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emotional and psychological abuse

By Anonymous February 22, 2015 - 5:39am
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Please help,

about a year ago I left my husband, I believe he has been emotionally and psychologically abuse.

I had no financial independance, he isolated me from my family and friends, told me I was fat (I am 5'3" and at the time weighed 7 1/2 stone) that I would be a bad mother so it was a good thing that we hadn't been successful having kids after 5 years together.

I have fibromyalgia following a very bad bout of pneumonia that ended up with two broken ribs. He knew this when I met him, but has continues to accuse me of being lazy, not doing anything to help myself and generally just being a 'taker'.

He made me scared that if I didn't satisfy his coital needs, he would go elsewhere, so I would give him what he needed even when it was physically very painful for me.

When I told him I felt emotionally neglected, he would run down a list of thigs that I was obviously ungrateful for, including the fact that he housed me and fed me, and had financially helped out my much younger brother, by paying his school fees for a year.

I went to a psychiatrist after I left him because I thought that I was crazy. She told me I had suffered abuse, this was the first time I had considered his behaviour as anything but a justified reaction to my own faults. Which he still tells me is true.

My problem is this. He has decided that he wants to try again, that he has changed. That his behaviour was not good, but is not bad enough to be thought of as abuse.

He has been going to a psychologist, who has told him that it is possible that I have been through abuse, but that as far she she understands from what he has told her, his behaviour is not abusive.

He manipulated me into a conversation with her in which I asked her how it was possible that I had gone through abuse in our relatoinship, but that his behaviour was not abusive. She told me that this was a 'gap' that needed to be closed.

I asked her how she could know that his behaviour wasn't abusive just by what he said, and how one person (the victim) could see non-abusive behaviour as abusive. She told me that she is his psychologist, and from what he told her, his behaviour was/is not abusive. She also told me that she is not judging, but I see it that she has already made a judgement by telling him that his behaviour isn't abusive.

I feel like I'm going crazy, I am second guessing everything and I don't understand how he can change his behaviour, if he doesn't understand how bad it was.

I also don't understand how a psychologist can tell from just hearing one side of the story if someone is abusive or not? Also, is it possible that I think that his behaviour was abusive, but it actually wasn't - what do I do in that case?

Please help me, I'm so confused and it hurts so much!

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I agree, trust your own experience

December 14, 2015 - 6:10pm

Hello and thank you for expressing you situation with EmpowHER.  I'd love to give you advice that will help you make sense of the situation.

First of all, domestic abuse is considered a crime in the US.  Thus, the United States Department of Justice has defined exactly what domestic abuse is in writing.

I suggest that you read the description at the link below.


From what you have said, I can see that your husband has offended in most if not all of these categories.  You can trust the law and trust what you have experienced to be the truth.

There is plenty of room for change, but if your judgement tells you that he has not changed, then you should not feel pressured into a relationship with a person you do not trust.

 You are right, if he believes he has done nothing wrong he will most likely act the exact same way as he did before.  Therefore, if you want to give him another chance, it needs to be on your terms this time.

Good luck and let us know if you have any more questions.


February 22, 2015 - 12:06pm
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Domestic Abuse

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