your defects with great exaggeration. Your partner will always notice something negative about you, and it will put you in a condition that you won’t even appreciate yourself at all.

 

Jokes Are Always Half Meant – There is a type of verbal abuse in a relationship that you think doesn’t seem to matter at some point. However, though you may find it cute and entertaining, some of those jokes are a considering attack on your values, competency, and personality. The longer you suffer on the sorts of negative comments, the easier it is to believe that the insults are an accurate representation of your character.

 

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“Humans are complex and all of us experience emotions like anger and sadness, so it’s very normal that at some point in the relationship, you will disagree with your partner.” Maryann W. Mathai, LPCC, LMHC, LPC, NCC explains. Though it is common for any relationship to have discussions and arguments, you should never allow your partner to make you feel inferior. Remember to evaluate yourself on how some of your significant other’s comments make you think.  Ask yourself how those words affect your emotional and mental state. It’s true that some situations and people are above you, but you should never lose your focus on determining what types of verbal approach are helping or destroying you.