This month is Mental health month so I decided to write a post addressing the impact bad relationships have on our mental health. One of which is something I believe a lot of us can’t truly define – Emotional Abuse- or in this case “mental abuse” for the purpose of this write up, I’ll use “mental abuse” in place of emotional or psychological abuse.
I hope everyone that reads this post will know to how to identify mental abuse and avoid it (please don’t expect to change the person). And I also hope this will help us all develop and enjoy positive, healthy relationships.
WHO defines mental health as a state of well-being in which every individual realizes his or her own potential, can cope with the normal stresses of life, can work productively and fruitfully, and is able to make a contribution to her or his community.
If you are in a mentally abusive relationship, trust me, you would not be able to cope with the “normal stresses of life”, “work productively” or “contribute to your community”.
Mental abuse on the other hand is “any act including confinement, isolation, verbal assault, humiliation, intimidation, or any other treatment which may diminish the sense of identity, dignity, and self-worth.”
Mental abuse is not as obvious as physical abuse or even verbal abuse. In fact, it can be very subtle. You may find yourself feeling confused about the relationship, always conscious when around that person or even “not yourself” because you want to impress the person or simply just want peace.This is the kind of abuse that sneaks up on you as you become more entrenched in the relationship and in some cases it could turn into physical abuse.
I read a few articles on this and pulled out some tips on how to identify a mentally abusive person/ relationship. I believe majority of my readers are young guys and girls and I would like to say this, if you come across a person who exhibits several of these behaviors repeatedly, please just avoid that person as soon as possible because the longer you stay, the harder it will be to let go.
1. They try to control you and treat you like a child. They correct or chastise you for your behavior. You feel like you need permission to make decisions or go out somewhere. They try to control the finances and how you spend money. They belittle and trivialize you, your accomplishments, or your hopes and dreams. They try to make you feel as though they are always right, and you are wrong. They regularly point out your flaws, mistakes, or shortcomings.
2. They regularly demean or disregard your opinions, ideas, suggestions, or needs. They use sarcasm or “teasing” to put you down or make you feel bad about yourself.They humiliate you, put you down, or make fun of you in front of other people. then they accuse you of being “too sensitive”.
3. They accuse or blame you of things you know aren’t true. They have an inability to laugh at themselves and can’t tolerate others laughing at them. They are intolerant of any seeming lack of respect. They make excuses for their behavior, try to blame others, and have difficulty apologizing. The repeatedly cross your boundaries and ignore your requests. They blame you for their problems, life difficulties, or unhappiness. They call you names, give you unpleasant labels, or make cutting remarks under their breath.
4. They resort to pouting or withdrawal to get attention or attain what they want. They don’t show you empathy or compassion. They play the victim and try to deflect blame to you rather than taking personal responsibility. They disengage or use neglect or abandonment to punish or frighten you. They share personal information about you with others. They make subtle threats or negative remarks with the intent to frighten or control you.
Was anything left out? please share below.
Happy Mental Health Month everyone! Lets stay sane 😀