How to defend yourself from psychological abuse


More times than we would like, the world is not as kind as it should be. It is not uncommon to come across indifference or lack of solidarity, but you learn to deal with them. The bad thing is that sometimes you not only have to face the coldness of the surroundings, but in an almost imperceptible way you end up feeling like a psychological abuse with all the letters.

It happens in a supermarket when they deliberately steal the place in line. It also happens at work if you have the bad luck to fall for those bosses who are more into dictators. Abuse also appears more and more frequently in schools and, why not, within your own home.

It is everywhere

In front of the abusive subject there are some who react effectively. They put a limit to psychological aggression, without much thought. On the contrary, others respond by being even more abusive and the outcome is always unpredictable. The one who is better trained to psychologically abuse others wins, although they usually negotiate to stay “even.”

But in many people, especially if they have received a very restrictive education, super protective or have doubts about themselves, the fears of childhood emerge, the fissures of self-image. They are the favorite victims of abusers. They know that a frightened person is fertile ground to install their stingy empire of arbitrariness.

A very strong bond is formed: the abusive desperately needs his victim to compensate for his narcissistic need for power; and the victim feels that it is completely impossible to escape from their aggressor, who does not have the necessary attributes to do so.

The bad news is that to break this infernal circle requires a great investment of energy and value. The good news is that even in the most extreme cases it is possible to get out of there. The question is: how?

Leaving the circle of psychological abuse

The first task is to recognize your victim status. Please do not be tempted to justify the ill-treatment you receive. Every abused person feels inwardly that, in one way or another, he deserves it. This is a lie. It is an unconscious reaction that is due to conflicts with itself and with figures of authority in its past.

Your next step should be to find support in others. Do not look for someone who will “save you”. Start by simply exposing your situation to people you trust. If solidarity is part of the problem (as it often happens), it does not matter. Look for a priest. Talk to the manicure. Tell a neighbor. The important thing here is not for you to find guidance, but for you to verbalize what has been happening. In doing so, you are likely to feel stronger and stronger. Identify the expressions that the abuser uses to intimidate you. Analyze them. Remember that abuse is in every statement that casts doubt on your worth or diminishes you as a human being.

Next, you should gradually broaden the emotional distance with the aggressor. Never confide in him and begin to distance him from the private aspects of his life. Do not negotiate, stand firm. When you feel it is the time, begin to express clearly and directly your discomfort with the way he treats you. Good luck!