Effects Of Narcissistic Abuse On The Brain

Understanding the effects of narcissistic abuse on the brain is crucial for those who have endured such trauma. Being around a narcissist, who often believes they are superior and demands constant respect, can be damaging not just emotionally, but also neurologically.

Narcissistic abuse, inflicted by someone with narcissistic tendencies, can lead to more than just hurt feelings; it can result in actual brain damage. Such abuse has the potential to alter brain functions and cause lasting harm. This article aims to delve into these effects and offer coping mechanisms for recovery.

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What is the definition of narcissistic abuse?

Pubmed's study "Recognising Narcissistic Abuse and the Implications for Mental Health Nursing Practice" states that someone who holds very high standards for themselves and demands special attention from others brings on narcissistic abuse. They could be highly egotistical and indifferent to the needs or feelings of others.[1]

Physical, mental, or emotional abuse by narcissists is possible. Anything that makes someone uncomfortable or hurt can qualify.

Name-calling, pressuring someone into doing something they don't want to do, or even physically harming someone are some signs of an abusive partner. It's crucial to remember that, regardless of the circumstance, it is never acceptable for someone to abuse you.

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The prevalence of narcissistic abuse

The following figures highlight the need for increased awareness and understanding of narcissistic personality disorder, particularly among these populations, as The Recovery Village explains. The prevalence of narcissistic personality disorder varies among different demographics. [2]It is estimated to occur in;

Many believe it is a reasonably common abuse, especially in romantic partnerships. Any interaction, including friendships, families, and work partnerships, can experience narcissistic abuse.

It is crucial for those who have experienced narcissistic abuse to seek support and assistance to heal and rehabilitate since narcissistic abuse can lead to actual physical brain damage.

According to the National Intimate Partner and Sexual Violence Survey[3];

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How does narcissistic abuse affect the brain?

Abuse at the hands of narcissists can have negative and protracted repercussions on the brain. There is an exceptionally high correlation between narcissistic abuse and trauma.

According to Hack Spirit's article, Neuroscience: The shocking impact narcissistic abuse has on the brain, the brain of a victim of narcissistic abuse interprets the abuse as a danger to their safety and well-being. This may trigger the brain's "fight, flight, or freeze" response - a normal reaction to danger. The brain then releases cortisol and other stress hormones to aid the person in overcoming the perceived threat.[4]

The brain can be harmed by prolonged stress, such as that brought on by narcissistic abuse.

The hippocampus, a part of the brain involved in learning, memory, and emotion regulation, can shrink due to chronic stress. It causes alterations in brain structure and function. The likelihood of developing mental health conditions, including post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and depression, can rise due to these brain changes.

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The connection between narcissistic abuse & mental health problems

There is a connection between narcissistic abuse, the emergence of mental health problems, and the relationship between narcissistic abuse and trauma.

Chronic stress and trauma can alter the brain in ways that can result in the emergence of mental health conditions, including PTSD and depression. This cycle of abuse and mental health problems can be exacerbated by these mental health problems, which can also affect how the brain functions.

To address the effects of the abuse on their mental health and to stop this cycle, those who have experienced narcissistic abuse must seek treatment.

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The long-term effects of narcissistic abuse

An individual's mental health and well-being may be adversely affected by the long-term effects of narcissistic abuse. Research Gate explains that experiencing a traumatic event, such as narcissistic abuse, will have victims exhibiting signs of;[5]

Increased chance of acquiring mental health issues such as PTSD and depression

Narcissistic abuse can be painful, and the experience of that consistent emotional trauma can lead to the emergence of symptoms similar to PTSD and depression. These ailments can be difficult to manage and negatively impact a person's quality of life.

Trust, attachment, and intimacy issues

Issues with intimacy, trust, and connection can result from narcissistic abuse, making a victim feel unsafe emotionally and physically. Because of this, it may be challenging for someone who has suffered from narcissistic abuse to build solid relationships or feel comfortable being vulnerable in front of others. As a result, a person's social and emotional health could suffer.

Cognitive dysfunction and poor decision-making

Cognitive functions are the mental operations that allow us to think, learn, and remember. Decision-making is the capacity to choose and make decisions. The consequences of narcissistic abuse on the brain can affect these abilities, making it difficult for a person to think clearly and make good decisions. As a result, a person's ability to complete daily duties may remain the same.

Difficulty managing emotions

Narcissistic abuse can make a person feel various feelings, such as fear, guilt, shame, and grief. These strong feelings might be challenging to control, and one could have trouble regulating them.

Flashbacks of the traumatic events

Narcissistic abuse might bring on flashbacks of the traumatic event. These flashbacks can be incredibly vivid and lifelike, giving the impression that the horrific incident is currently occurring.

Feelings of sadness, hopelessness, and a lack of interest in routinely enjoyable activities

Sadness, helplessness, and a lack of interest in often festive activities are depression symptoms that may develop over time due to narcissistic abuse of the brain.

Chronic stress and trauma can alter the brain in ways that can result in the emergence of mental health conditions

The hippocampus may atrophy due to the consistent emotional trauma caused by narcissistic abuse, and other brain structure and function changes may also occur. These changes may pave the way for the onset of mental health illnesses, including PTSD and depression.

Difficulty establishing solid connections

A narcissistic abuser can make a person feel physically and emotionally uncomfortable. This might make it challenging for someone who has suffered from narcissistic abuse to build strong relationships with others. Establishing and keeping healthy relationships with them may be difficult since they may feel uneasy and untrustworthy.

Social and emotional health may suffer

Abuse of the selfish kind can hurt a person's social and mental well-being. A person may find it challenging to interact with others, partake in social activities, and develop lasting relationships due to the trauma and stress brought on by the abuse. This may make it difficult to sustain good connections and cause feelings of loneliness and isolation.

The abuse may impact the capacity to carry out daily tasks

Narcissistic abuse can impair one's concentration and clear thinking, making it challenging to do daily chores. Additionally, it may lead to cognitive dysfunction and lousy decision-making, making it difficult for a person to organize, plan, and carry out everyday tasks.

Increased tendency to avoid triggers

Narcissistic abuse can lead to the development of triggers or stimuli that bring up terrible memories in the victim's mind. People with PTSD may avoid particular situations, people, or activities that bring up their horrific experiences. They may find it challenging to participate in specific actions, affecting their quality of life.

Panic attacks, and chronic anxiety

Because narcissistic abuse makes a person feel uneasy, afraid, and on edge all the time, it can lead to panic. The victim of narcissistic abuse may experience confusion, loneliness, and persistent doubting of their reality due to manipulation, gaslighting, and verbal abuse.

This pervasive feeling of emotional and psychological distress might result in an elevated level of anxiety that can bring on panic attacks. It would help if you addressed the long-term repercussions of narcissistic abuse on the brain, and those who have suffered them should seek therapy to learn coping mechanisms.[6]

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Recovering from long-term narcissistic abuse

It's critical to get support if you or someone you know has endured narcissistic abuse to deal with the repercussions on the brain and start the healing process. Very Well Mind's blog, Stages of Healing After Narcissistic Abuse, suggests the following is among the most crucial things you can do[7];

Support groups

Becoming a support group member can offer a secure and encouraging setting where people can connect with others who have gone through comparable situations. Support groups can be an effective aid in the recovery process by fostering a sense of belonging and validation.


Self-care involves caring for one's physical, emotional, and mental well-being. This can include working out, meditating, practicing yoga, keeping a journal, and spending time in nature.

Setting boundaries

Setting boundaries is essential for people who have experienced abuse in a relationship. It's crucial to learn how to say "no" to additional abuse and create boundaries with the abuser.

Safety planning

A safety plan is crucial for people who have experienced abuse in a relationship. This can involve making a list of secure locations to go to, virtual phone numbers, and a strategy for getting out of an abusive situation.


Drugs can effectively address some signs and symptoms of misuse, such as anxiety and depression. Before ingesting any medicine, get medical advice.

Seek Legal Help

If you are being abused, you should take legal action. Getting legal assistance can aid with custody, divorce, and restraining orders.

