The “Am I Abused Quiz”

National Domestic  Violence Hotline  800-799-SAFE (7233) 800-787-3224 (TTY)  http://thehotline.orgThe Am I Abused Quiz helps you recognize abuse in your relationship. Recognizing that your lover abuses you is the first step to ending it. Yet, sometimes the abuse is so subtle that you don’t realize you’re being abused. And sometimes the abuse has gone on so long you no longer recognize it as abuse. This quiz will help you gain a clearer picture of the problem in your relationship.

Answer the questions in this Am I Abused Quiz “in general.” Any person could have a bad day and act out in mean ways. But a person having a bad day will sincerely apologize as quickly as possible after it’s come to his or her attention that they hurt you. An abuser will apologize only if doing so will serve a selfish purpose. Some abusers never apologize but others give excuses for what they did, ignore what happened or deny that they behaved badly. Much of the time, an abuser will blame the victim for their own bad behavior.

Victims in abusive relationships wake up every morning wondering if the abuser will be nice that day. The abuser does not have bad days. Abuser’s have consistent bad behaviors. This Am I Abused Quiz can help you tell the difference between abuse and the occasional bad day.

Does the other person:

  • Embarrass you with put-downs (especially if you two are alone)? Talk nicely about you in front of other people, but cut you down in private, often about the things he compliments you about in public?
  • Look at you or act in ways that scare you?
  • Control what you do, where you go, or who you talk to? Forbid you from doing certain things or talking to certain people because of most any reason (a common reason is that you are cheating on him)? Do you have to check in with him whenever you’re apart? Does he become angry when you do not respond to his texts or calls? Does he insist he has people watching you so you had better behave yourself when he’s not around?
  • Stop you from seeing your family or friends? Cause you to feel embarrassed and uncomfortable when friends/family come to your home. You no longer want to invite people over due to your feelings of dread. Point out your friends’ flaws so that you’re uncomfortable asking them to come over because he hates them so much? Are you afraid to tell him you had a good time if he wasn’t there with you?
  • Blame you for every bad thing that happens to him, your family, or you? Do you think that maybe all the bad things he says about you might be true?
  • Insist on control over all the money? Make you ask for money? Insist loans stay only in his name or sabotage your credit with fraudulent accounts? Force you to declare bankruptcy on charges he’s made? Give you an allowance or a budget that cannot possibly cover the needs it is supposed to meet? Insist on you turning over your social security check?
  • List the therapies and/or medications you’ve used to deal with depression or anxiety to “prove” how you’re sick in the head? That your thinking cannot possibly be as clear as his because you’ve sought help from mental health professionals or medication?
  • Impress the neighbors, friends, and your family with his kindness or helpfulness leaving you to doubt your own perception of him? Act much differently in public than at home?
  • Make all the decisions? Tell you he considers you an equal partner but somehow ends up making the decisions anyway? Are you afraid of making a “wrong” decision for fear of his angry response but seem to make “wrong” decisions no matter what you do? Are you afraid to make any decisions for yourself or your children?
  • Proclaims that you are a bad parent or threatens to take the children away? List all the reasons why you couldn’t gain custody in a divorce, ignoring his own faults?
  • Prevent you from working or going to school? Stare at you or ask if something’s wrong every time you try to study or work at home? Make demands of you that lead to work absenteeism? Do you feel like you must put your dreams on hold?
  • Act like his abusive behavior is no big deal, your fault, or even deny doing it? Does he hit walls or destroy property but say abuse is wrong?
  • Destroy your property? Threaten to hurt or kill your pets?
  • Intimidate you with guns, knives, other weapons or even his presence? Do you feel you must do as he says or else suffer an emotional or physical consequence?
  • Physically assault you? Shove, slap, choke or hit you?
  • Force you to drop charges?
  • Threaten to commit suicide?
  • Threaten to kill you?

Here’s the Am I Abused Quiz shocker:

This "Am I Abused Quiz" helps you address the feeling that something is wrong in your relationship. It helps women & men recognize abuse in relationships.If you answered yes to even one of the above questions, your relationship shows signs of abuse and could be more abusive than you think.

Don’t dismiss it. Investigate it. Educate yourself about domestic violence and abuse. If your partner abuses you, you are not alone. There are agencies that you can call for help. Start with the National Domestic Violence Hotline or the Domestic Abuse Hotline for Men and Women.

Want to double-check? Look at this 16 question response strategy police use to determine if a domestic abuse victim is in imminent danger.

Note: Females are most likely to report domestic abuse and violence, so the abuser referred to in the Am I Abused Quiz is male. Women abuse men, too. Please do not hesitate to call for help if you are male. Men and women can find help by hotline workers and domestic violence agencies in your area.

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  1. My husband doesn’t do any of these except the one about making all the important decisions. And having been with an abuser in the past I realized a lot of the things were missing off that list. I wish I’d had this site when I was in my abusive relationship. I’m so glad to be where I am today.

  2. Anonymous says:

    I was Verbally, Mentally, Emotionally abused by Step-father. I was Sexually Abused for the first time at age 4 by my Mothers Brother whom was 14 at the time. Neither did my Grandmother nor Mother did nothing about it. My Parents Divorced when I wss 8yrs old and my Mother re-married to an alcoholic which Started to Verbally, Emotionally, Mentally abused me starting from the age of 9-16 yrs old. My Mother sent me off to live with her Parents and a yr later I meet a guy and my Mother let me get Married. I never had the support of my mother or father on anythi g they both were only concerned about them selves. I am on my 5th Marriage and every single husband was either an Alcoholic and Abuser. The husband that iam with now acts Identical to what my step-father did to me except my husband does not drink. After and still what my husband has and is putting me through I have turned to hate, resent and can not stand looking at my husband. I actually feel like uam living with the devil and it has been a fight for the past 7yrs. Iam finally at the end of my rope, Iam Disabled due to epilepsy and other illnesses and I believe it is all due to how my life hzs been. Iam reDy to leave but can not untill I have a place to go and cannot untill I find help with money to pay for a home plus I have 3 hihuahuas that I can not give u, they are like my own children and I would be crushed without them. I only get $711.00 a month and that is gone by a big carpayment, ins, and other bills I have to pay which by the end of the month I only have $100.00. Iam waiting on a housing app which they said the waiting list is 3yrs or better. I have to means like I said from family members to give me a temp home and cannot count on my own children, for they are messed up as well due to drug, my children they are 27 and 29, I call them children because they act like it. My Son and daughter as well treat me like crap so iam getting it all dire tions. Izm sick of life anymore feel czged in like a dog that is being abused by my owner, the only differdnce is on the outside u can not see the cuts od scars. Iam so sorry iam rambling on and boring some. I just feel like iam binded by heavy chains with no way of out. I just czn not pack up and leave for I will for surely end up homeless. I would most liksley be more happier alone and living in my car.

    • Love Doesn't have to Hurt "together we can end domestic violence" says:

      Anonymous, please find a good church. Join a support group for sexual abuse and domestic violence. Its not your fault and you are not alone. It’s agencies in your area that can help you.

      All the best,


  3. The unloved says:

    How do I classify the abuse u am enduring?
    I was abandoned and estranged thus being forced to live in the home where I grew up. There I am still told I am not wanted or loved even though I was adopted and told they wished they had never adopted me and that if it weren’t for them, where would I be. . Is it still domestic violence or domestic abuse if I am being abused by the homeowner whom I used to call dad?

    • You endured child abuse before entered adulthood, but because you are this horrible man’s child, it is still child abuse. HOWEVER, I believe that in the eyes of the law, it is domestic violence no matter what the relationship if you are over 18 or 21 in some states. So you can use your local domestic violence resources to leave the home and get started on a life free of abuse.

  4. gittel samet says:

    is there any way, how I can survive my abusive marriage? at this point, divorce is not an option. we are just staying in the house together, hes real sick, screams, yells, argues constantly, puts me down, shames me. but hes so sweet and kind outside of the house. I get physical sick, from all his constant rage. refuses to go for help. and makes our whole house cookoo. how can I stand up for myself? he is emotional, and financial, and spiritual abusive

  5. KerryMathies says:

    Someone please tell me why I am having so much trouble describing the abuse? I cannot explain in detail the reason I am afraid for myself and my kids…

    • Kerry, sometimes the abuse is so insidious that it is hard to put your finger on it. Every time you open your mouth to explain it, you feel it sounds ridiculous to complain about such a thing. The only thing you’re lacking is the vocabulary OF abuse. Start on Types of Verbal Abuse and you’ll learn the vocabulary you need to explain what’s happening to you.

