A Letter to The New Girlfriend of Dr. Jekyll & Mr. Hyde

I didn’t write this letter, and a few of the specifics are different from some of my experiences (as they will be for all relationships), but yes, this.

This is exactly what it’s like, and what you’re in for when you end up with a person like this.  Been there, done that, got that t-shirt.  Beware that whirlwind and feeling of having hit the jackpot indeed – especially when it comes very rapidly on the heels of his last relationship (which should be a major red flag by itself)…

Whirlwinds like this do sometimes work out, but if you’re all caught up with someone and the description below even remotely matches your ga-ga state, please do at least consider the possibility that things are not quite what they appear at first.

The letter below is taken from Caught in the Cogs (who adds a lot of interesting commentary that a person might want to be aware of), who in turn got it from the About Relationships blog.  The post doesn’t seem to actually be on the original site any more, but there are a lot of good links about dealing with these types, how to identify cheating, etc., so I’m leaving the link in (also for clear attribution purposes, too, of course).  It’s long, but please do read through to the end; it’s well worth it.

Interestingly, a psychiatrist of my acquaintance, alarmed when I mentioned a Dr. Jekyll/Mr. Hyde in my own life, told me that this pattern is the single most common presentation of bipolar disorder.  I can now totally believe it.

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A Letter to The New Girlfriend of Dr. Jekyll & Mr. Hyde
by Dr. M. Analise Torelli, PhD.,MA,MSW,BS.

Dear New Girlfriend,

Let me preface this letter to you by acknowledging that you will not believe a word of it…just yet. Not for months, or even a year or two…or three…In fact, you may read it and go running to your amazing new man, your special King and newly found ‘soulmate’ for some reassurance that none of this is true. And he WILL tell you it is all a lie. He WILL deny everything. And I also expect that he will tell you it’s all the imaginings of his bitter ex-psycho GF. Oh yes, he will say, you are SO much better, his Princess, his One and Only Truest Love. And he will warn you not to ever believe a word of anything ANYONE ever says about him…unless it is all GOOD, of course! If you find out my real name, he will convince you most of all that you must never listen to a word I say or write, and that you should never EVER try to talk to me. You will believe everything he tells you. You will. I know. Because I did too. Once Upon a Time.

Right about now YOU, as the next one in line, are feeling like you hit the jackpot and won the lottery all at once. You could not be happier! You are happy, just deleriously HAPPY! You are dancing on cloud nine and ten and counting all your lucky stars. Continue reading

Can You Face Her In the Morning (How to Assault People Less)

This is a terrific post put up on Fetlife by SadisticLark on how to avoid being an abuser and assaulting your partner, reposted with permission.  Please read the original as well, as he is planning some changes and additions, and there are some great comments there that cannot be reproduced here.

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This is a rambling collection of thoughts based my own mistakes and ideas I’ve pulled out of my ass. It’s written mostly from the perspective of male top / female bottom engaging in casual/public play. Feel free to disagree, substitute your preferred gender pronouns, and/or go back to looking at nude pics. I’ll hopefully be adding to and changing this as time goes on.

I honestly don’t know much about rape culture and my only experience with unwanted touching was having my ass grabbed by a cougar at a bar (which I thought was funny at the time). It seems like many tops are worried about being ‘falsely accused’ or having a bad scene get blown out of proportion and turn into some kind of witch hunt. I’m not going to say that doesn’t happen but I personally think it’s a pretty rare occurrence (for exceptions see the How to Avoid Problem People link below ). It’s a risk you take by playing with people but if both parties are acting in good faith there are a few things you can do to lower the chances of things going south.

1. Choose your play partners carefully.

There are people you probably don’t want to play with. These people can usually be divided into two groups: People with no fucking clue about what’s going on and people who need professional help.

The first group is dangerous because their expectations can be anywhere from non-existent to complete fantasy and you can easily end up way outside their Goldilocks zone.

