What stops you healing from emotional abuse?

23 May 2017

What stops you healing from emotional abuse?  Most emotional abuse survivors – including me, back in the day – would argue that what stands in the way of healing is the damage done to you by the experience your abuser has put you through. Certainly that damage is massive. However, there is more as well.

What you lose in an emotionally abusive relationship

By the time you leave an emotionally abusive relationship, you feel like you have lost everything. Certainly, you have lost – in no particular order, your

  • Voice.
  • Identity.
  • Your self-worth.
  • Confidence.
  • Close connection to family and friends – an abusive partner will do his very best to undermine these.
  • Financial independence.
  • Hopes and dreams.

You will have learned to doubt every aspect of yourself. So much so that you end up asking that most ridiculous question,

“How could I ever manage without him?”

In reality, that question is ridiculous because, what stops you healing from emotional abuse r is actually the abuser’s plan for you.. An abuser lays their plan carefully to prevent you from healing. However, once you get the hang of NOT having someone around who intimidates you 24/7, you won’t “manage”, at all. Rather, you will start to thrive.


The emotional abuser’s plan

That plan is very simple.  You could sum it up in two simple words,

“Trash her.”

An emotional abuser sets out to trash their partner every which way – spiritually, psychologically, emotionally, financially and professionally. The better they can do that, the more likely they are to stop you healing from emotional  abuse.

Emotional abusers are on a mission to create the Unhappily Ever After. For you.

If the world only worked the way they that they believe it does, then they really would stop you healing from emotional abuse forever after.

Happily, the best things in life totally escape their understanding.  This happens because they are emotional  barbarians. They have no real awareness of what is truly precious. Otherwise they would have had the good sense to appreciate you, and what you brought to their life.

As French composer Pierre Schaeffer observed,

“Barbarians always think of themselves as the bringers of civilization.”

Don’t they just?!

Abusers are bringers of misinformation

In reality, an emotionally abusive partner is the bringer of misinformation.

Shedloads of misinformation. Most of it about you.

From the moment he starts to feel that you have swallowed his hook, he trains you to believe nothing but bad of yourself.

His attacks on you fall into a number of categories:

  • Competence – personal and professional
  • Appearance
  • Womanliness
  • Intelligence
  • Parenting
  • Sanity
  • Caring
  • Loyalty
  • Devotion.

You, obviously, fail on all of these categories. He, on the other hand, would pass with flying colors on every last one – provided you just replace Womanliness with Manliness.

Any emotional abuser that you have ever known for more than about 10 minutes will start to implement, “Mission Brainwash”. He is on a mission to get you to believe the absolute worst about yourself.

“How could someone who was meant to love me, behave like that?”

Question. “How could someone who is meant to love me behave like that?” you might well ask.

Answer.  You meant him to love you. He meant to possess you. Body, mind and soul.  Big difference. He may have promised to love you. However, as you already know, he is not a man who keeps his word.

Why would he?

It is so much easier for him to lie

Still, that leaves you with the – underlying – problem of what stops you healing from emotional abuse.

An emotional abuser brainwashes you into believing the very worst about yourself.

You end up punishing yourself for that “worst”. In fact, he trains you to punish yourself – and keep on punishing yourself – even without his constant input.

Do you see what I am saying?

For as long as you continue to punish yourself, you cannot heal from the damaging experience that you have been through.

Punishing yourself stops you healing from emotional abuse.

That means that you have to do something quite different.

You have to learn to forgive yourself

You have to learn to forgive yourself for,

  • The accusations your emotional abuser levelled at you.
  • Your – perceived – failures in all of the categories mentioned above.
  • Not being perfect.
  • Having your own human frailties.
  • Ending up in a relationship with an emotional barbarian.
  • Not being able to protect your children from their other parent’s awfulness.

The key word, there, is FORGIVENESS. That is the key that unlocks the door of your healing.

An emotional abuser deserves many things. As far as I am concerned, most of all, he deserves to work at – and thereby earn – his own forgiveness. However, that is really not your problem.

You need to forgive yourself for what you have been through.  It should not have happened to you. The fact that it did happen to you only means that you happened to become immobilized in the path of an abuser.

What stops you healing from emotional abuse is not forgiving yourself. Forgiveness could well be the most important gift you ever give yourself.


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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