Seek Professional Help

Getting professional assistance might help you comprehend and view the situation differently. You can start to understand the complexities of the abuse and begin to process the trauma with the aid of a therapist, counselor, or counselor.


Journaling can be a powerful emotional freedom technique for recovering from trauma. It can offer people a private and secure forum for expressing their feelings. Writing about one's experiences might be a method to process them and release bottled-up emotions, as explained by the APA's study, Writing to heal.

Additionally, keeping a journal can help one keep track of their development and gauge how far along they are in the healing process.[8] And for daughters who's suffered under a narcissistic mother, we suggest reading The Best Books On Healing From Narcissistic Mothers For Daughters.


Using meditation to assist in managing the effects of abuse can be very beneficial. It can encourage quiet and inner serenity while helping in reducing stress and anxiety. According to Medical News Today, meditation allows you to focus the mind and develop emotional management abilities.[9]


Bodybuilding or physical exercise can be a great way to help individuals heal from abuse. Regular exercise can help to reduce stress and anxiety and can promote feelings of well-being.

It can also provide a sense of empowerment and control, which can be especially beneficial for those in a controlling and abusive relationship, as stated in IOI's blog "Rape victim muscles up, opens gym for abused women." Additionally, bodybuilding can help individuals feel stronger and more confident in themselves, which can be an essential step in the healing process.[10]

It's crucial to remember that recovering from narcissistic abuse requires time, and it's acceptable to move at your own pace. Asking for assistance when you need it is also good. Resources are available to help you on your path to recovery and healing.


The effects of narcissistic abuse are both mental and physical. As we now know, narcissistic abuse can cause brain damage. This is due to the stress on the victim's body and the cognitive dissonance caused by gaslighting.

Narcissistic abuse is a form of domestic violence and should be taken seriously. If you or someone you know is in an abusive relationship, please seek help from a professional and call 1-800-799-SAFE (7233) (the national domestic violence hotline).


Can narcissistic abuse cause brain damage?

People who have been subjected to narcissistic abuse may develop changes in their hippocampus, which controls memory, emotion regulation, and stress response. Additionally, this kind of abuse can cause chronic stress and inflammation, which can harm other parts of the brain including the prefrontal cortex, which is in charge of making decisions, and the amygdala, which is in charge of processing emotions.

How does narcissistic abuse affect the development of the brain?

It is true that narcissistic abuse can cause PTSD and despair. Narcissistic abuse can set off the body's fight or flight reaction and result in PTSD symptoms like nightmares, anxiety, and flashbacks. Additionally, it influences how the brain processes emotions, which may result in depression.


  1. Pubmed: Recognising Narcissistic Abuse and the Implications
  2. therecoveryvillage: Narcissistic Personality Disorder Statistics
  3. National Data on Intimate Partner Violence, Sexual Violence, and Stalking
  4. hackspirit: The shocking impact narcissistic abuse has on the brain
  5. researchgate: The Effects of Emotional Abuse and Neglect in Adulthood
  6. researchgate: The Effects of Emotional Abuse and Neglect in Adulthood
  7. Very Well Mind: Stages of Healing After Narcissistic Abuse
  8. APA: Writing to heal
  9. Medical News Today: Mindfulness meditation helps to control emotions, says study
  10. IOI: Rape victim muscles up, opens gym for abused women

How To Deal With A Passive Aggressive Boss?

Learning how to deal with a passive aggressive boss is crucial, as we often encounter difficult people in the workplace, where interactions with co-workers are as significant as the job itself. To maintain sanity and job security, it's important to have strategies for handling passive aggressiveness, whether it comes from a challenging boss or a bothersome colleague.

Let's explore effective methods for managing passive-aggressive bosses.

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Steps on how to handle a passive aggressive people in general?

Since passive-aggressive people can come in all shapes and sizes, it's essential to know how to handle them. One should keep a cool head, give the other person their personal space, and refrain from playing their games. Here are some more strategies:

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Subtle Discontent

in a post about how to deal with a passive aggressive boss

Procrastination and Avoidance

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Guilt Tripping

Shifting Blame

Pro Tip for Self-Awareness

"The Power of Now: A Guide to Spiritual Enlightenment" is recommended for insight and developing self-awareness.

Strategies for Employees


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Effective Communication

Pro tip

For additional insights on enhancing communication and interpersonal relationships in the workplace, visit Shrink's Office - How to Improve Interpersonal Relationships in the Workplace.
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Offering Solutions

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Setting Boundaries and Self-Care

Pro Tip for Self-Care

"Self-Care: A Day and Night Reflection Journal (90 Days)" is recommended for self-awareness and reflection.
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Group Support

Online Therapy Can Help

Online therapy emerges as a vital resource for individuals grappling with the challenges of a passive-aggressive boss. It offers a confidential and accessible platform for employees to explore and understand their feelings, frustrations, and reactions in a safe environment. With professional guidance, individuals can develop effective coping strategies and communication skills tailored to navigate the complexities of passive-aggressive dynamics in the workplace.


Passive-aggressive behavior can be challenging, especially when you don't know what is happening. Your first step should always be to talk to the passive aggressor, but if that doesn't work, then it's time to make some tough decisions. In many cases, your only option may be to quit your organization and find a new one where there are better people skills in the workplace.

In other instances, if you're just not getting along with your passive-aggressive boss or co-workers, it may not be worth leaving because the company is excellent in other areas. In this case, think about speaking up more at meetings and giving constructive feedback to your new boss about how he could improve his communication skills.


What are the first steps I should take when dealing with a passive-aggressive boss?

The initial step is to objectively assess the situation. Keep a detailed record of instances where your boss displays passive-aggressive behavior, noting dates, times, and the context. This documentation can be crucial for identifying patterns and providing concrete examples if you need to discuss the issue. It's also important to reflect on your own actions to ensure that you're not inadvertently contributing to the dynamic. Seeking advice from trusted colleagues or mentors who might have observed similar behavior can also provide additional perspectives and support.

How should I communicate with my boss about their passive-aggressive behavior?

Communication should be approached carefully and strategically. Choose a private and calm setting to discuss your concerns. Use specific examples from your documentation to describe the behavior without being accusatory. Focus on how the behavior impacts your work and well-being. Express your willingness to understand their perspective and work together to improve the situation. It's crucial to remain professional, calm, and empathetic during the conversation, avoiding any confrontational tone.

What if direct communication doesn't improve the situation with my passive-aggressive boss?

If direct communication doesn't lead to a positive change, consider escalating the issue to higher management or human resources, especially if it's affecting your work performance or mental health. Provide your documented instances of passive-aggressive behavior as evidence. Additionally, seeking external support, such as online therapy, can provide you with coping mechanisms and strategies to handle the stress and emotional toll. Remember, it's important to prioritize your well-being and professional growth, even if it means seeking opportunities in a more supportive work environment.


  1. Medical News Today: 7 Examples Of Passive-Aggressive Behavior
  2. Business Insider: 11 signs your boss is passive aggressive
  3. Forbes: How To Handle A Passive-Aggressive Supervisor
  4. MindTools: Managing Your Emotions at Work
  5. Hubspot: How to Communicate Effectively at Work With Your Boss
  6. Verywell Mind: What Is Passive-Aggressive Behavior
  7. Medical News Today:  7 Examples Of Passive-Aggressive Behavior
  8. Havard Business Review: How To Deal with a Passive Aggressive Colleague
  9. HBR: How to Deal with a Passive-Aggressive Boss
  10. HBR: How To Deal with a Passive Aggressive Colleague
  11. HealthPrep: Conditions And Causes Linked To Passive-Aggressive Behavior
  12. Workology: How to Handle Your Abusive or Aggressive Boss
  13. Chron: How To Handle A Boss On A Power Strip

Can you get PTSD From Spousal Abuse? The Shocking Truth

Can you get PTSD From Spousal Abuse?
How It Causes PTSD?
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Yes, it is indeed possible to develop Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) from spousal abuse. Spousal abuse, also known as domestic violence or intimate partner violence, can have profound psychological impacts, including the development of PTSD.