Risk of things going bad with group 1 = moderate

The second group I personally try to avoid. I’m not a psychologist, therapist, or doctor (although I play one in the bedroom). Even if I was any of those things, I’m pretty sure hitting them with a stick or sticking my dick in them wouldn’t be approved methods of treatment. I really recommend How to Avoid Problem People. [klg – Ed. note – also found in its entirety on the author Libida’s blog, where it’s easier to read and print out, but the Fetlife version and its sequel have entirely different lists of fabulous comments.  All of it on both sites is worth reading.]

Risk of things going bad with group 2 = RED FUCKING ALERT!

Pitfall: Your partner has “consented” to an activity they know nothing about.

You’re up big guy! This probably isn’t going to be terribly “Risk Aware” (RACK) and it’s debatable if they can “Consent” (RACK & SSC) to something they know nothing about. They are effectively washing their hands of any personal responsibility and leaving everything up to you. If this thing goes south you are probably going to be wearing this one around your neck.

Pro Tip: If you want to play with the hot newbie then tailor your scene to the person you are playing with.

A light laboratory/education style scene with lots of communication may help them get familiar with the reality of this type of play. Once they know what they are getting into you can talk about a heavier scene. If they still don’t seem to ‘get it’ then you may be dealing with someone who belongs in the group number 2.

2. Negotiate what you want to do before, not during the scene.

If you enjoy a good rape-and-pillage just ask during negotiations. If you want sexual touching ask. While you are at it you might want to ask what exactly “sexual touching” means to them.

Example: If I’m round house kicking you in the ass and I accidentally stick my foot in your box is that sexual?

Pro Tip: Rape play works best with people who both agree to have sex with you and enjoy consensual non-consent.

If you are missing one or both of these elements your partner will probably get the strange idea you are actually raping them.

Pitfall: Re-negotiating while your partner is at your mercy (or “physically incapacitated”).

Top: – “Wow she is looking awfully cute all tied up like that. I think I’ll ask if I can stick my penis in her.”
Bottom: – “My god I’m helpless! I had better do what he wants and maybe he will let me live!”

Pitfall: Re-negotiating while your partner is in subspace.

Surprisingly, they may agree to things in the heat of the moment that they wouldn’t normally. This has been known to leave them feeling like they were taken advantage of in a vulnerable state.

Pitfall: Turning into a legal bagel (Yes I know it’s beagle) mid-scene.

People often make the crazy assumption that you are negotiating in good faith. Avoid “omitting” things or your partner might start thinking you are a piece of shit.

Examples:

  • “You didn’t negotiate me not sticking my penis in your nose!”
  • “When you agreed to needle play you didn’t say the needles had to be clean!”

Good luck playing with this person or any of their friends ever again.

3. Don’t assume.

Remember that old saying ‘Assuming makes an ass of u and me’ well it can also end up making an ‘assault of you by me’. We all enter a scene with expectations of what’s going to take place. It’s important to talk about what’s going to happen so we don’t end up with what I like to call ‘a serious fucking mismatch of expectations’.

Pro Tip: The less you have played with someone the more detail you should provide about how you think the scene is going to progress.

Anticipation is the best marinade.

Pitfall: “Everyone knows who I am and that I’m the edgiest of edge players.”

No they don’t. If I had a dollar for every time someone said “Wow, you’re really mean” I’d have enough for a happy meal. Assuming that someone magically knows your play style and what type of scene you have in mind is setting one or both of you up for some disappointment.

Pitfall: “Negotiations are Borings-ville and I’d rather be exciting and spontaneous.”

Top: I think I’ll surprise her and brand ‘SL’s Cum Dumpster’ on her chest.
Bottom: OH MY GOD WHAT IS ON MY CHEST!

It’s a common misconception that girls like surprises. In fact rigorous scientific study has show that that girls only like expected surprises. This tricky sub genre of the surprise can often be achieved by negotiating the hard limits around the ‘surprise’ ahead of time.

