Things Verbal Abusers Say and Do

April 29, 2012 Kellie Jo Holly

Abusive people, men and women, say and do similar things to control their victims. The delivery may vary in tone or type, but the effect is the same. Read this.

What does verbal abuse sound like? The tone and content vary from abuser to abuser, but the words affect the victim in similar ways. Victims hear horrible things from their abuser and they feel small, withdrawn, angry, helpless, sad, ashamed, and a hundred other horrible emotions - sometimes all at once.

At the beginning of my abusive relationship, I felt anger and stood up for myself leading to loud, circular verbal altercations that had no solutions. Later, after coming to believe that he was my hero, my savior, and my provider, I felt stupid and wanted to fix myself so he would love me. Much later, I turned away and left the house for a while which eventually led to increased physical violence and leaving forever.

Sometimes my abuser's words hurt when he jabs and attempts to provoke me on the phone. Mainly, the memory, the countless memories of the abusive things he's said to me rear up and try to convince me that his remembered voice is my own.

This list is only a partial list of the things verbal abusers say. It's not limited to my own abusive relationship. It takes into account what others report hearing, too.

Things Verbal Abusers Say:

  • "Why don't you get a job so you understand the real world? Oh, wait - I forgot - you can't get a job because you're a stupid sh!t.
  • "Quit your whining and crying. You have no reason to cry or complain! Your life is perfect because I made it that way!"
  • "Bitch" (and the countless other names I won't bother to list)
  • "I should have left you at the club with all the other whores."
  • "If you were more like my mother I could worship you."
  • "I hate it when you act so pitiful. Stop the waterworks and talk like a human being."
  • "I can't stand to look at you. You make me sick."
  • "You're such a great actress! You know how to get what you want, don't you?"
  • "I can't believe I have to come home to you every day. How did I get involved with such a train wreck?"
  • "I must be the first a$$hole to love you. You don't know how to please a man!"
  • "You're fat and miserable and you make me hate you."
  • "You always look like God stomped on your face."
  • "Why do you care what I want for dinner? My favorites taste like crap when you make them anyway."
  • "You used to be as beautiful as my ex, but geesh - time hasn't been good to you, baby!"
  • "Those children are mine, will always be mine, and if you leave you'll never see them again."

Things Verbal Abusers Do:

  • Deny they said anything similar to the list above.
  • Defend what they've said.
  • Analyze what they've said out loud, explaining that the words they used do not have the definitions you seem to think they do.
  • Block you in a room so you can't leave and thereby avoid what they're saying.
  • Talk horribly to the television but are really speaking to you.
  • Flip open their knife to open a piece of gum while looking at you under knitted brows.
  • Leave to do something else at the last minute when you had plans together.
  • Take you out for your best birthday ever and then wind up berating you on the way home for not appreciating their efforts enough.
  • Tell your children you need more happy pills to be a good mom.
  • Change the topic of the conversation so you bounce from one place to another, never getting to the core of the issue.
  • Accuse you of being a whore or a dummy or a _________ so often that they no longer need to say the words but can offer up a "look" and you know what they're saying (then they may deny it).

Okay. I have to stop. My stomach is literally upset right now after digesting the utter contempt and hatred some people spew on a daily basis.

If you're still living in this nonsense, learn about detachment and how it can benefit you. Maybe in time you'll choose to leave your abuser, and maybe you'll choose to stay. No one here will judge you for staying (I've been there and it can feel hopeless!), but please work on ways to make yourself feel better in the process.

Start here:

You can also find Kellie on her website at Verbal Abuse Journals and can buy her books from Amazon.

*Both women and men could be abusers or victims, so do not take my pronoun choices as an implication that one gender abuses and the other is victimized.

APA Reference
Jo, K. (2012, April 29). Things Verbal Abusers Say and Do, HealthyPlace. Retrieved on 2024, June 23 from

Author: Kellie Jo Holly

September, 13 2019 at 2:07 pm

I do not know if I am being emotionally abused or not. I have been with him for 10 years, we have 5 kids (2 mine) (3 his)
When he gets mad he will call me a b****, tell me to shut the f*** up. If he doesnt have clean clothes to wear for work or of I do not buy food. I work full time and pay the bills ( I do not make alot) he makes more he pays the mortgage and his child support and his car payment. He makes me pay half for any appliances or anything for the house. He has called me a c***, he has told me to get the f*** out.... I am always scared of being yelled at early in the morning ( he leaves between 4 am -6am) so I always make sure he has work clothes in his basket. I cook all the meals clean up after all the meals do all the laundry all the cleaning (but I do not clean well enough for him) I also do most of the stuff with the kids, alot of the time if i take them swimming he wont come he will stay home alone. Is this abuse or just a sh***y husband?

September, 14 2019 at 9:25 am

Hi Melanie,
It can be difficult to determine what's abuse and what's not. I always suggest reaching out to someone you trust and or a licensed therapist for support and guidance. An outside perspective is always helpful. However, name-calling is a verbally abusive trait, and if you fear saying or doing certain things to avoid conflict, it might be time for outside intervention. Counseling may be able to help both of you communicate in a healthy way. You don't have to go it alone, and you don't deserve to live in fear. Always remember that. I wish you the best and encourage you to read more articles on HealthyPlace. They may give you the insight or sign you're looking for.
Light and love-Jenn

