Does Emotional Abuse Drive You Crazy?

emotionl abuse“I have not been able to find out till date, how he can twist me around his fingers like a puppet and how I give in so easily to all his demands .It is only much later I would realize that I have been made a succor. He played with my emotions”, said Tina. Emotional abuse even though is visible and disturbing yet the victim finds it difficult to ask the perpetrator to stop and leave the victim alone. We all know that the abuse is real and we are being abused but we find it extremely difficult to come out of it. Abusive relationship is in true sense a violence of the soul and mind. Unlike physical abuse it does not hurt on the physical body parts. It hurts in such a way that the bruises and the blood don’t come to the fore yet it shreds the mind, emotions and the self respects to many uncollectible bits, leaving the victim broken in body mind and soul . Its impact can be every time more killing than the actual bullet is fired by someone. The abusive behavior is often directed at a weaker personality irrespective of the status, gender or creed or relationship.

argu cplThe abusive behavior in marital relationship is often made a tool by either partner to control the other partner’s mind and soul. The advantages sought by the perpetrator could be to gain control over the victim for financial, emotional, psychological, social or simply sadistic pleasure. Emotional abuse is a form of domestic violence, and it can have devastating effects on the physical, emotional and mental health of the victim more so if the victim is a housewife, as she feels threatened of losing her matrimony.

The first thing you need to understand is that emotional abuse is not so easily recognized by others as the one who indulges into it is always fully well prepared to go on the offensive, should the victim seek any outside help or interference. The others would be made to believe that you are creating difficult situation by your emotional weak mind. They are made to understand that you could be unnecessarily reacting to the situations which you are finding difficult to handle. You could be rather called the one initiating it. The abuser poses to be the victim here. Then again no law of the land looks at emotional abuse as a crime. You do not have any valid proof against the abuser as it is always done in such a manner that none other can come to know of it except the victim. At the basic level all forms of emotional abuse is an act of coercion, intimidation and suppression.
emotional abuse 4The victim of emotional abuse is often tortured so much that he or she begins to blame self for provoking the perpetrator. The victims are made to believe that they deserve the treatment that is being met to them. In the victim’s perception the villain deserves sympathy. In this manner the abuser becomes the person being sympathized with piety and kind attitude.

Over a period the victim starts thinking: I am definitely sick of my mind and psyche to have caused distress to the one who sympathized with me so much. One could never be more incorrect than this misconception. Such misperception can make one think that one is definitely suffering from psychotic issues and the thought itself can give severe depression.
How can one know one is being subjected to emotional abuse?

emotional abuse 2It is not necessary that only intimate and romantic relationship can bring about emotional abuse. The emotional abuse can happen between the mother-son or daughter, parent and the child, or vice versa, between the co-workers, between the friends, amongst the official relations or even casual acquaintances. But often the position wielding stronger power would indulge into such an abuse making use of the power inherent in the opposition.

Gender does discriminate when it comes to emotional abuse. Women tend to be more vulnerable than men to emotional exploitation by their men folk.

The ways the perpetrators make use of Emotional Abuse.

There are several ways by which emotional abuse can take place in relationships. Actually abusers may adopt multiple tortuous tools against the weak victims, to control their minds.

Threats

cpl fgtThreatening to either break the relationship, of leaving the person alone or even threatening to harm physically the victim or self ,defaming or spoiling reputation amongst the friends and family, of taking the kids away are some of the ways . Entire plan of the villain is to play vicious and manipulative mind games to create mental fear, awe and terror and kill the independent thinking of the victim.

Regular Fault Finding and Negation of Contribution

crop-hand-pointing-at-upset-girl_23-2147798382Regular Fault finding, pointing out shortcomings and negation of the person’s any and every act would upset even the most brave and positive person. The constant denial of any appreciation and consideration is a terrible abuse causing low self esteem and feelings of failure in the mind of the victim. Critical words turn into put-downs, which are not productive, it’s abusive. When someone is constantly putting you down or questioning your decisions, there’s a malicious motive behind their behavior.