      • KerryMathies says:

        Thank you; I am so scared of him- I left a message for the Captain at our police department after he is having his friends drive around the block. I said that I did not know how to explain it but he is escalating now that he knows the police are not watching and social services isn’t. He has not put a hand on me but has done things like slamming on the brakes over and over while I was pregnant because my daughter wouldn’t put her seat belt on. Or pins me into spots so I can’t get away. But when I go to explain why it started I can’t, I am not even sure what I did at the beginning. I found out that he sexually abused my daughter that was the last draw so we came to my moms to live (August). The police had little to go on so they couldn’t arrest- but he uses our 9 month old son to continue to the abuse. I contacted social services- endangerment calls, dropping our son and he refuses to take a drug test- no utilities… you name it, But when I am asked to describe whats happening I can’t. I met with legal aid for any help and the attorney read my restraining order denial and said that I was not describing just explaining… He drives around the block over and over when I don’t respond to calls, and stops in front of the house, the police say its not illegal. I keep reading your site with hopes that something will “click” and I can put into words why I feel so scared for us all. I keep thinking why on earth can I not explain- the things I have said out loud I look at the response and it was kinda like… “well whats wrong with what he said?” So I over explain and it ends up so overwhelming. I will keep looking for an attorney to help, I wrote to the DA, police and everyone you can imagine… people like neighbors that have heard whats happened or know of him as a serious threat (small town) don’t speak up- I am doing it on my own & really isn’t working all that well. He is a smooth talker and have explanations for everything, even talked his way out of an elder abuse case. I really wonder if he actually knows what he is doing is so abusive- I will check on the link you gave me and will sign up for a mentor. I am so happy I found your site.

  6. He sounds like a stalker as well

    • KerryMathies says:

      How do you get the police to realize a problem exists? They have told me not to call anymore that what he is doing isn’t illegal…

      • Unless he physically attacks you, what he does is not illegal. By and large, even when the abuser does physically attack you, the police are worthless (depending on where you live). Kerry, you cannot wait for a knight in shining armor to relieve you of your abuser. This is something you must do yourself.

        The police only enforce the law. It’s not that they don’t see the problem or know that the problem can escalate. It’s simply that they cannot enforce a law that has not been written. The police are not your way out.

        Call the domestic violence agencies local to you. Find out how to get into a shelter or temporary housing. Ask if you have to press charges for physical assault to qualify for those programs. Ask what the agency can do for you before you leave and ask if there are services available after you’re out. Use the information they give you to plan your escape, YOUR ESCAPE as it is no one else’s decision to make.

        Right now, waiting on “someone else” to “do the right thing” is pointless. You must do the right thing for yourself.

        And if he turns physically violent, call the police.

  7. KerryMathies says:

    Thank you for your help and your advice. I am on my way to helping us thanks to your site and helping me put things into words and perspective- this is more difficult than I ever imagined.

    • You’re doing the right thing. If he continues to stalk you move as far away as possible and do not let him know where you are. It seems to me that he can’t take “NO” for an answer because he must have control and he’s loosing it so he’s getting pissed off. You are the only one who can protect yourself and your children.

  8. My boyfriend of 2 yrs now is so verbally abusive and sometimes it gets physical between the both of us. We are 10 yrs apart in age and he thinks he runs everything and knows everyyything. He calls me stupid and tells me that I don’t know anything and his favorite word to call me is the B word I hate it when he calls me that name and he knows it. But when I ask him to stop calling me names he says it repeatedly just to make me feel hurt. He tells me I can’t handle my money thats why he doesn’t give me any and not to ask him for any.He’s said many times that he’ll kill me in the heat of him being angry at me, he makes me feel as if I owe him something because I’ve threatened to leave plenty of times and he always says, ” Pay me back all the thousands I have spent on you then b$**h”. . He just got surgery on his knees two days ago and he’s in so much pain still. I say still because he’s had a problem with his knees since a little before I met him. When we first started dating he never talked to me with disrespect or made me ever once feel sad…he tells me to get out of his f-ing house everytime he gets mad at me knowing that I don’t know anyone in this city. He talks bad about all of the few friends I do/did have, they don’t even like him now because he talks so much crap to them. He tells me not to talk to them So I really dont have Friends now….he knows he’s mean to me he admits that hes wrong and he uses his pain from his knee as an excuse to try and justify his actions towards me saying, “I’m sorry I just am just in so much pain, my knee is driving me crazy I promise I’m not this person when I have two functioning knees, I try not to b mean to you but the pain gets the best of me and you dont make it any better, you never know how to shut up!” ” If you don’t like me after my surgery and after I’m healed you can leave I won’t try and stop you.” I don’t feel like I’m any better than him sometimes because I feel as if I let him get the best of me when he hits me and I hit him back or if he calls me names and I say them right back to him. I just tell myself that I’m not going to let him put me down or hit me and me not do/say anything back, I will put up a fight right back to let him know that I am not the one to act defenseless, but it is starting to drain me im getting so tired of the disrespect! Like yesterday and today had been horrible between us, today he literally started calling me names because I didn’t bring him the specific candy he wanted from out of the store and I looked everywhere I could for that candy! He called me a dumb b and that I’m Stupid because he buys that candy ask the time he knows it was in there and I just couldn’t take it I started yelling back at him like crazy. He started telling me that I am a fat b and that ill never do anything with my life and that I’m a slut thats all I am and I told him that I dont wanna be with him anymore and I cant take him being abusive so we haven’t been talking for like 5 hrs today… I just need some advise, we have to move out of our house because the lease is up and we’re looking for new places to go, but I feel like it wont be best for us to move into another place together I am just tired of the negative blowouts. Then again I feel bad that he really doesnt have no one to help him out and be there with him like I have especially now that he is trying to heal from his surgery, he could barely move around. Even though it may sound bad I feel as though this may b the best time for me to part ways from him because he can’t get too physical with me or anything like that but it’s so hard for me in a way to just leave him because I still love him. Being with him for two yr I’ve seen a great person and I still see that he has a good heart but he also has another part of him that makes me feel uncomfortable being around. I just don’t know what to do about getting this apt with him or not I don’t want to feel like I’m leaving him at the time he needs me most it gives me crazy rollercoaster emotions…

  9. I have been with my husband for 25 years. Verbal and emotional abuse is a tormenting reality. Initially I was naïve to his outburst of anger and thought things will get better ( it never does). Suddenly something will spark his anger when we were younger and he would destroy whatever was in front of him be it TV’s , furniture and car windscreens. The reasoning behind these actions was my fault. I cause him to behave in such a manner. Me being the subservient and dutiful wife began to believe I was useless and weak. I was told how to dress, what to say , where to go , how to behave amongst people . Worst of all I was constantly questioned about my job and had a curfew . The last 14 years was a major emotional rollercoaster. After the birth of my children , I had to become “Superwomen”. I had to juggle motherhood , a career and the verbal insults became worse. Everyday I had to walk on egg shells . Scared to say ” the wrong thing or do the wrong thing”. Dinner needs to be cooked and ready by the time he walks through the door ( it always is ) or else all hell breaks loose. If I cry I am told I’m weak and immature at my age ..A few years ago things got really tough. He agreed to seek professional help where the psychologist diagnosed him as a narccisistic . I moved out and promised to be ” Behave” .For a year or so apart still dutiful cooked and cleaned the family home daily and still worked , things were better. For the sake of the children and culture wise , I decided not to divorce and return to the family home. The picture perfect image portrayed to the world is a ” Happy” family who live on the hill , in a nice house with dogs and cars , is a fallacy. Presently things are back to square 1 . My life is in ruins. I have myself to blame . Friends or family are never supportive or are scared to help.

    • Anu, I feel you & completely understand how you feel. The culture thing is the problem for many women….the stigma associated w divorce is so problematic, yet I bet many of those who shame divorce are often in miserable marriage themselves….just stay strong (:

  10. I appreciate this very much because people need to realize that verbal/emotional abuse IS abuse…it is real, and it hurts.

    I am now 31 years old. I’ve been married almost 7 years to a wonderful man; we have no children.
    I credit him with rescuing me from a toxic environment where I felt unloved and unwanted. I would probably have killed myself by now if I hadn’t met him.

    So here is my story…I will try to make it short if possible. I’ve always been bullied and mistreated by others in general throughout my life. My mother was sometimes verbally abusive to me as a child but I think this was because she had no one to help her raise me. When I was about 13 or 14, she met my stepfather. I still consider that to be the day my life changed for the worst.

    From the age of 14 until almost 23, my life was filled with severe verbal and emotional abuse on a daily basis. My stepfather made it clear that he didn’t want me around. Being a teenager at the time, I was no angel but I was not a bad kid.
    He would belittle me constantly. He would call me lazy and stupid. He would say that I had an “attitude” despite the fact that I was a shy, quiet young girl. He accused me of having sex with multiple boys under his roof. He threatened to hit me but I would fight back so he knew better than to try that.
    He never sexually abused me but he often said inappropriate things and looked at me in ways that made me uncomfortable.

