Wednesday, April 20, 2011

How to Heal from Emotional Abuse

If you want to heal from emotional abuse, you may want to start with your childhood. Emotional abuse often has roots going all the way back to early development. Emotional abuse of children can result in serious emotional and behavioral problems, including depression, lack of attachment, low cognitive ability, and poor social skills – all things that affect adult life and especially adult relationships.

In studies, children who were emotionally abused were found to grow up angry and uncooperative, lacking in creativity, persistence, and enthusiasm.

Modeling is especially important here, because the child may either imitate violent behavior, or learn that being abused is normal. Once gained, these roles are very hard to unlearn, and set the tone and model of behavior for their adult relationships.

When put into action, angry and violent verbal abuse such as blaming, ridiculing, insulting, swearing, yelling and humiliation will have long-term negative effects on a woman’s self-esteem and contribute to feelings of uselessness, worthlessness and self-blame. Her reaction to and acceptance of abuse may have been learned when she was a child. It is important to recognize this behavior and learn how to reverse it.

Emotional abuse can have serious physical and psychological consequences for women, including severe depression, anxiety, persistent headaches, back and limb problems, and stomach problems.

In order to heal from emotional abuse we need to bear in mind the following:

  • Become aware of your situation, call abuse as abuse and stop accepting his “tough love”.
  • Recognize that change is earned – it will come only if you work for it. Nobody will rescue you against your will.
  • Research emotional abuse books and learn as much as you can.
  • Learn to recognize abusive relationships and how to avoid them, everywhere.
  • Begin building a support system by reaching out to community resources.
  • When in doubt, find your best resource: a professional advisor educated in abusive relationships.

• What does it take to heal from emotional abuse?

In order to live a happy and peaceful life, we need to learn ways to achieve and meet our needs and goals in an ethical and healthy manner; we need to receive sound affection, we need to be accepted and respected for who we are, we need to be able to meet our basic needs (material, emotional, spiritual, professional, etc.), we need to feel we can reach our goals in life successfully, and achieve every task we carry on (study, work, career, etc.) without feeling threatened by others.

Grown adults need to recognize and process childhood abuse in order to move forward and function in a normal, healthy relationship. In other words, it is hard to know where you’re going if you haven’t come to terms with where you’ve been.

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