Spousal abuse, a traumatic event, can lead to Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) due to the intense fear, helplessness, or horror it instills. Victims of such abuse might experience recurrent distressing memories, nightmares, or flashbacks of the abuse, causing severe emotional distress and physical reactions.

Over time, this repeated psychological stress can manifest as PTSD, with victims avoiding reminders of the trauma, experiencing negative changes in mood or thinking, and heightened reactivity, a state of constant alertness for danger.

Physical Abuse:
- Unexplained bruises, cuts, or injuries
- Frequent accidents or injuries
- Clothing that's inappropriate for the weather, possibly worn to cover up injuries
- Emotional and Psychological Abuse:
- Decreased self-esteem or confidence
- Signs of depression, anxiety, or PTSD
- Social withdrawal or isolation
- Fearfulness or constant worry about pleasing their partner
- Changes in sleep or eating patterns

Behavioral Signs:
- The partner exhibits excessively controlling behavior
- The partner exhibits extreme jealousy or possessiveness
- Frequent arguments or tension between the partners
- The partner threatens violence or harm
- The victim seems afraid of their partner

Financial Abuse:
- The victim has limited access to money or financial resources
- The partner controls their spending or financial decisions
- The victim is not allowed to work or is sabotaged at work

- Cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT)
- Prolonged exposure therapy (PE)
- Cognitive processing therapy (CPT)

- Selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs)
- Serotonin-norepinephrine reuptake inhibitors
- Anti-Anxiety medications
- Prazosin
- Support groups
- Mindfulness and relaxation techniques

Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) is a severe mental health condition that can occur after experiencing a traumatic event. Many people think of PTSD as something that only happens to those who have served in the military or experienced a natural disaster, but it's also caused by spousal abuse.

In this article, we'll discuss how domestic violence can cause victims to develop PTSD and how to seek help if you or a family member is a victim.

We'll also discuss ways to cope with the effects of PTSD after experiencing spousal abuse.

Does Domestic Violence Cause Post Traumatic Stress Disorder?

Domestic Abuse

Domestic violence is any form of physical, sexual, emotional, or financial abuse that occurs between two people in an intimate relationship.[1]

Unfortunately, domestic violence can have a devastating impact on victims, leading to physical injuries, emotional trauma, and even Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD). [2]

PTSD is an anxiety disorder that can occur after someone has experienced or witnessed a traumatic event. According to the American Psychiatric Association's Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM-5), it's estimated that one in eleven Americans will be diagnosed with PTSD as a result of domestic violence. [3]

You can take this quick PTSD test to confirm if you have PTSD.

How Does Spousal Abuse Cause PTSD?

Spousal abuse causes PTSD

Spousal abuse can take many forms, including verbal insults, physical intimate partner violence, sexual assault, and financial exploitation. All of these can have a traumatizing effect on the victim. For many domestic violence survivors, the traumatic events may lead to the development of PTSD. [4]

Those who have complex PTSD may experience flashbacks, nightmares, extreme feelings of guilt or shame, panic attacks, and feelings of detachment from their loved ones. [5]

Furthermore, victims of an abusive relationship often suffer mental illness and psychological injuries, which can lead to severe depression, sudden inexplicable anger, and other mental health problems. [6]

It’s critical to recognize that PTSD is a serious condition and should be treated as such. With proper support and treatment, those affected by substance abuse disorders or by PTSD can begin their healing process and move forward with their lives.

Symptoms of PTSD from Spousal Abuse graphic

What Are The Symptoms of PTSD from Spousal Abuse?

The symptoms of post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) that may result from spousal or child abuse can vary depending on the severity of the abuse and the period it started. [5]

Generally, PTSD symptoms include trouble sleeping, emotional outbursts, feeling numb, suicidal thoughts, flashbacks, and avoiding reminders of the traumatic experience. [5]

We have provided brief explanations to help people understand the specific symptoms they are experiencing.

What Treatments Are Available for PTSD After Spousal Abuse?

Therapy for PTSD patients

Domestic abuse victims can find several mental health resources online.

For example, an Online therapist specializing in treating mental illnesses can help you heal since they have the knowledge and experience.

You will receive the following treatment plan from a board-certified psychiatrist:

  1. Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT): CBT helps you identify and challenge unhelpful thoughts and beliefs that lead to symptoms such as avoidance. As part of CBT, you can learn relaxation techniques and gradually expose yourself to distressing memories and situations. [7]
  2. Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing (EMDR) and Prolonged Exposure Therapy (PE): EMDR involves identifying areas of distress in your life and then using eye movement or tapping to desensitize them. In PE, you practice facing feared situations or memories without avoidance or distress and talk about the traumatic event in a safe haven. [8]
  3. Medications: The psychiatrist may prescribe antidepressants and anti-anxiety medications for PTSD. However, medications are not a cure-all, and they should always be used in combination with therapy. [5]
Domestic violence hotline

National Domestic Violence Hotline

If you're a victim or witness of domestic violence, you can call the National Domestic Violence Hotline, and they'll listen and provide confidential help anytime.

If you've been affected by spousal or intimate partner abuse, you should seek help as soon as possible. You can be provided with a mental health professional who can help you work through the symptoms of PTSD, develop healthier coping skills, and live a more fulfilling life.


PTSD is a severe consequence of domestic violence. Victims of spousal abuse often suffer both physical abuse and mental trauma, with some cases leading to PTSD.

Victims of domestic violence need to seek help from trained mental health professionals that provide effective treatments for PTSD.

With the right kind of support and treatment, those with PTSD after spousal abuse can find healing and begin to move forward in their lives.


Can you get PTSD from emotional abuse?

The short answer is yes - emotional abuse can lead to PTSD.

Emotional abuse is a form of psychological abuse that can cause significant distress and anxiety.

It involves controlling behavior, manipulation, belittling, and criticizing. Over time, the effects of this kind of trauma can be severe and long-lasting

How long does PTSD from abuse last?

PTSD is an emotional disorder that can arise in individuals who have suffered from trauma. It can be caused by several different types of abuse, including physical, sexual, and emotional abuse. Victims of intimate partner violence can experience PTSD symptoms for months or even years after the abuse has ended.


  1. What Is Domestic Abuse?
  2. The Connection Between Domestic Violence and PTSD
  3. What is Posttraumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD)?
  4. Domestic Violence
  5. Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) - Symptoms and causes
  6. Abuse, trauma, and mental health
  7. What is Cognitive Behavioral Therapy?
  8. EMDR vs Prolonged Exposure Therapy

How Anger Damages Relationships. Why your relationships fail

How Anger Damages Relationships
Negative Effects
Prevent Anger
Helpful Products

Anger can damage relationships in several ways. When people are angry, they may say hurtful things or act in ways that are harmful to others. This can lead to feelings of resentment and bitterness, which can be difficult to overcome.

Anger can also create a sense of fear and intimidation, causing others to avoid or withdraw from the person who is angry. Over time, this can erode trust and intimacy in a relationship, making it difficult to maintain healthy connections. Ultimately, managing anger in a constructive and respectful way is crucial for maintaining positive relationships with others.

- Loss of Intimacy
- Disrespect
- Divorce
- Separation
- Infidelity
- Abuse
- It creates an unhealthy environment for your family

- Lashing out at others without provocation or real reasons.
- Constantly blaming others for your mental health issues.
- Becoming increasingly hostile and aggressive towards people who disagree with you.
- Denying your feelings and responses to situations.
- Blaming the world for your anger problems.
- Making threats or ultimatums when dealing with a disagreement.
- Not being able to express yourself or listen to the perspective of others.
- Refusing to forgive and move on from past hurts and arguments.
- Trying to control or manipulate others through anger and fear.

- Talk to your partner
- Learn to identify signs of anger
- Take timeouts
- Find healthy ways to express your anger
- Practice forgiveness
- Mindfulness meditation
- Consider professional help

Anger can cause irreparable damage to the bonds you share with people. Out of frustration, a person can display negative feelings toward those closest to them, even if they didn't cause the anger. In some cases, this can cause hurt feelings, abuse, anxiety, and even the end of a relationship.