    He humiliated me in front of friends or boyfriends I had, to the point where I became even more socially awkward.
    He viewed me as a problem no matter what. He called me lazy and told other people that I was lazy…they believed him without knowing the truth. So I worked harder in school. I tried to find jobs. I would spend hours doing chores at home. But it seemed the more I tried to win his approval, the worse he treated me.

    There were many miserable years of fighting, screaming and shouting. Sometimes he was verbally abusive to my mother as well.
    My mother did very little about my stepfather’s treatment of me. She knew it was wrong but she blamed me, saying that I needed to “toe the line” and “stay out of his way”. To me, there is a serious problem when a person allows their only child to be treated this way…it made me feel unloved, as if I were a mistake for even being born.

    It is sad when a kid has to hide in his or her room and be fearful in their home. A home should be safe, happy and comfortable. I became a very angry, depressed individual. I had a boyfriend at the time who was verbally/emotionally abusive just like my stepfather. I wound up doing things I was ashamed of because my self-esteem was completely destroyed. I have a severe learning disability and people took advantage of me because of this.
    It was a terrible time. My dreams were shattered…I was once full of hope about the future; I turned into an emotional wreck who made bad decisions.

    I met my husband at 23 and married at 24. He is thirteen years older than me, but has never abused me in any way. Meeting him showed me that I deserve love and happiness in my life…he is the first man to ever really make me see that I should be cherished instead of mistreated.
    My relationship with my mother and stepfather improved for a while. It seemed like for the first time ever, we would actually be something like a family. Things were pretty good for a few years…at least 5 years. There was peace and tranquility unlike the violence and chaos I’d grown used to.

    This year my mother and stepfather decided to sell the home I grew up in, and move to a new community about 30 miles from their old neighborhood.
    My mother has started being verbally abusive again now that she has moved into this new home. I don’t feel comfortable visiting anymore because it is starting to remind me of how things were in the past. Unfortunately, I still have to depend on my mother’s help with doing my hair because I’m unable to do it myself so I have to make the weekly trip. Just to give a few examples of what I mean…

    my stepfather is the type to have violent or angry outbursts over little things. I’m talking about stuff that wouldn’t bother most people; he overreacts and makes a scene. My mother, whom I suspect is abused by him in her own way, refuses to acknowledge that there is a problem with her husband. She is defensive and blames me, as well as other people, for his issues. In her world it is more important to “stand by your man” than to face reality.

    I often feel that my husband is the only person I can turn to. The rest of my family, with a few exceptions, doesn’t give a damn about me. My husband is the one I can talk to and share my pain with.
    I am still struggling with depression, shame, low self-esteem. I often consider suicide and have trouble letting go of things. I’m still stuck in the past in many ways. My mother moving has triggered all of the bad feelings again. In the last few years I’ve gained 60 pounds, find myself sleeping too much (due to self-medicating with pills) or hardly sleeping at all (this is mostly the case). I’ve given up on therapy because it hasn’t helped. I still can’t find a job. I lost a loved one this year, a person who stood by me when my stepfather was at his worst. She was a kind lady who cared about me and she died after a long battle with cancer. My stepfather lost his mother this year also, and although I am being compassionate towards him, it still doesn’t resolve my pain.

    Anyway, this is my story…I just wanted to share. Sorry about it being so long. I just wanted to show that verbal abuse can leave deep scars for a long time. I feel like I was starting to make some progress and now I’m having setbacks.

    • Ah! You must visit your mother because she does your hair. Therefore, distancing yourself from her seems difficult. MB, do you know someone else you could ask to do your hair? Perhaps a local community college could point you in the direction of a cosmetology program in which the students do your hair for free.

      Triggers suck. There’s no other way to put it. HOWEVER, look to the bright side of it: You know you are being triggered! Imagine how badly you would feel if you did not understand the triggering concept. When I’m triggered, I let the feelings flow out in private. Or sometimes with my fiance depending on how much stress I think HE is under already. I prefer to do it in private. Anyway, I let the triggered feelings out to express themselves while knowing I’m expressing a piece of my past. Each time I’m triggered and deal with the pain of it like this, the trigger’s strength lessens.

      What could you do to lessen the strength of your triggers?

      • Thanks for your kind words, Kellie Jo.

        About my hair…I am of mixed race and very few people seem willing or able to work with my hair. It is just too different for most folks, I guess. I never really learned how to take care of it on my own. I have chemically straightened (relaxed) hair that is prone to being very dry and it can be easily damaged if I’m not careful. I wash my hair on a weekly basis and then my mother roller-sets it and does all the rest. I’ve tried to set my own hair in the past but can’t do it and have no one to show me how.
        I would try the beauty school suggestion but I’m afraid of some inexperienced person who doesn’t know much about hair like mine, possibly damaging it.

        I don’t want to distance myself from my mother because I adore her. I know I’ve probably made it seem otherwise, but I really do love my mom.
        I just can’t stand how defensive she is about my stepfather. Maybe it’s because she loves him, but I also think she allows herself to be treated like a doormat. And she is in denial about how all of this has affected me…still continues to affect me even as an adult who has tried to seek therapy.

        As I said before, my stepfather has a history of violent outbursts. It doesn’t take much to set him off. It was terrifying when I was growing up because I never knew when he would suddenly explode.
        My mother is only too aware of this but her motto is “toe the line”. She caters to his every whim and although she is independent in many ways, she seems afraid of him sometimes. She won’t make ANY decisions without pretty much asking his permission first. She is borderline OCD about keeping the house perfectly neat and tidy because he will freak out if anything at all seems out of place. If I’m having a conversation with her at any time, no matter how neutral or innocent the subject may be, she will tell me to hush if he is anywhere around.
        That is how bad it is…I can’t even sit and talk to my own mother because she is afraid of this controlling jerk. It makes me angry that I can’t have a normal, happy family relationship.

        You asked what I can do to lessen the strength of my triggers? That’s a good question. I’m not sure there is anything much I can do. I simply shut down and feel a series of emotions…anger, sadness, despair, hopelessness.

    • Oh – setbacks are normal! I like to think of them as reminders to consciously heal myself (only I can heal me). I’m experiencing a setback right now due to stress triggers. I realize that I haven’t worked on healing myself in a while. I will get back to finding ways to love me straightaway.

  11. By the way…is it normal to miss the home I grew up in, even though there was a lot of fighting and abuse? I miss the house itself because it was a very charming place and I loved looking up at the stars at night. I was able to push the bad memories aside for a while, but I can’t accept the fact that my mother has moved into a new home and has returned to treating me somewhat badly again because of her husband’s issues.

    • Sure, MB, it is normal for you to miss chunks of your childhood or any other aspect of life now gone. Abuse doesn’t and cannot taint everything forever.

      I’m sorry your mother digressed. It doesn’t really matter why she digressed, only that her behavior hurts you now. Keep some distance to protect your sanity.

      • Thanks for your response. My mother can’t understand why I miss the old house so much…she thought I hated the house.

        The truth is, I loved it. It had so much old-fashioned charm. The stars in the deep velvet sky, the cats that would play outside, the bird feeder in the backyard…there was much to love about that house.
        My problem when I lived with my mother and stepfather was never with the house itself; it was the way my stepfather treated me. But my mother never could see that. I was viewed as the problem. I had no choice but to leave.

        She has never really been sensitive to my feelings about anything, though. I’m trying to be happy for her because she seems to like her new home but like I said, this negative vibe has returned. We can’t talk or laugh when her husband is around. I have to watch my every move. It wears a person down after a while.
        Imagine wanting to talk with somebody and they are putting their finger up telling you to hush, because they are afraid their controlling partner is listening…even if you aren’t talking about them? Or feeling that you have to be obsessively neat while around them because they will attack you over little things like a drop of water on the floor?

        All I can say is that at least my husband doesn’t treat me that way.

  12. that is so sad! i dont know what to say. what can i do to help you?

    • Hi Me 🙂 You asked the perfect question: “What can I do to help you?” When I was by abuser’s victim, I did not know how to answer that question for a very long time. I didn’t know what I wanted to do, so I couldn’t say how anyone could help me. However, that question alone causes us (victims) to think of ourselves for one moment and acknowledge that we DO exist for someone. Living in abuse makes us forget we are separate from the abuser and his/her words and action. We feel “filled up” with THEM and lose ourselves.

      So thank you for asking that question. I hope it makes some think hard about what they need right now.

