My experience with Verbal / Emotional Abuse

 

Emotional Abuse

Emotional Abuse

I know some people think this website is all about sex tricks, but sometimes we have to do some housekeeping.  Last week I wrote an article on Redefineblacklove.com entitled. “Do You Really Know What Domestic Violence Is?”  I wrote the article in response to a picture of a beautiful young woman that went viral, who said she was a victim of domestic violence.

Unfortunately, in the African American community incidents of abuse has become common place. We live in a culture where we accept unspeakable treatment from people who are supposed to love us. The effects of this behavior permeate every aspect of our being. This is also the reason why a lot of us are angry bitter and broken.

Having and maintaining healthy boundaries is necessary to curb inappropriate behavior. It is ok to have a standard of behavior for the people who we choose to give access to our lives. It is ok to say No and draw a line that we refuse to allow others to cross. For me I have decided that if I have to constantly/repeatedly question someone’s love for me that is a problem.  If I cannot speak to them in a manner that exudes kindness and get that in return I do not need to have them in my life. It seems like such a small thing. I mean really it is an idea that we learned in girl scouts. We have all heard of the golden rule, treating others how we like to be treated. However, a concept is always simple, putting it into practice never is.

Domestic Abuse

The truth is I have been abused.  I have in the past allowed people to treat me in ways that did not feel good. I have also been an abuser. But the first step of healing is acknowledging that the behaviors are not positive.  The second step is examining what need it serves in you to continue or stop the behaviors. The third and final step is fixing it. Today I chose to operate from a loving caring space in my interactions. This doesn’t make me special, it doesn’t make me perfect but it does make me happy. And I have noticed a change in my relationships because of it.

 

In the past I have been in a lot of abusive relationships. Anyone who knows me may or may not believe that. I am a strong person who maintains very clear boundaries but I have not been that way. Although I was not abused in the traditional since by a boyfriend (although that has happened too) it makes my pain no less real. I am a victim of emotional abuse, and I am a recovering verbal abuser

verbal abuse

Verbal Abuse

I had a knack for dating the wrong men. I often chose men who didn’t like me very much. This is never overtly evident when I first meet them, but it shows over time. They all thought I was pretty, they liked that I was smart and they adored my sassy mouth, in the beginning. Little by little they would say things in an attempt to erode my self esteem.

All of a sudden I was too short, they had a specific preference on the way I wore my hair. My intelligence became a point of contention. “You think..You know it all.” I even remember a guy I dated telling me I was a “well of useless information.” His brother however said he wanted me to go on jeopardy. I also dated this one guy who didn’t like that I wore glittered nail polish. I mean really who the hell doesn’t like GLITTER. Although I can laugh at this now at the time it was definitely no laughing matter.

In a counseling session with a man who I know is a chronic domestic abuser (in the classic sense). He said that if he dated a woman and it was all about her it was a problem. If she liked herself too much she couldn’t like him. This made so much sense to me because I often felt this is how some of the men in my life felt about me.

I know some of you are like, “wait a minute these just sound like petty arguments..That is not a story of abuse. “ But abuse takes on many forms. For many years I tolerated emotional abuse, both in my family life, my relationships and my friendships. It is amazing how much shit I put up with over the years. For some reason I could not see that I deserved better.  It is easy to say to someone I don’t want to date a smart successful man BECAUSE HE beats me, than to say I don’t want to be with him because he doesn’t treat me nice.

It is unacceptable for me to say I don’t want to have a relationship with a family member because I believe they don’t mean me well than for me to say that we had an argument and she slept with my man. Everything is not Jerry Springer. And although being a victim of emotional or verbal abuse doesn’t leave any obvious scars you have every right to draw the line and say you will not be disrespectful to me.

It took me a long time to get to the point where I demanded kindness in my relationships. I don’t usually throw down the gauntlet about it, but I am quietly defiant about it. I want to be loved, I need to be respected, I have to have relationships where I am valued, and I offer the same in return. And to be clear I am no one’s victim. Don’t you be either.

About admin

Niki Banks The Single Girls Guide to Men Was the Brain Child of the Site Creator writer Nikita Banks. Ms Banks has worked in the world of Sports and Entertainment as a correspondent for many national publications such as ESPN the Magazine, ESPN.com, King, Hip Hop Weekly, Smooth and more.