September, 27 2019 at 11:06 am

Yes this is abuse. No one has the right to call you a C*** or b**** any self respecting husband would call you his sweatheart or my loving wife. Every couple has their own arguments but he is making you feel bad about yourself.He wont from what you are saying doing things with you like swimming with the children why? because he is a selfish man. Thinking only of his NEEDS his FEELINGS his TIME his SPACE. Never helps you in the home when he creates some of the mess and he can clean his own clothes he is a grown man. Making you feel like crap for not having HIS items ready or expecting you to pay more than himself. What is he doing with his extra money? Seems he is not interested in you or the family life and does only what he wants because he can? Does this make sense. Never feel it is you who needs help as he wants you to feel insecure, lower your self esteem, make you feel worthless to make him feel better and in control. You need to be happy you have one life and it is not to be put on the earth to be spoken to that way or to put up with this form of abuse. Read it again all you have said and make it really sink in just what he is doing. Your life and if the children are hearing this form of behaviour they pick up on things it is NOT a two way happy relationship from what you are explaining. Hope you see the light x

June, 22 2019 at 12:43 am

Hi, I have been married for 7 years and it's just getting worse. We keep moving from City to City but it's the same thing. My husband is always accusing me of sleeping with men and women, accusing me of going out when I have no friends and no life, accusing me of stealing money from him but yet he has no job. He is never home always out in the garage with low life homeless people that are always drugged out. On the other hand you have me, I cook 3 meals, clean 24 hours, take care of 2 kids all day!!! And take my husband's bull shit!!! He hates talking about bills, money, or anything for that fact. He wakes up whenever he like and stays up all night. I stay up with are 1 year old, feeding, changing diapers and so on. He is always stating I'm doing him wrong in some way, I can't even take a shower without being called nasty names. I never leave unless I'm with him and are 2 kids. But for as for him he's always out never home are 6 year old even cried asking him to spend more time with us as a family but that did nothing!!! Everywhere we have lived he has caused a problem with are neighborhoods. He thinks everyone is out to get him but in reality no one cares. Everyone is busy with there life, kids job but yet he thinks everyone has it out for him. I honestly start to tell cuz I defend myself but I hate when I'm like that. I try so many times to have a conversation but he doesn't care. He has hit me a few times and I hate him for that. He will say that you forced me to. But he's 6 feet I'm 4 "11. I pushed my family away cuz he acts crazy with them. I have never had friends and I'm accused of having them. I have ended in a mental hospital cuz of him 2 times. Each time he pushes me to my limit then blames me for everything. Not once has he blamed himself. He has done ever drug under the sun. And takes it out on me. BTW he blames me for that as well. Again I have never changed I'm not perfect but I'm me. I mind my business and keep to myself not one person has come home. Everyday he has 7 to 10 people in him garage to the point where everyone is complaining about him. He keep saying how he's making money but not 1 penny has come are way. He's out all day and when I complain he tells me I'm making money hes better off getting a job and coming. Last year he told me that I was cheating on him with ever car that would come into the complex or how I have a secret door in my closet or how I use candy crush the game as a dating app?!!!.. what should I do??? I have 2 kids with him and are 6 year old loves him. I do love him but I don't think I can put up with anymore. BTW there's more problems I can keep at it till the next day,!!!

June, 10 2019 at 8:29 pm

Hi , I am in the same situation ; same words my husband also using. He is too much perfect and discipline man so for the small things he yell at me like anything and always says am not worth at all to do any things.
He always call me as useless.
But I am a working women and earning more than him .He saying am not doing anything perfect in household. If I want anything from he always comes up with my past mistakes(as per his opinion) and say I cannot have rights to ask for it.
He take over me fully. He says my dressing sense is too bad and he only select the cloths for me. Whoever seeing from outside thinks my husband is so caring but originally am struggling a lot. Even the inners also he only select but doesn't think of its comfortable for me.
He is not allowing my parents to visit me or I have to visit them .Not allowing my child to speak with my parents.
He cut down all his friendships and mines. He is not allowing me to contact my relatives. I feel more lonely. His life is only me and Child (and his parents) and he wants the same to be for myself also.

Kane Roberts
June, 5 2019 at 5:11 pm

I will love to share my testimony to all the people in the forum cos I never thought i will have my girlfriend back and she means so much to me. The girl I want to get marry to left me few weeks to our wedding for another man. When I called her she never picked my calls, She blocked me on her facebook and changed her facebook status from engage to Single, when I went to her place of work she told her boss she never want to see me. I lost my job as a result of this cos I couldn't get myself anymore, my life was upside down and everything did not go smooth with my life. I tried all i could do to have her back to all did not work out until i met a Man when i travel to East to execute some business that I have been developing some years back. I told him my problem and all i have passed through in getting her back and how i lost my job, he told me he gonna help me, I didn't believe that in the first place. But she swore she will help me out and she told me the reason why my girlfriend left me and also told me some hidden secrets’ was amazed when i heard that from her...she said she will cast a spell for me and i will see the results in the next couple of days..then i travel back, the following day and i called him when i got home and he said he’s busy casting those spells and he has bought all the materials needed for the spells, she said am gonna see positive results in the next 14 days that is Thursday. My girlfriend called me at exactly 12:35pm on Thursday and apologies for all she had done. She said, she never knew what she was doing and her sudden behavior was not intentional and she promised not to do that again. it was like am dreaming when i heard that from her and when we ended the call, I called the Erica and told her my my girl friend called and she said I haven’t seen anything yet… she said i will also get my job back. And when its Sunday, they called me at my place of work that i should resume work on Monday and they gonna compensate me for the time limit I have spent at home without working...My life is back into shape have my girlfriend back and we are happily married now with a baby boy and I have my job back too. This lady is really powerful...if we have up to 20 people like her in the world, the world would have been a better place...she has also helped many of my friends to solve many problems and they are all happy now...Am posting this to the forum for anybody that is interested in meeting the lady for help. You can mail her to erika_raven_temple@ religious. com, I can’t give out her number cos she told me she don’t want to be disturbed by many people across the world...she said her email is okay and she also have a web site if you want to visit her there’ she will replied to any emails asap..Hope she helped u out too...good luck. Her web site is ericaraven. webs . com

