Stop Emotional Abuse So You Can Build Better Relationships
I have a story to share with you today.
Something happened this morning that made me reflect rather deeply about myself. I gained a new perspective on emotional abuse.
The weather was freezing out, but I had to take the train to work. I was running late, because I never know what to wear and was wasting time in front of the mirror trying to decide. (Yup—I’m one of those people.)
As I got to the station, the train I wanted to catch was just pulling away! Gosh, why today?
Well, it was only a 10-minute wait until the next one but when you don’t enjoy the bitter cold it can feel like taking a stroll in Antartica naked.
I observed a guy in his 30s, texting intensely on his phone. He kept sighing and tapping his right shoe against the metal pole of the seat in the waiting area. Never looked up for a single second. He was fixated on what he was doing. Frustrated as ever.
We got on the train and funny enough we ended up sitting across from one another. I watched him intently as he dialed a number. This made me curious (and nosy). I was interested in eavesdropping, hoping to hear what had gotten him so worked up.
I heard the beep sound—it has gone to voicemail. DRAT! He spoke into the phone saying these exact words: “I know you still don’t want to talk, it has been two days. I said I was sorry. I was wrong, but you ignoring me is far more painful than what I did to you.”
He hung up the phone, lifted his head and made eye contact with me.
His deep green eyes looked sad and tired, red and swollen from tears or, perhaps, lack of sleep. I thought gosh, whoever is doing this to him must be a real jerk.
I don’t approve of psychological punishment.
Why Am I Telling You This?
Well, just like a slap in the face—it hit me. I was guilty.
I have done the exact same thing! Maybe even hurt someone the same way as the guy was hurting.
Giving the silent treatment for long durations of time is a form of emotional abuse. It is a good weapon of choice because it’s powerful. A form of inflicting pain without visible bruising.
If you are regularly giving your friends, partner, and/or family members this type of treatment, you need to stop.
Reasons People Give The Silent Treatment:
- Deliberately trying to hurt or punish you
- Want full control of the situation
- Are avoiding a confrontation
How Do You Deal With And Practice Effective Communication?
If one or both of you need space, establish it.
You need to have patience, which is hard when you are hurt and angry.
If someone is purposefully trying to hurt you through the silent treatment and acting out of malice, analyze the situation. Remember, this is emotional abuse and is a sign of an unhealthy relationship.
There is a lack of effective communication and you need to decide whether it is a relationship you want to grow or walk away from.
This does not only apply to your spouse, but friends, colleagues, and acquaintances as well. Don’t ever let anyone tell you or make you feel like you don’t matter.
5 Ways To Stops Emotional Abuse And Practice Effective Communication
We say one thing, the other person hears something else, and misunderstandings, frustration, and conflicts ensue.
Fortunately, you can learn how to communicate more clearly and effectively by:
- Agreeing it’s okay to disagree
- Actively listening
- Being present
- Finding your voice
- Being honest but mindful of the feelings of others
It is important for you to understand the emotions and intentions behind the information.
Practice Effective Communication Daily
It is a learned skill and the glue that helps you deepen your relationships and connections to others.
By practicing effective communication, you and those around you will be more respectful to one another and you will see your relationships flourish.
Are you able to convey information to people clearly and simply in a mature and fair way?
How do you practice effective communication? Please share in the comments section below.
Featured photo credit: Pixabay via pixabay.com