Sometimes when days are long and stress is high we have fights with our spouse or best friend and we both say things we don’t mean out of anger. We’re all human and some days we just are pushed to the end of our rope and loose our filter. When things settle down, we realize how silly we were and apologize. That’s life.
But it’s when those “sometimes” turn into “all the time” that there is a problem.
Whoever came up with the saying, “Sticks and stones may break my bones, but words will never hurt me,” was obviously either trying mask his pain or had never had a mean word hurled at him.
Words hurt and leave lasting wounds as well. And if you’re in a relationship with someone who is constantly hurling hurtful and demeaning words your way, you may be the victim of mental or emotional abuse.
I know nobody likes to see himself or herself as a victim, but recognizing the problem is the first step to fixing it. Here are some questions you can ask yourself to see if your partner might be mentally abusing you.
- Are you afraid to talk to your partner about even little things because you’re not sure how they will react?
- Have you stopped bringing your partner to family events or out with friends because you’re embarrassed about how they demean you?
- Do they belittle your accomplishments or dreams?
- Do you feel worthless?
- Does your partner blame you for everything?
- Do you feel trapped?
- Does your partner get easily jealous?
- Do you feel the need to apologize even when you know you’ve done nothing wrong?
- Does your partner like to control how you spend all your time?
- Do they isolate you from the rest of the world?
- Do you make excuses for your partner all the time? Are you making them now?
- Do you feel like you deserve to be treated this way or that if you were better, your partner would treat you better?
If you answered yes to all or most of those questions, then you are probably in an abusive relationship. You need to seek guidance and help from trusted friends and family so that you can have the support you need to get out of an abusive situation.
Some people aren’t supposed to be in your life forever. Sometimes they are just supposed to stay for a season to teach you a lesson—and maybe that lesson is you’re strong enough to let them go.