May, 19 2019 at 4:35 pm

I am a husband married and my wife curses and yells at me and the kids constantly over small things. She constantly says she is losing at it can be over small things like I misplaced one of her boxes. She would get angry that she cannot find it and then berates me loudly for 30 minutes about how important it is to keep her things organized. The funny thing is that she is a slob and lazy and cannot focus and cannot prioritize things to actually do any work or do house work and do a good job at it. She has never cooked a full meal. We both work and I take care of the home and the kids and honestly try to avoid her having to do much so she doesn't start to "lose it" over small things and make it a living hell for all of us at the house. She spends her weekends binge watching Netflix and sleeping. She has trouble sleeping regular nights and has a lot of drama with people at her work. She is not able to handle stress at work and small things that children say or things that take work at home. Anyone with similar experience please help. I am not willing to get a divorce because of the kids and would like to make it work but the emotional instability and the cursing and the abuse is taking a toll on the marriage and our family.

May, 26 2019 at 4:21 am

She sounds depressed/anxios to me, I can understand at lot of her actions as I feel them too, a simple thing like losing something, really freaks me out, it gives me a physical feeling of weight on my chest, that's sets off panic, sounds like she is the same. I also struggle to prioritise things, I used to be happy relaxed, and really easy going, now everyday stresses seem too much to handle, every where I look, something wants a piece of me, though I have nothing to give. Binge eating, one little comfort, and netflix one thing she can zone out from, without thinking about all the things that go through her mind. Only my guess, but on my bad days, I could be like this. I now take Ads. I have learned about anxiety and stress on a course at the doctors. I now have more motivated days, than not. Had she ever mentioned anything like this, or feelings she doesn't understand?

Confused and depressed with a black eye.
January, 3 2023 at 10:59 am

Interesting, when a women list things like this her husband is an abuser, straight off no questions asked, he's evil. When a man says the same about a women, she's depressed? She needs forgiveness and help? Why don't you offer the same compassion to men? Or don't we deserve it? Just a thought I had reading this comment. I was physically and emotionally abused by my mum, my first boyfriend and the man I currently live with, I recently realized how much of a dark horrible path my mum set me down as a child. Each of there excuses is that I apparently have a horrible voice. Now, I've just found out that my mum lied in court, took her sisters kids off her for nothing (5 years since) and has had them taken off her for the same abuse she put me through after my cousin tried to take his life. Does she need forgiveness and help? I suffer from severe mental health problems because of all she did to me as a child, not to mention what she allowed my brother to do to me in the bedroom, and her with holding my disabled dad

June, 26 2019 at 11:24 am

You may not be willing to get a divorce but are you willing to have your children think that this is what marriage is supposed to be? They will end up marrying someone like her or being someone like her. Take a stand and expect change for the kids sake. If she isn’t willing to work on herself then you need to protect the kids. Believe me, staying married for the sake of the kids isn’t a good thing. I have terrible and sad memories of growing up that make me who I am. Give your children better.

September, 19 2020 at 9:52 pm

That’s right, i I hope he considered to take this route, the kids are the most important not her that he needed to protect

May, 18 2019 at 3:33 pm

Sadly my situation was that I was alone in another country where the attitude towards domestic abuse and violence against women and children was somewhat draconian and an accepted practice so there was little empathy let alone laws or procedures to deal with it. I was aware that I was being mentally and physically abused but I couldnt do a thing about it except leave my home, my belongings and my life which at first I was reluctant to do as I felt that I should not have to give up everything that I had worked my entire life to achieve when I was the victim and had done nothing wrong. At first his verbal abuse had no effect on my self esteem as I was strong and self assured and well aware his behaviour was the problem and not me. However in time it took its toll with me feeling constantly on edge and anxious without being able to relax in my own home. I wanted him to leave but he wouldn't go and not even the police would help! I did not and would not comply with his controlling behaviour initially but he then turned to being violent towards me so I had no choice but to surrender to his demands and suppress my own feelings and needs until I could find a way out of it. Of course he was not always abusive especially when I didnt question his authority or disagree with his opinions and met his every need and demands so I went alone with it and in these times I started to convince myself it wasnt so bad and not as bad as the other option of me having to leave my home and my life with nowhere else to really go... but with abusers, the abuse always continues to escalate and after I had been beaten up many times, each time worst than the last after him promising that time and the time before he would never do it again, I knew he would kill me eventually if I didnt leave him... I had to leave my home, my life and everything I had except the clothes on my back in the end but I am grateful to be alive!

May, 6 2019 at 10:36 am

I was engaged to a man that thank God I didn't marry. And this weekend I hung out with him. Same s*** different day. Calling me as scumbag calling me a **** oh, we've been through a lot together I was pregnant and had an abortion because I could not keep his child because I knew how life would be with him. I feel bad about that everyday but then I think how would my life be if I had a child with him he would have so much more control over me. I'm leaving my phone number here [number deleted] if anyone ever wants to talk feel free to call me I am so open to discussion I've been there and I've done that and sometimes what gives us strength is talking to another person that it's going to the same situation as you it helps trust me. There's a reason why we're on this website doesn't that tell us anything? I'm 37 years old not married no kids and I was willing to settle but this man just because I thought I loved him and I thought I was getting too close to bearing children at forty. I still feel that way I still feel like I should even try to make it work because who else do I have. But that's not the case. If any of you want to talk please reach out because like I said it helps me as well and it'll help you let's get to the bottom of this as women we will survive and instead of being victims let's consider ourselves the lucky ones please reach out to me if you feel okay doing so

May, 13 2019 at 11:02 am

Hi Heather,
Id like to chat. Im married to an abuser and need some help.