  13. Anonymous says:

    I wish I had seen this when I was young. I’ve been physically, verbally and mentally abused since I was 4 years old by my mother, and verbally and mentally abused by my father and my brother (who was taught how by my mother). It was only 40 years later that I am finally seeking help and counselling. Being told that you are the fault for your entire family’s miserable existence growing up in abuse. Being called names is abuse. Trying to control you is abuse. Yelling at you just for walking through the door is abuse. Realizing that the reason you aren’t married is not because of you, but because of your finances (3), HATE your family because they are so abusive and even if you do get married, you really don’t want to invite any of your family. sign. So many signs I never saw. I wish I saw this sooner but I am very glad I’m on the right path now. Bless you all for posting and to whomever created this site.

  14. Okay, I hate to be THAT person, but I really dislike the fact that you used male pronouns instead of a more ambiguous term. (They, it, ect.) It seems that there’s this idea that only men abuse women, and it’s never the other way around. Women abuse people too, even in relationships like this. In fact, this idea is so strongly put into society, that a woman can be just as hurtful to a man and say that it’s one sided, and she automatically gets custody of children, if any of course. Men are victims too. When I was growing up, my mom physically, verbally, emotionally, and sexually abused me on a daily basis. Me, a BOY. My mom would start fights with my dad, but when the police came she said that it was my DAD who had started it. She would play innocent and pretend that she’d never hurt him, even when he showed his marks. In fact, I remember once a police came to the house and laughed at him and called him a liar. And they believed her JUST because she’s a woman. Because SHE was the VICTIM.

    She lied and made HIM the antagonist. She cried and used her own insults and said it was my dad who made them up. She said that HE was the one sexually abusing me, he was the one who… let’s see: Broke three of my ribs, gave me internal bleeding, three separate concussions, several black eyes, bruises on my inner thighs, burnt, tore, and bruised my genitalia. cut my nails to the point of bleeding, burnt my hands and feet in boiling water, stuck pins into my nipples, left bite marks on my nipples, beat me to the point of delirium, locked me in a dark room for days on end, raped me several times, put me in a pain induced coma.

    That HE had raped her, hit her, bit her, called her names, said she was worthless, and restricted her from going where she wanted. And suddenly HE was the one being fined for abuse. SHE was the one who had done all of this fucking damage.

    She blamed HIM for my depression, anxiety, and the onset of my borderline personality disorder. And they believed her, just because she’s a woman. But she wasn’t a woman she was a fucking demon from hell. In fact, she was closer to being Satan than a demon. She put on her little ‘polite as a priest’ smile and told absolute lies. She’d convinced them of enough horrible acts to send him to jail, and the only reason that he didn’t was because we both cried and and begged them to listen to the truth. But I STILL got put into her custody because of the web of lies that she had spun for herself. She was a despicable human being, and I hope she rots in hell where she belongs.

    She had absolutely NO PUNISHMENT. That fucking deceptive bitch. After that, she kept on abusing me for YEARS. I remember once I called my dad while I was hiding in the closet because I was so scared. I told him how she was coming in to beat me, and most likely molest me again. He came over immediately and broke down the door because it was locked, then ran up there and carried out a barely conscious eleven-year-old and brought me back to safety in his house where he called 911. That’s how bad my injuries were. I was barely breathing. Then the next day, he called the police to report the abuse for the FOURTH TIME, and they had a conference with him and my mother.

    She accused him of calling me on the phone, threatening me, breaking into the house, beating me, and then carrying me away to his house. She put on her best fake crying (Fake as fuck) and they believed her. They were going to charge my father with breaking and entering, child abuse, and child abduction, but luckily my mother over looked one detail! The phone call that I made to my dad?! RECORDED! THEN They finally believed us and she went to jail where she’ll rot for the rest of her life! Mwuahahaha! Got what she fucking deserved.

    But it wasn’t just me who had experienced this trauma, my father had also gone from a happy-go-lucky and cheerful person to a guy who was afraid to talk. He went to therapy for a long time to deal with his emotional problems caused by all of this, but he said that the only thing that could help him was if I got better because I was the only good thing he got out of the relationship.

    Anyways, (kinda trailed off, there) There are tons of other cases like this were lies are told and crying is faked among women. The point is that women can be evil too, women abuse people too, and not just children, often times it can be a spouse or even a family member. More people need to be aware that both sides of a relationship can be abusive, yeah? And yes, I realize that women are more often the victims, but men are victims too. Just saying.

  15. My wife all the time talking negative she talk about how her life rubbish I do every thing for her she a lot of time asking me do this for me I also doing shopping just every things she got mental health problems she also got a lot supports from doctor for her mental health, she doesn’t go out any where without me. also we have two children which is I am the mean career for the kids recently I move to refuge and I filled some paper at the refuge then they told me I have been verbal and emotional abused at very high score. when I was at refuge with two children my wife was heart broken crying to come back I was feeling so guilty leave her like that then I came home social services didn’t want me go back to my wife I just don’t know how long more I can take this hard live which I have been doing this for more than 10 years I just don’t know which way to go I am thinking to leave my wife and take the children social,and all family support worker they on my site to leave for the children one of the child got adhd.


    • It sounds like you’ve been taking care of the children on your own anyway, so living with you and not their mother won’t be much of a change for them. It is possible that after you leave, your wife could take responsibility for her ill treatment of you. But so long as you stay, she will continue to abuse.

      Prepare for her to cry and make all kinds of promises and excuses for her behavior – she doesn’t want you to go because she doesn’t know how to cope with life without having someone to “take it out on” every day. She needs to learn how to cope without abusing anyone else, but she can’t do that if you are with her.

  16. I grew up neglected and abused by my mom she also made me feel very insignificant. Like nothing I did was important. She w as very verbally and emotional ly abusive I even had friends that told me they didn’t like the way she treated me. My whole life shes been abusive putting me down calling me names and blsming me for alot of things im grown up now and have alot of emotional problems and low self-esteem because of this ive also attracted abusive men my whole life. The latest one is very abusive hes an alcoholic and a rage aholic I feel like im trapped here no car no job and very little money he tells me im stupid and worthless all the c time and sometimes while yelling at the top of his lungs hell slam the door so loud im surprised the window s havenot broken I wish I had the money to leave I know he will never change

  17. Desprate Mom says:

    What do you do when its a child who is the abuser? I left my ex-husband when I was pregnant with my son. Living in constant fear of verbal, emotional and physical abuse everyday. My daughter at that time was three yrs old. I realized we both were living with the fear upon waking each morning ” what kind of mood will he be in today”. Under doctor’s orders to leave home or possibility of losing my son. It was a very long scary lonely road. Having to move 2000 miles away from any family due to the constant death threats from my ex-husband, but we made it. Only to find myself in the same place 16 yrs later. My son was born with frontal lobe disorder. He was a wonderful happy baby. At age 2 he started showing signs of anger and aggression. Within his first 7 years of his life he was treated for depression, epilepsy, ADHD and hallucinations. Its wasn’t till he was 8 yrs old that he was diagnosed with FLD. Long story short I have a son who has many disabilities. He can be the most kind, generous, fun loving young man, but as easy as flipping a light switch he becomes angry, aggressive, and out of control. I find myself along with my 20 yr old daughter reliving our past. Each and every minute worried about how my son will react. Only one time has he been physical. It was after I had knee replacement surgery and I was knocked down and busted my lip. I stepped between my children to stop and argument over a dvd player. He pushed me and due to no balance I fell. Of course he was extremely sorry and started crying. This last year has been very hard with outbursts daily everything is his way, He must control everything tv food who comes into the house. Not that I have a social life anymore and my daughters is almost as bad as me. If he doesn’t get his way he says things that he knows will hurt us mostly me. Or will threaten and sometimes breaks our belongings. just recently has said he will kill me if I have him removed from the the house
    ex: jail or hospital. I feel responsible for my child and want to help him. We have done counseling since he was 4 yrs old. at the age of 15 he refused to go anymore. ( long story behind that justified feeling of betrayal) I did manage to have the school bring a counselor in an seemed to help a little. Then they changed counselors and he refused to talk anymore. I’m afraid of what will happen to my son when I’m no longer alive. His future brings me a great burden feelings of failure as a parent. But now my life isn’t much of a life anymore. Being physical disabled myself I’m stuck at home most of the time and dread almost each passing minute of it. How do you escape the abuser when you are responsible for them. Please help a desperate mom.

    • Desperate Mom, I feel for you. Oh my goodness, I don’t know where to start.

      Do you have a mental health counselor? If you can get one through disability, I recommend you do that as soon as possible. The counselor would be only for you.

      The last age for your son you mentioned was 15, but it sounds like he is older now. How much older?

