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What part do verbal emotional abuse play in domestic violence?

You felt shock when your partner accused you of domestic violence, especially because you never laid hands on him or her. Could harmful words and intentions lie at the root of the issue?

To learn more about emotional and verbal abuse and the part they play in domestic violence, see what HelpGuide says on the matter. Educate yourself so you know how to defend yourself legally.

Defining verbal and emotional abuse

Emotional and verbal abuse lead to the same devastation as physical abuse. Victims may minimize or dismiss the effects of non-physical domestic violence. Usually, agency and self-worth become the primary targets of verbal and emotional violence. The abuser may want the victim to feel trapped in the relationship or adrift without the harmful partner.

Examples of verbal and emotional abuse

Non-physical violence manifests in name-calling, shouting, shaming, accusing and criticizing. Abusers may control their significant other’s behavior or engage in intimidating behavior. Emotional and verbal abuse may involve isolation from friends and family.

Psychological abuse is another component of non-physical domestic violence. One example of such abuse is threatening physical violence if the victim does not obey the abuser’s demands.

A person may engage in financial abuse, too. Controlling a person’s money, taking money without asking, withholding access to funds and only giving a significant other an allowance are common examples of financial abuse. Abusers may also forbid the victim from working or force the person to note every financial transaction.

Effects of verbal and emotional abuse

Like physical domestic violence, emotional and verbal abuse leaves scars, although the damage becomes psychological rather than physical. Sometimes, non-physical abuse leaves victims with greater scarring than physical violence.