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 varies from abuser to abuser, but the words effect the victim in similar ways. Victims hear horrible things from their abuser and they feel small, withdrawn, angry, helpless, sad, shame, and a hundred other horrible emotions - sometimes all at once.

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

Sometimes my abuser's words hurt when he jabs and attempts to provoke on the phone. Mostly, 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).

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.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 social media pages on Google+, Facebook and Twitter. 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 2021, November 29 from

Author: Kellie Jo Holly

Comfortably Depressed
November, 4 2021 at 9:07 pm

I've recently been called the "C-word," "Weak" (because I started crying), "Stupid" (that was tonight), "You wear your heart on your sleeve that is why you're weak." We were watching Miss. Doubtfire tonight and he constantly telling me how horrible the movie is, he Googled what others were saying about the movie and telling me what they said while agreeing with them. He told me that its a horrible movie because "Robin Williams" was lying to his kids and is a creep for being a woman and tricking his wife so he could be around his kids. I said, " Wouldn't you do anything for your children?" He replied, "Not that and why should I have to dress in a costume to trick anyone and lie to see my kids?" I said, "The point I see is he is doing anything he can to see them." My husband says, "That is disgusting and that should not equate to "Doing anything" for my kids." *looking at him not understanding why he has contradicted.* So he would do ANYTHING for his children but not that so in return he is would not do ANYTHING for his children because his "Anything" has limits. (I assume he was trying to confuse me as he does everyday to create and argument then blame me for the creation of said argument. I'm confused. There is so many instances over 8 years he has berated me, called me names, belittled me in front of his co-workers and friends, telling our children that I'm a pos then asking me if I took my meds that day. (I take anti-depressants due to being depressed for 6 years..... His behavior started 7 years ago.) I'm so confused and hurt. Right now, at this moment, he came into our room and asked me "what is that laundry on the bed?" I said, "I don't know did you put there there?" He said, "Yes because they were in the dryer." I said, "Okay, so what do you want to do with them?" He replies, "Throw them on the floor." I said, "Okay. You do that then." He left the room and hasnt been back... its been three hours. He took the laundry out of the dryer and didn't fold them or hang them up and left them for me? He doesn't help or do anything around the house. I have to wash the dishes everyday. He says no he will not do them because we have a teenager in the house. (My teenager does Volleyball and Basketball after school plus she had homework everyday and if I ask her to do anything around the house she will but I don't feel dishes should fall solely on her. Am I wrong?) I don't understand what happened or where it all went wrong. I'm emotionally and mentally broke. :-/

November, 19 2021 at 11:46 pm

Hello, my name is Cheryl, I am the current author of the Verbal Abuse in Relationships blog here at HealthyPlace. Thank you for reaching out and sharing your story. I am sorry to hear about your situation. It sounds like you could use some support to help deal with your circumstances. I encourage you to visit our Resources page… for ways to find the tools and help you need to work through these difficult circumstances.

October, 24 2021 at 9:27 pm

I respect women are beaten mercilessly. Peaceful men are targeted, because they don’t fight back. As a result, a deluge of extreme violence with all the shades of antiquity are delivered with vinegar and salt as a sort of revenge. Good luck nice guys