      I recommend you try our mentoring service. It is free and all you have to do is fill out the form on this page:

      My oldest son gave me similar problems at about 15-17. It was hard to believe he did and said those hurtful things on purpose, and I wanted to be responsible for him – to fix him since I am his mother. But, I had to be tough and stop tolerating the behaviors that hurt me. I made him responsible for what he said and did. He was too old to punish effectively in the old ways, but I found new ways of withdrawing myself from him when he had an outburst. In time, he came to me to apologize, and in a little more time, he stopped that behavior.

      Your son is mentally disordered, but I think NON-verbal reactions are the way to go. No, don’t hit him, push, etc., but don’t react to his abuse as you usually do. That may be hard, especially if you have PTSD, but regardless, the verbal abuse pages on this site recommend ways to react to verbal abuse. They start here: You’ll see the types of abuse on the LEFT. Each type of abuse page suggests a way to react. Sometimes the best thing to do is walk away; sometimes there are more empowering reactions.

      Please try the mentoring program. You need an ally.

      • Desprate Mom says:

        Thank you Kellie Jo for responding so quickly. Yes my son is older by one year. He is now 16 yrs old 6ft and 230lbs. I do exactly as you suggest I never lay hands on him. I have always found Non-verbal response more effective since he was very young age. I agree to making him responsible for actions, That is the most difficult thing to accomplish. Because now he will destroy mine or my daughters personal property. He controls the household. I’m definitely going to looking into the mentoring program. Several times in the past I have tried to find a mentor and tried to get BBBS to help. But do to his mental conditions they would not place him. I truly believe if he could have a role model and man to look up to he would learn how to respond appropriately to difficult situations feelings. I wish I could get him to agree to counseling. Because of bad history with mental health workers breaking privacy rules and causing great turmoil in our family there is no trust. He feels they just want to put him in a hospital. I have asked the schools for help in the past that puts us in the court system and they want to put him in jail. That is not the place for him. He is not a criminal or juvenile delinquent. He does not run the streets or commit crimes. I truly feel he needs to want to change and get better in order for someone can help him. I grateful for your suggestions it is giving me hope again. a plan of action and resources to look to for help.

        Thanks again,
        Feeling Empowered in Texas

  18. I’m 18 and pregnant, and i am being verbally abused by my step father. My mother is highly aware of this and continues to let it happen, and yells and cusses at me claiming “Your causing problems in my marriage.” I have absolutely no where to live if i leave this household and no job. I am a single mother and the father is long gone, what should i do?

    • Jonie, the best thing you can do is talk to domestic violence services in your area. You can find them by visiting and/or calling 1-800-799-7233. Also, the next time you have a pre-natal appointment, tell your doctor what is happening at home. You can begin building a support system by speaking up; it is important you find support to ease the stress, even if the only support you have is a volunteer on a crisis line.

      I’m sorry this is happening to you.

  19. Anonymous says:

    Hi I have a question for kellie Jo holly
    I have read your blogs and things that you say connect with me. I’m glad I found you.
    I have been with my husband for 14 yrs . I just recently have seen him at his worst we had some unexpected stress happen and he verbally attacked me and raged at me . The stress was not released for a couple of months so it was a roller coaster ride . Now that things are better he is back to normal . I have had him make me
    Feel bad before and go into a rage but they where spaced out. I guess my question is if there is large spaces between them is it abuse and I forget alot of what has happened in the past I just remeber feeling sad is that also normal to forget things from the past?

    • When he verbally attacked you and raged at you, that was abuse. The times between attacks are tension building and honeymoon periods. Since he has done this before, you have a pattern of abuse in your marriage.

      So far as the memory lapses, your brain wants to protect you from pain. It blocks out the things that hurt, emotionally or physically. I blocked out a physical assault and didn’t remember it until I found an old journal where I’d mentioned it.

      Your next question is probably, “Can I make it stop?” or “Can he change?” You can’t make it stop because you can’t control what your husband does or says. He might be able to change. Patricia Evans wrote The Verbally Abusive Man: Can He Change? and it would be the perfect book for you to start with as you come out of the fog.

  20. Anoymous says:

    I just found out my family is physically, domestically, emotionally, verbally, mentally, Spiritually,
    financially, and digitally abused. Also we are neglected,stalked, and family violence. It is me, my sister, mom, and brother, who are abused by my dad. Is this a big deal? Should i call someone about this?

    • Anoymous says:

      Me again! Fyi, my parents are divorced. My dad has made my mom bleed. Also we have spent about $120,000 because he take my mom back to court about every 2 months. He makes $200,00 and only gives us about $25,000, when my mom spends half time with us. And my mom has to support us at our dads to, and he keeps that $175,000 to himself and only buys us food, and some medical care.

  21. Hello,
    I am fifteen years old. Today my dad was trying to fix something and told me to stand right next to him to assist him until he was finished. He was gone for a while and I saw my grandma who was bending down doing something at my house. He was not there and did not look in need of my assistance at the moment so I went over to my grandma to help her out as she is old and if I tell her not to do housework she will just ignore me. I so I helped her out instead. My dad became furious that I helped her instead and starting yelling at everyone. When all my relatives left, he began yelling at my hitting my head repeatedly. That’s when I declared, “LEAVE ME ALONE!” I walked out the door. He grabbed my arm and hit me on the head again. I YELLED, “LEAVE ME THE F*CK ALONE.” He took my arm and threw me on the couch and repeatedly began hitting me on the head and on the arm. My damn siblings just stood there watching it like an entertaining movie. He took a ruler and hit me on the head many times. I want to run away or suicide. I don’t know what to do. I’m extremely ANGRY. I am not the first person in my family he has physically hurt. He says stop acting like you’re a victim. Am I a victim? I really can’t tell anymore. He is a good dad usually but sometimes he has his violent breakouts. Advice please?

    • When you’re being physically abused and can’t tell if you’re the victim or not, you definitely are the victim. The violent outbreaks are abusive and you are currently his victim. Your siblings are stuck between wanting to help you and saving themselves the same pain.

      Call your relatives and tell them what your father is doing. Tell your school counselor, too, as soon as school starts. Also call the National Domestic Violence Hotline ( and tell them what you’re going through. Child abuse is always domestic violence.

  22. While I was reading this all I could think of was my dad.

  23. When I was younger, I loved my brother and looked up to him. I never understood what I was doing. He would always say that I was doing things wrong and he blamed everything on me. For some reason, even though I knew this was wrong, I started to believe him and think that he was write and that he was the good person. All I wanted was his acceptance, but I never got it. One night my dad and I were at a restaurant after my guitar lesson and my brother was there. I haven’t seen him in a while because he joined the army, got out,moved to Connecticut, and then went to jail for 8 months. But he was back and my dad and him were talking and he brought up the time he was in jail. He got real mad real quick and was trying to blame everything on my dad. I walked in on them coming back from my guitar lesson screaming at each other. The guy at the bar told them to stop or we had to leave. When he saw me he wasn’t yelling at my dad he was yelling at me. In his eyes i was a disrespectful, immature, stupid, useless child. Disrespectful was the thing he said to me all of the time and I just broke down the moment he said it. This disaster happened about 2 and a half years ago but its the only thing I think about. Everything thing I do I am reminded of that moment. Since then I have made pretty bad choices at picking relationships but for some reason I can’t get out of them. It’s like my brain is stopping me.

  24. Anonymous says:

    I’m a little girl and I think my dad is mentally abusing me he always yells at me in the car when someone cuts him off and he calls me a brat and a fucking bitch and he calls my brother stupid and u hate him and I have ocd and add which j think the emotional abuse did plz help

  25. I am just a little girl I am only 11 years old and I think my dad is emotionally abusing me he always yells at me for things that happened on the road in traffic and people Cutting him off he calls me a motherfucking bitch and he called me a brat and he used to call my brother stupid before my brother stop seeing him but I’m too young to say I don’t want to see him anymore I have been making lists and trying to get him put in jail for emotional abuse so I won’t never have to ever see him again I hope that can happen but first I need someone to tell me if he actually is emotionally abusing me thank you please help me

  26. Avery R.M says:

    Hello I’m 11 and I seriously need help my dad is mean to me and I’m trying to get proof of mental abuse so we can some how put him in jail or something but he has pinched my but cheek before as I walked passed him and he has called me a brat and a mother fucking bitch and he has called my brother stupid and he yells at me for no reason and he get mad at me for things that happen to him that make him mad and I need to know if that is abuse plz reply as soon as u can I have to see him again soon and I can’t take this pain no more

