Ever wonder if you are being too sensitive or controlling because someone who treated you poorly and abused your hospitality said that you were after they harmed you on purpose or knowingly? You are the victim of a gaslighting social predator, one prone to emotionally and socially mistreating other people.
Emotional abuse is common in toxic family units. It’s also common between toxic peers to dish out in the form of outright insulting or the use of caustic humor to humiliate and to ridicule for strictly anti-social, hyperadrenalizing purposes.
Ever been told that you are crazy and imagining someone said or did something abusive or that your reaction to abuse is the problem? That’s emotional abuse regardless of the actual abuse circumstances.
Feeling insulted by someone who is insulting you is never a sign something is wrong with you. Actually, knowing you are being insulted — if and when you actually are — is a sign of social and emotional intelligence… not that you are some sort of moral, intellectual, or medical misfit.
Never measuring up to someone else’s standards. That’s emotional abuse being dished out by a person withholding affection, withholding approval, or withholding validation in order to keep you acting as if you are their jumping marionette puppet.
The goal of Emotional Abusers is to control the thoughts, feelings, and behavior of their targeted marks. Discrediting victims socially who might testify or “tattle” is a common emotional control technique — saying things like, “It’s my word against yours if you tell!” when an Abuser and their victim were the only ones present — is the most common form of profoundly anti-social abuse, threatening to not only lie and deny having harmed the victim but making sure they are denied social triage after social, emotional, and psychological wounds.
Walking on Eggshells. Being forced to be hypersensitive and hyper-aware of someone else’s mood, in order to avoid being punished or hit, is profound emotional abuse that does incredible harm to people physically who expose themselves to that kind of person.
Making a person feel physically trapped. That’s emotionally abusive. It does not matter if it’s holding them manually hostage or by making sure in their mind that they truly believe they are unable to physically escape a hopeless environment using things like lack of access to money, to transportation, or by telling them if they try to leave that things like their children, their personal belongings, and their pets will either be harmed or neglected.
In general, a relationship is emotionally unhealthy if people involved are prone to socially competing amongst themselves instead of valuing one another and striving to collaborate. If and when there is a pattern that one person plays the role of Alpha predator and their Narcissistic Harem spends the majority or even any of their time trying to meet the demands of that person as Beta predators using them as a means to their own social ends, the environment is toxic — without a doubt.
Ever been told to overlook bad grandpa’s behavior because you might inherit his fortune? Or that it’s okay for Mommy Dearest to do things like to lie to authority figures and to the neighbors about what happens behind closed doors in her home?
Enabling is treating a predator like a means. A useful means in some circumstances, as a means to an end in others.
Enabling someone to behave poorly socially is a passive way to allow that person to do physical damage to their own neurobiology. People with problem personality types are often right to fear or to believe that the only reason why their “friends and family” come around is that they are interested in using that person. Not mistreating, per se, in overt ways… but certainly not coming around for a visit because they miss that person and they enjoy spending time with them.
The pattern of treating a toxic elder like a bank or someone to fleece out of inheritance is a passive way of abusing a family member socially and emotionally. The Abuser who plays Alpha blurter is the ringmaster, yes. But if you keep showing up and enabling them to be socially abusive, it makes you a CIRCUS MONKEY — not necessarily a flying monkeys doing that person’s bidding but definitely someone socializing because they [we, as Enablers of our own mistreatment] are thinking of what we can get from the person if only we take one more slight, one more insult, one more abusive comment from them… while we delude ourselves into thinking that tolerating Abusers makes us somehow moral instead of Machiavellian and ultimately ineffective self-promoters.
Keep in mind when the person who mistreated you for life who expects you only stuck around because of what they promised to give you after they were dead are the most likely types to wait until their last stages of life and to write their most loyal and patient of their caregivers out of the will intentionally to insult and to harm them from beyond the grave. Don’t think they don’t know if you think they are a pain.
When emotional abuse happens one time, situationally — like when some bully on the playground says or does something mean we (as their prey) never seem to be able to forget — PTSD can form and cause victimized people ongoing distress. When it happens pervasively, a different condition forms as a stress-related injury; read up on C-PTSD to understand what happens in bodies to people who make the social choice to expose themselves routinely (voluntarily or due to self-perceived inescapable civic circumstances) to predatory personality types.