This chronic shaming wears down the victim’s respectability ,self confidence, decision making ability,  conative skills , reducing him or her to a mere moot spectator to the life and happenings around them. Criticism is often in the garb of taunts, challenges and ridicules to ensure the victim does not react and further gets drowned into the abyss of self insult and pity. For example a person may not be referred to as self respecting person but one who expects others to bow before him or her just because he /she thinks very highly of herself/himself.

Not respecting and responding to opinions and suggestions.

emotional abuse 3The abuser will have scant regards for victim’s any and every thought, suggestions opinions and would always use statements like,” you don’t know anything and hence don’t talk. A regular flow of fault finding, opposing and blocking, continues. The result of repeatedly having your opinions shot down or being told to shut up or that your thoughts don’t matter is that you stop standing up for yourself. You stop vocalizing your opinions. Ultimately no interaction can exist without open communication and the relationship breaks down.

Such an aggressive abuse can be quite negative. It can be as cruel as the abuser telling you that you are useless, time and again thus killing your sense of self worth completely.

Making one feel unwanted

A relationship evolves and flourishes when one person makes the other feel wanted and reciprocity is maintained. This is golden rule to sustain all successful relationships, be it parent-child relationships, lover- beloved relationships and or husband -wife relationships, and even siblings. When the child is accused, abused punished for no fault of the child, the entire sense of self esteem in the child’s mind suffers. The child feels insulted, demeaned, and feels threatened of being abandoned. Such a behavior by the parent, guardian causes emotional, psychological and mental damage to the child, cause extreme mental harm. This also occurs in intimate relationships in which the abuser continues to stay but repeatedly calls the victim names and makes character assassination or other such social personal insults to show that they have no respect for them. In any such relationship, the result is that the victim feels like no one else would want them either and that they are themselves responsible for such a grim situation.

Isolating the victim

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The abuser makes sure that the victim is kept apart from friends or other family members .This is another form of emotional abuse. A child or partner may not be allowed to interact with friends. An elderly parent may be denied visits to and from family and friends. Without other healthy relationships, the victim becomes more and more dependent upon the abuser to fulfill his or her needs.This is unhealthy and destructive to their lives.

Partners or parents may keep the victim from getting a job, meaning they don’t form relationships with peers and they have no financial independence. Ultimately, losing the abuser would mean losing everything, even if the victim sees that the relationship is not.

Shifting the blame:

main-qimg-fb5d01aa8cb68a295113832883654288Passing the onus of doing everything and anything wrong on to the victim is one more of emotional abuse. Emotional blaming is a severe form of mental torture that results into emotional abuse. making the victim feel responsible for the acts , behavior not committed by him or her in another form of abuse, whether physical, sexual, or emotional. The perpetrator will make the victim assume or aver specifically that things that happened are his or her doing. Such acts behavior often takes place in privacy and hence none is in a position otherwise to refute the claim made.

How do I stop it?

The only way to stop such emotional abuse is to raise your voice against the abuse even when the others initially may not understand why you have complaints against such a nice person (remember the perpetrator will be always on the right side with others that matter) in the relationship.

Seeking a Family therapist

couple therapyReaching out and seeking a professional advice is away helpful. It is not necessary that your partner will agree but mere discussion with a professional family Therapy counselor will be empowering to identify your issues. Such professional counseling reaching out for help can show you a way ahead to deal with the emotional abuse.

Refusing to bow down to the tricks of the abuser and putting your foot down for such emotional abuse with firmness and finality will help. If it doesn’t, at least it will make the abuser clear that the games played by her or him have been seen through and exposed.

If you have such  an abusive situation You should come to us at Family Therapy India and we will help you resolve all issues of your marriage in more amicable manner .Find us @ http://www.familytherapyindia.com.

Email us @mansikpramarsh@gmail.com

Call: 09179383554,917324263087

Ramneek Kapoor – Family Therapist, Psychologist Counselor and Science of Living Expert.

