Wednesday, July 15, 2015

HANDLING ABUSIVE COMMENTS

Sometimes when you're on the receiving end of verbal abuse, you may not have a clue what to say to just get it to stop.  So you may find yourself becoming depressed, angry, bitter, fearful or even resigned as you continue to deal with the disrespectful behavior of being lied to, humiliated, cheated on, gaslighted, degraded or personally attacked. There's no doubt that this can be a nightmare to cope with. As difficult as it may be, the key is not to fall into the act of defending yourself, because it will almost never work, particularly with a narcissist.  

Dr. Irene gives some great feedback on what you may be feeling, as well as suggestions on what to say so you can make attempts to get off of the emotionally abusive roller-coaster.  As you look at her example below, I'm sure some of the language will sound very familiar. 

Also, it's important to remember that verbal abuse is considered domestic violence.  It's not cute, or amusing. Please know that help is available with your local shelter or someone you trust.


Getting Defensive

www.drirene.com


Rachael was preparing a special dinner tonight for Larry. Forever trying to please him, she had spent an hour at the market selecting the very freshest produce. She found a wonderful  bottle of Cabernet! Rachael was looking forward to dinner - when she heard a loud thud inside...
Larry smacked his magazine on the floor and bellowed, "Look at this house! It's disgusting! What do you do all day Rachael? Sleep? He pulled a small plastic child's toy from under the seat of His chair. It had been pinching him. "I work all day and I don't need this. You are home all day. You can't keep the house clean, you can't keep the kids quiet! You can't you do anything right! Do you do this to me on purpose?"
Rachael's mood broke. "Please don't do this now," she pleaded under her breath as Larry continued ranting. When he got in this mood, he accused her of all sorts of things she would never dream of doing. "How could he misunderstand me so?" she sadly thought as she began to defend herself - so he would understand
Larry and Rachael's Conversation
STOP! When you defend yourself, you put yourself in the position of justifying your actions to others. You seek understanding, agreement, empathy, recognition of what's really going on, etc. This is OK in an ordinary relationship. It's NOT OK in an abusive one:
bulletsince everything you say can and will be held against you
bulletsince defending yourself puts you in a one-down, where you are asking for approval, congruence, permission, etc.
bulletyour abuser is looking for a fight; not for understanding
bulletsince you are taking the "bait" and engaging in a "no-win"
Below find some non-defensive, disengaging responses to typical abusive comments. The abuser's objective is not to impart understanding. Your partner wants to provoke you. Your objective is to remain calm, disengage and avert provocation!  Engaging is a no-win!

"There's nothing to talk about." OK. (Think: My partner is withholding; nothing I can do about it. So be it.)
"I've had it; I'm leaving!"  OK. (Think: Here is the door. I don't want you here if you don't want to be here.)
"Why should I tell you? You won't listen anyway." OK. (Think: Let him/her think whatever they want; they will anyway.) 
"You're wrong!" OK. "What do you mean OK?" I mean OK. (Think: Who cares who is right or wrong!)
"I never said that." OK (Think: No point engaging. We both know the truth.)
"You're too sensitive." Yes. Respect my sensitivity. (Think: It's OK to be sensitive!)
"You're jumping to conclusions."Perhaps. (Think: It's OK to jump to conclusions.)
"You're not wearing that!"  OK.
"I've had it with your bitching and complaining." OK. (Think: So leave.)
"You can't take a joke." Yes. Please respect my lack of humor. (Think: OK to have no humor!)
"You always have to complain."Yes. (You have the right to.)
"You have excuses for everything." Sorry you feel that way.
These are simplistic answers intended to get you started. 

13 comments:

  1. Replies
    1. Hey There Kim and thanks for the kudos! Hope all is well in your world today! Hugs....

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  2. Replies
    1. Happy New Year Ms. Sophia and thanks so much for stopping by! I tried some of these and they really work. By the way, I gave you a kudos on my New Year's Message, Talk to you soon. Hugs...

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  3. Sounds good but if I keep getting berated, I'll just go nuclear and stop being nice. LOL

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    1. LOL! I hear you! Hugs...and Happy Saturday to you. Ro

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  4. I'm tired of feeling like I have to explain myself. I am put down daily and am just so low. It is hard to heal.

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    1. It's very frustrating to have to live with this type of situation. In fact, you should have the freedom of not having to explain anything you do. This is all part of controlling you. Hang in There. If you visit a domestic violence shelter, they will walk you through what you've experienced and offer help. I care, and hope you stay in touch. Hugs...RO

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  5. I'm tired of feeling like I have to explain myself. I am put down daily and am just so low. It is hard to heal.

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    1. You matter, your thoughts matter, your feelings matter. Please e-mail me, at your convenience. I care and want to help you. You deserve to be happy and appreciated! Hugs...RO

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    2. Thank you RO! I left! It has not been easy but I am starting the healing process. Thank you for responding and validation. I am not being verbally abused daily and I can breathe again.

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  6. After 6 years of abuse I have gone down to 95 pounds, started having uncontrollable tremors, have insomnia, PTSD, became severely depressed and am overweight. My body has been showing me just how bad the abuse was affecting me. He did not break my bones but what he said, over time, was slowly killing me. Thank you for letting me have a voice and responding with compassion.

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    1. That's a long time, and it pains me to know you had to suffer trough that instead of feeling loved and appreciated. I'm thrilled that you were able to safely leave that environment and are slowly getting your life back. Sometimes, it takes a lot of talking and validation, so I'm here to talk when you need to. Hugs...RO

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