Verbal Abuse is a Kind of Control

What is verbal abuse? the use of verbal communication to control, put down, and diminish the other person’s self-image. This is a move in the greater battle between people, the “who controls whom” power play.

Sometimes couples have an implicit contract by which they will allow the other to “keep them in their place,” so stifling their own creative thinking and initiatives.

Why do people need to control each other? Because we want to support the structure of interpersonal relationships that was offered to us when we were born: patriarchy. We feel cosy and secure in it, because this is the pattern of our lives. We run our own perceptions of who we are, and we keep our loved ones in the same pattern.

When we are doing the role of the abuser, we tell the other from the outside how to be, and the person has to comply or feel inadequate. When we are performing the abused role, we need to accept other person’s perception of us, as more accurater than the ones we have of ourselves! And so the chain of control is perpetuated.

We get a premium for being here: we never feel alone, because there is always someone telling us what to do. Eternal dependency and childhood, anyone? this is the way: let someone tell you when you are inadequate, and follow external advice as more legitimate than what your gut is telling.

When we begin to realize how many ways of interaction are really covert attempts to control us via our feelings of inadequacy, the machinery gets clear and clearer.

If you want to stop, what to do? there are defensive ways, of course…the first step, however, is to give up the comfort of this emotional jail….it’s not easy to decide not to play the game. Better to begin doing appreciation immediately, so we know this time again who we are: we are the person setting the others free! Free of our unwanted advice, free of our constant evaluation of them.
Isn’t that great?

Neil Warner

Neil Warner

I’m the “relationship guru,” and my main focus is to increase the quality of love-based relationship experiences. In this ground-breaking guide I offer useful strategies on healing a difficult angry relationship with love and compassion. You don’t have to stay in an unhealthy relationship one more minute. Let us share our tools with you today.

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