  27. Hi I am a 17 year old girl and a senior in high school. I have a 16 year old younger brother who might verbally abuse me but I’m not sure. He constantly tells me that i am “stupid” or “fat” or “ugly” but he says it in a very lighthearted joking kind of way and when my parents tell him to stop he says he was just joking. He also has no regard for other peoples feelings whatsoever. I don’t know how to explain it he’s not apathetic he just doesn’t think about what anyone else wants or feels. Also he seems to enjoy getting me and my mom irrationally angry. He will make me so mad that I get to a breaking point and scream at him but he just laughs and says calm down or your crazy. but sometimes he gets angry back? He does not do any chores or help my mom out at all in the house. he just throws his clothes on the floor in the kitchen and my mom has asked him for years to stop and he never does (this is an example of him not caring about anyone else because my mom is 55 and its getting harder and harder for her to clean and pick things up due to arthritis but he doesn’t care.) I dont really know if its verbal abuse and it probabaly isnt becuase i could just be making a bigger deal out of it than it is and using him as a scapegoat for my problems. please give an honest opinion on whethere or not you think this is verbal/emotional abuse.
    p.s. he does the same things to my mo so i think if it is verbal abuse its both of us

  28. Hi. My name is Kiari as of right now I am 13 years old. When I was 2 I had been adopted by my grandmother because my parents were drug attics and did not take care of me. So I have basically lived with my grandma for about 11 years and she takes care of me, she is practically my mom so I call her mom, but anyway I have an aunt who is my grandmas daughter who l live with and I think she might be abusing me not physically but mentally and emotionally, but she has hit me twice once because I wasnt listening and she hit me so hard it left a big black a brown scar that when I told her, but she claimed it was just dirt because im dirty, and another time because I had been texting a guy friend. But as I was saying I recently moved to Georgia and the house that I live in now is my aunts house she bought it but since her mom lives with her which is my grandma she has to pay rent, but anyway since my grandma is my legal guardian she has control over me right? When I always complaining about my aunt, I complain to my friends who said its starting to sound like she is mentally abusing me. so I decided to look into it. My aunt is very rude first of all she says that whenever I want to do something or go somewhere I have to ask her but she isnt even my mom so I ask my mom, she basically tries to control me by stepping out of her place. secondly I have ODD and ADHD so of course im always hyper so its kinda hard to stay focused on the task at hand, and i dont always listen.recently I missed the bus and my aunt gave me the punishment of having to wear a school uniform from my old school at thus ti.e o was in 6th grade and the uniform was from fifth and the new school i went to was a no uniform school. The uniform already didnt fit so it would be extremely tight and some kids would make fun of me at school because of them and how i looked in them. After she started to take more things away such as a laptop I had saved up for it was 400$ I had 300 so my aunt was kind enough to throw in 100 to help me pay. She hasnt given it back in 3 years and to be honest i i i dont even know if that’s what I got it taken away for. One day I had missed the bus again so she ran up to my room and started taking all of my clothes and putting them in a tub on the curb to be thrown away, I then started having a panic attack along with an anxiety attack and I couldn’t breathe I curled up and started rolling on the floor and she still continued to get more and more clothes. That’s when I jumped up ran into the kitchen and grabbed my medicine. She then saw and ran after me we had been rolling around on the ground fighting over the bottle of pills when she finally hit me and I dropped it she told me to go upstairs, lay down and wait until my mom got home to talk to her. she finished gathering all the clothes and put them outside and that was my first suicidal attempt. after that when I was in 7th grade and I missed the bus a lot again so she started making me wear uniform again she gave me back my clothes and all was fine. but then I missed the bus again and I had to wear uniform for more days it lowered my self esteem because of the way I looked after while I started sneaking out the house in my regular clothes so she started taking them and putting them in her room. that Christmas my mom had gotten me a tablet and my aunt took that away 4 not doing my chores and missing the bus I started getting stressed out about all of these things even though they were stupid and I started going into her room and taking my things back when she wasn’t home and she noticed so she put a lock on her door then I started going back downstairs and taking my stuff like I was doing before but her door had a doggie door on it so I would sneak in through there and she started calling me a thief and I told her that I’m not a thief because these are my things and I wouldn’t be going and sneaking into her room if she had taken them from me when she had no right so she permentaly took my laptop and said she was gonna sell it to get a door that didnt have a doggue door on it but she still hasbt done it. After a while seventh grade school year was over and she had said that I had to wear uniform in 8th grade, and remember these uniforms that I was wearing were uniforms from 5th grade when I was small, and I am now tall and more developed so the clothing didn’t fit in certain areas and was very tight. over the summer I finally got my tablet back but she started taking internet off of it and I wasn’t allowed to have the Wi-Fi, when she didn’t even pay for it my mom did and my mom got cable for me but since I wasn’t doing my chores my aunt put restrictions on all of it so I couldn’t watch anything and again she didnt even pay for this. so one day when I went to take my tablet back because she had taken it again and she came home and she saw I was in her room using it and she started screaming and cursing at me.I went to my room and took three pills then my mom came up and found me crying on the floor I told her what I did and she rushed me to the hospital where I was then transported to a mental hospital where I stayed for about 5 days. When i came home I was later given a therapist and a psychologist that I have weekly appointments and I now take 10X a sleeping medicine because I can’t sleep and Prozac a depression medicine and adderall my ADHD medicine. after she had taken all of my things one day I decided to go into her room take her laptop and I bought stuff on Amazon using her credit card and I know that’s illegal and it was credit card fraud but I did it because I wanted revenge.she was so mad at me and ever since I went to the mental hospital my mom says that I opened door that did not need to be open. I always feel guilty and ashamed because I feel like everything’s my fault and I put my mom through a lot that she does not deserve. my aunt always mistreats me and when I told my therapist that she gets mad at me she always says things to put me down. But when she was confronted she denied it. ever since my trip to the hospital she’s always screaming at me she always neglect, tells me everything is my fault and is always cracking jokes on me and she and my brother always talk about me right in front of me and make fun of me. when she’s upstairs in my moms room and my mom and her are on the bed talking to each other about their day with my brother as a family, when she or my brother hears me coming up the stairs to come and join in, either one of them runs over and closes the door in my face and locks it. She excludes me from almost everything. Shes always cursing at me about how much I get on her nerves, she never lets me do anything or go anywhere. she’s nice to my brother even though he doesn’t do his stuff or chores but he still gets to have all of his stuff but I don’t have anything. She screams and makes a big deal over the smallest things I do, like the other day she had a timer on the microwave and I didnt know and when i used the microwave i ruined her timer. She then started screaming at me because I messed up her time. When we got in the car she continued screaming at me telling me how selfish I am because I don’t think about anybody else but myself and I’m too busy in my room getting dressed and putting my makeup on to be conscious of other people’s time. When I got to the therapist office she sat down, and was very polite to me and my doctor and then pretends to care and when I tell him how mean she is and what he does he doesn’t believe me because she was being all nice in front of him. But when we get back in the car she screams at me. She is truly a fake 2 faced bitch. She curses at me she tells me how I get on her f****** nerves or I piss her off or sometimes threaten me saying that she doesn’t want to see me so I tell her to close her eyes and then she says Ima close your eyes permanently and I say is that a threat and she says no that’s a promise. She ignores me all the time and the reason why I’m so depressed and stressed out and I get anxiety is because of her doing these things to me and treating me like crap.I get so sick of it and so overwhelmed that I just want to cut myself, she drives me crazy and I try to tell her but she still doesn’t listen. The doctors dont believe me, they say it’s just a phase I’m going through even though its really not. I just hate my family so much I feel like they would all be happier if I was just dead and I told my mom that I wanted to go to a foster home, and I felt bad because I didn’t want to hurt her feelings, but I don’t want to be in a place where I don’t feel like I’m wanted or needed and one time my brother got in trouble because he told me that I need to get out of this house and he wants me gone, and that he’s trying to get me in trouble so i will leave, because we fight alot physically fight because of this and they started telling me that if I get in another fight with him they’re going to send me off to juvenile hall because I’m crazy when really I’m not, he always hits me punches me and kicks me and so we can fight and then i get in trouble and leave the house like he wants. When I tell my mom that I want to leave this family and go to a foster home my aunt always instigates and says that no one wants me because I’m ugly girl I’m stupid and no one wants to deal with a child that has all these issues like depression and ADHD, no one wants a crazy child, or she tells me who would want you. I get so mad, she claims that it’s not abuse but sometimes if I’m in a room and she doesn’t want me in there she’ll grab me by my clothing and push me out. When I told my friends they told me that its mental abuse and I looked it up and it sounds like it is, because the only reason why I have depression and stress and really bad anxiety is because of her and sometimes I have nightmares at night where I have to save everybody and I end up failing and then i wake up feeling like a failure to everyone and it’s really irritating. I’m tired of it, and I would really like to know if this is mental, emotional or just some type of abuse? and what should I do about it?

