By Dr. Vijayalakshmi Damera, Psychology
Emotional abuse is subtle. People involved in it are often unaware of the act. Though there are no physical marks or injuries, still emotional abuse is more toxic and noxious than physical abuse. Emotional abuse can be in between husband-wife, parent-child, in between friends, in fact in between anyone irrespective of what relation binds them.
What is emotional abuse exactly?
Any pattern of behavior directed by an individual towards another which results in destruction of FOG- Fear, Obligation or Guilt is termed as emotional abuse.
Victims of emotional abuse are found to have very low self esteem and show changes in their personality like depressed, unhappy, lonely, anxious and suicidal. Marks of physical injuries heal with time but emotional injuries are cumulative.
Signs Reflecting Emotional Abuses:
• Favoritism: Favoritism is not only common at our home but is widely seen in schools and colleges and in fact in corporate world. If your boss prefers your female colleague over you, you are surely facing favoritism at your workplace.
• Emotional Blackmail: Emotional Blackmail is more than those threatening from parents in order to finish our homework on time. If you are being threatened by your colleague to complete his part of work in return of keeping quiet regarding some of your deeds, you are surely facing emotional blackmail.
• Cheating: Cheating is rampant. It is an act of sharing a romantic or intimate relationship with someone besides being committed to someone else. If your spouse or girlfriend/boyfriend is ditching you and moving out with someone else you are being cheated by him/her.
• Harassment: Harassment is a form of employee discrimination. It is an unwelcomed conduct that is based on race, color, region, sex (including pregnancy), national origin, age (40 or older), disability or genetic information. If someone keeps making fun of you or try to move forward with unwanted steps, you are facing harassment.
• Bullying: Teasing is a part of growing, but when it is used excessively, then results are not satisfactorily. It is an act of repeated verbal, physical, social and psychological behavior by a dominating person. Getting bullied by seniors in the college and hostel are some common ways of emotional abuse.