Example: “How would you feel about me permanently branding something on you that is both degrading and shows my ownership over you?”

4. Don’t fuck around with colours (safe words).

When you cram a bunch of unrelated people together it helps to have some common language to maintain some semblance of order. Colors (safe words) are one of the ways we communicate ‘consent’. Specifically we can use the absence of colours to indicate that our partner is most likely continuing to consent to the scene.

I say most likely because this system isn’t perfect. Our partner(s) are only human and there may be times where they can’t safe word or even communicate their feelings. If this isn’t scaring you, it should be! Just because your partner can’t indicate that you are well out of their comfort zone doesn’t mean they aren’t going to hold you responsible when they come back to reality. This is a whole other topic that I won’t get into but just be aware that colours are one of those necessary but not sufficient things.

Pitfall: Having a meltdown when your partner gives you a yellow/red.

Nothing says experienced master in full control of themselves like a good old fashioned hissy fit. To really pull this off it helps to blame your partner for whatever is wrong and berate them for not being good enough to play with you.

Example: DON’T YOU KNOW HOW LUCKY YOU ARE TO BE PLAYING WITH ME?! RESPECT MY AUTHORITAH!

Side note: S-types please run-don’t-walk when the above happens and tell everyone and their dogs about it. You could be saving someone from injury or worse.

Pro Tip: When starting a scene reassure your partner that colours are available to be used.

You want them commit to using colours if something is wrong. If they can’t do that then your risk level just increased a few defcon levels.

Example: “I need you to use your colours if something is up and don’t be afraid to give me a yellow. I promise not to throw a dom temper tantrum and I’d rather know so I can fix whatever is wrong instead of finding out later.”

Actively and continually procure consent.

Why? We already negotiated and they consented to this! I’m the the one in control now and they need to stop topping from the bottom and let me work my Dom-ly magic.

Some reasons off the top of my head:

  • Negotiations are not perfect. Without prior experience people are often either guessing what they like or trying to extrapolate from tangentially related experiences.This can lead to an awkward situation where someone is engaged in an activity they thought they would enjoy but learn they hate with a fiery passion.
  • They know what they like but there is some stupid little thing easy to fix thing preventing them from enjoying it tonight. Maybe a cuff is too tight, a creeper is staring at their titties, it’s freezing cold, etc.
  • They have done this a million times before but today it just isn’t fucking working. It could be a bad day, a lack of chemistry (I know hard to believe right?), injuries from prior play, etc. etc.

Now you can wait until they say something or you can check occasionally and see how they are doing. The problem with waiting (as mentioned above) is that some people won’t say anything unless prodded and some people can’t say anything. This can mean the difference between “The scene was fucking horrible and I regret ever playing with him” and “The scene wasn’t working but I’d like to try something again some other time”.

Someone once described these check-ins in terms of risk and time:

The risk of the scene going off the rails increases in direct proportion to the time between checking in with your partner during play.

Examples:

  • Incorporate some evil witty banter into your scene. If the last shock had her calling your mother a crack whore she is probably alright.
  • Arrange for them to squeeze your hand if you squeeze theirs and all is well.
  • Take a break. Are they a thirsty kitty?
  • Agree on some body language that indicates things are going well. If she is wiggling her bum in time with the music things are probably good.

Personally, I find colours can be a bit ‘jarring’ and it seems much easier to feel in control of the scene if I’m the one asking how they are feeling and fixing things on on my schedule instead of waiting for them to colour.

Pro Tip: The less experienced your partner is with the activity the more important it is to actively get their consent as play gets heavier.

If you’re lucky you will get a chance to do a scene with someone who finally wants to try out that scary hard limit activity. Do your warmup but before you dive into the unknown it’s a good idea to get consent one last time before starting.

Pro Tip: The scene just isn’t working for them, you’ve tried fixing some things with no success, and you need to end it.

