Are you experiencing verbal assaults such as belittling, criticizing, name-calling, screaming, threatening, excessive blaming, shaming, using sarcasm in a cutting way, or expressing disgust towards the person. This kind of abuse is extremely damaging to a person’s self-esteem and self-image.
Maybe there are abusive expectations: Unreasonable demands such as demanding a partner’s undivided attention or requiring a partner to spend all of his or her time with your are some examples of abusive expectations
Is there emotional blackmailing? When one partner coerces the other into doing what he wants by playing on his partner’s fear, guilt, or compassion. An example would be threatening to end a relationship if he doesn’t get what he wants and one partner rejecting or distancing herself from her partner until he gives in to her demands.
What about Gaslighting? Partner may continually deny that certain events occurred or that he or she said something you both know was said, or he or she may insinuate that you are exaggerating or lying. They attempt to make their partner doubt their perceptions, memory and sanity.
What should you do?
1. Have a serious discussion. Sit down with your partner and have a talk about the fact the he/she is being inappropriate or disrespectful.
2. Call him or her out on the behavior or attitude the next time the abuse takes place. Try this approach and confront your partner about the abusive behavior. This is a good approach for couples who have grown distant.
3. Seek couples counseling.
(Reference: “The Emotionally Abusive Relationship: How to Stop Being Abused and How to Stop Abusing” by Beverly Engel