Friday, 16 January 2015
Not all abuse is physical in nature and may not necessarily involve sores and bruises, some are verbal or silent. Emotional abuse is often very destructive and harmful, leaving the victims with unseen pains and scars that would take years and years of counseling to overcome. Regrettably, because there are no ugly scars or bruises, society doesn’t lend as much credence to emotional abuse as it should, and even the victims play down on this ill.
Emotional abuse is the most difficult kind of abuse to recognize, but anyone who has been a victim can smell it from far away. It’s a form of abuse that cuts to the very core of a person, creating scars that may be far deeper and more lasting than the physical ones. Abusive relationships distort the victim’s perspectives, making them feel worthless about themselves and making them believe they do not have a choice or any value at all outside the relationship with the abuser. This ‘brain-washing’ feeling or belief of shame and worthlessness makes it difficult for the victim to get out of the relationship and stay away for good. This is exactly what the abuser wants – to control the relationship. Most emotional abusers are ‘ loved’ ones’, such as spouses, parents, siblings, etc. The abused don’t usually show they are being abused and never talk about the on-going emotional torture because of embarrassment and fear.
Recipients of abuse often struggle with feelings of weakness, fear, hurt and anger. Ironically, abusers tend to struggle with these feelings too because they are likely to have been raised in abusive environments and became abusive as an alternative way of dealing with their feelings. Abusers are usually attracted to people who have learnt not to value their own feelings, opinions or perceptions.
ABUSERS USE THE FOLLOWING TACTICS ON THEIR VICTIMS
· Isolating the victim from friends and family and routinely humiliating the victim in front of others by calling him/her derogatory names.
· Extreme jealousy when victim talks to or spends time with other people.
· Blaming the victim for everything, thus making the victim develop a sense of guilt.
· Constantly criticizing the victim’s looks, way of dressing, weight, etc. Nothing he/ she does is ever right.
· Discouraging victim’s independent activities, such as work, school, etc.
· Expects him /her to do what he/ she is uncomfortable with just to prove their love.
· Making all decisions without asking for the othe’s opinion.
· Threatens to withdraw privileges, hurt or harm victim or children or threatens to abandon victim.
Recognizing abuse is a huge part of stopping abuse. The victims have to be able to tell themselves the truth and shield themselves from the constant lies they hear from the abuser because they deserve better. The victim has to be firm and clear with his/ her decisions to make serious changes in the relationship. Confronting the abuser and setting boundaries could help but know that one cannot change the abuser except they want to change. Reaching out to family, friends, or a trusted hand for help would also help to crack the ice on the abuse. In some extreme cases, if the abuse is really severe, the victim is better off leaving such an environment for physical and mental reasons.
In addition to all these, the society has to take emotional abuse seriously with more medical experts in this field to help victims. This would go a long way in making abused victims come out of their holes. We definitely don’t want a society full of morons. Also the home is the foundation for every individual and the society at large, and if both parents express their love to each other and also share this with their child, the society will be a much better place.