Verbal Abuse

See also:    Abuse    Psychological Defense Mechanisms   

Internet Resources

Terms such as emotional abuse, psychological maltreatment, verbal abuse, mental abuse, emotional maltreatment and psychological violence are commonly used to describe non-physical aggression. Some view these terms as synonymous whereas others may make differentiations between forms. For example, emotional abuse may be defined as those behaviors that both partners may exhibit and are likely to include name-calling, negative judgments or attributions or actions (such as yelling) that result in causing the other person psychological pain or discomfort. Psychological violence, on the other hand, may be characterized as carrying an implied threat of physical violence, or attempt to intimidate or control the other person. Whether this distinction between psychological violence and emotional abuse is real or arbitrary, the fact still remains that, in a rudimentary way, these distinctions are an attempt to begin to differentiate the concept of psychological violence from marital discord.
Daniel Jay Sonkin
You understand their feelings, but they never attempt to understand yours; they dismiss your difficulties or issues as unimportant or an overreaction; they do not listen to you; they expect you to perform tasks that you find unpleasant or humiliating...
Unlike physical and sexual abuse, where a single incident may be considered abusive, emotional abuse is characterised by a climate or pattern of behaviour(s) occurring over time.
Adam Tomison, Joe Tucci
Violence in the family often follows other forms of more subtle and long-term abuse: verbal, emotional, psychological sexual, or financial.
Open Encyclopedia
Why do people feel they must treat sensitivity as a topic of scorn? Why is sensitivity treated as something inferior, undesirable, or outright horrible? Why do abusers spit out the label of sensitivity as if it were an insult?
Adolescents who perceive parents as excessively guilt-inducing, disregarding their point of view, and responsive only when parental standards are met, construct maladaptive self-representations in which pursuit of almost unattainable goals is central.
Bart Soenens, Maarten Vansteenkiste, Patrick Luyten, Bart Duriez, Luc Goossens
Overt abuse is openly demeaning with a pattern of jealousy, isolation, and control of finances being common in such relationships. Covert abuse results in the victims feeling despair and confusionas they are often unaware of the violence.
Marti Tamm Loring
People who use psychological aggression usually believe it is a valid tactic. It is used so widely that we rarely question its appropriateness.
Francis McNab
Psychological control may be evidence of a negative parent-child relationship. Moreover, psychologically controlling parents may create a hostile parent-child relationship.
Robert D. Laird, Gregory S. Pettit
Prevalence rates greater than 90% and the absence of differences according to child or family characteristics suggests that psychological aggression is a near universal disciplinary tactic of American parents.
Murray Straus, Carolyn Field
Because verbal violence is at the root of all other violence, I must create a language environment where verbal abuse is truly rare. When I do find myself involved in verbal violence, I must end it quickly and honorably and put it firmly behind me.
When people don't recognize verbal abuse for what it is, they may try to get the person who is putting them down, giving them orders, or 'correcting,' denouncing, yelling at or ignoring them to understand them.
Patricia Evans
Children who never experience being hit by their parents often exhibit behavior problems associated with verbal aggression. The psychosocial problems of children is more directly related to parental verbal aggression than to physical aggression.
Yvonne M. Vissing, Murray A. Straus, Richard J. Gelles, John W. Harrop
Emotional abuse is any kind of abuse that is emotional rather than physical in nature. It can include anything from verbal abuse and constant criticism to more subtle tactics, such as intimidation, manipulation, and refusal to ever be pleased.
Carnegie Mellon University

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