May, 15 2019 at 4:55 pm

Hi Natasha: I'm so sorry about what you're going through with your spouse. I wanted to post and offer a link to our resource page here at HealthyPlace in case you want to contact any of the organizations there for the assistance you need. It's located here:… Stay strong and take care of yourself! -Kristen

March, 21 2019 at 11:30 pm

Here I am a grown woman at 48 years of age googling this at matter how old I get I can't shake the verbal and physical abuse I endured as a kid. I'm adopted and had an issue at age 6 (to the present day) where I developed trichotillomania (started pulling all eyelashes out -then progressed to all eyebrows around age 17 -to this day I pull all out by the end of any given day). Terrible beatings and threats I can't even begin to share -but tonight for some reason I can see my dad working on the side of our house when I was 7 and him telling me to "get away as I make him sick" (due to my hair pulling). I've tried talking to my mom about this but she denies everything (she was always part of it). Anyhow, just need prayers...I don't understand how anyone could hurt a child physically or emotionally.

October, 25 2018 at 11:21 pm

I'll make this comment brief. First, I'm a survivor (NOT victim) of a 35 yr marriage of escalating abuse that ended with DV. A hereditary physical disability prevented my getting out far far earlier than I succeeded in doing so.
I feel strongly impelled to say that the photo at the top of this web page is inappropriate. I have had much exposure to the situations of other survivors, both as a volunteer and in other settings, and for many relationships any portrayal--such as the photo clearly implies--that "it takes two" is plain dead wrong. For so many of us, who are not codependent, who do and have set boundaries, who exercise careful self-discipline of all kinds along with courage up to 24 hrs a day in the balancing act of standing up for themselves in an abusive environment, it definitely does not take two. It only takes ONE. Any one of us could be the most perfect person ever to set foot on the face of this planet, ever to interact with the partner, family member, or spouse in question, ever to care about, love, and try as hard as any person ever did to make a relationship with that person work--and the abuse would still have occurred. Did any of you ever think of that?
If no, do so, please.
I will not detail more of what it takes day in and day out to live in and walk out of abuse as a survivor and not a victim, but so many of you know just what I mean. And that photo needs to be replaced. It is not descriptive of verbal abuse, except in that a verbal abuser can--yes--be from either gender. Please get rid of it. No photo is better than that one.

September, 2 2018 at 10:45 am

I'm in a very unusual situation. I've been with my husband for literally half my life- we met when I was 15. I got pregnant 7 months in, we got married, and it has been a nightmare since. I left more than once, but always went back. The beginning years were the worst, physically and emotionally. It got better after the last time I left, and was that way for a while. I thought he actually loved me and would be different. I did some things while I was gone, such as dating outside my race, which he hated. After a while he started asking questions about that particular time, even going so far as to ask me multiple times to do it again. I thought it was some kind of trap. I begged out of it for a couple years, then finally went with it. I didn't enjoy it at first, it was weird and I struggled. I kept at it because I always want to make him happy, I never really succeed. He made it seem like all I needed to do was this or that, and I'd try...I would, but many times it wouldn't work out the way things were planned. All my fault! Now 3 years later, I thoroughly enjoy going out because I get from them what I've never gotten from him. The last time, it didn't work as planned, and he flipped out...keep in mind, he flips out over small things the kids do, not getting his way over every little thing, me not sticking to an oral pleasure schedule he set up years ago as well...there is no end to what makes him mad. Anyway, since the last time, a few weeks ago, the verbal assualt has really picked up. Idk what to do anymore. We have 4 children, ages 14, 13, 11, and 6, and they know he's an ass, they see and hear him being abusive, he's even mean to them at times, not physically, but it hurts my heart. They deserve better, I deserve better. I'm just terrified of leaving and not being able to support my babies, or of him really hurting me or them. He hates when I refuse to engage in arguments, when I shut down, but I can't help it...I don't do well with conflict, i freeze, terrified of what's he going to hurt Me? Hurt the kids? What do I say or do? Just this morning he was at me about missing my night last night to perform oral on him, but he fell asleep before 7pm! I got up this morning to try and fix it and even made breakfast for him, but he wasn't having any of it. Idk why I'm even writing this, no one can possibly be in the exact same situation and offer advice.

October, 9 2018 at 3:52 pm

Dear H,
Look for a domestic violence shelter in your area. Verbal abuse is domestic abuse. Do you have family or friends who can help? If so, seek them out for support. Don't tell your abuser any of your plans. Are you employed? Your children are school-age so maybe you can work while they attend school.
Keep reading this site and others for information, support, and encouragement. (((Hugs)))
There are many people who care about you! :)

