Verbal Abuse Changed Me as a Person

March 2, 2023 Cheryl Wozny

Navigating verbal abuse is never ideal. This toxic behavior can alter how a person sees and trusts others and interacts in relationships. The amount of exposure to verbal abuse can drastically change a person's view or attitude toward themselves and others. This situation is one I'm familiar with since I can see now that verbal abuse has changed me. 

How Verbal Abuse Changed Me in Childhood

As a victim of verbal abuse, I now understand, after years of therapy, how I have changed. My childhood years were filled with feelings of inadequacy, shame, and guilt. These emotions are not something that a child should experience regularly.

Because of these and other deep-rooted feelings, I spent my childhood years with some unwelcomed issues, including: 

There were times when these issues were mild or non-existent. However, I carried them with me into adulthood.

How Verbal Abuse Changed My Adult Life

Because my childhood included verbal abuse that was never corrected or addressed, I grew up believing that this dynamic was normal. So, my first marriage was to a person who also displayed verbally abusive tendencies toward me. 

Once I started to recognize how hurtful the behavior was, I strived to change my situation. My adult life still contained these negative side effects from verbal abuse, including: 

  • Chronic neck and back pain
  • Depression and anxiety 
  • Complex PTSD
  • Low self-worth
  • Anger and control issues

Unfortunately, until I started seeking full-time therapy treatment, I faced these problems every day. Thankfully, my work with therapists has helped provide me with the tools I need to address my feelings of low self-worth, mistrust, and anger.

How I Handle Verbal Abuse Now

Although I no longer have to face verbal abuse regularly, it does still happen in some circumstances. However, I am more equipped to handle this situation when it does occur. Some techniques that work well for me are: 

  • Redirection
  • Leaving the conversation
  • Confronting the abuser 
  • Limiting my time with possible abusers
  • Setting clear boundaries 

Of course, I still struggle daily with anxiety and other lasting side effects from the verbal abuse in my life. However, I try to make an effort to rely on my coping tools and strategies from my therapist to help me through these situations. Although no one is perfect, knowing how verbal abuse changed me helps me navigate my adult life into a more positive environment. 

APA Reference
Wozny, C. (2023, March 2). Verbal Abuse Changed Me as a Person, HealthyPlace. Retrieved on 2024, June 15 from

Author: Cheryl Wozny

Cheryl Wozny is a freelance writer and published author of several books, including mental health resources for children titled, Why Is My Mommy So Sad? and Why is My Daddy So Sick? Writing has become her way of healing and helping others. Find Cheryl on TwitterInstagramFacebook, and her blog

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