Emotional Abuse

Emotional abuse essentially allows one person to gain power and control over another through words and gestures which gradually undermine the other’s self respect and confidence. Emotional abuse can be difficult to identify, as there is no scars or marks, but the torment can continue indefinitely, and can be a very difficult issue to live with day to day.

Emotional abuse can fall into three patterns:

  • Aggression: which can include name-calling, belittling, blaming, accusing, yelling, screaming, making threats, degrading insults or destructive criticism.
  • Denying: this includes sulking, manipulation, neglecting, not listening, withholding affection.
  • Minimising: this may include belittling the effect of something, isolating, accusations of exaggerating or inventing and offering solutions or 'advice'.

Signs of emotional abuse can be as follows:

  • Depression/anxiety
  • Increased isolative behaviours from friends and family
  • Fearful or agitated behaviour
  • Lower self-esteem/self-confidence
  • Reliance on alcohol and drugs
  • Escapist behaviour

Emotional abuse can damage your confidence so that you feel worthless and find it hard to maintain or create other relationships. Secrecy and shame usually maintain this type of abuse, and this can be a very difficult cycle to break without assistance.

At Castle Counselling Services we can offer you a safe, secure, confidential and non-judgemental space, where you can explore this issue, and it can be the beginning of a long, but rewarding journey to a better and more fulfilling way of living by breaking old, unhealthy patterns. This therapeutic work would be integrative in nature, and would include person-centred/humanistic perspectives, working alongside Cognitive Behavioural Therapy methods of change and also possible exploration of your past relationships through the lens of psychodynamic therapy.

Who can help you?

Counselling services in the North Coast Causeway area of Northern Ireland, we can offer you an initial telephone consultation for 15/20 minutes free of charge for you to discuss the reason you are seeking counselling.