9 signs your partner is emotionally abusive

Abusers rarely change, so don’t carry around a false hope that they will change with time.


It is possible be in an abusive relationship and not even know it. Often the abusive behaviour of our partners only becomes clear to us after someone points it out or after we have broken up and are reflecting on the relationship.

Unlike physical abuse which can be as obvious as being hit, emotional abuse can be subtle, however all kinds of abuse damages us. More often than not, our self-esteem is suffers severely and we become this person we were not before entering the relationship.

Emotional abuse usually encompasses strong emotionally manipulative moves and threats intended to force the victim to comply with the abuser’s wishes. Abusers rarely change, so don’t carry around a false hope that they will change with time. Don’t explain abusive behaviour away, don’t be blinded by love, if any of these things is happening in your relationship, it is time to revaluate things and take better care of yourself.

1. Your Partner Humiliates or embarrasses you. It can be cute when you and your partner are able to tease each other in a relationship. Sometimes it only means you pay attention to each other and you notice your individual habits, like the way she claps anytime she is on the dance floor.

Teasing can be harmless and even lovingly done. However, when your partner goes out of their way to humiliate you, make mean jokes or constantly makes fun of you in private or in public, there is a real danger this may be eating away at yourself esteem. Watch the things that make you feel worthless even if it said followed by a seemly friendly laugh.

2. You are constantly put-down. Hypercriticism in a relationship is never a good sign. If you are dating someone who never celebrates who you are and makes you feel crappy most of the time, you certainly can do better than that. A partner who insists on doing things his way all the time and criticizes you when you don’t act the way he/she prefers is not good for you.

You are supposed to complement each other in a relationship, if one person is making the other feel like you are not worthy of their love because you can’t do thing their way, you are in an abusive relationship. Concerns about your actions can be discussed without engaging in conversations that attack who you are as a person.

3. Your partner ignores or excludes you. Does your partner shut you out completely when angry? This can make you feel unworthy of love and attention. Many of us use the silent treatment to tell our partners that we are unhappy with something they did or did not do.  The silent treatment is emotional abuse.

It is a way of attempting to control your partner into doing what you want them to do. Shutting down your partner down and refusing to communicate with them is abusive. Love that is conditional is not love at all. You should be able to communicate with your partner even when they have displeased you. Also, you have cause to worry if your partner isolates you from friends and family.

4. Your Partner’s “I love you” comes with a disclaimer or a threat. If you are constantly hearing the “I love you but…” or the “If you don’t ………, I will …….” No one is perfect, your partner should be able to love you wholly, if she/he is constantly reminding you of why she/he cannot love you entirely, you will end feeling unlovable. Saying that you are not enough or withhold their love when you don’t do what they want is a form of control.

If you don’t cook for me, I will go and eat from some other woman’s kitchen. Or if you don’t come home early, I will not have sex with you. None of this is good.

5. Your Partner guilt trips you and makes everything your fault. If you feel like you are walking on eggshells all the time because your partners blames you for everything that goes wrong in the relationship you are being abused. You shouldn’t feel this way especially if your partner encourages the guilt and is incapable of taking responsibility for their actions toward you.

“I did this because you did this” or “I said this because you said that” is just another way emotionally abusive people habitually guilt trip and dominate you. An abusive partner can even blame you for their moodiness. They hold you responsible for how they act and feel. Run.

6. You Partner calls or texts constantly. Even though receiving a lot of calls and text messages at the beginning of your relationship may seem sweet, this can turn out as a form of abuse if not measured.  You have a life and your entire life should not be your relationship.

An abusive partner does not understand this and will not allow you to spend time apart without constantly checking in. When your partner calls you relentlessly when you are not with him/her, it is a sign that they want to control you and your time or that they don’t trust you so they are keeping tabs on you. Whatever their reason, it’s never a good sign.

7- 9. Remember always that love shouldn’t feel manipulative! If you are constantly feeling anxious, lonely or scared in a relationship, it’s a clear sign of emotional abuse. The last three points need no expansion. You are not in an unhealthy relations if:

7. Your Partner is irrationally jealous

8. Your partner is cheating, or threating to or is blatantly flirting with other people

9. Your Partners threatens to hurt themselves or commit suicide if you leave.

By  Dormaa Yeboah


Unblock notifications in browser settings.

Eyewitness? Submit your stories now via social or:

Email: eyewitness@pulse.com.gh