5 Warning Signs of Emotional Abuse


Are you in an abusive relationship? If your answer to this question is “No”, then well done, you have one less stress in your life. Did you know that you can be in an abusive relationship without any physical violence? If that is making you reconsider your first answer, then you owe it to yourself to learn the emotional side of abuse so you can get out before it becomes too late. This type of abuse often goes unnoticed because it plays on the emotion and affects how you feel rather than the pain of the physical. People all over the world are in terrible, abusive relationships and you or someone close to you may be among them.

Here are a few signs to look out for to help you spot emotional abuse.


  1. Invasion of your privacy and space

If your husband does not trust you and requests that you give up your personal items e.g. mobile phone, for inspection, then you may need to start re-evaluating your relationship. While it may be necessary to check your children’s activity for their own protection, you are an adult and the moment you give someone else the right to police your life, is the moment you have given away a part of your freedom. Some don’t even make requests, they just search your belongings, question your friends and loved ones and sometimes even follow you. If your spouse does not trust you, then the real question is why, especially if you know he has no reason to feel that way.


  1. Limiting who you can spend time with

If your husband is telling you who you are allowed to see for any reason whatsoever, then you may be in trouble. It is one thing to suggest that someone in your life is a pariah but a totally different thing to restrict you from seeing that person. You are your own person and should be allowed to make your own decisions. Even if you make a mistake about someone or something, you should be allowed the freedom to do so. Your husband may advise you, but should not use any of your mistakes to continually put you down and erode your self-confidence.

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  1. Embarrassing you in public

While we all have embarrassing moments that can be poked fun at, if your husband is constantly sharing these types of details about you in public, this is a mark of someone who doesn’t mean you well. Your husband should be extolling your virtues as a sign that you are valued to them. People who continually put others down may be suffering from low self-esteem themselves and this may be a way of them dealing with that. This does not mean that you should put up with it as this may lead to you giving away control of your life because you are afraid to be out in public with your husband for fear of what they will say about you. Other forms of public embarrassment may be shouting at you, correcting you in a condescending manner, adverse comparison to others and belittling you in any way.

  1. Tells you no one can love you but them

Making you feel inadequate is a tool of many abusers and saying things like “You are so lucky that I love you because …” is another way to make you doubt yourself and make you rely on their judgment rather than your own. This is another way that an abuser can limit and control your life. It is also used to isolate you from others, giving them even more control. You are worthy of love and there are many others out there who will see your worth but if you do not believe in yourself, it won’t matter how anyone else feel.


  1. Threats to your safety

Many abusers will make threats to your safety to compel you to do as they wish. There are some who may even try to control you by threatening to hurt themselves or someone you love. Although, many times these threats may not be carried out, however, psychologically you can still feel it hanging over your head. The result is that they are able to control you and make you act according to their will and not your own. There are some people who may say, “He loves me because he said if I ever leave he would harm himself”. This is not loving but a form of control.

So in summary emotional abuse can be so subtle, compared to physical abuse that you may not even realize that’s it’s taking place in your life or within the relationship of someone you know. If you recognize any of the above-mentioned signs please feel free to reach out to me for support and advice or get you copy of my Amazon bestseller ‘Time to Go’, which is packed with sound and practical advice and guidance about abusive relationships, including what you can do if lack of personal finance is a big issue that is keeping you in the toxic marriage.

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