The 5 Secrets emotional abusers do NOT want you to know invariably come as a massive surprise to anyone who has ever been in an emotionally abusive relationship. Yet, in some ways, they really should not. In reality, the secrets emotional abusers do not want you to know are hidden in plain sight. They are clearly visible – but only for those who have eyes to see them.
That is the reason why the first thing that an emotional abuser does is to willfully blind you to the truth. Clear-sightedness is always the first casualty of an emotionally abusive relationship. For women who try to struggle through to healing on their own, that clear-sightedness will, likely, be very, very slow in returning. However, until it does return, you will not be able to heal properly – because you will be looking for healing answers in all the wrong places.
Never underestimate how effectively an emotionally abusive partner blinds you to the truth. He employs a number of techniques – which he has honed to near perfection. These techniques include:
- Declaring mad, passionate, eternal love. (This enchanting ploy is reserved for the early stages of the relationship, or else when you look ready to walk away.)
- Withholding affection. (His “love” for you comes, and goes. He “loves” you. He loves you NOT. The longer the relationship last the more he loves you NOT.)
- Crazy-making. (He denies, undermines, and subverts your reality every which way.)
- Isolation. (He makes himself increasingly indispensable by ensuring you have no-one else to turn to.)
- The egg-shells routine. (He is very, very easy to offend. It only takes a glance – or a smile – from you, and he launches into another Oscar-winning Righteous Indignation performance.)
- Financial deprivation. (When you are constantly worried sick about money and survival, you lack the time and energy to be plotting rebellion.)
- Threatening to leave. (He knows how effective pushing your Fear button is.)
With all of that going on, you simply don’t have enough mental and emotional “bandwidth” left to focus on the big picture – or the secrets your abuser is so anxious to keep from you. Let’s look now at them.
#1 5 secrets emotional abusers do not want you to know: Opinions, opinions.
Your emotionally abusive partner may or may not be a bright guy. In this context, it does not really matter either way. What does matter is that – where you are concerned – he regards himself as The Font of All Knowledge. He knows everything – allegedly. He knows more about you than you do yourself – although he probably couldn’t tell you your shoe size, dress size, favorite food, or even your favorite place. (I remember my Mr. Nasty telling me that my favorite place in the world was Milan – probably my least favorite city in my favorite country in the world.)
In reality, he is a very self-opinionated man who just has opinions about you. They are the opinions of someone deeply in love with the sound of his own voice. That doesn’t make his opinions true, or right.
Interestingly enough, the more arrogant people are, the more wrong opinions they tend to hold. Not listening to other people – especially people who are more knowledgeable on any subject – means that they remain in blissful, self-congratulatory ignorance.
“Opinions are like ass-holes. Everyone has one.” (as Clint Eastwood famously said.) That is one ass-hole you have seen enough of for a lifetime. Perish the thought of you taking his opinions for truth any longer.
#2 5 secrets emotional abusers do not want you to know: You are more than good enough.
This secret may take a little bit of getting your head around. Mr. Nasty goes to a lot of trouble to make you feel worthless, and unworthy of one so wonderful as he is – allegedly. But think about it. At some level, even you know that Mr. Nasty has an inflated idea of his own wonderfulness.
He chose you for several reasons. One was that you made him look good – inasmuch as you had some status that he felt enhanced his own. He could see that you looked good, and you were a woman with various gifts and talents. At first, you worked as some kind of status symbol for him. (Initially, my Mr. Nasty used to crow about my Ph.D.)
However, a shift inevitably occurs in every Mr. Nasty’s thinking. Over time he realizes that you have not magicked away all the dark resentments and hostilities inside his head. (It doesn’t cross his primitive little mind that this was never your job, in the first place.) So he becomes increasingly cross with you for not being able to transform him remotely, as it were. When that happens (as happen it must) he starts practicing the thoroughly nasty trick of making himself feel better by making unfavorable comparisons between you and himself.
#3 5 secrets emotional abusers do not want you to know: Transforming your past into your future.
All emotional abusers know one key truth: if they can keep you looking back – in anger, despair, or fear – then there is no way you can move forward. (If you don’t believe me, try it. Try walking down a street turning your head as far over your shoulder as you possibly can, and focusing your concentration on what lies behind you. You won’t get very far. Just the pain of constantly turning your neck will wear you out before long.)
Now, you could ask yourself:
- “What kind of a jerk would think up something like that?”
- “What kind of jerk would do something like that?”
And you could go looking for some deep and meaningful answer. But you really needn’t bother.
The kind of jerk that would do something like that is the kind of jerk that you have been in a relationship with: a heartless, hurtful, devious, manipulative little jerk. That is all you really need to know on the subject.
You could go looking for a loftier, more scientific explanation but, really, it is NOT going to help you. The facts is the facts. You already know that he is a heartless, hurtful, devious, manipulative jerk – because he has proved it to you, time and time again.
#4 5 secrets emotional abusers do not want you to know: You’re (part of) ‘what he needs to get by’.
Maybe he has already found a partial replacement for you. Some abusers do, others do not. Either way, he just LOVES to big himself up at your expense. So, he is NOT in a hurry for you to be free of him. That is why he tells you that you will never cope on your own.
Do you really imagine that man cares enough about you to worry how you will fare without him?
An emotional abuser is right up there with Kim Kardashian when it comes to self-absorption. When he says, “You’ll never manage without me.” what he is really saying is: “Honestly, spare me the trouble of having to groom someone else. Besides, if you leave it will cost me money, and that is just not fair – to me.”
Only get him out of your head and being without him will be a thousand times better than being with him ever was. As a general rule, never believe a single thing an emotionally abusive man has to say, without objective proof.
#5 5 secrets emotional abusers do not want you to know: You were never “broken”.
Emotional abusers invest NOTHING in their relationship. However, they do invest a lot into training their partner to blind subservience. That is why it is so important for them to make you believe that you are “broken” (and crazy, and selfish – and all of that horse excrement). It’s not true. But it is a damned good ploy on their part.
Here’s how the “broken” scenario plays out. People only see what they are looking for. I’m guessing you have occasionally done that thing of looking for something and not finding it – when it is right there in front of you. You couldn’t see it because you had already told yourself that it was lost. That is exactly how it goes with your “brokenness.”
You cannot see your wholeness when you focus on your brokenness. In reality, your wholeness has never left you. You can always rediscover it – like my lovely client F who emailed on her birthday to say:
“I was thinking how miserable I was on my last birthday (spent with my ex ), and how different it felt today and how wonderful is the journey I am following. I am so happy and full of hope for my 2017 birthday – and beyond.
I had this thought today: how far I am already from the deeply desperate-sad states I used to have before working with you. For several weeks now “not feeling good” means at its most some anxiety. This week I had a very familiar “pity party”: I got into it fully for some twenty minutes and suddenly I heard a voice inside me saying (with an impatient tone you’d use with a nagging but nice dog 🙂 : ” Oh, come on, give me a break”, and my mood just changed. It is so incredible!!”
F.’s life has changed because she is absorbing the 5 secrets emotional abusers do not want you to know into every fiber of her being – especially #5: You were never “broken”. The first time I said it to her, she did wonder if I had lost my sanity but then she started to experience the truth of it. That is what gives her the power to outwit negativity, despair, and anxiety so effectively.
You, too, can do what F. has done. But you will have to shift your focus from Mr. Nasty back to yourself. And you will have to let go of Mr. Nasty and all his Nasty beliefs. The 5 secrets emotional abusers do not want you to know are the secrets that will give you wholeness, healing, and happiness.
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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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