In this article, we will discuss how anger can damage relationships and how to manage it.

Negative Effects of Unhealthy Anger in a Relationship

Unhealthy anger

Unhealthy anger in a relationship can have a damaging and long-lasting effect. Some of the common negative effects of unhealthy anger in a relationship include the following:

Loss of Intimacy: When partners don't feel safe expressing themselves and their feelings, they may begin to withdraw from one another. Without healthy communication, intimacy can suffer, leading to a further disconnection between partners. [1]

Disrespect: Unhealthy anger expressions often lead to snarky comments and behaviors that can cause feelings of disrespect in the other partner. This lack of respect can damage the relationship and cause conflict if it goes unchecked. [2]

Divorce, separation, and infidelity: The accumulation of the adverse effects of unhealthy anger can sometimes result in divorce or separation. Research has shown that couples who experience frequent bouts of intense anger are more likely to get divorced than those who manage their emotions more healthily. Additionally, anger in a relationship can also lead to distrust and infidelity. [3]

Abuse: When you fail to control your anger in your relationship, it can result in mental, physical, verbal, sexual, or emotional abuse of your partner.

It creates an unhealthy environment for your family: Expressing anger violently towards your partner can create a bad example for your children. Similarly, it can instill feelings of danger in your home.

Why Is Anger Dangerous to Relationships?

Why Is Anger Dangerous to Relationships

Even though anger is a normal emotion, it can be dangerous if it isn't controlled. Relationships can suffer when emotions aren't appropriately addressed. Your ability to engage with your partner and handle disagreement.

Uncontrolled rage can impede communication and undermine trust in a relationship. Resentment and bitterness may result, fueling additional sentiments of rage and hurt.

Since anger can result in physical abuse, shame, and worry, it can have psychological and physiological effects. [5]

It may be difficult to escape the hostile environment that an abusive relationship can produce. Therefore, it's important to address any issues of anger before they begin to harm the relationship.

Did you know?

Did you know that hitting yourself when you're angry, known as self-directed aggression, is a maladaptive coping mechanism that can escalate negative emotions?

Warning Signs of Mismanaged Anger

When anger is not managed properly, it can cause significant damage in intimate relationships. Learning to recognize the signs of mismanaged anger can help to prevent these damaging effects and improve your life.[6]

The most common warning signs of mismanaged anger include:

  1. Lashing out at others without provocation or real reasons.
  2. Constantly blaming others for your mental health issues.
  3. Becoming increasingly hostile and aggressive towards people who disagree with you.
  4. Denying your feelings and responses to situations.
  5. Blaming the world for your anger problems.
  6. Making threats or ultimatums when dealing with a disagreement.
  7. Not being able to express yourself or listen to the perspective of others.
  8. Refusing to forgive and move on from past hurts and arguments.
  9. Trying to control or manipulate others through anger and fear.

If you find yourself exhibiting these behaviors, it’s a sign of mismanaged anger. But what steps can you take to address the problem before it damages your bonds further?

Let's find out.

Steps to Take to Prevent Anger from Damaging Your Relationship

Here are some ways to prevent anger from ruining your relationship:

Talk to your partner – Open and honest communication is essential in any relationship, and it’s imperative if you want to control anger. If you feel angry, talk to your partner about it before it becomes a full-blown argument. [7]

Learn to identify signs of anger – Try to recognize signs of escalating anger, such as clenching your fists, increased heart rate, or a tight feeling in your chest. These signs should serve as a warning for you to take a step back and assess the situation.

Take timeouts – If the situation escalates, take a break from each other. Taking a few minutes or hours away from the situation can help deal with your emotion and gain clarity on the issue.

Find healthy ways to express your anger – Find ways to express your anger healthily. This could mean writing it down in a journal, talking it out with a friend, or even taking up physical activities such as running or boxing.

Practice forgiveness – Anger can be corrosive and destructive if it’s not dealt with healthily. Make sure to practice forgiveness and let go of your negative emotions. This will make it easier to move on from the situation and change your thought patterns to a more relaxed state.

Mindfulness meditation - Practicing mindfulness can be beneficial in managing conflict between partners. It involves tuning into your body sensations and breathing to ground yourself in the present moment without judgment. It's a great way to create awareness around your triggers and reactions, allowing you to control how you respond instead of letting your anger take control. Additionally, mindfulness can help regulate stress hormones, which are often heightened when a person is angry. [9]

Consider professional help - If none of these strategies work, consider seeking professional help. An online therapist can provide impartial guidance on how to handle difficult situations and break the anger cycle.

Couple having a picnic

Restoring and Rebuilding Relationships

Restoring and rebuilding relationships after the damaging effects of uncontrolled anger require patience, effort, and a genuine commitment to change. While it may seem daunting, it is possible to heal the wounds and rebuild trust. Here are the key steps and strategies to guide you through the process:

Genuine Apologies and Taking Responsibility

Repairing a relationship begins with a sincere apology. Here's how to approach it effectively:

  1. Reflect on your actions: Take the time to introspect and understand the impact your anger had on the other person. Acknowledge the pain you caused and take responsibility for your behavior.
  2. Offer a heartfelt apology: Express your remorse genuinely and without making excuses. Be specific about the actions or words that hurt the other person and demonstrate empathy for their feelings.
  3. Show commitment to change: Explain your intention to manage your anger better and actively work on improving your emotional responses. Make it clear that you are dedicated to rebuilding trust and creating a healthier relationship.

Rebuilding Trust through Consistent Actions

Rebuilding trust is a gradual process that requires consistency and reliability. Consider the following strategies:

  1. Open and honest communication: Foster an environment of open dialogue, where both parties feel comfortable expressing their emotions and concerns. Encourage transparency and active listening to rebuild trust gradually.
  2. Follow through on promises: Honor your commitments and follow through on your words. Consistently demonstrating reliability and dependability will help rebuild trust over time.
  3. Be patient and understanding: Understand that rebuilding trust takes time, and the other person may still be cautious or skeptical. Show patience, empathy, and understanding as they heal and gradually trust you again.

Effective Communication and Active Listening

Improving communication is essential to rebuilding relationships affected by anger. Here's how to enhance your communication skills:

  1. Practice active listening: Give the other person your full attention when they are speaking. Maintain eye contact, nod to show understanding, and ask clarifying questions. Avoid interrupting or formulating responses in your mind while they speak.
  2. Use "I" statements: Instead of resorting to blame or accusations, express your feelings using "I" statements. This approach helps to take responsibility for your emotions without placing blame on the other person.
  3. Seek professional guidance: If communication remains challenging or the wounds run deep, consider seeking the help of a couples therapist or counselor. They can provide valuable guidance and facilitate healthier communication patterns.

The Role of Forgiveness and Letting Go of Resentment

Forgiveness is a crucial element in the process of rebuilding relationships affected by anger. Consider the following:

  1. Understand forgiveness: Forgiveness does not mean forgetting or condoning hurtful behavior. It is a personal decision to let go of resentment and the desire for revenge, allowing room for healing and growth.
  2. Focus on empathy and understanding: Put yourself in the other person's shoes and try to understand their perspective. Empathy helps foster compassion and encourages forgiveness.
  3. Practice self-forgiveness: Recognize that managing anger is a challenging process, and everyone makes mistakes. Practice self-forgiveness and let go of any guilt or shame that may hinder your progress.

Seeking Professional Support for Relationship Recovery

Sometimes, rebuilding relationships damaged by anger may require professional intervention. Consider the following options:

  1. Couples therapy: Engage in couples therapy or relationship counseling to address underlying issues, improve communication, and learn effective conflict resolution strategies.
  2. Anger management programs: Attend anger management programs or workshops to develop healthier coping mechanisms, anger regulation skills, and communication techniques.
  3. Individual therapy: If anger issues stem from deep-rooted emotional wounds, individual therapy can help you explore and address the underlying causes, providing support for personal growth and healing.
A couple taking a stroll in the sunset

Positive Effects of Healthy Anger in a Relationship

When used properly, anger can positively affect a relationship or marriage. It can help a couple understand each other and encourage them to work through issues together. [10]

Also, healthy anger can provide an opportunity for growth and understanding within a romantic relationship. Couples can use their angry moments to communicate openly and honestly about the root of their frustrations.