The following emotional abuse tactics are commonly used by Cluster B people to harm others on purpose:
- verbal abuse
- false accusations
- ad hominem attacks
- criticisms of an unhelpful nature
- avoiding responsibility for intentional choices of behavior
- shame shifting
- acting unpleasable
- picking at old or known wounds
- hyper magnifying focus on target insecurities
- using push-pull techniques to keep a target vexed
- withholding affection or approval
- withholding pertinent data at key times to dupe people into making self-harming or poor social choices
- misleading people to believe known falsehoods or intentionally spun misinterpretations
- hiding affairs — or having them to begin with
- making unreasonable demands on others
- refusing to treat other people as if they have human rights
- acting unpleasable in general so people who are People Pleasers can never feel like they self-actualize
- Demanding MY WAY OR THE HIGHWAY with regard to irrational demands, acting on whims without respect for logic or the common good
- Demanding PROOF of things that are unnecessary to prove before being willing to validate someone has a legitimate point or trauma issue to address
- Undermining other people’s confidence in you
- Distorting claims about things you say, felt, or did in order to obfuscate truth — not simply noting when someone might have made a social or logical misstep in their thinking that is constructive to point out if there is a subconscious motivation to recreate a toxic pattern
- Refusing to accept your subjective assertion about your own wholly personal and ONLY objective report of your subjective experiences… ie someone claiming that you are faking a headache or a stomach ache when you were reporting accurately a subjective fact
- Telling you that your perceptions of abuse are wrong to feel after you have shared in good faith the emotions you felt
- Pretending someone who is traumatized by a predator is somehow intellectually, emotionally, and socially deficient
- Pretending a victim is exaggerating the impact of abuse on them emotionally or socially in order to minimize not only them as a person in the eyes of others but to avoid being held fully to account for causing them harm
- Implying a person in a traumatized state, suffering from extreme terror and frustration, is emotionally unstable for responding appropriately to inhumane treatment
- Accusing someone targeted for social misuse of being selfish, greedy, needy, neglectful of others, or materialistic and shallow if and when they strive to set and enforce healthy boundaries
- Expecting you to have no needs or interests or desires of your own… or that if you do, treating your needs as if they are never as important as the whims of everyone else [Think Cinderella’s wicked Step-Mother and her truly hateful and utterly complicit, nurtured narcissistic and ultimately socially gluttonous daughters.]
- Starting arguments to alleviate Hospitality Abuser social anxiety and or their boredom
- Making Word Salad statements to confuse listeners and psychological abuse targets in order to prevent a healthy conversation from happening at the moment
- Treating mood swings like Abuser playground equipment — using mood as an excuse to behave poorly in public or private
- Obsessively focusing on things like Somatic social appearance in order to avoid acknowledging positive character traits — picking on someone’s hair, clothes, body type, appearance, their social status related to employment (or lack thereof), making fun of their face, making fun of their voice, making fun of their teeth, making fun of their weight, making fun of their sexual attractiveness [slut shaming or panning them for being undesirable physically as a sexual object]
- Saying one thing then doing another
- Trying to put people on guilt trips
- humiliating you in public or private by doing something they know will humiliate — strategic targeting
- Throwing temper tantrums to frighten or embarrass
- Fear Mongering
- Denying Reality
- withholding sex unless someone does or says what you want or agrees to “pay” with material goods
- Treating other people like they are inferior or dehumanizing others
- Collapsed Narcissist claims of any type
- Doubting everything you say for no reason other than to make you spend time proving things that did not need to be proven in an attempt to make you spend MORE time talking to them or pursuing striving to please them
- Contrarian behavior or Oppositional Defiant behavior
- Telling you that your ideas are stupid — whether they are good ideas or not… knowing that there is no pro-social reason to shame anyone for thinking, for being creative, or for trying to offer other people socially collaborative assistance
- Talking down to you like you are an idiot to make you look and feel small in private or in public
- Being condescending or overly paternalistic to the point of disrespecting the mark
- Using sarcastic tone to mask deliberate insults, then claiming anyone offended took the statement wrong and that they have no sense of humor
- Spying, prying and invading your privacy
- Using any form of trauma bonding tactic
- Using logical fallacy arguments to manipulate others while covertly insulting our hospitality and intelligence on purpose
- Monopolizing someone’s time and attention with the intent to isolate them from friends and family specifically to allow the predator to be gluttonous
and the list keeps going. If you let it.
Going low to no contact with hospitality abusers is key to taking back control of your time and emotions. Stop blaming yourself for enabling when you had never heard of things like Narcissistic Abuse and start making better decisions about who you want to spend time with and around in life.
We all become like the people who we physically spend the most time with and around. If you never have been away from social predators a day in your life, understand this…
The grass is greener on whatever side of the fence where you choose to water it. It’s intelligent social and emotional behavior to limit how much time we spend exposing ourselves to any form of person who is toxic.
Establish boundaries with Abusers by depersonalizing their commentary and refusing to do things like paying them any personal mind when they say things to bait, to provoke, or to malign. Tend to cleaning up the social harm their blurting causes without placing focus on them, knowing emotional abusers are always at their core interested in feeling socially and emotionally like they are not only the non-stop center of everyone’s attention but like they are actively in conscious control of other people’s emotions.