It’s time to attempt the art of the graceful crash landing. The idea is to change the direction this scene is heading so you both ‘win’. This isn’t as easy as it sounds but often changing the pace, modifying the negotiated activity, and winding it down is a good place to start. Avoid the emotional equivalent of dropping your partner by making this a ‘failure’.

5. Check in a day or so later and actually listen to what they say.

Besides being the polite thing to do it’s also your last chance to work things out semi-privately before things blow up. At this point they’ve had some time to think about things and decide how they feel about the scene.

Bang! They feel uncomfortable/’off’/unhappy about something. The first thing is to realize that you aren’t ‘going to make this better’ by arguing. People feel how they feel and trying to rationalize someone’s feelings generally just pisses them off. Instead, try listening and try working backwards to the ‘mismatch of expectations’ that led to this point.

This isn’t a risk free activity, mistakes and miscommunications happen. If you followed my earlier advice you have hopefully shared the responsibility for the failure with your partner by:

  • Making them aware of what they are getting into.
  • Sharing the responsibility for planning and executing the scene.
  • Repeatedly seeking and obtaining their consent (without duress) as the scene progressed.

Talk about it. Own it. Figure out how not to repeat it.

6. Relax and have fun.

BDSM is serious business. No fun allowed! 😛

TL:DR?

Actively involve your partner in all the phases of the scene so they share the responsibility for how things turn out. Periodically get their consent to continue so you are ‘playing together’ instead of you just ‘doing things’ to them.

I wrote this like a guide but it’s more of an opinion piece. People have different ‘styles’ and I can only talk about what has worked for me so far.

If you have any neat stories (anonymous please) of pitfalls I’d be interested in hearing them.

Have You Experienced Abuse in a BDSM Setting?

Leatherati has a survey on its website whose results unfortunately don’t particularly surprise me.  Asking “Have you experienced nonconsensual abuse during BDSM activities?), as of the moment, the totals are running as follows:

Yes – 57.5%

No – 37.7%

Maybe – 4.7%

This means that as many as 62.2% of the respondents may have indeed experienced abuse in a kink setting.

More than sixty two percent!

That’s almost 2/3 of the respondents.

Even if we leave off those “maybes”, that’s still more than 50% of the respondents having this kind of problem.

I spoke in a prior post about how awareness of the issue of abuse in the BDSM community is growing, and how then-IMsL titleholder Mollena Williams had asked, during one of her presentations, how many people were survivors of sexual abuse. Three quarters of the room stood or raised a hand.  That’s 75% of the people there.  Then she asked how many others knew a survivor – and the entire rest of the room was in.

That’s 100% of our population who has either experienced kink-related abuse – the vast majority at 75% – or at least knows someone who has.

These are obviously not scientifically valid samplings, but the numbers are damning, regardless of how specifically accurate they are.  Until such time as someone comes up with the funds to do a larger scale, properly constructed study, they will have to serve as representative.

The numbers will vary with such informal surveys, but the fact that we are even anywhere remotely near even half of our people being so affected, never mind forming a majority, is absolutely untenable.

 

On Hope and Speaking the Truth

Why I write this blog and continue to speak out:

“On the other end of the spectrum,” said [Vaclav] Havel, there are those who insist on ‘speaking the truth simply because it [will] lead somewhere tomorrow, or the day after, or ever.’ This urge, too, is fully human, every bit as much as the temptation to despair. Such daring, he argued, grows out of the faith that repeating truth makes sense in itself, regardless of whether it is ‘appreciated, or victorious, or repressed for the hundredth time. At the very least, it [means] that someone [is] not supporting the government of lies.’ Havel admitted, however, that defiance is not undertaken for its own sake but because people cannot exist in the absence of hope. Logically or not, people act out of faith ‘that a seed once sown [will] one day take root and send forth a shoot. No one [knows] when.'”