Additionally, expressing anger healthily can create a stronger bond between partners and help with conflict resolution. It allows them to acknowledge each other’s perspectives while maintaining respect for one another. This can build trust and intimacy, which are essential elements of an intimate relationship. For example, if a husband does wrong to his wife, it's perfectly normal for her to be angry and respond to create meaningful change within the relationship.


Managing your emotional outburst can lead to healthier communication and stronger bonds with loved ones. However, when anger is left unchecked it can create a rift between people that can be difficult to repair. If you don't want that to happen, take the necessary steps to manage your temper today and become your best self.

If you're worried that you may have bipolar disorder, you can take this quick bipolar test.

Meta Description

Being unable to control your anger can harm your relationship. Find out how anger can damage your relationship and how to manage this issue in this guide.


How Do You Stay Calm With an Angry Partner?

It can be difficult and overwhelming to deal with an angry spouse. Yet, it is vital to realize that even if one of you feels out of control, you both can establish a calm and polite environment. You can make your partner feel heard and understood if you take the appropriate approach.

Will I Ever Overcome Anger?

Yes, it's possible to control anger with the right tools and strategies. The key to overcoming anger is to identify the root cause of your anger and develop healthy coping mechanisms to manage it effectively. This may involve seeking professional help from a therapist or counselor specializing in anger management, practicing relaxation techniques such as meditation or deep breathing exercises, and learning practical communication skills to express your emotions healthily. With consistent effort and dedication, it's possible to control anger and improve your overall well-being.

Does Anger Management Work?

Yes, anger management techniques and therapies can be effective in helping individuals manage and control their anger. Anger management typically involves identifying triggers, learning relaxation, and mindfulness techniques, practicing effective communication skills, and developing problem-solving strategies. However, the success of anger management also depends on the individual's willingness to participate in the therapy and commit to changing their behavior.


  1. 6 Things That Can Cause Emotional Withdrawal—And What To Do About It
  2. Disrespect through Aggression, Anger, and Belligerence
  3. The Consequences of Anger in Your Relationship
  4. The Danger Of Anger In Relationships
  5. What Are the Effects of Emotional Abuse?
  6. Signs of Anger Issues
  7. Relationships and communication
  8. Feeling angry: Mental health and what to do
  9. Mindfulness in Moments of Conflict with Your Partner
  10. Sometimes expressing anger can help a relationship in the long-term

Why Do My Parents Hate Me?

Content Warning: The following article contains topics such as abuse, childhood trauma, and child neglect, among other potentially triggering topics. Read with discretion.

As teenagers and young adults navigate life and the challenging process of growing up, they may sometimes find themselves asking, "Why do my parents hate me?" It can be hard to cope when we feel like our parents don't love us, and of course, it's crucial to keep in mind that just because people tend we feel that way doesn't necessarily make it true.

In this blog post, we'll examine the reasons why someone might feel this way and we hope to provide practical tips on how to deal with these feelings.

An example of a parent hates on their own children

Understanding the Roots of Parental Behavior

Exploring Generational Patterns

Child abuse and neglect have devastating consequences on children's well-being. According to the Centers Of Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), in 2020, an estimated 1,750 children in the United States were victims of child abuse and neglect. [19]

Children who are abused or neglected are more likely to experience mental health problems, such as anxiety, depression, and post-traumatic stress disorder. [20] They are also more likely to have problems in school, such as low academic achievement and dropping out. [21] As adults, they are more likely to have problems with substance abuse, criminal behavior, and homelessness. [22] Understanding the roots of parental behavior can help prevent these adverse outcomes and promote healthier parent-child relationships.

To understand the roots of parental behavior, it's essential to consider how these patterns influence current parenting practices:

Remember: Feelings of parental hatred often stem from their struggles, especially with mentally ill parents. Remember, it's not your fault. Seek supportive resources and therapy to help navigate your emotions.

The Impact of Societal Expectations on Parenting Styles

Societal expectations can greatly influence parenting styles and the ways in which parents interact with their children. These expectations can vary across cultures, communities, and even individual families. Here are some ways societal expectations can impact parenting:

Tips for Breaking Generational Patterns and Overcoming Societal Expectations

Become aware of your own upbringing

Reflect on your childhood experiences and how they might be influencing your parenting style. Consider whether there are any patterns or behaviors you want to change.

Develop your own parenting philosophy

Establish your values and beliefs about parenting, and create a parenting style that aligns with those principles. This will help you resist societal pressure and create a more authentic relationship with your child.

Seek support from others

Connect with other parents, join parenting groups, or attend workshops to learn different parenting techniques and gain new perspectives. This can help you make more informed decisions about your parenting approach.

Practice open communication

Encourage open and honest communication within your family. This can help break down barriers and prevent the perpetuation of unhealthy generational patterns.

Consider professional help

If you're struggling with breaking free from generational patterns or societal expectations, consider seeking the help of a therapist or counselor specializing in family dynamics. They can provide guidance and support to help you make positive changes in your parenting style.

A family sitting together for a meal

The Importance of Empathy in Parent-Child Relationships

Empathy plays a crucial role in fostering strong, supportive relationships between parents and children. By understanding each other's perspectives and developing emotional intelligence, families can build deeper connections and better navigate the challenges of parenting.

Seeing Things from Your Parents' Perspective

Understanding the experiences and motivations of your parents can help improve communication and create a more harmonious relationship. Here are some ways to see things from your parents' perspective:

Developing Emotional Intelligence

Emotional intelligence is the ability to recognize, understand, and manage emotions in ourselves and others. Developing this skill is essential for building empathy in parent-child relationships. Here are some tips for enhancing emotional intelligence:

Interesting fact: Narcissistic mothers often project their insecurities onto their children, leading to feelings of being unloved. Recognizing this is key to understanding it's their issue, not a reflection of you.

A mother hugging her son

Building Empathy in Parent-Child Relationships: Tips for Parents and Children

  1. Model empathetic behavior: As a parent, demonstrate empathy in your interactions with others, including your spouse and friends. This will teach your children the importance of empathy and how to practice it in their own relationships.
  2. Encourage open conversations: Create a safe space for discussing emotions and feelings within your family. This will help build trust and understanding among family members.
  3. Teach empathy through storytelling: Share stories that highlight the experiences and emotions of different characters. This can help children develop empathy and understanding for others.
  4. Validate emotions: Acknowledge and validate the emotions of your child, even if you don't necessarily agree with them. This demonstrates empathy and encourages open communication.
  5. Practice perspective-taking: Encourage your children to consider different viewpoints and imagine how others might feel in various situations. This can help develop empathy and understanding. [24]
A mother hugging her daughter

Reasons why you might feel like your parents hate you

Poor communication

Miscommunication or lack of communication can lead to misunderstandings and create the feeling that your parents don't care about you. If your parents don't understand what you're going through, for example, it may feel like they're not interested in listening and understanding. [1]

Harsh discipline

Some parents are stricter than others when it comes to enforcing rules and punishing bad behavior. If your parents are too harsh, you might feel like they don't love or care about you. [2]

Overly critical

Criticism is often necessary for personal growth, but if you have toxic parents that are overly critical of everything you do, it can make you feel like they hate you. [3]

Lack of respect

Respect is a two-way street and if your parents don't show you respect, it can make you feel like they don't value you as an individual. [4]

Too much discipline

Discipline is important, but if it's too strict or severe it can make you feel like your parents don't trust you. [5]

Not enough love or affection

You may feel like your parents don't care about you if they are not showing you enough love and affection, which can make you feel isolated and alone. [6]


If one of your siblings is favored over the others it can cause jealousy and conflict in the extended family too. This situation can lead to feelings of inadequacy or resentment from those who are not favored.[7]

Unfair expectations

If your parents or other members have unrealistic expectations for the future for you, it can be difficult to please them and meet their standards. This can lead to feelings of frustration and helplessness as you try to live up to your parents and friends' set of impossible expectations. [8]


If family members do not communicate openly and effectively, it can be difficult to resolve conflicts and understand each other. Poor communication can also lead to feelings of distrust and alienation within the same family unit. [9]

Physical abuse

Physical abuse can make kids fear their parents rather than trust them since it is traumatizing to be hit or hurt physically. Because it has become commonplace in various societies and generations, physical punishment is widely seen as harmful and is associated with poor developmental results. [10]

Emotional Abuse

Similar to physical abuse, emotional abuse by parents harms a child's emotional growth and impairs their ability to have self-esteem and a positive self-image. As a result, their attachment to their relationship with their guardians suffers, which makes many kids fear that their caregivers disapprove of everything they do. [11]

They compare you to someone else

Constantly being compared to others makes you feel like you are inadequate.