  29. I was in an abusive relationship when I was 15 for over a year all forms. And currently I think my baby’s dad is emotionally abusing me. Even though I broke up with him is still harassing me. This is my only child currently pregnant with his baby. I’m not sure what to do because the emotional and verbal abuse I truly think it is. It’s very stressful to put up with all of this.

  30. I have been verbaly abused since I was little now I’m 20 and married to an verbaly abusive husband and live with an verbal abusive father I don’t want to get a divorce since it’s not very christian like I just won’t the abuse to stop. My father has done it since I was 5 and my husband since we been married for 2 years abuse doesn’t stop unless you leave but I’m am very good at hiding it only my bestfriend knows and I put a smile on when I go out and about by my self or with them but my father abuses me in town to and my husband only does it at home. I sit and I cry because I know it won’t stop and I have kinda gotten used to it but I just want people to appreciate me and not yell shut or bitch or other names at me

  31. I am being emotionally abused by my mother
    I looked at this and I saw 5 things my mother does within 8 seconds of looking at it

  32. I am 16 years old and kids my age would always tell other people that there parents hate them because they won’t do certain things, but in my life my Father likes to” tease” me about my weight and about how ugly I look to other people/friend afterwards he will deny it,but when he gets mad he calls me “selfish, self center, stupid,unworry,and comments about how he shouldn’t have made me”.Everyday is like this and he will get mad at me when I’m on the phone with friends or when I just want to play games for a little bit. He will yell and tell me that everything is my fault. The reason why I haven’t left is because he was diagnose with cancer 3 years ago and I haven’t seen him for the last 6-8 years,but I wonder if it right for me to stay with him despite the fact he doesn’t want me there? I want to leave but I’m scared that he will die if I do. Even if he hates me of dispute me I will always love and care for him because he is my Father I just wonder if I’m doing the right thing my staying? Can someone please help?

  33. My sister gets all the praise and don’t lift a finger. While I have 8 hours of home work to do every to days, my mom has hit me and my dad verbally Abuse’s me, the took my door off the wall took away my bed room my heater and threw me a blanket they blame me for all the bad stuff that happens and make me do all the chores

  34. My husband does 8 of these. No wonder I’m so miserable.

  35. Penélope Coleman says:






    Im scared for my boy and im just scared..

    Please help.

    Penny Coleman

    Hi I am in Australia and I think im finally close to the crunch…. its been going on for 8 months each time he has stupid behavior i get pissed off at him and I cant understand why he’s being such a dick and doing nothing to help get ready to go…

    I disassociate too when im onto it and he denies it, eventually i start to disconnect a little just to cope cause it makes me sick and i can’t understand why he loves daddy so much.. he disasociates now every time it happens, that explains him not lying to me because he said hes telling the truth and he wishes i would believe hom when he says hes ok.

    But no!!! No way my superior intuition tells me so and he can’t remember so denies it and im just not doing a thing! He’s starting to be effected differtly now..
    Im going to get the doctor to give him a fill examination today and ill give him this quiz .

    Im trying to find a movie in relation to family zexual abuse father & 8 year old boy.. can you help?

  36. I hope I can help someone with a few lessons I’ve learned. Abusers have bad sense of self, low self esteem, etc. they feel they don’t deserve good things, good people, good anything. They HAVE to control everything externally because internally they are out of control. They expect perfection from their partners. They often self medicate with drugs, booze, etc. what worked for me is to expose the abuse. Like always have a friend or neighbor over your house. He’ll be sweet as pie when there’s a witness. In fact, he’ll probably flirt with your friend in front of you (be ready for that crap) to demonstrate how “worthy” he is as a man . It’s ok let him – I say Good Riddance. 😃

  37. Hi… I am 22 years old, and I think my mom is emotionally and verbally abusive. She has degraded me, blamed me, yelled at me, neglected me, and so much more on this list since I was young. But I had my dad who always had my back. He and I were very close and he was the buffer between me, my mother and my younger sister. But he died suddenly two and a half years ago. Now I am stuck with her (especially now because I just graduated) and I am miserable. I have suffered multiple eating disorders, lost and gained over 100 pounds, been on different anti depressants; all in under three years. My mom constantly puts me down and makes fun of me and says I am too serious or just need to lighten up. My sister isn’t much better as she is 4 years my junior and in the absence of my dad has become similar to my mom in terms of abuse. I am so stressed and scared of staying here. I am suffering near constant panic attacks and really don’t know if this is abuse of if I am just being ungrateful or stupid… Does anyone have any advice?

    • It is abuse. They’re tag-teaming you. It would be best to move out of the house asap. If that seems like too much to consider right now, talk to your therapist and doctor about the abuse. You may have a psychiatrist who prescribes meds, the psychiatrists are only interested in SYMPTOMS, not your feelings. Find a good therapist, gain your strength, go and don’t look back.

  38. Anonymous says:

    Hello, I’m only 13, but I believe that my mother is emotionally and verbally abusing me.
    Whenever I ask her something because I don’t understand, she turns around and looks me straight in the eye saying ‘I shouldn’t fake being confused.’

    Just recently, my older sister and older brother were fighting, my mother tried separating them, but they kept on yelling at each other. While this event was happening, I was in my room silently listening to music. She suddenly asked me to come out, so I was about to until I realized I hadn’t changed out of my school uniform yet. I told her I was changing, loudly, since my brother and sister were still yelling at each other. She asked me why I yelled at her and I told her why. But she didn’t believe me and said ‘Don’t take advantage of the situation..’ and so on. I was really hurt from her reply, so I asked her why she said that, slowly breaking down. As I let the tears go, she saw me and told my brother and sister, ‘I know she’s smart, I can’t trust those tears.. who knows if they’re fake.’ My sister is nice and kind, so I think I can survive. But honestly, being a 13 year old girl, I should be really emotional.
    I don’t know if this is just me being too sensitive or if it’s actually a type of abuse. My mother doesn’t do this to anyone but me, by the way.

    For a 13 year old, I don’t like showing much emotion. I have trust problems due to events that have happened in my past, so I really just don’t know any more.

    It isn’t just recently that I started feeling like this, but this feeling started since I was around 6 years old. I’ve felt so done with life since I was still 7.

    This is just me ranting, going on about my problems. You don’t need to reply. thank you for reading, I hope you have a good day/evening/afternoon/night.

  39. Anonymous says:

    Um hi I’m just a 14 year old girl but from what I’ve read I think I’m being verbally abused by my mom. We can’t tell her anything because we’re always wrong and she’s always right because “mom is always right” or “because I said so”. She always yells for the littlest reasons like if we load the dishwasher wrong or if we forget to do something. Nothing is ever her fault. Ever. If we tell her were low on dog food she will say ok but if we run out then say we told her that we were low on it she screams and says that we never told her that. She always demands respect but never gives us any. whenever we have guests coming over she makes us clean the house spotless while she sits at the kitchen table on MY laptop that my grandparents got ME so that I could print my essays for school and stuff and orders us around like slaves. My dad didn’t used to believe us when we told him about this stuff because he was always traveling for work and didn’t see it happening but now he has a new job and admits that there is something wrong but won’t DO ANYTHING about it. Whenever she yells she threatens to hit us or ground us or kill us in all kinds of creative ways like “bashing our skulls together” or “beating us until we’re black and blue”. The worst part is that my little brother sees all of this and he is only 11, sometimes I feel like more his mother than she is since I’m the one who takes care of him and holds him when he cries. She even told me once “I did the hard part it’s your job to raise him”. She almost always used to help him when he was hurt but not anymore and if I am she just asks me “what do you want me to do shit out a cure for ya?”(I have juvenile arthritis). I just don’t know what to do she is so controlling and hypocritical telling us not to be on electronics and to stop being so lazy but she is always on her phone or my laptop even while eating dinner. She is even making me take two summer classes and wants me to get a job. She always tells me I’m overreacting or that I’m too dramatic so I don’t know if this is actually abuse, does anyone have any advice?

    • Your mom is abusing you. She’s mean and hateful and reminds me a lot of one of my relatives. Berating you for the things she does (or in this case, she’s calling you lazy when she seems to be the lazy one).

      On the bright side, if you take two summer classes and have a job, you won’t have to see her nearly as much. I don’t know anything about juvenile arthritis, but I imagine it’s painful. Maybe you could find a job doing something really cool like working with therapy horses or therapy animals – you help them and they help you.

      Talk to a trusted adult besides your dad. Now that he’s seeing all of this for real, he probably doesn’t know what to do about it anymore than you do. Keep talking to him, but find an adult (teacher, friend’s parent, neighbor…) to talk to about it.

      Your mother may be abusing your dad, too. Grown people aren’t immune to abuse.

      You can always visit or call them when your mom puts down your phone. They could have some very good advice for you.

