I am not a professional of any kind, I just want to voice my opinion and raise awareness on the matter 🙂
I felt like I wanted to write something about this after I heard everything about the ‘YouTube scandal’, where many people are coming forward to tell their stories of being emotionally abused or manipulated by YouTubers. I’m not going to name any of those people, but I would like to say I was angered by all of this, because these are people that I used to look up to, people that teenagers, like myself, had as role models. Or idols. And to find that someone you look up to took advantage of others who looked up to them is awful. And that is all I’m going to say about the YouTube side of this.
You can be emotionally abused by anyone. Family, friends, partners, colleagues, anyone in your life could, potentially, emotionally abuse you. Some people might think it can only happen in relationships, but abusive friendships, or toxic friendships, happen a lot. You can tell if you are being emotionally abused if:
1. Your feelings are constantly invalidated.
2. They manipulate you into doing things you don’t want to do
3. When you try to point out something they did wrong, they turn it around and make it about something you did to them.
These are not all the signs, although I think they are good ones to look for.
(Like I said, I’m not a professional).
It’s often hard to get out of toxic relationships, especially if you have lots of mutual friends with that person, but the first thing to do is realise that they are emotionally abusing you. Now, you can choose the best path to take. You may want to explain to the person that you class what they are doing as emotional abuse. This person may not be aware that what they are doing is classed as emotional abuse, so you may want to enlighten them –
politely of course. (Please note I am not excusing their actions). Stopping all contact with that person is a good thing to do, generally, but not always achievable. If it is not, try to limit one-to-one contact as much as possible and try not to directly address them in group conversations. If you tell your abuser that what they are doing is wrong, and they try their best to change their behaviour, feel proud of yourself. Potentially, you stopped them from doing the same thing they did to you to someone else. If they don’t change, don’t blame yourself. Never blame yourself for being in an abusive relationship, or for not being able to change them. I would not advise forgiving them, even if they do change.
If you are unsure if what is happening to you is emotional abuse, then I suggest you look at more indicators you are in an abusive relationship before you confront the person about it, but if you think you may be, then you should probably talk to the person in question about it anyway.
Emotional abuse comes in varying degrees and forms, and it is never acceptable! Take care of yourselves and your friends, if you’re worried about them being in an emotionally abusive relationship
(or if you’re just worried about them in general).
Thank you for taking the time to read, if I help just one person I’d be very happy 🙂