Many people experience neglect in a relationship in the form of emotional abuse, but because they don't have the physical scars to prove it, society often does not take them seriously. This post is dedicated to the people who have felt as though they are alone because the world does not recognize the trauma they have experienced. If you are reading this and have experienced any form of emotional abuse, your experience is valid, and you are resilient for sticking it out and pulling through. If you are reading this and have ever wondered whether emotional abuse is real abuse, it is, and we as a society need to talk about it more often. Here's why:
It can even be more dangerous than physical abuse by mentally diminishing another person's sense of worth, identity, and self-dignity:
Although physical abuse is damaging and debilitating, emotional abuse is just as dangerous. It can leave people feeling worthless, empty, and blaming themselves. What is even worse is that society tends to dismiss the emotional bruises of people who have gone through emotional abuse. The sooner we collectively start to loosen the stigma that victims can often feel.
Victims Often Feel Depression, Suicidal, And Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD):
Because we cannot see emotional abuse does not mean that it does not exist. Even in the most severe emotional abuse cases, we cannot see the bruises or wounds, but that broken lip and the swollen eyelid are just as lethal as consistent belittling, guilt-tripping, and name-calling. Instead of dismissing emotional abuse, we need to collectively acknowledge it for what it is: a soul-crushing, emotionally debilitating situation, and we need to show empathy to victims of this kind of abuse because they can be experiencing suicidal ideation severe depression, and PTSD, among other things.
Like many other types of abuse, emotional abuse is a particular type of cruelty that thrives behind the scenes when no one acknowledges, understands, or empathizes with the victim. This cycle is dangerous because the more we keep emotional abuse in the dark, the more victims feel ashamed to open up about their pain. As a society, we can all do our part to avoid this.
People Need To Open Up:
Emotional abuse can be a challenging and devastating situation to individuals experiencing it. The pain of experiencing emotional abuse can be exacerbated when victims feel gaslighted into believing it's not a big deal and cannot open up to anyone. We need to talk more about emotional abuse because emotional abuse victims need to feel like they can openly share their experience with abuse without being dismissed or taken lightly by broader society. We can all do better.