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Energising your Relationships

img-20190313-wa0000-444810066.jpgI love to go to a garden nearby to look at the plants growing and to savor their fragrant breeze full of oxygen and greens. And let me tell you I do love to speak to the plants in the morning as they open up their lovely flowers to the rising Sun and rebuild their energy which they gather from the sunlight .At home we do not have a lawn where we could grow these plants (we live in an apartment) . But on the top of the building where we have managed to rent a terrace we do have a few pots with plants. These plants have very tenderly been reared by my daughter with great care and love. I have seen the fresh flowers of white, red and yellow colors bloom to the plants virtually growing from little buds to the full blown beautiful flowers. Whenever I go the terrace I water them, talk to them and make sure they feel loved and taken care of by me and feel happy about this. I feel my conversing with my plants exactly is the reason these plants have grown from tiny saplings to the full grown plants adorning their smile into these flowers.
Similar to these little saplings and plants all kinds of relationships need constant communication, love, tender care, nurturing and sunshine of trust and admiration. If any of the same is missing our relationships tend to get withered away just as all those seedlings died which had not been attended to by me.
We would often take our relationships for granted once we have formed them. We allow the novelty and the freshness of each other’s company wear of, thinking, “now that we have each other where the hell can the person go”. It is easy to do that as you get busy with the daily grinds of life. But like the delicate plants that were given extra care by me to grow, each relationship too needs to be handled with full involvement and care.
In a relationship or in a friendship, we need to regularly spread the showers of mutual understanding, of admiration the nurture and love. Not all relationships may require you to go out of your way to attend to them. A periodic touch of getting to know about each person as to how he or she is living life ensures we do not feel cut off and likewise the other person too feels in touch. In the current age of internet and social media though people are always available online, yet the lack of personal touch and physical presence of good listeners is felt by one and all. People living under the same roof and sleeping in the common bedroom become strangers as they remain occupied in their own virtual world of WhatsApp.Facebook,instagram,twitter and other online social media apps.
I have many a times met such husbands and wives who do not have either time or an empathetic ear for each other to give at least a hearing to the partners when they need to talk. Being there with an empathetic attitude and listening with patience to the other’s point of view can go a long way in solving many compatibility issues the couples face in their marital life.
I am currently meeting and counseling quite a few numbers of families, where all family members have agreed to spend at least two evenings in a week on working days and every alternate weekend in a month together on family outing or family dinner and they have shown wonderful results in their understanding of each other. The faces of the family members more especially the younger members beam smiles as big as the rose in the picture above after they find their parents spending a quality time with them in such a positive manner.

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Just as we need to take care of the plants, saplings and flowers an protect them from all kinds of weeds, strong winds, too much of sunshine, the same way we need to tend to the relationship by giving our empathetic, loving , and understanding physical presence and listening ears  to all family members.

-Ramneek Kapoor – Family Therapist, Psychologist Counselor and Science of Living Expert.

family therapyFamily will survive all storms with a little patience and perseverance

What should you do if your marriage partner is having an affair ?

51372915-happy-couple-in-love-dating

Every marital relationship is based on mutual trust and understanding. If ever such a question as mentioned in the headline above arises, your immediate response obviously would be, “I would definitely divorce him/her”, and that being an overstatement, you might get agitated and say, “I shall confront him/her and then ask him either to leave the person or leave me”. It is obvious we cannot tolerate cheating of any kind in our life more so if it comes from a marital partner. Hence the response from many without second thought would be, “I will kick him/her out “.

But what will be your reaction, if I ask you to reconcile with your partner in spite of all the betrayal inflicted.

Some of you will say,”He is talking out of his hat,” but trust me there are many others who would want to reconcile despite being betrayed. They’re willing to forgive and believe they can mend the marriage and bring around their partner to see the reason and come back to the marital fold.

It is true that most of us just cannot accept the idea of forgiving a cheating spouse, but you never know how you’ll react to that situation until it happens to you,

pensive woman

It becomes an altogether a different story when you’re faced with the decision of ending a marital relationship and the consequences thereafter you have actually ended many years long held marriage . You have spent a good part of your life setting up the marital home and then all of a sudden the fairy tale dream turns into a nightmare. It can really be shattering for both partners involved and more so I’d say if you have had kids in this marriage.

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Some of the things that could affect the decision making to either hold on to marriage or move out of the relationship could be —living life without a father for the kids, living life without the kids, living life with lesser money, moving into parental home or moving into a smaller house, a different or lower standard of living, the possibility of looking for a new marriage partner again, and the prospects of your accepting the new life/new partner in your life. In totality it involves tearing up your years of brick by brick built home. Yes cheating is definitely unacceptable as it has undermined your value as a marriage partner and more so as a self respecting individual. But for many people it can be worth it to try to reconcile and rebuild from there. The decision to divorce is a punishment at both ends. It punishes the perpetrator and the victim both ie., The partner who has cheated gets that nightmare too.