September, 27 2021 at 1:41 pm


Diana McK
September, 23 2021 at 9:49 pm

My husband was like a tape recorder that you can t turn off. His rants went on for hours, and then he would stop and start over again, as if he had rewound and replayed the tape. While this went on I wasn’t allowed to leave the room. He was a large man and blocked the doorways, pointing out that I would have to push him in order to get out and if I did he would have me arrested for assault. The longest screaming session lasted 7 hours and that is after I started timing him. Our living room had a clock on the wall. He began over a perceived slight and then said we could have avoided all this if I supported him as a wife should. I thought oh, dear God, no, he is going to start over. And he did.
The police would do nothing - not even take a teport. Once I packed to leave and he came in with a ridiculous list of things he said I owed him money for - like half the food (he kept every little piece of paper, including supermarket receipts, filed by year) and said he knew I woukdn’t oay him, but this box of music tapes was probably worth that much so he was hoing to keep them until I paid him or sell them.
I called the cops then but they said everything I owned, including my clothes was community property and he could keep anything he wanted. They said to let him have it if I wanted to leave so bad and argue in court. That gave him more ammo; he began hiding treasured possessions and secretly made an extra set of keys to my car so he could “hold” the “community property’” “until the divorce is over and the judge decides what is whose.” It was to keepme from leaving.
He had neighbors watch the house and call him if they saw me trying to losd up my car and leave while he was at work. He needed their help so he coukd “save” our marriage.
I couldn’t confide in friends because he would call them and cry, saying he was worried about me and thought I was depressed, and had I said anything to them? A friend of more than twenty years repeated everything to him, including that I was planning to leave. She looked me right in my fave and told me I “didn’t understand” and “he is worried about you.” Nobody would listen to me when I begged them not to talk to him. They thought they were “helping” us “save” our marriage. I lost friends over this.
I finally got away while he was on a business trip. His flying monkey neighbor ran over to try to stop me and called him, but he didn’t make it back in time.
I tried to get a protective order but the judge said I had no proof. He contested the divorce, crying and swearing he loved me in court. My stupid state requires a year waitbefore you can file for divorce and he harassed me constantly.
It took two years to get divorced and he only agreed because he found a new girlfriend.
She moved out after a year and he wentthrough a seriesof broken engagements. The last girl DID get a restraining order and he spent almost a year in jail and got ten years probation for violating the restraining order.. At least now everyone, including his family, believes me now. His sister keeps me informed now because she is afraid he will still hurt me someday. She says he sometimes explodes in rants out of nowhere, saying I ruined his life.
He is hiring lawyers and trying to get his time reduced. His sister and I are afraid he willget away with it. I am afraid he will kill a woman someday. He has contacted me several times, saying I was his one true love, although I am now remarried.
We live in another state but I am afraid I willnever truly be rid of him.
He wasn’t like this until the second year of our marriage. I don’t know what happened, although there is a history of mental illness on his father’s side of the family. He is totally different from the guy I met and married.
Stalking laws and restraining orders are a joke. Divorce laws that make you wait a year with an abuser are cruel.
It’s been 16 years since I left, but I am still not over the damage. Thank God for my present husband; he understands and supports me.
Women can’t win. It is our fault for getting involved with the man in the first place, our fault fornot leaving, our fault for “dwelling on it” and “not moving on and forgetting about it” if we are damaged. Nobody ever asks THEM why they do what they do.

July, 3 2021 at 10:28 am

This may sound familiar to some and fantastical to others. My bf and i have known each other for 15 years or thereabouts. I moved to another state to be with him. During the time he and i got married, i got divorced, and moved in 2015. I'm not sure what year I think it was 2018 (my time frame gets a little confused). My bf and i were broken up. In some aspects I was wanting to date someone I suppose maybe to get approval for whatever lack of self-esteem. I started talking with someone, who made himself to appear to be someone that he wasn't. Several times I would communicate with him, and my instinct would kick in and i would cancel, eventually though I did go visit him. The new man too advantage of me - sexually, twice. Then he forced me to be forced me to be his prostitute, after 8 months. I left, i went back to Oklahoma. Then i came back, I ended up telling what happened. During this time my bf went through his own situation. Now that I live with him, he brings up the fact that I was a prostitute, he forces me to tell me to say either that i was a victim, or that i wanted to do that. no matter the statement that i say. nothing i ever say is ever right. If i say i wanted to, he states i'm disgusting, fat, etc. Then if i say i was a victim of rape, he then tells me why i didn't fight, why didn't i scratch his face like i scratched the face of my bf. Then he has stated he won't kiss me, that i'm disgusting, fat, etc. again no matter what i say is not good enough. I stay because I am not good enough, I do love him so much.