Despite your parents' expectations, you feel like you can never measure up to your sibling/cousin or achieve anything worth praise. [12]

They have emotional or mental health problems of their own

Parents of children who have mental health problems will show it in their parenting. Even inadvertent coldness, dismissal, or strange and frightful acts can make kids feel unloved or unsafe. [13]

They aren't present emotionally

Childhood emotional neglect has been determined to be as detrimental as other types of neglect or abuse, despite the fact that for most parents its effects are difficult to notice. Many youngsters who are raised in emotionally negligent families experience feelings of emptiness or unwanted without ever fully knowing why. [14]

They are physically absent

Many kids internalize it and put the blame on life and themselves when a parent is always absent due to employment, physical distance, or incarceration. They feel unlovable or hated since they don't understand their parent's absence in person. [15]

They're in denial of any trauma you experience

It can be much more distressing for a youngster when their trauma or abuse is denied by a parent or family members. The child will frequently internalize this as self-blame or self-hatred, believing that the family does not support or love them, for instance, if they are sexually abused or molested by a babysitter or another family member and the parent(s) do not believe them.

Signs of an unhealthy relationship with parents

Helpful tip

For a child with reactive attachment disorder, consistent care, patience, and professional therapy are crucial. If a parental conflict exists, remember it's not a reflection of the child's worth.
A father and his son posing for the camera

8 tips for what to do if you think your parents hate you

Remember that there is a difference between punishment and abuse

Many young individuals believe that their parents must not like them if they punish them for breaking household rules. So, it's critical to keep in mind there's a difference between abuse and punishment.

Rules are put in place to keep kids safe and teach them responsibility when they are just and age-appropriate.

Identify what is causing their behavior

As difficult as it may be to consider, our parents frequently act in ways that are a result of their personal anxieties that drive them to their own actions and project their own emotional pain or fears onto their kids.

Some parents struggle to build ties with their children because of personal traumas or mental health issues, or they may have an attachment disorder.

Use healthy communication methods

A child can convey their final thoughts and feelings to their parents and communicate with them more effectively by using healthy communication techniques. This can be achieved by pausing before responding.

Using "I" statements could be as simple as saying, "I feel angry about what happened in this circumstance," or "I feel terrified when you yell." This may prevent your parents from being hostile.

Seek out support

If you are having difficulty communicating with your parents, it can be helpful to seek out support from a therapist or counselor. Talking to someone in a safe environment who is trained to assist people with such issues can provide the guidance needed to improve communication and help build healthy connections and relationships with your parents.

Look out for opportunities to spend time with them

Even if you realize you don't have a good relationship with your parents, it is important to try and reach out and spend time with them. This could mean going out for breakfast or coffee or simply offering to help them with tasks around the house. Showing that you care and are willing to invest in the relationship can often be enough to start bridging the gap between you and your parents.

Address issues directly, instead of being passive-aggressive

If you have an issue with your parents, it is important to approach the matter with them directly. Being passive-aggressive or avoiding the topic will only add to the tension and make it harder for both of you to reach a point of resolution.

When addressing issues, be sure to come from a place of understanding and respect in order to ensure that both parties are heard. Also, ensure that you're open to compromise.

Find an outlet for your stress

It can be difficult to manage the stress that comes when dealing with parental conflict. One way to reduce your stress is by finding an outlet such as exercising, writing, spending time alone, or talking to a trusted adult friend or family member. Taking some time away from the situation can help you gain perspective and handle it more effectively.

Set boundaries

If communication is difficult or emotions run high, it might be helpful to set boundaries for communication. This could mean deciding on certain times of the day when you will talk about the issue or establishing ground rules for how each person should behave during the conversation. [17]

Seek out professional help

Sometimes parental conflict can become too intense to handle without outside help. A therapist or family counselor can provide guidance and emotional support to help you navigate the situation in a healthy way.

They say online therapy may also be able to offer strategies for communication, such as active listening and assertive expression therapy, and other factors that can reduce conflict and foster understanding between parents.

foster understanding between parents. We would recommend trying OnlineTherapy.com. [18]

A fathering holding

Cultivating Trust and Mutual Respect

Developing trust and mutual respect is fundamental to building healthy parent-child relationships. Honesty, transparency, and open communication are key ingredients for cultivating these vital elements. In this section, we'll explore the role of honesty and transparency in building trust, as well as how to show respect and expect it in return.

The Role of Honesty and Transparency in Building Trust

Trust is the foundation of any strong relationship. Honesty and transparency play crucial roles in establishing trust between parents and their children. Here's how they contribute:

How to Show Respect and Expect It in Return

Mutual respect is essential for maintaining a healthy parent-child relationship. Both parties must demonstrate respect for each other's feelings, opinions, and boundaries. Here's how to show respect and expect it in return:

A mother embracing her child

Additional Tips for Fostering Trust and Mutual Respect

  1. Be patient: Building trust and mutual respect takes time and effort. Be patient with yourself and your parents as you work towards developing a healthier relationship.
  2. Celebrate successes: Acknowledge and celebrate the positive aspects of your relationship with your parents. This helps reinforce the importance of trust and respect in your interactions.
  3. Seek professional guidance: If trust and mutual respect are significantly lacking in your relationship, consider seeking help from a family therapist or an online counselor. These professionals can offer guidance and support in fostering these critical elements.


It can be difficult as a child to feel like your parents don't love you, or in this case, feel like they hate you. However, it's important to remember that they most likely aren't letting out their dislike for you in the way they intended. Attempting to nurture a strong and loving connection with your parents is not only beneficial for the relationship between you both but also for your own mental health.

To learn more about disciplining children with reactive attachment disorder and fostering emotional connections, read Fostering Emotional Connection: How To Discipline A Child With Reactive Attachment Disorder. The journey to having a better relationship with your parents won't be easy but with understanding and patience from both sides, it is certainly possible. All relationships take work and effort, so don't give up on yours just yet.


What are some strategies for dealing with parental conflict?

Some strategies for managing parental conflict include setting aside specific times to discuss the issue, establishing ground rules for how each person should behave during conversations, and seeking out professional help if needed.

Is it possible to resolve issues between parents without outside help?

It is possible to resolve issues between parents without outside help, but it can be challenging. If the conflict has become entrenched and damaging to family relationships, it may be helpful to seek assistance from a qualified therapist or counselor who can provide guidance and tools for communication that can help both parties find common ground.


