Top 10 Things You Need To Know About Emotional Abuse

01 Mar 2016

What are the top 10 things you need to know about emotional abuse?  As I prepare to head off to give my first workshop in Denmark about emotional abuse, I’ve been asking myself: “What is the most valuable, transformational information I can provide an audience with?”  And also: “What are the top 10 things to know about emotional abuse that would have changed things for me?”

Top 10 things you need to know about emotional abuse

  • Emotional abuse is B-A-D. How many times have I heard women apologise for how bad they feel – as a result of emotional abuse?  The rationale goes like this: “Well, at least he didn’t hit me.  Other women have it a lot worse.  So, why should I be making such a big deal about it?” Being made to feel bad, and worthless, by another person is appalling. Doubtless, there are worse people in the world than your emotionally abusive partner; and that’s a great shame, too.  However, your emotionally abusive partner behaves deplorably badly towards you – otherwise you wouldn’t be in pieces.  Bad is always bad enough.
  • You have a high threshold for ill-treatment. Please understand, I’m not suggesting you are a masochist or anything like that: I despise that term.  What I am saying is that you have been taught to tolerate very much more emotional pain than another person might – otherwise you would have walked a long time ago.  That has not served you well.  And it’s not your fault.  You’ve done the best you can with a toxic situation.
  • It’s all designed to make you feel worthless. You don’t feel worthless because you are worthless.  You feel worthless because you have been brainwashed into feeling that way.  Mr Nasty truly believes that making you feel worthless proves what a special , worthwhile, and all round wonderful, guy he is.
  • There is something totally ‘off’ about an emotionally abusive relationship. Emotionally abusive relationships defy normal logic and sanity. That tends to be the piece that emotionally abused women miss.  An emotional abuser wants a very different kind of relationship to the relationship you want.  That’s why they create the relationships they have.  From where you’re standing, it’s totally illogical: why would they?  From where they stand, it makes perfect sense: there is a lot they want from you; and very little they want with you. Doing Life together is really NOT in their masterplan.
  • It’s a one-way street. The other name of this street is the Highway to Hell.  There are a fair few crossroads along the way that you can take.  But stay on this road and it will lead to a living Hell. There is no One Day when it’s – magically – going to get better.
  • It’s not your fault. You didn’t know what you were getting yourself into – you wouldn’t have believed it if someone had told you. It’s not your fault that he behaves the way he does any more than it is ‘your’ fault if a toddler has a temper tantrum.  In fact, isn’t it time that you ditched the whole ‘fault’ thing? It’s your responsibility to take care of yourself.  It’s NOT your responsibility to manage the emotions of another human being who refuses to deal with his own emotional c**p.
  • You don’t have to stay. Over the years I’ve heard so many reasons why women had to stay, and had to tolerate the unacceptable. When women explain their ‘Reasons Why’ they focus on what they’ll lose by leaving.  What they totally overlook is just how much they lose by staying.
  • The true cost of an emotionally abusive relationship. An emotionally abusive relationship will cost you your health – mental and physical – your happiness, your self-respect,  your opportunity to be loved and valued, and your chance to make something you can be proud of, of your one life.  And what for?
  • You’re not broken, hopeless, pathetic, or incapable. Science has shown that human beings only have a finite amount of energy. If you’re in an emotionally abusive relationship then not only are you CONSTANTLY obliged to tread water just to keep yourself afloat, but you also have to do that with a heavy rucksack on your back.  That rucksack is filled with your emotional abuser’s nastiness, your unhappiness, the ton of negative beliefs spawned by the relationship, your guilt and shame, and plenty else besides.  No wonder you lack surplus energy!!!  Once you leave, you can start to reclaim that energy and – finally – use it for good; to rebuild your life.
  • You can be so much happier than you can even begin to imagine. Mr Nasty has trained you to believe in unicorns, and flying pigs, and the Holy Grail, and all that other nonsense.  That’s why you tell yourself  that you can only be happy when he’s finally happy with you.  That belief will guarantee you a lifetime of profound unhappiness.  Mr Nasty does not do happiness.  Simple as that.  The journey of recovery from emotional abuse is a journey into incremental happiness. You have no idea how easy it is for you to get happy and stay happy – provided you’re not living in his home state of Unhappyville.  The only thing that separates you from happiness is the role emotional abuse,  and an emotional abuser, currently play in your life.

When I left my Mr Nasty,  I didn’t know the first thing about how abuse worked, or how I could ever have a life after emotional abuse.  Since first learning the Top Ten Things You Need To Know About  Emotional  Abuse, I’ve helped hundreds of other women – who didn’t truly believe they could be helped – to live joyful rewarding lives.  If they can learn how to do it  even when they’d been in emotionally abusive relationships for decades – there’s no doubt you can, too.

Emotional abuse makes you feel that you’re the only one who is suffering like that.  Nothing could be farther from the truth. Share this article with everyone who either might know – or needs to know – the top 10 things you need to know about emotional abuse.


Annie Kaszina, international Emotional Abuse Recovery specialist and award-winning author of 3 books designed to help women recognise and heal from toxic relationships so that they can build healthy, lasting relationships with the perfect partner for them, blogs about all aspects of abuse, understanding Narcissists and how to avoid them and building strong self-worth. To receive Annie’s blog direct to your Inbox just leave your details here.

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