– By Eric Gfesser in an Amazon review of Madeleine Albright’s book Prague Winter quoting Albright quoting Vaclav Havel regarding the existence of two types of hope.  The first was just sitting and waiting for some kind of outside help or salvation.

 

 

Pennsylvania Crimes Code / CHAPTER 31 – SEXUAL OFFENSES

Source: http://www.pitt.edu/~weinberg/sexual.htm

Pennsylvania Crimes Code

CHAPTER 31 – SEXUAL OFFENSES

Sec.

3101. Definitions.

3102. Mistake as to Age.

3103. (Repealed.)

3104. Evidence of Victim’s Sexual Conduct.

3105. Prompt Complaint.

3106. Testimony of Complainants.

3107. Resistance Not Required.

3121. Rape.

3122. (Repealed.)

3122.1. Statutory Sexual Assault.

3123. Involuntary Deviate Sexual Intercourse.

3124. (Repealed.)

3124.1. Sexual Assault.

3125. Aggravated Indecent Assault.

3126. Indecent Assault.

3127. Indecent Exposure.

3128. (Repealed.) Continue reading

Guilty Until Proven Innocent

Reblogged from buckwheatsrisk-surviving abuse:

Yesterday a thought crossed my mind (yes another thought ).  Why is it that those of us who have been abused and escaped are the ones that have to change everything?

It’s been liberating for me to cut ties but frustrating in another way.  I am the one who has been abused and I’m the one that basically  has to go into hiding like a criminal and that really sucks.

Read more… 384 more words

Why do those of us who are abused have to change everything, why are our abusers believed and not us? Why are the victims of abuse so often revictimized repeatedly by the courts and everyone else? An important quote from this post: “Narcissistic/sociopaths are just as wickedly abusive as those that physically abuse and yet no one sees the scars and unhealed wounds they leave. They are not visible to the naked eye but they are visible if one looks closely. These people are dangerous people and often they will physically abuse, they even have the potential to kill, yet they are cowards so more often, they will beat, whip and abuse with their tongues. They will manipulate, guilt and lie to control you. They will use mind games to convince you that you are the one that is bad, wrong, messed up and needs fixing…Well ya, now I need fixing because of you, I wouldn’t have otherwise!Add your thoughts here… (optional)

Blaming the Victim of Lying About Harm Done to Her

I read a post in a certain person’s Fetlife writings putting forth a Zen parable that spoke of a woman who lied to her parents about who had fathered her out-of-wedlock child, blaming it on a “Zen teacher”, to whom the parents then brought the infant, telling him he must raise it.  He accepted the child with equanimity as they cursed him out for his hypocricy, just commenting, “Is that so?” (Another poster said the parable was originally a Buddhist monk, and the comment was “We shall see”, which is more how I remember hearing it originally.)

A year later, the daughter recanted, reportedly “distraught”, and Mom and Dad came back to the master, begging him to return the child, profusely apologizing for besmirching his good name, and received exactly the same serene response from the master as the year before, of “Is that so?”/ “We shall see”.

The moral, of course, is that women (or at least certain women) may lie (!) about what well-known masters have done, claiming harm that never actually happened, so one should not believe them when they issue accusations against the high-and-mighty, who often believe themselves to be invincible (at least in the BDSM world), particularly when they are better known.  It is likely to turn out that the complaints are what was untrue.

(Of course, it often turns out that the “master” isn’t that much of one to start with, except in his own imagination, and comparisons to Zen masters are thus absurd to the point of ridiculousness, but I digress…)

Another poster responded with a quote from the I Ching, which I quoted partially and responded to.  I am reproducing my response here because I fully expect that the OP will delete my posts, and this is an incredibly important issue – and there’s a reason it’s been raised at this point.

Because *my* moral to the story, with some known additional history (which could in fact also be played out in many ways by many people), is “Be careful, those of you who proclaim that your victims are lying about you when they tell the world what you have done to harm them, because we shall indeed eventually see…”


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Second, a compromise with evil is not possible; and must under all circumstances be openly discredited.