May, 6 2019 at 10:31 am

Hi my name is Heather. I have gone through similar things and situations like you have. You are not alone. Don't feel like your situation is any different from any other I would like to talk on the phone because it helps me as well as it helps you [number deleted]
Call me as soon as you read this I'm a 37 year old going to be 38 this month female. I was engaged to a man. I saw all the signs but completely put them aside because I thought that I could fix them. Verbal abuse, physical abuse, and emotional abuse does not go away on its own. You are doing everything that you are supposed to and that you are trying your best to do. There is no way you should have to live with a schedule that someone else makes for you. Nobody else should be telling you when to give them oral that is beyond abuse. You're a beautiful human being that has children with this person and you know what? When you met this person you didn't know how you would wind up. It's not your fault. I keep getting caught in the same trap and thinking that it's going to change. It won't. It's different for you because you have children and you want to keep the family together I get it. But while keeping the family together you're slowly dying inside and outside. So what's more important? Keeping your own wits and Sanity and his self respect or keeping the family together and having this person step all over you and you walk on eggshells? In no way is this your fault but what I'm saying is they comes a fine line and when that's crossed imagine what the next step would be for the next action they take? There's no need to live the rest of your life in fear or to live on someone else's schedule that they make for you to give them oral or they'll be upset. Think about that. I know it's easier said than done and I know it's very hard. But just like myself there comes a time when we have to go and leave and get out of the situation simply because we don't deserve to live this way and it's as simple as that. We were not put on this Earth to be brought down low to anything else but what we were born here to be, wonderful women. I'm sure you have beautiful children and that is a good thing that came out of this. But that might be just about all that is good that came out of this. It's time to leave it's time to get out of the restraints and the ropes that are day in and day out tying you back. Think about it like this and this is how I think about it there's no reason you and I would be on this website if we weren't completely in pain over it and we knew something wasn't right. If you find yourself on a baking website for cupcakes what does that mean? It means you want to learn how to bake cupcakes right? Well you're on a verbal abuse website, what does that tell you right there simply that we're even on this site is the answer itself. Stop asking questions which I will do as well to the outside world for their opinion the opinion lies within you. You know what's right and wrong and obviously that's the reason why you're on this website because you know it's wrong. There's no clarification for this there's no putting this on the back burner. You obviously feel uncomfortable in the relationship you're in and yes it's scary to leave but think about the damage that could be caused if you stay. Just remember there are millions of people as you and I speak right now that are not happy in their relationships. We are not alone this is an everyday event for many people like us. And stupid us keep running back for more will that has to stop there must be an end to this when I noticed wow I'm on a website for verbal and mental abuse from a man, right there's my first answer and my first sign that there's a problem. There are many ways you can get out of this relationship without Danger call me I left you my number if you can call me and he's around I understand but I would like to speak to you as well because I'm going through the same thing except I'm not married I was engaged. And the two of us are on and off and I just hung out with him this weekend and the same verbal abuse and emotional abuse and yet I still feel like I'm the one that did something wrong I need to speak to other women that are going through what I'm going through because nobody else the regular person out there will understand. Call me fight me calling you or you calling me and I stalking it will help each other trust me you have to talk to someone that goes through what you do. Somewhere along the line we will come up with an answer if we stick together us women have to stick together when going through any situation like this. You can't run away from it it's not going anywhere but you can take charge and control of it in your own mind that way you don't live your life on eggshells and the first step is to reach out what you have done call me my number is above my name is Heather

August, 22 2018 at 12:01 pm

why are these commentaries always portray men as the abusers....

Angelica Pickles
October, 25 2018 at 11:53 pm

Dear x:
Hmm...You're more than welcome to share the information you must have others clearly lack: which is, that you're welcome to add your stats on how many contributors here are men and how many are women--and how many didn't answer the questionnaire you must have sent around. I sure don't know. My boss is a married gay guy who is very proud of his husband, and more, most of us think he's one of the best bosses we ever had. You really think "husband", for example, means the speaker is a woman? More, without more clarity it's also hard to understand which commentaries you're including, just this page? and more questions of that sort. You've got to narrow your question down. I think it's clear you are a guy, one who's annoyed, but if I can't tell, and you don't say, you're guessing too. A the end of all that, you are asking a why question, and the only answer for that is: Why are you asking?

BPD is real
July, 22 2018 at 4:54 am

I'm not condoning abuse of any kind. However with that being said. Not every verbal abuser is just an abusive person. I struggle with a disorder called BPD and it does not stand for bi polar. When I get stressed or angry or afraid I enter a fight or flight mode in my head. I don't like it and I normally would plead for my wife to stop pushing the argument further and she would end up keeping it going. Then I end up losing it and apart of the disorder is lashing out and going for the jugular sort of speak. I don't like it and I feel like shit every time it's over. I never hidy problems from her. I told her what I had and what happened to me that caused it. She still agreed to marry me. The help she tried to give was not the proper help and she never even read up on it. I thought she knew what was wrong with me but I found out after 5 years she never even read it. She jhas been dealing withy problems for that long and never knew why it was happening. I never wanted to say bad things to her. The sad thing is after she left. That's when she decided to actually find out what was wrong with me and how to really help. But the damage in her mind was already done and not able to be fixed. I took just want to be loved and have a healthy relationship but I'm not able to have that because I was broken as a child and it's not a super glue fix. I have said I was sorry so much it's not even funny. But I don't mean to sit here and make it sound like it's ok to be abusive. I just want to open your eyes maybe that person actually needs your love and support and therapy Because they might just have a mental health problem. Not everyone asked to be cursed with a disorder. And I don't think that one person's problems should become a bourdon on someone else. But if you know the problem and still agree to be with them. Then find ways to help. I just wish I had real help before it was to late. I chose my job to support my family over my mental health and I ended up losing everything in the end. I miss my son and my wife. Now I am on a medicine that is a mood stabilizer so I don't lose control as easy. Actually I haven't at all since I started taking it. Dispit how much my ex seems like she tries to get me to lose control just to help her case later down the line. But I just wanted to open your eyes to other sides. I just needed proper help and I'm getting it. Not every abuser is just some ass who likes to hurt others. I'm not saying stay with one. But if they want the help and is willing to get it. Try.

July, 10 2019 at 7:15 pm

BPD is NOT a mental illness, it's a BEHAVIORAL disorder. Stop using BPD as an excuse for your ****** behavior and abuse. Take responsibility for YOUR actions.

Tanda Miller
September, 15 2021 at 12:24 pm

BPD is a mental illness. It is a Personality Disorder. A personality disorder is a class of mental disorders. A mental disorder, also called a MENTAL ILLNESS or psychiatric disorder, is a behavioral or mental pattern that causes significant distress or impairment of personal functioning.

