What verbal abuse symptoms will you experience over time? Living in an abusive relationship can cause you to suffer physical, mental and emotional problems (The Am I Abused Quiz). How does verbal abuse mess with you in the long haul? What will you give up to stay in a relationship filled with emotional and verbal abuse?
Verbal abuse symptoms like depression and anxiety make you think less of yourself. Not only does the abuser treat you horribly, but you begin to treat yourself horribly too. As you read this list of verbal abuse symptoms, ask yourself “What will I sacrifice to tolerate abuse?!”
Verbal Abuse Symptoms List
You don’t have to be in a long-term abusive relationship to experiences the verbal abuse symptoms listed below. Verbal abuse acts quickly on your emotional health and will erode every aspect of your health over time. It’s never too late to protect yourself from harm (Safety Planning for Domestic Violence and Abuse Victims).
If your partner verbally abuses you:
Your doctor may diagnose you with depression, anxiety, posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) or some other mental issue.
You feel trapped and on-guard.
You lose your spontaneity and excitement for life.
You think you cannot communicate well.
You suffer postponement, loss or shattering of dreams.
You wish for death – yours or your partner’s.
You become preoccupied with fears or what-if scenarios.
You think you lost your ability to understand what others say or mean.
You feel crazy or out of control.
Others say you have low self-esteem. Or, if you realize you’re losing self-esteem, you don’t know why.
You turn to shopping, drugs, alcohol, sex, or any other addicting behavior.
You feel lost or experience circular thoughts and confusion.
You find that you rely on another person to tell you what you should feel or do.
You feel uneasy or even paranoid with no defined cause.
You over-analyze yourself.
You replay conversations in your mind to find where you went wrong.
You find that your internalized critical voice agrees with your abuser’s accusations.
You feel that you are missing something or that time is passing too swiftly to carry out your dreams.
You wait for some point in the future when everything will be better.
You want to escape or run away (but you may not know what you want to escape from).
You might feel you don’t have anywhere to go if you left.
You may experience insomnia or other sleep disturbances.
You might put yourself down in conversations without noticing.
You may experience unexplained physical problems or fear that you’re a hypochondriac.
So … What are you willing to sacrifice to tolerate abuse in your relationship? Check out a video about my symptoms of verbal abuse at Effects of Abuse.
Verbal Abuse Symptoms Can Lead to Tolerating Physical Violence
If you’re lucky, at this point there’s nothing wrong with your emotional or mental health. But long-term verbal abuse symptoms include mental illnesses and emotional issues that increase your confusion and lessen your resolve to free yourself from abuse. Abuse imprisons you.
In addition, abusers who have not yet turned to physical violence could be time bombs with fuses of unknown length. If your abuser feels that his or her verbal abuse techniques are not working, s/he will most likely turn to physical abuse to keep power over you (Was I Abused When He Grabbed My Face?).
Also, Remember that abuse escalates over time. If you are verbally abused today, you will be physically assaulted in the future (Domestic Violence Response Strategy Saves Lives-Take a Quiz). Abusive relationships make you feel beaten down and devastated – but it is never too late to get help.
List of verbal abuse symptoms adapted from The Verbally Abusive Relationship by Patricia Evans, St. Jude’s website, and the author’s experiences with verbal abuse.