Toxic and Cruel. The Signs of Emotional Abuse

toxic people

by Annette Young

Abusers wield their words like a weapon. They are masters at deceiving, bullying and confusing. They want you to become a victim. Their victim.

If this sounds a little dramatic, don’t be fooled into thinking that people cannot be so cruel to act this way  or that even the strongest individual cannot be duped. Seriously..it happens all the time.

There’s no doubt that some people are more likely to be manipulated than others, but, it’s not a sign of weakness. Manipulative tactics can easily make you question yourself and fill you with self-doubt. Sadly, by the time you realise what is  happening, this person will have already infiltrated his/her way into your life.  Don’t think that it will always be someone new either. Take a look at people around you – work colleagues, your partner or even a close friend. If they have control of your life, there’s manipulation going on.

There are many different tactics but these are common ones:

It’s always your fault.

Have you heard that one? It doesn’t matter how hard you try to please this person or to fit in, they always manage to somehow blame you.  They make you feel stupid, incompetent and leave you doubting your own abilities. If you’ve ever tried to tell them how they make you feel or to stand up to them, no doubt you’ll get a rather harsh, personal attack listing all of your inadequacies.

Predictable

Manipulators try very hard to get inside your mind and to screw with it.  They say that you’re so predictable. They may even try to second-guess what you are thinking. They are the mind games champions.

Overly helpful

This one may not sound like a problem but a manipulator will often work damn hard to make you depend on them. They are so supportive at first that you can’t believe your luck. You’ve finally found someone so loving and caring but then, the real person emerges once you have fallen so deeply for them or you have become dependent on them. The story very quickly takes a more sinister turn.

Complex responses

When you dare question a toxic person, you will often come to regret it. Their answers are long drawn out and overly complex. Yes, they are the politicians of the manipulative kind and wrap up their responses in a blanket of words.  The solution here is to try to focus on the topic, don’t let them distract you with long words or drawn out complicated statements which account for very little.

An abuser will often use varying tactics to undermine, to control or to belittle and no two abusers are the same. Sadly, they don’t wear warning labels and there is no quick way to determine their intent. It’s a sad fact of life that you have to be careful who you trust. So, with this in mind, it’s best to monitor their words and actions and, consider who your friend, colleague or partner makes you feel.  If you come away feeling down, confused, anxious and realise  your self-esteem is dragging behind you, the chances are you’ve encountered someone highly toxic and quite dangerous.

Are you fed up feeling emotionally inept? Do you feel as if your relationship has been a lie? Do you need help to recover and to rebuild your life?

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