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If you have already made up your mind and you are in the process of divorce proceedings, we will advise you to at least give it a good second thought and pay attention to the possibility of reconciliation through the family counseling. If you decide to save your marriage and reconcile your marital relationship, you may want to follow some of the following important steps: advice:

-Do not just spy on your spouse: just expression of doubts can trigger distrust in marriage and if you have asked someone to follow your partner this spells into total betrayal. You have to learn to be a leader of your marriage and not a follower. Your integrity is the key word to your being the leader in your marriage.

-Just hang on to your marriage. The affair your spouse has been indulging into could be a passing fad and may end soon. It had been observed that most of post marriage affairs end up in 9 to 12 months time. Though you do not want to live this torture for so long but it could be worth it to save your marriage for your children.

-Your kindness can become the key factor. You do not have to treat your spouse with disdain, hatred or anger. You can be more accepting, more accessing, more sympathetic and more tolerant towards your spouse during this period. The kind attitude shown by you will bring about a feeling of guilt, repentance sooner than later and act on the conscious of your spouse.

-Use your seductive charms to your advantages.Do Not just grieve over what has happened and neglect yourself. On the contrary now is the time to use your seductive powers and your sexualities to charm the person like the proverbial music played by a snake charmer. Do not withdraw yourself into a shell; rather be more outgoing and more inviting to your spouse.

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Soon you will notice the competition dying down and the vagrant partner returning back to marital fold. Even if it doesn’t happen soon do not give up, extend the rope a little more by your killing charms and soon the effect will take place.

Once the victory is yours, do not celebrate with a war cry. Maintain your dignity self respect and do not have a showdown with your spouse.You don’t want a spouse back with a dented confidence.Act natural and let the spouse gradually become so over a period of time.

-Ramneek Kapoor – Family Therapist, Psychologist Counselor and Science of Living Expert.

family therapyFamily will survive all storms with a little patience and perseverance.

Should you really leave him or does he deserve another chance ?

cuplAmrit (name changed)had not believed her eyes and ears when she just discovered that her husband has been cheating on her for so many years.She found out about him accidentally on the internet when her friend pointed out to the similarities she noticed in her new instagram friend and Amrit’s husband,both the persons were no different from each other.She was shocked to see his pictures with another woman and a kid.Indeed it was her husband only. Amrit didn’t know what to do.She had become suicidal in her thoughts but the question of her three years old child kept her away from any such action.

She had been referred to us by the same friend.”I didn’t want to come for marital counseling “,said Amrit, “but now that I am here , I want to ask you a very pertinent question, “My husband has apologized to me for hundred of times.He promised to me that he has stopped his affair.He says he is committed to becoming a new man. My family too believes that he has changed. But my heart refuses to trust him .I feel I and my child {she has a three years old daughter } would be better off without an unfaithful husband. But my moot worry is whether I can really think of getting married again . Should I consider starting my life again with somebody unknown and new? Or should I really forgive my husband and become blind to his future clandestine affairs and trust he has improved now”.

upset cplThe pain of heartbreak, of loss of faith in her own worth and of loss of trust in her marital relationship is difficult to measure yet it is understandable. She has a lot to deal with in her life,in her marriage ,in her mental and emotional pain. To carry on the hurtful baggage, of her husband’s unfaithfulness, and a broken marriage to heal is definitely a tall order to ask for from any wife. The same is probably true in the case of Savi(name changed) whose husband unabashedly admitted to his affair when Savi had caught him red handed.

It is a very painful decision to make and decide to either sustain a marital storm of infidelity or to end and break a marriage when the hurt has been on account of complete loss of trust.

Is it possible to come back once the trust is broken? Is it possible to heal your family from the mental, emotional and social ordeal caused by infidelity of your partner? Does it make sense to just get out of the current relationship and start over with someone else?