Very well said.

Nor must our own passions and shortcomings be glossed over.

True, but if they are unrelated to the evil situation in question, they are irrelevant to the resolution of it and the discrediting of the perpetrator, and may only confuse an oftentimes far more clear issue.

IOW, pointing a finger inwards certainly may be necessary at times – but should never distract from when the fingers definitely ought to be pointed outwards. Even more importantly, it is essential that others not distract from the issue by doing this.

There is a time and a place to look at them together – and a time and a place to hold them separate.

If a person is grievously physically injured, for example, there is simply no excusing the perpetrator who has caused this injury by his deliberate actions, and it is irrelevant what the injured party may have done because inflicting a nonaccidental injury is entirely under the control of the perpetrator. It’s like no one makes anyone rape someone else, no matter what they may have been doing before it happens. No one makes another perform any other manner of evil or harmful deed. That responsibility lies entirely with the person who causes the harm.

If one is himself the perpetrator of a harm, of course, then not glossing over it (and not blaming the victim for it or accusing him of lying about it) it is certainly the only appropriate course of action.

Indeed, it is incumbent upon said perpetrator, if he is an honest person and wishes to be so perceived, to own up to what he has done without excuses.

Amazingly, sometimes all it takes is an honest apology to rectify even some of the most grievous of situations, even when vast amounts of documentation as to the cause of the problem exist.

Therefore it is important to begin at home, to be on guard in our own persons against the faults we have branded.

Just so.

It is also important to recognize, if an outsider to the situation, that these “faults we have branded” (and here we are, of course, discussing lying about a harm done) may lie (so to speak) far more in the home of the party doing the open branding than that of the one so accused.

Sometimes, large amounts of documentation exist that prove who is actually doing the branding and who ought to be the one justly discredited, if one but consults the blamed party who is so branded a liar. Not all accusations of lies are themselves the truth as in the parable told in the OP – and many such accusations can be readily so proven to be the actual falsehoods.

And indeed, in the end, the real truth will tend to out eventually…

Characteristics of the Narcissist

from the Narcissistic Abuse website:

CHARACTERISTICS of the NARCISSIST and others with Personality Disorders

These apply to males and females.

1. Self-centered. His needs are paramount.

2. No remorse for mistakes or misdeeds.

3. Unreliable, undependable.

4. Does not care about the consequences of his actions.

5. Projects faults on to others. High blaming behavior; never his fault.

6.  Little if any conscience.

7. Insensitive to needs and feelings of others.

8.  Has a good front (persona) to impress and exploit others.

9.  Low stress tolerance. Easy to anger and rage.

10.  People are to be manipulated for his needs.

11.  Rationalizes easily. Twists conversation to his gain at other’s expense.  If trapped, keeps talking, changes the subject or gets angry.

12. Pathological lying.

13. Tremendous need to control situations, conversations, others.

14.  No real values.  Mostly situational.

15.  Often perceived as caring and understanding and uses this to manipulate.

16.  Angry, mercurial, moods.

17.  Uses sex to control

18.  Does not  share ideas, feelings, emotions.

19.  Conversation controller. Must have the first and last word.

20. Is very slow to forgive others. Hangs onto resentment.

21. Secret life. Hides money, friends, activities.

22.  Likes annoying others. Likes to create chaos and  disrupt for no reason.

23.  Moody – switches from nice guy to anger without much provocation.

24.  Repeatedly fails to honor financial obligations.

25.  Seldom expresses appreciation.

26.  Grandiose. Convinced he knows more than others and is correct in all he   does.

27.  Lacks ability to see how he comes across to others.  Defensive when confronted with his behavior.  Never his  fault.