June, 6 2021 at 1:26 am

I married a very angry man. Shortly after our wedding he started calling me names. I had a dreadful mother who was cruel to me and so, although it was painful, I had no contact with her. My husband started calling me by her name. I cried and begged him to stop. He didn’t. He called me many things like “maggot”, “a lying waste of time”, “f**ing mole”, and a million other things. He punched holes in all of the walls and I patched them up. He is a lot bigger than me and he frightened me. He slammed my head into the refrigerator and hit me a couple of times but that was all. But the names continued for over 30 years. I separated from him a few years ago but we continue to live in the same house due to finances. He still calls me mental and psycho and tells me that I’ll never change, as he looks at me with disgust. I struggle every day to want to live. I drive to work fighting back tears and drive home fighting back tears. He says that I make him call me names because I make him angry. The last time he did it was because I told him that I always look like the bad guy to our children. He agrees with me on issues concerning them and then when I say something to them he acts as though it is all from me. I’ve always had to discipline our kids, who were never any trouble, and say no to the risky stuff while he wanted to look like I was being unfair. Our kids are grown and I think that they understand why I took on the role of single parent. I’m desperately lonely and so sad. I feel as though I’m invisible. I’m 57 and I feel worthless. Have I been abused?

June, 8 2021 at 9:54 pm

Hello Tracey, I am Cheryl Wozny, the current author of the Verbal Abuse in Relationships Blog here at HealthyPlace. Thank you for your comment. I'm so sorry for what you have gone through. It's important to remember that physical abuse isn't the only kind of abuse. Yes, verbal interactions like you have described are definitely abuse. Please know that you are not worthless. 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.

June, 5 2021 at 11:28 am

Well i have been going through emotional abuse for 3 and a half years and i finally decide enough is enough my childrens father has been unfaithful to me ans his ex they seperate due to his infidelity after 15 years and 4 children .. He mentally and physically abused both of us the only difference is she cheated on him and he got an assult charge but he praises this women never says one bad thing to her i never cheated and have forgiven him for cheating on me and he started calling me a prostitute says things like i have sex with 20 guys a day and have a pimp and that i dont want to have sex with him because either i havr their cum inside me or dont want to have hia inside me while im prostituting says that my vagina is filled with cum and my boobs are ruined from all the guys sucking on them and thats nust the beginning hes beeb doing this to me for three years and i finally had enough i have never cheated in my life and have only been with 5 guys.. He really believes these things i put cameras up and he says in fucking the wifi guy so he controls the cameras and that im pimping out my 7 year old daughter... I mean this ia nuat the beginning he has said everything you can say to hurt me and i love him very much 6 years and two beautiful boys but i cant take it anymore so im super depressed and dont knkw what to do with myself ..he has torn me apart . im devastated and confused.. I dont know if he ever loved me and i dont know why he treats me so bad i have done everything for him and he claims to love me but can you say those things to the women you love?? Im just venting today i called quits and it hurts because i know that i cant live like that anymore coming from the man i love with all my heart .. How can i love someone like that? How ? My does it hurt so bad ?

May, 26 2021 at 1:49 pm

My jaw is on the floor - these lists were as if I'd written them myself..... I feel like I've finally found somewhere where I don't feel like I'm going mad.

October, 15 2020 at 11:10 am

Is anyone on here now? I need help

September, 13 2020 at 3:37 am

funny how people say all these things about their partner, even call them disrespectful names and claim they are the abused.......

September, 4 2020 at 9:53 pm

My husband always says things like "shut your fat face" & "do you even have a brain" while shouting at the top of his voice.... I've literally become the things he's always said to me for the past 10 years, I've tried leaving but can't, he's made so i can't live without him... Also we have 5 kids with one on the way... He only loves me when in working out and skinny, every since i got pregnant with this last baby and needed to take it easy, he resents me and says I'm using it as an excuse to sit on my butt all day... When I'm killing my self to not only mother my own children but doing daycare for 4 of his nephews every single day, so i can "at least make some money while I'm sitting around the house" ... I have nothing without him, and he has nothing without me, but he doesn't see that part...

September, 19 2020 at 9:33 pm

I can feel how you live everyday with this, I hope you loved yourself and the kids more than consider living with him the rest of your life! Please find way to take the kids out! Family will be the first place that can help you before you can set out to live on your own. I was in the similar relationship, it took my focus, beauty, energy and loosing my confident until I was not confident to put make up on because I scare he will make a joke of my make up.
Now I start love myself, withdraw myself out from that life, and live happier with my kids without that man, I don’t believe my kids would grow up healthy with such a father they have,. I know it’s hard to walk away from relationships especially toxic. Believe in yourself honey, we women stronger than man can think, to me I got enough with name calls, my parents never called me anything but just the man I meet half of my life should he do that, I will not keep up with that, there is not love, someone that love each other will never put his love one down especially you have 5 kids with him,..

