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Recognizing the Signs of Abuse-In Yourself and Others

August 14, 2020
Have you ever been abused?

Your initial answer may be no. But are you sure?

Abuse can masquerade in many forms. Some forms can be subtle, and other forms can involve obvious physical harm. This means that to protect yourself, you need to be able to recognize both.

Generally speaking, abuse is a double-edged sword. In other words, a person doesn’t have to hurt or threaten physically to engage in the act of abuse. 

Signs and Effects of Emotional Abuse

The first form of abuse to be aware of is emotional abuse. This is because emotional abuse is more common than you might think. It affects both men and women -- and lots of them. Unfortunately, many people don’t recognize it. 

According to the National Coalition Against Domestic Violence (NCADV), almost half of Americans have experienced some type of emotional abuse. It is often defined as psychologically aggressive behavior by an intimate partner. But it can involve friends and family members, too. 

Further, four out of 10 women and men have been subjected to coercive control by a partner or spouse at some point during their lives. And almost 18 percent of women have experienced emotional abuse in the form of a partner or spouse trying to keep them from having contact with family or friends.