  40. Anonymous says:

    Hi there.
    I believe that I may have been emotionally abused by my mother. When I was younger, she used to hit me whenever I did not pay attention to her and would often compare me to others claiming that ‘they’re better than me’ and so on. She would often set unrealistic goals for me and often belittled me whenever I did not do as she pleased. I was often kept at home and forced to complete large amounts of homework everyday, even if it was a ‘holiday’ or weekend. She also expected me to gift her an actual birthday gift every year despite me being… you know-a child at that time and therefore unable to buy proper gifts. When I did so once with my pocket money, she tossed the gift aside and screamed at me for giving her unwanted things.

    My mother is what I call a chronic liar. She lies about EVERY. SINGLE. THING. to the point where I have developed an internal bullshit translation meter. Not to mention her constant denials on said lying and mistakes. Her constant denials has caused me to become very confused with things and unsure of my next actions since I have this useless mindset that ‘Everything I Do Is Wrong’. I tried confronting her once and got whacked a couple times with her umbrella. So I tried again. This time she threatened to kill herself. With a dining fork. I pleaded no because I was a stupid child who didn’t know anything. Third time’s the charm. She did the same thing, but with a butter knife this time. I begged her not to because I didn’t know what else to do.

    So I gave up I guess. Now I just feel numb. Mother doesn’t hit me anymore as I’ve grown older, so I can fight back. She just rants at me occasionally for an hour or two. It gets irritating at times, because she uses whatever I confide in her against me. But I know better than to get angry. Once, I bruised her by accident when I pushed her away. She said that she would show her colleagues and all my relatives the bruise to prove how ‘naughty and abusive’ I was. Again I apologised like I was taught to do so.
    She does admit her past physical abuse towards me now, but she still treats it as something I should have gotten over a long time ago since ‘it’s already in the past so just forget it’ and often falls back to verbal abuse KNOWING that it triggers me.

    I’m not sure what to do, short of suicide. I’m just tired. Please? At least just help me confirm whether this a form of abuse or am I making a mountain out of a molehill?

  41. I am 17 years old. I have a sister and two brothers. I’m the oldest so I feel like they all look up to me to protect them. when I was a baby my mum used to just leave me in my high chair all day with vomit all over my shirt (I had acid reflux) and a dirty diaper. when I entered third grade my mum lost full custody of me due to malnourishment and not feeding my sister and me proper food. my sister and I moved in with my dad and stepmom right before I entered 5th grade. my stepmom was physically abusive and verbally abusive at the time because I was so small she was able to pick me up and do what ever she wanted. one such evening I was working on my math homework and you know it was one front and back 20 question page. she had checked on my progress when I had just started then came back 20 minutes later and looked at my progress again. I was on the last question but she insisted I was still working on the first question and picked my up from my desk and threw me into the rose bushes in the flower bed outside. as I got older I got to heavy for her to just pick me up and so she resorted to throwing what ever she could reach while yelling at the top of her lungs at me (literally till her face turned purple). I would cower in the corner or try to run away from the room but she would grab me or yell at me chasing me through the house. this behavior carries on today but now she doesn’t wait for my dad to leave the house. instead he will come up from the basement (that’s where he hides all day) and yell at her to stop yelling. but she is supper manipulative and convinces my dad that I did (blah)___. and he will begin yelling at me as well. my dad is ex military so he make my sister and me do push-ups as he yells at us. (once he told me I had 500 push-ups to do because I didn’t come down when he asked me to, well more of yelled up the stairs). my stepmom is a control freak and very manipulative. she will get the whole family to team up against me, my sister or one of my cousins (I only have two on that side). my step mom constantly takes my hair ties away because “I braid my hair too much or I wear it up too much” or she takes my watch away even though she knows that the alarm on it is to remind me to take my meds. she has started saying that my mother is “shitty” or “crappy” and she says I can go live at “shitty’s” house with the idiot (my stepdad). my dad rrecently broke my 3ds in half by throwing it against the wall behind my head. he locked my laptop in his safe saying that I was a cleptomaniac and that he couldn’t trust me with “shit” he has now said im not allowed in the basement for fear that im going to take something… I don’t take things. my stepmom also tells me I have such and such diseases (she isn’t a doctor and has no knowledge to diagnose me anyway). it has gotten so bad that I don’t feel safe at home and am willing to take the risk of running away. before I do that though I have to find a safe place for my sister. what should I do?

  42. Well I am 16 and my mom says she’d hurt or even kill herself because she is a screw up. My while family tells her that we love her and she has so much to live for. I don’t know if she is playing victim because we confronted her about how she treats us (not very well) or if shes always thought those things..

  43. I am 12 (almost 13) years old. From the time I was seven up until now I’ve been getting emotionally and physically abused by both my father and stepmother (bio parents divorced when I was 3). And when I was 8 my stepmother sexually abused me by having me do sexual things to her. I’ve had several thoughts about calling CPS or CAS, maybe even the police up until now, but honestly I’m scared to do so. I’m scared that nobody will believe me and I’ll be stuck with them, the abuse getting worse. And I’m scared to use my own phone in order to report them because my dad had put some little recording device in my phone so he can hear all my calls. I’m just really scared that nobody will believe me if I do work up the courage to report them. What do I do?

  44. My parents call me bad, bad names. Just today they called me a **** up and a little ****ing ***hole IDK if I’m just being a little diva or if i am actually being abused. My mom calls me a d*ldo and then says OH NO I CALLED YOU A DODO! and my dad actually believes it because I am known for lying about things but not about when my mom swears at me. Today she called me a c***sucker twice for not doing my HW immediately. I am mot physically abused because I am a little rat and whenever my dad comes in the room to beat me up I talk long enough for him to calm down so I don’t get hit much but let’s be honest – every chilD has gotten the belt – I’m just really sad sometimes

  45. Almost all of the above. I don’t tell anyone and cover it up for years even to my own therapist and our mutual marital counselor.

  46. SnickSnack says:

    I realize that this is for abusive relationships in the ‘lover’s sense but a lot of these go along with parents. My parents so most of these to me and my siblings. My dad physically abuses my pets and recently threatened me By saying “if you keep crying I’ll do it to you too. I’ll rub you’re face on the floor and everything.” And when we act scared in any way he always says something along the lines of “what did I do to scare you?” Or “stop overreacting.” He blames us for his marital problems and financial problems. Just the other day he told me that hitting kids is okay and then yelled at me for saying that what he was talking about would be abuse and he kept repeating “it isn’t abuse if they deserve it.” He makes sure to tell us that we are mistakes and that we shouldn’t have been born and had told me I’d be better off dead multiple times. When we’re out, he acts like the perfect person and everyone loves him but he’s so different at home. He makes fun of everything we do wrong and has even threatened to break my hands for not doing fishes fast enough. That’s another thing. He’s constantly threatening us, but he’s bnever actually hit me.

    He also throws things at my mom. He broke the television by throwing a Pepsi at her. When he gets angry he knocks stuff over and then blames us.

    My mom isn’t nearly as bad. She’s just never home. She’s always working. When she is home, she’s always sleeping or staying away from us. If we upset her in any way, she puts the blame on us. But she at least makes sure we know we’re loved and that she would never hurt us physically. I doubt that, though.

    This has led to my sister trying to commit suicide. And I’ve been thinking about suicide for a while too, but I’ve promised myself I won’t. And I’ve been hitting myself for a few years now because it’s the only thing that relieves my anxiety anymore.

    Well that was a rant.

  47. Anonymous says:

    My mom. She does all of these, but I have taken many test and quizzes and read many articles but can anyone relate to never standing up for themselves no matter what the other person says? Example mom could say to father and her friends: “She is always doing this and that, she is disrespectful, and a bad child, she is such a bitch,” and you are in your room tears but come out with a smile and apologize for all 100% false acts of accusion? I am often faced with this and called “a bitch, dumb, asshole, a fucker, etc.” and yet my bipolar mother can act like another person when my dad comes home, I haven’t told him for 10years… she abusing me physically and mentally, I need help what the hell do I do I don’t think dad would believe me, she should be on 3 medications she takes 0 of them and only controls herself around my dad

    • Yes, many of us can relate to not standing up for ourselves, especially when you’re the child of an abusive parent. Please tell your dad. He probably already suspects. If Dad doesn’t help (he’s probably being manipulated and abused too), talk to a trusted adult outside of the family, like a teacher or coach.

      Don’t berate yourself for apologizing to her for nothing or for not standing up to her. You’ve learned at some time that these things are what she wants and you use them to protect yourself. In time, you can find healthy coping skills to use, but you’ve got to reach out and ask for it.

      Also know that the people your mother talks badly about you to should understand that she abuses you. Mothers don’t typically speak like that about their children, period.

  48. Im abused by my mom and no one does anything about it i feel alone and is very young to be going through any of this

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