April, 17 2020 at 12:07 pm

I am a male, abused by a female, covert narc. I read this, hoping to find support and help. Apologize if this seems harsh, but this should have been titled, "Things Male Verbal Abusers Say and Do". Of all your comments, the only ones that apply to my abuser are, she has said "I can't stand to look at you. You make me sick." Three years ago, she took me out for my "best birthday ever" and to this day berates me about it, let's say, on a monthly basis. Oh, and if I ever ask her anything pointed, that might be construed as "critical", she immediately changes the subject - never to return to it. I appreciate if this piece is designed to help women sufferers, but I think you should have stated this. This makes me feel worse. Thank you. Peter

June, 21 2021 at 5:44 am

I am sorry you felt worse reading this, but i believe you missed this paragraph at the end that says this:
“ *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 victimised.”
This was not wholly for female “victims” but for everyone seeking comfort in a situation where you and I are in at the moment. I am on this website, this day (21st of June 2021) because i feel lost and want to know if there are some things i can validate my feelings.

Naomi Salomon
January, 3 2020 at 1:22 am

I believe most women, not all, who are with abusive men like myself are truly good hearted, extremely strong, and the most giving women around and most know that no one else can love such a man but yet at the same time we unrealistically think that maybe he will change with our endless extraordinary efforts. Some men change and some men will never. Sometimes it gets so bad because it has been tolerated and allowed for too long where the woman becomes trapped financially and in all other areas and becomes isolated from friends and family even though they were once before strong/independent financially and emotionally plus had many friends and family. My question is how to come out from the lowest of the lowest point when the choice was made to allow things to get that way. I know it was my choice from the very start to stay or leave since red flags are always there from the beginning with every abusive man.

April, 27 2020 at 9:59 pm

Dear Naomi, your comment " I believe most women, not all, who are with abusive men like myself are truly good hearted, extremely strong, and the most giving women around and most know that no one else can love such a man but yet at the same time we unrealistically think that maybe he will change with our endless extraordinary efforts" really struck a chord in me because I have always believed that to be true.
I always told my mom, who was so loving mother, that she raised me & my brother to be too loving and too nurturing. We are both the "fixers" in our marriages. We try to fix our spouses' ugly issues. Meaning their nasty personalities.
You are correct. We are extremely good hearted and strong. We are also too forgiving and understanding. Unfortunately, the ugly spouse do not change. If like mine, it sneaks out REAL slow and would always apologize. Then one day, the apologies just stopped & his nastiness became more frequent throughout the years. Eventually, it became a way of life, for the entire family. I have been the fixer and referee for years, hoping to keep stability within the family.
Well tonight, I apologized to my son because today was really bad & I really realized I did it all wrong for these past 8 years (that's when everything stated to get worse). I should have left my husband. My son should not have gone through any of this. He deserve a father who thinks the world of him. Instead, he as to deal with this ugly abusive person for a father.
My husband is such a failure. He has driven away the only ones who truly love him, his family. I have many loose ends to wrap up and I need an exit strategy, but I hope to be free of him by mid-summer.
Please, follow my lead Naomi. We all deserve better. Life is too short to waste more of our precious time with these nasty mentally ill spouses/partners.
Good Luck💖

Niki Galloway
September, 15 2019 at 1:18 pm

My husband and I have been married for 9 1/2 years. We've known each other for 18 yrs. At first in our marriage he would make side comments (negative) to my friends and family. Then after our 2nd born son died, he started in on me (5 years into our marriage). He doesn't say anything like you mentioned above which make me constantly re-evaluate my sanity. He tells me I'm dirty, I'll never find anyone better than him, the house is never clean, I'm fake (phony), my efforts are wasted and the big one last night is that I'm a copycat. I feel like everything I do is wrong to him. I have my faults, I know I do, and I have even admitted them to him. He tells me that I don't have my own opinions about things but when I try to form my own opinions, he tells me that they are wrong and that I should listen to his opinions only. He also expects me to read his mind when he wants me to do something "after all these years of marriage, you still don't know what I want from you" (his words right from his playbook).
After typing all this and reading it out loud, it all seems stupid and I feel like I'm going insane. I don't want to disappear under his thumb but I want to try to work this out. We have applied for marriage counseling but have been turned down because the counseling programs say that he needs counseling. He refuses to go because counselors who assess him (by himself) are stupid and don't know what they are talking about.
He told me this morning that I'm a gaslighting, narcissist because I refuse to talk to him (for the first time in all the years we have been together). I'm tired of my words being twisted and used against me in the heat of an argument (or to start one with me). The list is lengthy of all the abuse but it's never been name calling (to my face). Currently, I'm working towards getting out. I just need to know if what I'm experiencing is abuse or if it's all in my head. If it's all in my head, I'm going to check myself into a program, but if it's abuse then I can sign up for emergency counseling and housing for me and our 2 boys.

