Emotional Abuse And Emotional Abuse Therapy


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Mental or emotional abuse, also known as verbal or psychological abuse, is a type of psychological harm that happens when one individual puts another to degrading, demeaning, offensive, and harmful actions or words. Years of being mentally abused could lead to emotional trauma and mental health disorders like depression, PTSD, and anxiety disorders.

Emotional assault generally happens in adult and teenage relationships, such as in romantic relationships, dealings with strangers, friendships, parent-child relationships, and co-worker relationships. When an individual is assaulted or harassed by co-workers or friends, it causes him to go through heightened levels of depression or anxiety. Additionally, it causes the harassed individual to feel insecure, irrelevant, hopeless, and incompetent.

It is vital to keep in mind that while an emotionally abused individual might not manifest the physical wounds of harassment – bumps, bruises, etc. – the effect is the same as, if not more, disparaging as the effects of physical harassment. In fact, present research reveals that emotional abuse is similar to the impact of physical abuse in numerous situations. More particularly, experts have reported that the outlooks of people who have been emotionally or mentally maltreated are comparable to those who have been abused physically.

Sadly, emotional assault typically is not backed by sufficient evidence, which implies that it is frequently neglected. Consequently, this assault victim usually keeps mum compared to someone abused physically and has evident wounds and marks to prove it. Furthermore, in many circumstances, the emotional offender is very “congenial” to those external to the relationship, meaning that this offender might come across as polite, funny, easygoing, and kind to others, but being cruel, vengeful, or hateful to the victim privately.

The Dunedin Multidisciplinary Health And Development Study states that males have a higher likelihood of being aggressive compared to females. But outcomes also suggest that sexuality is an undependable predictor of emotional assault in relationships. Specifically, experts found that males and females displayed emotional assault in relationships at closely the same occurrence, particularly regarding certain behaviors like mood swings, decreased self-control, jealousy, suspicion, and behaviors usually suggestive of emotional abuse.

Additionally, male participants who displayed these behaviors seemed to manifest two types of relationship emotional assault. The first type was emotional abuse targeted at strangers (interpersonal aggression), and the second was emotional abuse targeted exclusively at female partners.

Source: marriagerecoverycenter.com

That said, women typically only demonstrated aggression towards their children and/or partners. Still, both women and men who were emotionally abusive in the specific study had personality disorders (histrionic personality disorder, paranoid personality, antisocial personality disorder, and borderline personality disorder).

Emotional Abuse Therapy

Emotional assault is difficult to manage unless the abused can separate himself from his offender or abuser or if the abuser confesses that there is a problem and decides to get himself treated for his offensive behavior. But for this to occur, the offender must recognize first that his behavior has harmed someone and that what he did was not right.

Emotional Abuse Therapy

The objective of emotional abuse therapy is to find out the real cause of the assault or abuse.

  • Who is the offender?
  • When did it begin?
  • Did you confide in someone about this?
  • How long has this been happening?
  • How did you feel every time it happened?
  • What usually triggers the abuse to start?
  • Did the emotional offender ever become violent or physical? If yes, how frequently did this occur, and what triggered it?

A therapist can start the therapy by presenting behavior modification strategies to the emotionally abused victim. The purpose of these strategies is to assist the victim in recognizing negative behaviors and mindsets. If the therapist is also working with the abuser or offender, he may help him realize how his attitudes or actions are abusive, offensive, and unhealthy, accept the need for treatment and be aware of the relevance of completely obliging to the therapy process. Either way, a therapist will designate both the victim and the offender homework and help them create realistic objectives and actionable steps to assist them in moving forward.

Therapies For Emotional Abuse

If the emotional assault happens within an intimate relationship, a mental health professional like a social worker or therapist may ask to meet both individuals in the same session. The objective of these therapy sessions is to enhance conflict-resolution and communication skills in the relationship. Another objective is to help the passive or ‘silent’ partner be more self-assured about what they would and would not accept from the abusive partner.

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Other types of therapy may include group therapy, individual therapy, and support groups, like domestic violence support groups or survivor support groups. These therapies aim to educate the victim about what comprises positive and negative behaviors in a friendship or relationship and ways of identifying warning signs when they come up.

Complementary therapies that could be helpful for individuals who have been mental or emotionally assaulted include hypnosis, acupuncture, massage, and music or art therapy. In some circumstances, medication can be recommended to help abuse and assault survivors deal with the trauma that they suffered.


