The new age world is waking up to abuse in a different form, emotional and mental abuse. It’s not as if it has suddenly spawned or that it hasn’t existed before. But we as a society now have become aware of its possibility and the trauma associated with it. The hurt is never seen, only felt, and in many cases not even realized. The scars remain, sometimes festered wounds take on another form and a slow decline of health leaves no traces. Words become invisible swords.
The more we read/hear about this the more we become aware of what this abuse is and what repercussions one might face. But does the abuser know? Unfortunately, sometimes they themselves are completely unaware of what they might be putting another individual through. Today my write-up is for that awakening. As parents, spouses, siblings, friends, employers, we all should be conscious of what we say and do. A repeatedly given statement may leave an everlasting impact. Check yourself if you are the creator of toxicity in a relationship.
The markers of a toxic person.
- Undermining the capabilities of another on a continuous basis
- Constantly having the need to correct the smallest mistake of the other
- The need for others to apologize to you for small overtures
- Blanket indictments of the uselessness of the other
- Having the constant need of having your permissions taken for everything
- Not giving a proper listening ear
- Using offense as defense (finding faults with the other if you are in the wrong)
- Raising your voice or improper tone for a small discrepancy by the other
- Feather beating, “You always do this.”, “You can never do this correctly” ,“ Why do I always have to repeat myself”, “Can’t you ever do anything properly”, “This is so middle class”, “Even the servants can do it better” and so on.
The last one is never even thought of as abuse. But things like this said repeatedly over and over again can destroy a person’s confidence and belief in themselves. Joseph Goebbels, who said, “If you repeat a lie often enough, it becomes accepted as truth.” Anything told again and again suddenly sounds believable. Over a period of time, the listener actually starts believing and behaving as if there is something wrong with him/her.
In today’s world, when there is so much strife outside, we all need to look inward, and if there is even one marker of the above that you say yes to…then wake up. You are the perpetrator of emotional and mental abuse. Make a change consciously.
As Leo Buscaglia said, “Too often we underestimate the power of a touch, a smile, a kind word, a listening ear, an honest compliment, or the smallest act of caring, all of which have the potential to turn a life around.”
A student committed suicide at the University of Southern California where he was teaching due to ragging. Yes, sometimes we don’t realize the power of words.