Most victims of infidelity and marital cheating and /or other emotional abuse will prefer to believe that they’ll be safer in a new relationship .They definitely hope they will be happier with someone who doesn’t stray away from marriage or who doesn’t cheat on them or abuse them.

Yes it could be true .Such a wishful thinking is completely understandable . However, Sudha was quickly disappointed when in her case,her new husband proved to be much worse than her first partner.She had been abused by her husband of earlier marriage . It took her good five years to come out of it and get legal divorce .Her new husband who is a divorcee himself continues maintaining relationship with his earlier wife ,despite all objections from Sudha. His statement is ,”I feel responsible for her now that she has been wronged by me”.

In the case of Sudha(name changed) above, it appears that her husband really changed for his first wife where he felt responsible for her after having divorced her.But this certainly causes lots of hurt to Sudha.

I’ve seen husbands transforming themselves and changing their attitude towards marriage and family after getting the “I want a divorce” notice from their wives . This wake up call opens their eyes to the possibility of their losing the existing family. But mere words may not be enough .The couple needs to undergo marriage counseling and family therapy to ensure spouse learns the values of family ,love ,affection and fidelity.Having been awakened to the possibility of divorce and subsequent marital therapy sessions a spouse is less vulnerable to make the same mistake again and lose it all.

According to a survey by researchers at the University of Chicago, about 25 percent of married men and 17 percent of married women in the United States admit having been unfaithful sometimes or the other . Another research findings indicate the probability of cheating by partners in marriage closer to 25 percent of women and 40 to 50 percent of men.The statistics may not be much different in India given the spread of social media in all sections of society and the access to better online communication on these platforms.

I was not sure how Amrit’s husband’s promises will hold till he falls into another affair. What If Amrit gave him another chance,on my advise, what’s the likelihood that he’d make the same mistake that almost caused him to lose his family and daughter? But our persistence and the couple’s regularity and sincerity in attending all sessions of couple’s counseling did help bring about better understanding amongst the partners.Says Amrit,”your sessions have been very helpful.Even I understood where I had to make amends in my relationship and attitude towards our marriage.And as for my husband, he is a completely different man now with complete sense of loyalty love and affection towards me and our daughter “.

Yes I’m aware that this could be a rare case where a husband truly transformed himself and proved to his family that he’s changed.

crossroads cplBut If partners were to leave her husbands or the other way around,the very concept of marriage may have to be given a new meaning by the society.It has been my belief that a family is a place where a human can be educated,reformed and brought back with right counseling and marital therapy.Not that I would recommend cheating in this sacred relationship but our counseling and family therapy can ensure that this sort of transgressions would never happen to her again.

But as I had mentioned in my one of write-ups earlier, many wives continue suffering abuse in relationship for years and years .When they wake up to seek amends to the marriage and expect their spouses to mend their ways, it becomes too late.

The best advise here could be ,”to keep an eye on your spouse and read the signs of infidelity”,but it is not the intention of this writer to make a family a detective agency.

Yes it’s true an erring spouse has made serious mistake,but it is also true that the warning of a divorce and taking the kids away with you could be a very harsh wake up call for him to mend his waywardness and improve for future. He can become a better spouse better than anyone else not known and coming as a stranger into your and your children’s life.

We will help you with our counseling and family therapy to develop fulfilling and complete relationships between the two of you .

There is a very strong possibility that the erring spouse who had been disrespecting the marital relationship will now become very keen to transform it; into true love based marriage.

divorcedIn situation to the contrary here the wife will have a choice. She can let her husband go and she can get out of the marriage. Her husband most likely will marry another woman and treat her like a queen. He will leave you saddled with the kids that you had from him (like it has happened to Divya (name changed) whose husband left her high and dry with a two years old child ,after their divorce.

The question obviously is: how do you heal from your hurt and ordeal? How do you forgive? How do you get to the head-space where you’re able to give your spouse another chance? These are the questions we help you find answer to in our Family Therapy and Marriage counseling sessions .

Come and discuss with us how to proceed.