  1. Pyschecentral: How a Lack of Clear Communication Can Affect Your Life, and Ways to Improve It
  2. Bustle: 14 Subtle Ways Having A Toxic Parent Affects You As An Adult
  3. Lifehack: 13 Signs Of A Toxic Parent That Many People Don’t Realize
  4. Welldoing: 10 Signs You Grew Up With Emotionally Immature Parents
  5. The Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia: The Do's and Don'ts of Disciplining Your Child
  6. Ideapod: 17 signs your parents don’t care about you (and what to do about it)
  7. Reader's Digest: 11 Serious Consequences of Favoring One Child over Another
  8. Shabaira Junaid: Stop Overburdening Your Kids With the Weight of Your Unrealistic Expectations
  9. The Springboard Center: The Effects of Poor Family Communication
  10. Choosing Therapy: 15 Signs of Abusive Parents
  11. Bustle: 15 Signs You Had An Emotionally Abusive Parent
  12. MomJunction: 15 Signs Of Emotionally Abusive Parents And How To Deal With Them
  13. Bloomintoparenting: Why Do Parents Abuse Their Children? – 10 Real Reasons Behind
  14. Exploringyourmind: Growing Up with Emotionally Absent Parents
  15. Verywellmind: Characteristics and Effects of an Uninvolved Parenting Style
  16. Insider: Signs of Bad Relationship With Parents
  17. Cleveland Clinic: How to Tell if You Have a Toxic Parent
  18. Psychology Today: 10 Ways to Heal from Childhood Trauma
  19. Psychology Today: 10 Ways to Heal from Childhood Trauma
  20. CDC: Fast Facts: Preventing Child Abuse & Neglect
  21. Pubmed: The Long-term Health Outcomes of Childhood Abuse
  23. Pubmed: Child Abuse, Street Victimization, and Substance Use Among Homeless Young Adults
  25. Pubmed: Linking Parent-Child and Peer Relationship Quality to Empathy in Adolescence: A Multilevel Meta-Analysis
  26. Sage Journals: Change Leadership: The Role of Emotional Intelligence
  27. Edutopia: Social and Emotional Learning: Strategies for Parents

Understanding: Why Does Self Harm Feel Good & Breaking the Cycle

Self-harm is described as purposeful bodily harm without suicidal thoughts. Common methods of self-harm include cutting, burning, and hitting oneself. Self-harm can feel good because it makes your body release special chemicals.

This article will help us learn more about why people hurt themselves. To understand why people might feel better after self-harming, we shall examine the science and psychology underlying it.

A woman who experienced child sexual abuse is feeling emotional distress

The science behind self-harm

Self-harm is described as purposeful bodily harm without suicidal thoughts. Common methods of self-harm include cutting, burning, and hitting oneself. Self-harm can feel good because it makes your body release special chemicals.

Endorphins help make the pain go away, and dopamine helps you feel happy. When someone hurt themselves, their body releases those chemicals which distract them from their negative emotions. [1]

A woman who self-harms seeking help

The psychology of self-harm

People who self-harm to hurt themselves have to cope with strong emotional pain. Even if they are unable to explain the reason behind the self-harm episodes, they use it explicitly to express how unpleasant their emotions are and see it as a way to punish themselves.

The physical pain behind self-harm can offer someone a sense of control and the physical sensation gives them a sense of relief from their emotional turmoil. The release of tension and the ability to take action to alleviate their emotional pain can be empowering and make an individual feel better for the moment. [2]

A man in emotional pain

Reasons why self harm is an option

The paradox of pain

The physical pain from self-harm is a temporary escape from negative thoughts or emotions, but it can also lead to problems in the future. You might have scars or get sick from infections.

People who self-harm can get addicted to it, and they might do more dangerous things to feel pain. When we inflict self-injury, the physical pain feels good for a little while. But in the end, it only creates a cycle of more physical and emotional pain.

It will only make you feel worse and more depressed. [4]

Seeking help


It is not just important to find a therapist who has the necessary experience working with individuals who practice self-harm, or non-suicidal self-injury, but also somebody you feel comfortable talking to. Therapy is not a quick fix, and it may take time to see some progress. It's important to be patient and committed to the therapy process, and Online Therapy help is a mere phone call away.

A woman meditating


Individuals who suffer from symptoms of depression, anxiety, or other mental health issues may require medication to help them stop hurting themselves. [6]

Self-care activities

A man sharing his personal stories

Overcoming Self-Harm: Personal Stories

Jamie Tworkowski

Jamie Tworkowski is the founder of To Write Love on Her Arms (TWLOHA), a non-profit organization that helps people struggling with self-harm, addiction, and mental illness. Jamie started TWLOHA after he attempted suicide in 2006. He realized that he needed to find a way to help other people who were struggling with the same issues that he was. TWLOHA now has over 1 million supporters worldwide and has helped countless people find hope and healing. [1]

Amy Schumer

Amy Schumer is a comedian and actress who has been open about her struggles with self-harm. In her book, The Girl with the Lower Back Tattoo, Amy writes about how she started self-harming when she was a teenager. She says that she used self-harm as a way to cope with her pain and to feel in control. Amy eventually found the strength to overcome her addiction to self-harm and she is now an advocate for mental health awareness. [2]


Self-harm can feel good to some individuals due to a combination of biological, psychological, and emotional factors. While this act may provide temporary relief from overwhelming emotions, it is important to recognize that self-harm is ultimately harmful and unsustainable as a coping mechanism. Seeking support and understanding the reasons behind this behavior is essential for healing and recovery.

Don't hesitate to delve deeper into this topic by exploring our comprehensive article, 'Here's How To Tell Your Parents You Self-Harm.'


Is self-harm a mental disorder?

Self-harm is not a mental illness. But it can be connected to other mental health problems like depression, anxiety, or trauma. If you find that you practice self-harming, it is important to get help from someone who knows about this problem.

Is it possible to stop self-harming? 

Yes! With emotional support and the right therapist, any person who experiencing emotional problems can learn how to handle those negative feelings and emotional pain the correct way.


  1. Cutting and Self-Harm: How to Feel Better without Hurting Yourself
  2. Discovery Mood & Anxiety Program: Psychology Behind Cutting Self Harm: Looking at the Underlying Causes
  3. PINE GROVE BEHAVIORAL HEALTH & ADDICTION SERVICES: 7 Reasons Why People Self-Harm & How to Get Them Help
  4. Mental Health Foundation: The truth about self-harm
  5. MayoClinic: Self-injury/cutting
  6. HSE Live: Things you can do to help yourself
  7. Wiki: To Write Love on Her Arms
  8. Wiki: Amy Schum

Gaslighting: A Form of Emotional Abuse That Can Leave Lasting Trauma

What Is It?
How It's Implemented
How To Stop It
Helpful Products

Gaslighting is a manipulative tactic used by one person to make another person doubt their own perceptions, memories, or even sanity.

- Blatant lies
- Denial
- Discrediting your memory
- Confusing or contradicting information
- Shifting blame
- Isolating you
- Trivializing your feelings
- Using your vulnerabilities against you
- "Crazy-making" behavior

- They may tell blatant lies or distort the truth
- The gaslighter denies having said or done something
- They may undermine the victim's credibility or cast doubt on their memory
- Gaslighters provide inconsistent, misleading, or conflicting information
- They deflect responsibility for their actions onto the victim or others
- Gaslighters may attempt to isolate the victim from friends and family
- They dismiss or minimize the victim's feelings
- The gaslighter uses the victim's insecurities, fears, or weaknesses against them
- Gaslighters may intentionally withhold important information

- Trust your instincts
- Document events
- Set boundaries
- Seek support
- Educate yourself
- Avoid engaging in arguments
- Prioritize self-care
- Consider professional help
- Evaluate the relationship

Gaslighting is a type of emotional abuse. It can make people feel confused, alone, and helpless. In this article, we will talk about gaslighting.

We will explain what it is and how to know if you are in an abusive relationship by paying close attention to your partner's behavior. We will also share some ideas for what you can do if you are being gaslit.

What exactly is gaslighting?

Gaslighting is a form of manipulation that occurs often in an abusive relationship. It's when someone messes with your mind, making you doubt your thoughts and feelings. They might deny facts, tell lies, or blame you for things that aren't your fault.

Anyone can be a victim of this behavior - it happens in different types of relationships, including romantic ones. Gaslighting is harmful and can lead to mental health issues. It makes people question their memory and judgment, making it hard for them to see that they're in an abusive relationship. The constant doubt and confusion can cause severe stress and anxiety.[1]

Gaslighting Techniques and Tactics

Gaslighters employ various tactics to manipulate their victims, including:

Effects of Gaslighting on Mental Health

Gaslighting can harm a person's mental health. Victims might feel anxious, sad, or suffer from PTSD because they are constantly manipulated and made to doubt themselves.

