Verbal Abuse Coping Skills for When You Can't Just Leave
Learning verbal abuse coping skills is more important than you might think. Common misconceptions about verbally abusive relationships are that verbal abuse is solely characteristic of romantic relationships and that you can simply leave. Verbal abuse can be present in relationships involving parent and child, siblings, friends, romantic relationships, co-workers, school-yard bullies -- the list continues. Considering people cannot immediately leave their family, quit their job, or change schools, it can be life-changing to develop verbal abuse coping strategies such as learning the facts about verbal abuse, response techniques, and ways to love yourself amidst the verbal abuse.
People often advise others to “just leave” and while this advice likely comes from a place of love, it may not be realistic. With that being said, verbal abuse does not have to plague your life. If you can escape, do so promptly. Your future self will thank you. These verbal abuse coping skills and tips are for relationships that you cannot readily exit and should be helpful until you’re able to remove yourself from the situation entirely.
Try These Verbal Abuse Coping Skills
Things You Need to Know
- Verbal abuse does not happen because of some character flaw in you. The character flaw belongs to the abuser. Verbal abusers are typically narcissists, deeply insecure, or have some other inherent issues completely separate from their association with you. Truly grasping this about the abuser can severely weaken the impact of their verbal assaults but strengthen your verbal abuse coping skills.
- Remember the abuser is not the authority on who you are as a person. You are distinct from how your abuser perceives you. Identify your personal truths and hold on to them. If you have always known something to be true, do not be convinced otherwise.
- You need to find ways to be assertive. You have the power to be an assertive person every day and you can do this in the smallest ways. When someone asks where you’d like to meet for lunch, rather than asking the other person to choose, pick your favorite restaurant. If someone suggests you do something you’d rather not, politely decline. Small assertive actions will help you to build your confidence and find your voice.
Learn Ways to Respond to Verbal Abuse
- Examine the most recent incident of verbal abuse; now examine any escalators that may have occurred. Make a mental note of the escalator and try to remove it or avoid it in future incidents. Verbal abuse is not your fault. However, you are not powerless either; you can exercise your power by making these modifications.
- Avoid verbally abusive encounters if you can feel them coming. Find a reason to be busy until the mood subsides. Ignore the remarks you’re able to. Verbal abusers often feed off of the response they get. Find ways to alter your response.
- Try not to engage in verbally abusive behavior as a rebuttal. For example, if someone calls you names, rather than call him or her a name back, try setting a boundary. I know this is easier said than done but explore this tactic seriously.
Learn to Love Yourself Amidst the Verbal Abuse
- Practice self-care. Do things you enjoy, even small things like watching your favorite film or reading. Get a haircut or buy yourself something you fancy. Small acts of self-care make people feel better, even if just a little better, it makes a difference.
- Make a point of spending time with people who love you and build you up. Involvement with a verbal abuser can lead to alienation from loved ones. Reach out, this is so important.
- Compliment yourself. Take note of your daily successes, acknowledge your talents and best character traits, and remember you are your own person with inner strength and personal power. The abuser can never change that, try as he or she might.
Sullivan, E. (2017, October 24). Verbal Abuse Coping Skills for When You Can't Just Leave, HealthyPlace. Retrieved on 2019, September 21 from https://www.healthyplace.com/blogs/verbalabuseinrelationships/2017/10/coping-with-verbal-abuse