Topic In Therapy: Types of Sexual Abuse


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Sexual assault or abuse is any sexual violence, including incest, rape, child assault, and similar types of non-consensual sexual contact. Many sexual assault experts claim that sexual abuse does not only cover sex alone. Rather, it is frequently an effort to gain power and take control over others.

Instant crisis support following sexual abuse proves instrumental and even life-saving. An individual can claim sexual abuse by informing the local police. Sexual assault survivors might also want to get examined physically in a hospital. Therapy is also a helpful step for individuals who have gone through a sexual assault in the past. Other therapists focus on tackling the trauma of sexual abuse. Permanent support might be helpful to some sexual abuse survivors.

Types Of Sexual Abuse

Sexual abuse is typical, especially for girls and women. An overwhelming 90% of rape incidents are done against females. Additionally, one out of six females in the United States has experienced rape. Sexual assault and sexual abuse are two terms that are used to indicate various crimes, including:

  • Child Molestation. This implies any type of sexual interaction with a child. Numerous children who are assaulted are very young to know what is happening to them and might not be scared to fight back. Many assaulters take advantage of the child’s cooperation in these situations as proof that they have not harmed anyone. Fondling and forcing sexual favors from children are common examples.
  • Incest. This form of abuse describes sexual interaction between members of the family who are very close to each other. Incestuous sexual activities may happen between two consenting adults, but this is seldom. Most documented incest incidents happen as child assault. More than one-third of sexual abuse survivors in American below the age of 18 are assaulted by a member of the family, according to present statistics. But incest is a crime that is not often reported, so the exact number of incest survivors might be even higher.
  • Rape. Forced sexual intercourse with a person who has no capacity to permit or consent. Imposing sex on an individual who is against it, who is a minor and has no capacity to give consent, or intoxicated are all considered rape. Several states restrict their definition of rape to forced sexual contact, but any forced sexual intercourse can inflict permanent effects on a victim. Many states now identify involuntary oral sex and related types of abuse as rape.
  • Non-Consensual Sexual Intercourse. This classification entails any sexual touching that is not wanted, like pinching or groping. Attempted rape can also be part of this classification.
  • Non-Contact Sexual Assault. Not all types of sexual assault fit into general psychological or legal meanings. For example, parents who make profane or sexually improper language to their kids or who have sexual intercourse in front of their kids are considered to be engaging in sexual assault. Revenge porn sites that publish nude images of individuals without their consent are another type of sexual abuse.

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Male Sexual Abuse And Assault Victims

Males who have gone through sexual abuse are confronted with major stigma. American culture encourages a label that males always desire sex. A lot of people think that men are not potential rape victims. When they report sexual abuse, they frequently face criticism and doubt. Others might blame the assault on the man’s feebleness or apparent homosexuality. Blaming the victim is particularly common when a male accuses a female of sexual assault.

Because of stigma, men rape survivors can be hesitant to classify what they’ve been through as abuse or rape. Others might not talk about the incident at all. Nevertheless, a hesitation to disclose can keep men from being treated. Without help from a professional, some turn to self-harm or substance abuse to deal with trauma.

Sexual Abuse And Assault Amongst The LGBTQ Community

The incidence of sexual abuse for bisexuals and homosexuals is comparable or sometimes even higher than heterosexuals’. Hate crimes make up most of the sexual assault cases against LGBTQ individuals.

More than 60% of transgender people will suffer from sexual abuse in their lifetime. This percentage comprises transgender people of all gender identities and sexual orientations. Transgender youth, on the other hand, are especially susceptible to sexual abuse. In a survey done in 2011, over 10% of trans youth reported that educational staff or friends had sexually abused them in the school setting.

Sex offenses in the LGBTQ community are frequently not documented. Survivors might be afraid of disclosing their sexual orientation to others. They might think that the legal system is not reliable in terms of providing them protection. Survivors are also scared of provoking more violence.

Source: dailyevergreen.com

As with any survivor, the LGBTQ community frequently experiences stigma following their reports of sexual harassment. Discrimination in the healthcare platform may keep survivors from receiving care. Family and friends may think typecasts regarding LGBTQ individuals and blame the victims. In circumstances of domestic violence, the local LGBTQ members might be hesitant to trust the survivor or hold him responsible.

Survivors from the LGBTQ community can definitely benefit from therapy. Mental health professionals cannot divulge an individual’s personal details to the public. Therapy is a private space where a person can find support and guidance without any judgment.