Barry Salvitore
June, 11 2018 at 2:01 pm

I am very curious about something.
If someone is abusive , is it something that would most likely happen for years and years, or can it start suddenly, even after 20 years?
There is a situation where I know someone since basically the time I was born as the person has been friend with an older sibling since they were in preschool. I know him, his parents, his siblings, etc..
I realize of course it is difficult to know 100% what goes on behind closed doors, but when I have to choose whom to believe. I must believe the person with more credibility.
the person's spouse made claims that the husband was abusive to her, phycially and mentally. the person said stuff like "this will be hard to believe, I know it is hard to believe" however, t is also stated that the husband treats the couple's child very well, no abuse whatsoever and never has and cares for them.
they claimed the husband grabberd her. now sh ealso said she filed a claim, but the medical examiners showed zero proof of any bruises.
also says she is diminished etc.. the person says their own parents and siblings and everyone else takes his side, and not hers. well all people who know her very very well.
I do also know this idiivdual has some sort of bipolar and other similar issues for a long time. I also know one time they did something such as leaving work early, driving for no apparent reason , to some other state, every one was worried, work didn't know anything, nobody did, she was found to be ok, they were all very worried about her. then after they decided to start medications . and she had been mostly fine for awhile although still did some weird things.
recently she started having some episodes again, and I was told they sent her to a place that deals with mental illness to help her get better. I don't think she wanted to go.
she accsued her huband, her parents, and of course all the doctors of conspirting against her.
now she doesn't want to go home acting like she is all scared. but I asked both for the aprens andt he husband, were they always like this? or did this start recently. she seemed to indicate recent.
none of that really adds up to me. I am thinking she is deluding herself into thinking something is happening that is not. but I think the fact they made her go get help, was the trigger for her being so accusatory and wants to take a stand.
so I am wondering, what are some thoughts on this?

May, 23 2018 at 10:26 pm

Wow! So many people going through what I am going through. First off, I am a firm believer in putting love into action. Because I have studied love I took his mistreatment of me as a challenge to love him more, because he seemed like he never had anyone to love him. 3 years of misery, 1 miscarriage, a 2 year old and a 2 month old later, I now see that he is not the person for me. Even when he wished I would die in the hospital after giving birth to our son I stayed. Even though his behavior in the operating room while the doctors were giving me a c section had us all super alarmed because he was so angry that I wanted our sons middle name to be after my father. We thought he was going to hit me in my stomach while I was cut open on the operating table. Thank God he just stormed out, but I stayed. Even though he hoped our daughter wouldn't make it stayed. I left for a short while but I returned and it seems things are worse. He calls me worthless, ugly, he tells me he never liked me, refuses to pay the bills ontime and give me money to take care of the kids and house. I know I made the wrong decision to come back, but I'm to ashamed to go back to my sisters house. I feel so alone, sad and depressed. I know the cure is to leave him and focus my attention elsewhere but where do I start? How do I start? I have no money, no job 2 babies and a van that needs a new engine.

May, 12 2018 at 2:04 pm

I’m so glad it is not me being crazy, neither the problem. I am called everything under the sun, then he wants sex. Then he is charming until I say the wrong thing, or do the wrong thing, or simply ask him to clean after himself. How dare I tell him what to do!! Then I am the problem. I’ve been called everything during my 8 years of hell marriage. Unfortunately, where I live, I have no relatives or friends who can help me. I feel trapped. He threatens me with everything. He has even been violent sometimes. He constantly shouts at me. I’m never asked how am I. I need to work, clean, cook and shop. If something in the house is dirty, then I should go and clean it again. I feel ugly, unloved, disrespected, sad, isolated as I don’t have many friends either and I cannot really turn around to the few ones I’ve got and tell them what he really is like when they see me a bit sad. I feel extremely lonely. I really feel I have nobody to talk to. I just wish I had never met this man. That I had never married him. He was so much nicer when I met him, but he has gone worse and I really regret ever meeting him. No. Leaving is not an option. I’ve tried that before and I have had to come back due to money and children problems. Yes, I work. No, it is not enough for maintaining a child and myself. Do not judge. It is very easy to tell people to leave, especially when you’re not in their shoes. As I said before, I tried it and it did not work. Renting, the cost of daycare for a child, working and studying. I simply could not cope make ends meet. Now I work and still I struggle with the money, but I have a roof over my head and I am saving some money. One day, I’ll be free and happy again. Someone will give me a big hug and will tell me it wasn’t my fault and that everything will be ok.

May, 23 2018 at 10:55 pm

My heart breaks for what you are going through, what we all are going through and others have gone through. It's not your fault I'm praying for you, please pray for me. You are loveable and loved. Saying this to you makes me feel better. I am going to start to counteract the negative by making self affirming statements to myself regularly.

May, 5 2018 at 9:38 pm

I have been married 31 years to a verbal abuser, didn't realize it was that until the last 5 years. I married for Better or worse but, abuse does not count. I have been called every name n the book, but things have taken a new twist, I begged for counseling and he won't do t because I'm the one fucked up, I'm toxic, have my head up my ass. If I try to defend myself against his words he is an expert at blame shifting. The newest thing is he can be a nasty insulting person, I'll walk away, because confronting him makes things worse then in 2 minutes it's like nothing happened. I'm still angry and hurt but don't say anything. It's almost like he is two people. I'm still in the marrage that is loveless, I try to hug or kiss but after being rejected so many times I don't even try that seems to suit him just fine. Currently our arguments over the dumbest things, where he says says terrible things is about every other night so I do believe I should end this whole thing, but it is scary.

In reply to by Anonymous (not verified)

May, 5 2018 at 9:49 pm

Wow arter rereading this is is so toned down to what is really going on, I can't have any friends, and the two I have I have to see in secret, he won't get close or let anyone get close to us. A few time we did and they stopped being our fiends because they couldn't stand the way he treated me and were mad because I put up with it. According to hubby we don't have any friends because I push them away. I could go on and on it it is all because of me, he has stripped me of any self confidence. Ruined anything I care about but it is my fault. This has gone on the whole marriage, but yeah something must be wrong with me because I stay. I'll admit I stay because I'm scared, ashamed for putting up with it, afraid of what he will say. I have no kids a job and am financially able to leave so there should be no excuse right.

