Signs You Are Verbally Abused: Part I

This is an engaging article concerning “verbal abuse”, providing an example that helps to clarify when it is in fact occurring. The second part of this article is also available online at Psych Central.

Psych Central


“Note: Issues of verbal control can exist in any relationship, heterosexual, gay or lesbian, male towards a female partner or the other way around. Since more is known about verbal abuse in relationships where a guy is controlling his female partner, this article will address those relationships. However, a simple change of gender in any of the names is all it takes to apply the principles to other pairs.

Verbal abuse takes many forms: from loud rants to quiet comments; from obvious put-downs to not-so-obvious remarks that undermine the partner. What all the methods have in common is the need to control, to be superior, to avoid taking personal responsibility, and to mask or deny failures. The myth in Hank’s and Mary’s relationship is that he is much, much smarter than she is. She does admire him, but not as much as he admires himself. He trumps anything she says with a stronger, maybe louder opinion. He calls her ideas naïve or ill-informed or even idiotic. Mary thinks he may be right…..”

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APA Reference Hartwell-Walker, M. (2013). Signs You Are Verbally Abused: Part I. Psych Central. Retrieved on February 22, 2013, from

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