What is domestic violence?
Domestic violence is usually caused by an imbalance of power within a relationship. In a healthy relationship the power is shared and mutual trust and respect should prevail, meaning that neither partner should seek to gain control over the other for whatever reason. However, we don’t always live in an ideal world and unfortunately, due to a number of underlying factors, some people enjoy exercising control over another person – it makes them feel powerful.
Some relationships start off very well and everything is wonderful in the first throes of a romance, but when reality kicks in and things don’t always go to plan, tensions can build and hidden character traits may surface. To an unsuspecting partner this can be a huge shock and they might not want to believe bad of their partners and therefore excuses are made for bad and unacceptable behaviour…..and so a cycle of abuse begins.
What is emotional abuse?
Emotional abuse can come about gradually, so gradually that you are not even aware of it happening. An abusive partner can start off just offering help and advice in a ‘loving’ way, but yet most of what is said is deliberately designed to chip away at the other person’s self confidence. If a relationship is making a person feel depressed in any way then something is wrong. A loving and healthy relationship should be empowering and make one feel important and cherished, but all too often an abused partner slowly begins to feel useless, needy and jealous.
Abuse of this kind is insidious, creeping up on a person unawares and can often cause a person to question their own sanity. The emotionally abusive partner is clever, never allowing people outside of the relationship see their real nature, leading others to question why the abused partner is no longer the happy and confident person they once knew. The abuser also undermines their partner’s choice of friends and other family members in order to isolate them and cause further mental confusion.
Emotional abuse can take many years to recover from. Recognising it and realising its effects are the first steps to regaining confidence and putting one’s life back on the right track.
Scottish Charity No: SC037634