In reply to by Anonymous (not verified)

April, 29 2019 at 7:29 pm

Hun its perfectly normal to be scared, weither you have kids/a job or not. Im only 15 and was in an abusive relationship that i finally ended almost a year ago. A lot of people weren't happy with me either since i was 'letting it happen' it's a very dark and terrifying place to be. Ima be honest tho, i really hope you leave, and soon! Leaving my ex was one of the best decisions I've ever made. It was a hurdle cuz i was scared too and im not gonna lie, after you leave him (if you choose to) your prolly gonna feel anxious about it for a while like 'did i make the right decision?' But one day you'll realize you did and it'll all be behind you. If he tries to rope you back in...Stand. Your. Ground!
Also something kinda ironic: you posted this the exact day i left that ex 😂
I'll be praying for you dear!

In reply to by Anonymous (not verified)

July, 18 2021 at 7:57 pm

Its sad to say but this is howvive treated my wife for a long time,and now that ive lost my family im a complete empty mess ! Never did I realize the person I had become and all I had to do was stop!I feel bad for you and your situation since it foes relate to mine and im one of those men that will not q u it or give up on my wife and my family ,I wish I hadn't said or done all the things I have but I did and now I'm the one lost,take it from me some men do admit as nd figure out whats important and meaningful to them but sometimes we figure it out too late!!

In reply to by Anonymous (not verified)

December, 6 2021 at 4:09 pm

I’m wondering if you are still in the relationship? Your story is mine. Married 21 years full of verbal abuse and some good times. But the verbal abuse is like cancer that grows in your soul, each nasty word, put down, hateful thing that’s said leaves a little black spot that grows and grows and eventually there’s nothing left but blackness. I went through all the things the writer of this article has said, first argued back, then tried to fix me, then I would just leave and now I’ve just learned to take it. I’m so emotionally and financially dependent on him that I don’t know how to leave, or where to go. I’m so twisted up inside I don’t know what if anything I want. I want him to stop hurting me that’s as far as my brain can go. Anyway it’s another bad day which is why I was searching articles and found this. And the rollercoaster goes on.

December, 7 2021 at 12:04 pm

Hello Jen, I am Cheryl Wozny, the current author of the Verbal Abuse in Relationships Blog here at HealthyPlace. I'm so sorry to hear about your situation. Please know that you are not out of options. Sometimes people who experience abuse feel this way, but it isn't true. Please reach out and get help. You don't have to live like that. You can start here:…. I wish you luck on your healing journey.

May, 4 2018 at 8:50 pm

It took me reading this to see my first husband was a narcissist and my second husband not far off. I feel anyone that can relate to this is dealing with a narcissist, they lack feelings. You can try until you’re blue in the face to get them to understand but they are unable to feel empathy. My first husband committed suicide. If you are reading this- You Deserve Better!! Please leave this man that is tr sting you this way! You are strong and beautiful!

April, 21 2018 at 3:52 am

My husband called me pathetic because I enjoy taking my son to work because I get to spend time with him, then when I wanted to talk about it the next day he brought up a kiss & hug my son gave me for my birthday a year & a half ago a quick kiss my husband made out it was some torrid affair I was having with my son told me if a father kissed their daughter like that he'd be in jail made me feel like a paedophile & told me I was disgusting. I was just getting very the fact he kicked me out in September we got back together because he agreed to marriage counseling but only went to two sessions. He's been sucking up but today called me a sour puss I sad I was just sad I said an apology will help but he said i will never get one because he meant it. He cuddled up to me cause he wants sex I have in my head why would he want that with someone he believes s pathetic & disgusting. He never tells me he loves me, never kisses me because he says it's disgusting & sloppy. I don't know what time do I believe my love for him is dieing I want to leave but can't afford to as i don't work and he says its his money & his house & I won't be entitled to anything about if I left.

In reply to by Anonymous (not verified)

April, 21 2018 at 3:55 am

Sorry few minutes spell check mistakes but you get the jift.

In reply to by Anonymous (not verified)

May, 4 2018 at 8:54 pm

That’s not true about not being entitled. He’s using the word entitled to make you think you don’t deserve something. How long have you been married? You could very well be “entitled” to a lot!!

April, 17 2018 at 6:31 pm

My husband tells me I have enemies and nobody likes me... Calls me stupid.. Gets angry easily and blames me for everything... I'm no angel and I always right my wrong of I'm wrong.. But he never apologies .. I'm so hurt... I just want to hide... I had a job and he started accusing me of being in men face and I never in my life ever did.. Even questioning our five year of he ever seen me do that :(

In reply to by Anonymous (not verified)

June, 25 2021 at 3:04 pm

You do not deserve this. Talk to him on how you’re feeling and what you need. Look for progress and lack of occurrences / extremes, if there is no growth, try your best to leave if this is something you cannot live with. I am currently in a relationship where I’ve been told “you’re not marriage material” “you embarrass me” “I wouldn’t ever have kids with you” and the list goes on. I am still in this relationship, we have discussed that the extremes most stop or I cannot feel respect or love.