Gaslighting in Different Relationships

Gaslighting can happen in different relationships like dating, family, and work. It's essential to spot and stop this abuse early.[3]

Signs someone is gaslighting you

To recognize gaslighting behavior, pay attention to the following signs:

How does gaslighting work?

By Lying

People who engage in gaslighting often lie a lot. They never back down or change their stories, even when you show them they are wrong. They play games with the victims' memory by saying: "You're making things up," "That never happened," or "You're crazy."

By discrediting you

People using gaslighting tell others false stories about you. They act concerned but say you're not stable. This can make others believe them, not knowing the truth.

They distract you

When you ask an abusive partner a question or say they did something wrong, they avoid answering. Instead, they ask you a different question. This can make you confused and unsure of yourself.

They minimize your thoughts.

When someone is gaslighting you, they try to make you feel like your emotions or thoughts are wrong. They might say things like "Calm down," "You're overreacting," or "Why are you so sensitive?" By saying these things, they are trying to take away your power.

They shift the blame onto you.

Another way people try gaslighting you is to control you by making you think everything is your fault. They twist every conversation, so you take the blame for everything, even if it's not your fault. For example, they might say that if only you behaved differently, they wouldn't have to act as they do.

They deny that they've done anything wrong.

People who bully or emotionally abuse others often deny that they did anything wrong. They do this to avoid taking responsibility for their poor choices. This denial can make the victim feel unseen, unheard, and unimportant. This gaslighting tactic makes it very hard for the victim to move on or heal from bullying or abuse.

Their compassionate words are weapons.

Sometimes, when people are caught out or questioned, they try to improve the situation by saying kind words. They might say, "You know how much I love you. I would never hurt you on purpose."

What can you do when someone is gaslighting you?

The Role of Therapy in Overcoming Gaslighting

Therapy can help victims of gaslighting regain their sense of self and heal from the emotional abuse they have experienced. Online therapy platforms like OnlineTherapy.com can be a convenient and effective way to access support. [7]


Experiencing dissociation in the workplace can significantly hinder your efficiency and concentration, making it essential to remain attentive and anchored. We've touched upon the triggers, indicators, and manifestations to be vigilant about, in addition to offering guidance on handling dissociation.

If the sensation becomes too intense or unmanageable, don't hesitate to consult a therapist for assistance. We invite you to share your insights on online therapy in the comments section below, and let's foster a constructive, English-language conversation around this vital topic.


How can gaslighting affect your mental health?

It can affect your mental health by causing feelings of confusion, anxiety, low self-esteem, as well as depression. Recognizing the signs of gaslighting and taking steps to protect yourself from becoming a victim is essential.

Is gaslighting always intentional?

No, it does not have to be intentional for it to be damaging your mental health. It can also happen unintentionally, and the person doing the gaslighting may not even know that they are gaslighting you.


  1. Gaslighting: Recognize Manipulative and Emotionally Abusive People--and Break Free
  2. Gaslighting How To Recognize Hidden Behaviors
  3. Diversion Tactics Highly Manipulative Narcissists, Sociopaths, and Psychopaths Use to Silence You.
  4. Psychological Manipulation Techniques
  5. The Gaslight Effect: How to Spot and Survive the Hidden Manipulation Others Use to Control Your Life.
  6. Healing from Hidden Abuse: A Journey Through the Stages of Recovery from Psychological Abuse
  7. Techniques of Grief Therapy: Creative Practices for Counseling the Bereaved

⚠️Disclaimer: The information provided on this health blog is for informational purposes only and is not intended as a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition.

Breaking the Silence: Recognizing the Signs Of Emotional Abuse

Emotional abuse is when someone makes another person feel bad on the inside, like how physical abuse can hurt on the outside. It can be hard to spot because it doesn't leave visible marks like bruises. Some people might not realize they are experiencing emotional abuse, so they don't seek help.

It's super important to know the signs of emotional abuse, like when someone always puts you down or tries to control you. Learning about these signs is the first step to get help, talk to someone about it, and stop the abuse from happening.

The definition of emotional abuse

Emotional abuse is when someone hurts your feelings on purpose. It can happen with words, when someone makes you do things you don't want to do, or when someone doesn't let you interact with people close to you.

If you learn to recognize these behaviors, you can start to protect yourself from them. [1]

Types of emotional abuse

A table with four columns highlighting the types of emotional abuse, their impacts, the most likely abusers, and how it's executed.

Recognizing Emotional Abuse

The Subtlety of Emotional Abuse

Emotional abuse can be sneaky and hard to notice. It unfolds gradually, so the people it affects might not recognize it immediately. Others don't take it seriously since it doesn't leave any bruises. That's why it's essential to know and remember the warning signs.

Signs that someone is emotionally abusing you

They act superior to you

They try to control you

Emotional blackmail

They create chaos in your life

The impact of emotional abuse

Research shows that emotional abuse can be just as bad as physical abuse. An emotionally abusive relationship leaves invisible wounds;

Long-Term Impact on Mental Health and Well-being

The long-term effects of emotional abuse can be severe and impact a person's mental health. Victims may experience depression, anxiety, and even PTSD. It's essential to recognize these effects and seek help to heal from the damage caused by emotional abuse.[4]

A teen girl showing signs of emotional abuse

Emotional Abuse in Different Situations

Emotional Abuse in the Workplace

Emotional abuse at work means that someone is being mean or hurtful to others, making the workplace unhappy. It can manifest as bullying, belittling, manipulation, excessive criticism, financial manipulation, or even isolation. This abuse can make people stressed, depressed, and not want to come to work.

Because of this, companies need to pay attention to and stop emotional abuse. They should ensure everyone is respected, people can talk openly about their problems, and everyone supports each other. This way, the workplace can be a happy and safe place for everyone to do their best work. [5]

Emotional Abuse Among Friends

Emotional abuse between friends means that sometimes a friend can be mean or hurtful, and it's not always easy to notice. They might criticize, use mean words, lie, or purposely leave someone out. It's important to recognize when this occurs so the person experiencing the hurt can learn to stand up for themselves and seek kind and supportive friends.

This kind of mean behavior isn't okay. It's important to recognize when this occurs so the affected person can learn to stand up for themselves and find kind and supportive friends. Every person deserves friends who help them feel happy, safe, and valued. [6]

What to Do if You Are Being Emotionally Abused

Finding Support and Building a Safety Net

Finding support is vital when dealing with emotional abuse. Confide in trusted friends or family members, join support groups, or seek professional help from a therapist. Establishing a strong support network can make a significant difference in the healing process.

One option for seeking professional help is online therapy. It provides convenient and accessible support for individuals experiencing emotional abuse. To learn more, visit our affiliate partner's website: Online Therapy.


Knowing the signs of emotional abuse is essential to stop it from happening. If you or someone you care about is going through this, it's okay to ask for help and support.

We'd love to hear your thoughts on getting help - you can tell us in the comments below. Let's discuss how online therapy can be an excellent way to deal with emotional abuse.


How can I get help if I'm in an emotionally abusive relationship?

If you or someone you know is experiencing emotional abuse, it is important to reach out for help. This can include talking to a trusted friend or family member, seeing a mental health professional, or contacting agencies like the National Domestic Violence Hotline.

What are some coping mechanisms for dealing with emotional abuse?

Coping with emotional abuse can include self-care activities such as spending time outdoors, engaging in creative projects, or connecting with supportive people. Also, creating boundaries and maintaining open communication can be essential for protecting yourself from further harm. We also recommend seeking professional help.


  1. Springer Link: Beyond Correlates: A Review of Risk and Protective Factors for Adolescent Dating Violence Perpetration
  2. Research Gate: The Impact of Psychological Aggression on Women's Mental Health and Behavior: The Status of the Field
  3. Science Direct: Reconstructing the Risk–Need–Responsivity model: A theoretical elaboration and evaluation
  4. Research Gate: Awareness for Emotional Abuse
  5. Faculty Experiences with Bullying in Higher Education
  6. Research Gate: Overt and Relational Aggression in Adolescents: Social-Psychological Adjustment of Aggressors and Victims

⚠️Disclaimer: The information provided on this health blog is for informational purposes only and is not intended as a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition.