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Guide to Dealing With Abuse (Physical, Emotional, or Verbal)

Guide to Dealing With Abuse

Abuse no matter whether it is mental and sexual abuse, or whether it is physical and emotional, it could deeply impact your personality. Therefore, as soon as you discover that you are in an abusive relationship. Here are things you can do to deal with it.

How to Deal with Physical Abuse

One of the most difficult things to endure is physical abuse. No one would want to take physical abuse lying down and doing so can put your life too at risk. Here are some ways to deal with physical abuse and protect yourself from danger.

1. Check for mental problems

Physical abuse can be very traumatizing for the victim and in most cases, psychological illness can be seen lurking in the background. Because a physical abuser can become very violent and cause danger to your life, it is important to assess his/her mental wellbeing and look for unidentified mental disorders before things turn very ugly and damaging. With the help of family members, you must check his/her family background and look for hereditary mental illness, especially if you are staying with the person who abuses you. If there is a mental illness that is causing the person to become violent, psychological assistance is required. On the other hand, if it is uncontrollable anger that is bordering on violence, the person needs counseling to get out of the habit. Whatever the cause, it is important to rectify it before you deal with the person again on a daily basis.

2. Gain external support

When you are in an abusive relationship, it is important to have friends and family to support you and bring you out of this difficult situation. It is not easy to get out of an abusive relationship, especially if there are kids involved. Getting the support of family and friends will help you assess the relationship and take the best possible course. The best thing about having support is the fact that they can talk to the abusive partner, get him help through counseling and counsel him/her as well by talking about the implications and how you suffer as a partner because of his/her abusive behavior. Such talks can sometimes give surprising results and lead the person to change abusive behavior. If you have the support of the abusive person’s family as well, then things become even more positive as his/her relatives can talk to him/her and help the abusive person change his behavior. It is also a tremendous relief for you to know that there are many people who understand your plight and are willing to help.

3. Think about counseling

Counseling can help an abusive person get out of his mental state and stop the abusive behavior. Though you cannot expect immediate change, there would be a tremendous improvement in the person as soon as the counseling sessions are in place. When you are living with a physically abusive person, before you take the final step of getting separated from the abusive person, you must try counseling as a possible way to save the relationship. Counseling can detect many psychological disorders that may be easily treatable with counseling or deep-rooted. Give enough time to see if there is a positive change in the person and life can be carried on for the sake of your family and children. Counselors would also be able to suggest the possible course of action you can take. They being experienced will be able to predict almost accurately if the person can be changed or not.

4. Protect yourself from danger

Abusive people can become violent and can cause great harm and danger as they are not rational and do things without thinking about the repercussions. It is your duty to ensure your safety and the safety of your children when you are living with an abusive person. Do not try to aggravate or anger the abusive person in any way, especially if you are alone and at night when calling for help may not be a possibility. If the physically abusive person becomes violent, first ensure the safety of your children. Lock them up in a safe room and make sure that you are not in direct line of the person so that he/she can cause you physical harm. Make sure that you have objects between you and the abusive person and there is enough place to escape. Call for emergency help while you defend yourself. It is always a good idea to keep a certain person informed that if you give him/her a missed or blank call, he/she must immediately sense danger.

5. Walk away

Physical abuse may sometimes be difficult to treat, however much you have tried and want the relationship to work. In such cases, do not put your life in danger by continuing to live with the person. Seek a separation on grounds of mental illness or domestic violence, whichever category he belongs to. This is important for your peace of mind and safety as well. Relationships that are laced with violence and abuse do not have any scope for happiness and development and hence, it is best that you make the decision as early as possible to protect yourself from mental trauma.


How to Deal with Emotional Abuse

Relationships have their ups and downs, which highlight their importance and uniqueness. However, when there is a gradual tearing down of one party, it can signal emotional abuse. Here are some ways to deal with emotional abuse.

1. Mark your reaction to the abuser

Relationships are crucial to life and expecting perfect compatibility is impractical. You cannot modify individuals according to your need. Forcing change on the abuser may not seem feasible. However, you can reveal the non-acceptance of bad behavior through the most appropriate gestures.

Let the other party (abuser) realize that the behavior is not acceptable. The humiliation and verbal discomfort are hurting your sentiments and you do not want to take it further. Emotional abuse can leave you defenseless. Surpass those feelings and gain the confidence to present yourself confidently. Your confidence can force the abuser to surrender and refrain from damaging your self-esteem further. However, be cautious while defending, as many abusers may resort to violent techniques on being opposed. It is best if the abuser ends the abuse on his or her own.

Use emotional intelligence to deal with abuse. You can use forums (like a diary, a blog, a group of very close and trusted associates) to convey your feelings, but within a specified boundary.

2. Specify boundaries and limits in the relationship

It is essential to specify healthy boundaries in relationships. If possible, you can engage the abuser in setting these frontiers, which help in giving a new dimension to the relationship. Else, work on your own by using rational thinking. Once you have defined the frontiers, make the abuser aware of the guideline(s) to yield effectively.

Insecurity or lack of trust can drive a person to be abusive. Your failure or inability to recognize the abusive behavior can make matters worse. A weak victim, like a child enduring the emotional abuse of a parent, serves an easy prey. Defining boundaries can be a difficult task in many relationships requiring expert skills. Both parties should accept the agreement and abide by the guidelines for restoring mutual respect. The boundary should be clearly stated by the one who has been abused.

3. Redirect your energy to a constructive idea

The thought that you are at the receiving end, despite no fault of yours, can be disturbing. Confrontation can come as a natural reaction. It can work in favor, but more than often, it works against you. Even though you are made to feel guilty, realize that you have not committed the crime. Acknowledge the fact to gain inner strength which will enhance your endurance.

Discussing the matter with close friends and family members is helpful. They contribute in creating a positive atmosphere where you can think of the possible solutions instead of brooding over the past. Create a protective environment by making prudent choices. Make yourself accessible to your trusted associates so that they can help you in time. Heed your instincts to demarcate between the favorable and unfavorable.

4. Avoid bad coping mechanisms

Emotional abuse can give a feeling of helplessness and low self-esteem. Women adopt self-harming mechanisms to cope up with such situations. Eating disorder, drug addiction, bodily injury, etc. can make you worse off in handling the situation. Avoid showing your emotions to the abuser. Stay calm to any screaming or yelling. Do not give way to any criticism or threat. Your neutral and non-responsive behavior can dampen the energy of the abuser to abuse you more.

On occasions, the abuser can try harder to hurt you (maybe by harming you physically). On sensing such a tendency, it is better to escape unhurt. Counseling can help when the abuser has a mental frame to improve. Verbal consent cannot bind the abuser to act favorably.

The dynamism of the relationship is important. Some are formed out of choice but for many of the relationships, there is no choice (like parents). Some relations remain as they are, they just gain maturity over time. Others change dramatically with time. Relationships can serve the highest learning playground, with diverse emotions forming an integral component. Analyze whether the relationship is emotionally healthy or traumatic.

5. Seek professional help whenever required

Departing from relations is not the ultimate option available. Explore the other facets which seem productive. Professional advice from a counselor can bring respite and comfort. It can help you combat the emotional crises, which may emerge as personality changes, suicidal thoughts, and/or depression.

A support system provides a holistic approach to healing abuse and its ills. Qualified counseling can bring in relief, particularly under concerning and life-threatening situations. Expert advice can keep away the negative environment which promotes destructive thoughts.

In the worst scenario, where the abuser is too demanding and troubling, parting ways can be your last resort. Before going for the ultimate, give your last attempt meticulously to leave no scope for regrets later.


How to Deal with Verbal Abuse

Dealing with verbal abuse can be a very traumatic experience. Many people who are victims consider them as responsible for the situation and mostly stay passive and continue to suffer. Verbal abuse is a serious offense and must be dealt with in the right way to stay confident and without guilt.

1. Avoid counter abuse

Verbal abuse can become worse if the person starts abusing back with even more vigor and energy. This must be avoided at any cost. Yelling at each other and calling names and abuses can not only create a dangerous situation but will also taint your name among neighbors and coworkers. It helps if one person remains quiet and reasonable in such circumstances. However, this does not mean that you have to take verbal abuse lying down all the time. If it is a spouse who has been constantly abusing you verbally, remaining quiet will only make matters worse for you as this will be an encouragement for him. Most victims of verbal abuse are passive and do not respond for too long which is what causes a lot of suffering and heartache. Verbal abuse must be dealt with quietness at first to see if the person can be tamed and stopped. Avoid the use of hostile language, debates, and counter-attacks.

2. Be calm and quiet

When you are met with verbal abuse, remain calm and peaceful and not hostile and abusive. Assess what has caused the person to verbally abuse you. If it is your mistake that has caused him to react this way, there is no use reacting in anger and making matters worse. Wait until he cools down and you may give an explanation for your behavior or apologize to him if you feel that he has been wronged. This gracious act from your part will help him calm down and stop the verbal abuse. When things become manageable, you can explain and sort things out so that it does not affect your personal and professional relationships. It is, however, not very easy to remain calm and quiet when you are showered with abuses. It helps if you can practice some relaxation exercises or inhale and exhale deeply till a count of ten. Doing this will help you get back your control and deflect attention from the verbal abuse.

3. Boring baroque response

This is something that you can try with your friends, siblings, and coworkers. A boring baroque response involves arguing without any deep involvement. It can be a stupid or boring argument just for the sake of keeping up with the person and does not involve any particular points or explanations as such. Most often, the person who is verbally abusing you will get bored or thoroughly irritated with you and would leave you alone. A boring baroque response can be continued for 15-20 minutes maximum after which it may not be effective. In such cases, you will have to take the initiative to move away. It is also important to keep away from such responses if the verbal abuse comes from your boss or someone else whom you respect as it can only make them more violent. It would also make them feel that you are disrespectful and are trying to make fun of them.

4. Stay Away from the Person

If the situation gets out of control with you to showering abuses or has been practicing boring baroque response for too long without any effect, the best thing to do is to move away from the abusive person before he gets physically abusive. Walking away is one of the most effective ways to stop verbal abuse. It may not be effective always if you are at fault and are trying to avoid a confrontation. If keeping a calm and controlled demeanor does not help, then too, you can walk away hastily to stop the verbal abuse. Remember that walking away is only a temporary way to stop the abuse and you must be well prepared to face the person at some other point of time and sort things out.

5. Ask Friends for Guidance

Sometimes the verbal abuse could be a frequent problem that you are dealing with in a marital or family set up. In such cases, you could have already tried every possible way to stop the verbal abuse with no positive results. Talk to your friends and relative and ask them for guidance as to what is the best possible course to be taken. There are organizations and domestic violence centers that you can approach or marital counseling centers where you can discuss your problem and seek necessary steps to stop or prevent such episodes from weighing you down.



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