Jolly holly
April, 7 2018 at 5:16 pm

Well life is short it must really suck for them to be so uncomfortable in their own skin that they have to put another down constantly and smirk and ? and get off on it there the ones who are truly morally bankrupt

April, 5 2018 at 7:23 am

It's so crazy to read other people's stories alnoat exactly like mine....I am 25 and my bf is 34. I've never left comments on a website before but I feel like I need to at the point I'm at right now in my relationship.
My boyfriend gets mad at me when I want to hang with my friends and family...almost to isolate me. He never wants to hang with his friends either. He always has to be around me which is great I love being with him but I believe time apart definitely helps a relationship so u can miss and appreciate the person u are with. He tells me things ...and then when I say what did u say he will deny ever saying anything. Like tonight he said he wanted to go to Sheetz bc they have the best subs ( but he always wants to go to Rutter's bc he says THEY have the best subs) so it confused me. So im on my way to Sheetz and he's like where are u going and I say Sheetz..he's like I never wanted to go there I told u I wanted Rutter's. I said NO u didn't so of course we argued about that. Why does he do things like this? To f**k with me?? I do not understand. Wev been together almost two years...he wasn't always like this. He started about a year in messing with my head and calling me crazy. He's always been kind of a jerk tho. Making fun of me and always thinking he's better than me. Makes me look stupid in public and is a [moderated] in front of other females which ticks me off. Like why does someone do this to someone they love! Or say they love at least. He has his good and bad Days tho. A couple days can pass with NO I just don't understand. Everyone now is telling me to leave bc it's getting worse it's just so hard to hard to except :(
I've started breaking our TV's and electronics and I've never been this way. He just really gets my blood boiling. He never does anything wrong. Barely ever apologizes to me. And always turns everything around on me. I'm just at my breaking point and feel so drained. I love him to death and wanna spend the rest of my life with him but now idk. His family and friends think I'm the bad guy and think that he never contacts them or hangs out with them bc of ME! And that's not the case I tell him to hang with his friends and he just don't. I'm just so sick of this like do I just have to accept the fact and eventually leave. I think I do have to but I just can't now. It's nice and not nice to know others go thru this. I feel for all of u ladies ....!!!
Do they get off in doing this?!

In reply to by Anonymous (not verified)

April, 12 2018 at 8:41 am

Brirtney... I don't know why some people do this. But not everyone does. And if you leave, it hurts, but you start to realize it's not normal, and you don't have to live with that shit. That's the point where I am now. Woke up this morning thinking about him and wondering if I could've done better and made it all work... and remembering being called a slut, fucking stupid, and actually the worst thing was that he'd say things hadn't happened-- "I never said that"-- and I started to think I was crazy. If you are smashing electronics, it's because your situation is so frustrating that that is a rational response. Having someone lie to your face, about something you KNOW is true, that he should know is true since *he said it to you*? Having someone cause you all kinds of anguish, but barely ever apologize, insist he's done nothing wrong, etc? Having someone embarrass you in public, put you down, and call you crazy? Yeah, I don't know why he's doing that, but if you ask me, your blood *SHOULD* be boiling!
I don't know much about your situation, what you need, what your options are... it sounds like you *haven't* let him cut you off from friends and family and you have people in your life who know you deserve better, so you've got that. I'm not trying to tell you what to do, just... you aren't crazy. Trust yourself. It's way harder than anyone else understands, looking in-- AND you can do this.

In reply to by Anonymous (not verified)

May, 5 2018 at 10:01 pm

Your young not married, if he is doing this now it only get worse. And it ruins you. My only saving grace was I had a good job, so the abuse was there but I tolerated it for 28 years then an accident and I lost my Job. After that the flood gates opened to the real hard core abuse. I got another better Kobe but the months of constant put downs took its toll. I'm still in the marrage but hopefully will end it soon. I'm just scared to start ver at 60 years old. That in itself breaks my heart. The point it get out before your in to deep. RUN!

March, 29 2018 at 7:08 pm

Am I wrong to call the abuser moronic, evil or pathetic? He accuses me of being abusive because I’ve called him these words when he has been abusive. I’ve never used those words normally but those are true descriptions of people who are abusive. I was not even allowed to use he word stupid growing up so I know these are not words I would prefer to use but I cannot call abuse nice sweet and considerate. I’ve asked him what he would call a person who has treated someone so bad and he will not answer. He just expects an apology for using those words only when he has acted abusive. We are currently separated, thank goodness. I’ll gladly apologize if I am wrong.

In reply to by Anonymous (not verified)

March, 31 2018 at 3:03 am

Hi Lynn,
Thank you for your comment. I think it's difficult to contain the anger and hurt we feel when someone abuses us, and I would never want to censor someone who was a victim. However, I think we have to be careful not to emulate the abuser's language in our own behavior, because isn't it always wrong to call someone pathetic or moronic? It's easy to pick up on and even copy the actions and words of someone who abuses us, so I don't think you're in the wrong per say. I just wonder if there's a better way for you to explain how you feel, such as getting to the root of WHY his behavior is hurtful.
Can you say instead, "Your behavior is inappropriate and you need to treat me with more respect?" or "When you say that, it makes me think you don't respect me."
I don't think there are any magic words that can change abusive behavior sadly, but I do think we have to be careful not to retaliate with yet more abuse. This creates a vicious cycle that's toxic for both parties. What do you think?

March, 29 2018 at 7:00 pm

When I give adjectives to discribe the abusers......

Chasity McDonald
March, 11 2018 at 6:19 am

I get called a b**ch a prostitute a dumba** whore. A retard . I get called fat . I was told by him I'm not worth his investment. He always says he could hit me and in the blink of an eye I'd be dead cause of how strong he is. He humiliates me in public. He watches porno . he don't like me buying myself anything . he always tells me I owe him . he makes me feel like I'm the problem .. I've been with him for 6 years .. It used to not be like that but of course they never really say who they truly are in the beginning .. I have to sleep alone . he's always looking at other women .. Rapping about women's private parts in front of my face .. He makes fun of me .. Saying I look like a dude when I want to feel comfortable I always have to wear makeup . I had to get rid of my dogs he doesn't want to marry me or have children . I feel like I get treated like a slut . just yesterday after intercourse .. He didn't give me a hug or a kiss nothing he's playing his video game and told me good job .. I cry most the time from feeling insecure depressed stressed all of the above emotions .. I don't know how to leave .. I always keep coming back I want this to be the time I finally walk away

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