You take the first step today and find the much needed happiness by calling on us @9179383554 or write to us @ mansikpramarsh@gmail.com

-Ramneek Kapoor – Family Therapist, Psychologist Counselor and Science of Living Expert.

logo family therapyFamily will survive all storms with a little patience and perseverance

Are you giving enough of yourself to Improve Your Marital Relationship ?

mother-and-babyPoonam and her husband  Sangit had a wonderful marriage going for the first  year of their marriage.Everything seemed to have been set specially to bring the joy and comfortable living for them in their life, but things took an adverse turn when Poonam had conceived her first baby. Her pregnancy ( an unplanned one ) had happened and  Sangit  didn’t know how to handle this. Poonam’s early morning sickness was too much for him to take .He felt that he had  been dealt a wrong hand in the marriage.The same wife who used to be at his side all the times had almost forgotten about his being there  in her life .Poonam noticed he had begun avoiding spending time with her.The gap had further widened in them after the delivery .Sangit felt that Poonam had been spending her time with the child and she did not have any space left for him in her life. The daily spat of words and tiffs took the ugliest toll on their relationships when Poonam had attempted to hurt herself in a fit of rage . That is when they decided to call on the  family therapist for an intervention.

arguing coupleDolly had echoed similar words  of dissatisfaction in her marriage to this  therapist  as  she expressed her annoyance on her husband for  spending most of his days  for office travel unnecessary . She told the therapist, ” even on the days he is in town he would hardly give time to me and children. Every evening my husband  spends his time with his friends partying in the club or a bar”.

Poonam and Dolly are not the only ones who are dissatisfied with their marriages.

Facebook-Coverphoto-Ladies-Night-and-Brunches-Dubai-v2-1Harish a businessman speaks  same thoughts when he says, ” my wife throws one kitty party every week compulsorily and the days she does not throw a party herself, it would be any of her friends inviting her over. We hardly see each other at home.  We have become strangers staying under the same roof”.

Couples express their dissatisfaction with their marriages in many ways. one of them being not spending much time together or not giving the required attention to demands of each other. It is apparent today’s  marital life is not what it used to be ten or twenty years ago. The internet, the need for travel , the need of  socialising for each partner to the marriage demands time from them and they can hardly find time for each other . Resultantly , each partner is finding the other one going away from him or her. But in order to keep the contract of marriage running they are  demanding more from each other without putting in the necessary time to be with each other .

From the case studies mentioned above it can be seen that the couples  are basically divided their time and life into many different compartments, depending on the situations in which they currently are. These compartments can be identified as:

  • The couples with small  children allocate most of their time to  the act of parenting  but it is not necessary that both of them do it together.
  • The couples  who have grown up children have  found many interests of their own respectively on the internet .
  • Or they have  formed their social circles independent of each other and spend time away from each other .
  • The couples who do not have interest in either of the above three situations are concentrating on their work  and for them their careers hold more importance than being with their partners .

The demands however from the spouses into the marriage remain what these used to be  many many years ago. The modern husband  wants a wife that he has seen in his mother who was his father’s wife. The modern wife looks forward to a husband as she noticed  in her father who led a very devoted life many years ago. These partners to modern marriages often tend to forget that their interest , their needs, their style of living have been completely changed as compared to the times in which their  parents had built their families.

The new generation of couples need to understand that they either need to  put in more efforts, time and resources into their marriages to make them work or they need  to demand less from their relationships .Marriage is about contractual obligations of social nature  where each partner  would get only what has been invested into. Marriage works when you give as much as you want to get in return .

The best  way to make  your  marriage work is to not to make your marriage a standard measurement of your  marriage vis a vis the marriage of your parents . Your marriage  possibly is a better marriage contract now as you both are able to pursue your independent areas of interest and at the same time contributing towards the development of each other as a better human being .

But in order to achieve that you have to allow each partner a space wider enough to  facilitate the expression of their true self.

You both need to develop a lifestyle that permits investment of time and your socio- psychological inputs  in your marriage, to build strong relationship  compatibility.

Marriage is no more considered the only source of social  and financial security when so many people nowadays  live in relationships without actually tying the knots  or even getting on with their lives without the  need of a partner from the opposite sex. In such evolutionary times the investment of your time and  positive energy can definitely make the partnership  workable and enjoyable  and save you from the disappointment  of not getting the right attention from your partner  .

-Ramneek Kapoor – Family Therapist, Psychologist Counselor and Science of Living Expert.

logo family therapyFamily is everything