September, 16 2019 at 7:28 pm

Hi Niki,
I appreciate you so deeply for sharing your heart here on the blog. It's so difficult to decide what's real and what's a trigger/false perception. It sounds like you know his behaviors are wrong and that you know seeking help is the next step. Since I am not a licensed professional, I cannot say what's abuse and what is not, but I would encourage you to keeping reading the blogs and articles on Healthy Place and work with a medical professional to decide your next steps. It sounds like you have experienced a significant amount of trauma, and no matter which path you choose, getting help of any kind is the first step to healing. Be kind to yourself throughout this process and remember that love does not have to be painful.
I wish you light and love--Jenn

April, 30 2020 at 1:18 pm

an argument starts just tell your spouse, OK if you don't like me I'll leave, and then you can find the right one to put up with you. If you have children, tell him 'I hope your new woman won't mind having the kids as I need a nice break (and think of a nice place you can relax) see what he says then.

July, 13 2020 at 8:31 pm

The @ssholes know the loving “save the world” girl ain’t going any where (my PAST situation to a tee, he knew I had no where to go..... BUT I did find a place to go and I did get the courage to leave... was it easy after married 14 years but together 17 all together, HELL NO IT WAS NOT EASY!! And I didn’t let him trick me in to moving back in either, as he knew how to work me over with words..... but i knew deep down that if I went back it’d only b worse! We b apart almost 3 years now.... it’s been a rough road but I’m trying my damnedest to get over him and it’s not working y’all. He come back in my life a little over a year ago and been super kind n sweet to me (making me think we were both to a point in our lives that we could live happily ever after...... BOY WAS I WRONG! He used my love for him to get what he wanted and stupid me gave it to him..... so recently he started becoming distant and I know now that it was all an act, he didn’t love me, never has or he’d been here for me recently when I wanted nothing more that to take my own life because he cause me so much pain. I’m not eating or sleeping and I’m about to the point of relapse after being clean for almost 13 years so he’s really done a number on me this time....... pray for me.... as I still don’t care if I live or die.....

Sharon Jones
August, 22 2021 at 7:54 am

After reading many of these comments, there are so many who don’t know if their partner is abusive.Im one of those after being told my partners behaviours are abusive.I was in a 25 year relationship with my kids dad, I was physically abused many times, raped, controlled and verbally abused often.I finally got the strength to leave, having my life threatened if I did, and told I’d never see my kids.My daughters grown and moved out, my son refuses to see his dad point blank.I was alone for 3 years before meeting who I thought was the kindest most caring man.The last year, I’ve received mostly silent treatment, for weeks at times, anytime I say I’m not happy about something, he is moody and will ignore me instead of talking things through.I give, give, give and he takes all the time.He never apologised if he is in the wrong but blames me instead.It all came to a head last week when my son was very ill with a tooth abscess, he has not once asked about him, offered any help or to go get supplies.Ive been told that he doesn’t care about my son, therefore he doesn’t care about me either.I do everything for his son who is 8 but he does nothing for mine.I asked him why he hadn’t even asked if my son was okay, and he ignored me and basically ignored me since apart from the odd thing which he has growled at me.When I said I was taking my son to the dentist, he said he needed the car to pick wood up, I said that can wait, and he rolled his eyes and walked off.I loved this man and my stepson with all my heart, but the uncaring attitude he has had to my son and me this last week has me doubting everything and I have been told he is abusive just on a lower scale and he won’t change.

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?

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.

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