28.  Can get emotional, tearful. This is about show or frustration rather than sorrow.

29.  He breaks woman’s spirits to keep them dependent.

30.  Needs  threats, intimidations to keep others close to him.

31.  Sabotages partner. Wants her to be happy only through him and to have few or no outside interests and acquaintances.

32.  Highly contradictory.

33. Convincing.  Must convince people to side with him.

34. Hides his real self.  Always “on”

35. Kind only if he’s getting from you what he wants.

36.  He has to be right. He has to win. He has to look good.

37.  He announces, not discusses. He tells, not asks.

38.  Does not discuss openly, has a hidden agenda.

39.  Controls money of others but spends freely on himself.

40.  Unilateral condition of, “I’m OK and justified so I don’t need to hear your  position or ideas”

41.  Always feels misunderstood.

42.  You feel miserable with this person. He drains you.

43.  Does not listen because he does not care.

44.  His feelings are discussed, not the partners.

45.  Is not interested in problem-solving..

46.  Very good at reading people, so he can manipulate them. Sometimes called gaslighting.

Under Construction

Featured

Please pardon the chaos here; I’m in the process of reconstructing the entire blog here on this new site, including adding back categories and photos.  Moving a blog is a huge undertaking.

Please bookmark the updated url and come back to visit often – and sign up for automatic updates when new posts are posted. Continue reading

The 15 Characteristics of Verbal Abuse

via married2mrmean

“As defined by Patricia Evans, in her book The Verbally Abusive Relationship – How to recognise it and how to respond.

“I make reference to Patricia Evans often and decided I would write this entry, in case anyone needs it :) None of these words are my own, they are all taken from the book.”

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1. WITHHOLDING
Withholding is a choice to keep virtually all one’s thoughts, feelings, hopes and dreams to oneself and to remain silent and aloof towards one’s partner, to reveal as little as possible and to maintain an attitude of cool indifference.

The verbal abuser who chooses to withhold can add a variety of flourishes and camouflages to his withholding, such as pretending not to hear, picking up something to look at while his partner is sharing or watching television while saying “Go ahead, I am listening” when it is clear that he is not.

2. COUNTERING
As a category of verbal abuse, countering is one of the most destructive in a relationship because it prevents all possibility of discussion, it consistently denies the victim’s reality and it prevents the partner from knowing what her mate things about anything.

An abuser who constantly counters seems only to think the opposite of his partner. If she (or he) says anything directly or expresses thoughts on something, the abuser will say it is the opposite. What he is really saying is “No, that’s not the way it is” even about her most personal experience of something.

3. DISCOUNTING
Discounting denies the reality and experience of the partner and is extremely destructive. The verbal abuser discounts his (or her) partner’s experience and feelings as if they were worth nothing. He will say something that gives her the message “Your feeling and experiences are wrong, they are worth nothing.” Such as – “You’re making a big deal out of nothing, you always jump to conclusions, you can’t take a joke, you don’t know what you’re talking about, you take everything the wrong way.”

4. VERBAL ABUSE DISGUISED AS JOKES
This kind of abuse is not done in jest. It cuts to the quick, touches the most sensitive areas and leaves the abuser with a look of triumph. The abuse never seems funny because it isn’t funny.

Disparaging comments disguised as jokes often refer to the nature of the partner, their intellectual abilities or competency. If the partner says “I didn’t think that was funny” the abuser will discount her experience by angrily saying “You don’t have a sense of humour!” or “You just can’t take a joke!”

5. BLOCKING AND DIVERTING
This category of verbal abuse specifically controls interpersonal communication. The verbal abuser refuses to communicate, establishes what can be discussed or withholds information. He or she can prevent all possibility of resolving conflicts by blocking and diverting. This may be by direct demand or by switching the topic.

Examples of blocking are:

*You’re just trying to have the last word!
*You think you know it all!
*This conversation is over!
*Just drop it!

Through diversion the topic is changed. None of the abuser’s diversions answer the partner’s question in a thoughtful or considerate way. Continue reading