A Video to Share With Those Who Don’t Understand Verbal Abuse

This is a French video with subtitles, but it is well worth the time to watch and share with others to help them to understand how the dynamics of verbal and emotional abuse incrementally, insidiously destroy the victim.

It is one thing to watch this brief clip and see the pain in the woman’s eyes, but quite another to imagine living with a man like him day after day, week after week, year after year.  And he  never strikes her.

This is the kind of thing that most people do not understand.  The man is not going through a difficult time or having a bad day, nor is he merely unable to see his wife’s needs.  He doesn’t care about anything but himself and what he wants and expects.  The poor woman is his possession, not his partner.

See if you can identify the various tactics the man uses.

Trigger Warning:  This will likely churn up painful memories for the recovering abuse victim.



11 thoughts on “A Video to Share With Those Who Don’t Understand Verbal Abuse”

  1. Nice to see a new post! And what a powerful video!

    Yes, people do not understand all the tricks he uses, here, if they have not lived it:
    -Jekyll one minute, Hyde the next.
    -Public manipulation where he knows she will not likely respond.
    -Controlling tactics, some, oh, so subtle
    -insinuations he knows she will get
    -rudeness/meanness/contempt, etc., at times in the guise of “helping”
    -and on, and on, and on (this is but a very brief list)

    And, of course, her caring but not yet educated friend tries to help but falls into the blame-the-victim mentality because it’s the only one most of society understands.

    My latest discovery about abusers is that whatever the cause of their disorder/meanness/psychopathy is, THEY WILL NOT STOP.

    The end game of evil is….more evil.

    Unless by some miracle, they DO THE VERY HARD AND LONG WORK of changing, which needs to start on the INSIDE, it will not work. Period.

    Their targets/victims need to get away. Truly there is nothing to be done to help. For a few abusers, when their target does get away this helps the abuser see a little light, but THERE IS NO GUARANTEE.

    IMHO, best to leave them in God’s hands.

    1. Hello, Phyllis.

      Having been there, as you have, I too can see the abuser’s insidious tactics quite clearly. In fact, after I watched the video, it haunted me the rest of the day. It all came flooding back to me, and I had to have myself a good cry. It also reminded me of the so many others out there who are even now struggling to deal with the same depth of pain and heartache.

      Also, after watching this video, it made me realize how very hard it is for a victim to try to explain the kinds of things she is dealing with on a daily basis. To say that, “he told me he doesn’t want one of my friends to come over,” or “he told me what dress he wanted me to wear,” or “he wasn’t happy with the food I made for dinner,” it all sounds so petty – issues that surely can be addressed. I can just hear my Christian friends telling me to be more understanding and forgiving, and to pray for my husband. People do not understand what it is like to live in that kind of environment day after day, week after week, year after year. But I do.

      I also agree with your statement that it will take a miracle for the abuser to change. But, I am not sure I agree with your assertion it may take a long time and hard work for the abuser to change. From my perspective, what it takes is genuine repentance and a heart transformation. And transformation is virtually instantaneous. Just as we are changed when the Lord meets us where we are, and we fall on our faces in recognition of the magnitude of our sin and unworthiness, and His Spirit comes in and washes our hearts clean, we are transformed. It doesn’t make us perfect, but it makes our heart right. So too, the genuinely repentant will see the full weight of the anguish he has caused and turn away and do everything within his power to respect a victim’s boundaries and need for all the time and space she needs to heal and, if necessary, free his victim from any obligation to him as true evidence of his repentant heart. From my experience, abusers who work at change do not wish to change. They are offering mere compliance, the bare minimum necessary to clear their name so that they can show they are “trying.” But their hearts are still evil, and their motives and behaviors are not long contained. There may be some exceptions, but from where I sit, I have yet to see a successful slow transformation for a “repentant” abuser.

      I wholeheartedly agree with you that the victim’s role is to get away and leave the abuser in God’s hands; to take the time she needs to heal. It is long, long journey to freedom and recovery…

      Thank you for your contribution to the discussion. I always appreciate hearing from you.


      1. Yes, I tend to have a very limited scope when it comes to the topic of recovery ;)…but, then, we are talking over four decades with Mr. J/H…

        I do believe in miracles, however. But I’m very hesitant to trust what appears to be a miracle after one miracle, or seeming miracle (God alone knows), happened and lasted for about five years before things went south again…

        But that could have been my presumption and not really reality, more along the lines of compliance to clear the name, as you noted, or to keep me around.

        Cheers, and grateful to be much more recovered this year than last, and looking forward to year # 3.

  2. Phyllis, could I ask you what you meant by a miracle happening in your husband that seemed to change him for 5 years? That’s a long time. Did he really seem like a changed man all that time and then switch back?

    1. Excellent question, Kathy.

      It’s quite a multi-part testimony of God’s provision, information, and guidance over some years. Maybe too long for here? I have just finished it and it comes to about 1400 words…

      If you hop onto my blog and make the request, I can email it to you from there.


  3. This video really did get to me. Cause of memories and for others going through this and think they can’t get out. I encourage anyone in this inviroment, to please get out, whatever it takes. I didn’t think it was possible, but it is.
    The things I could relate to in this video is, being put down, control and control. All the verbal abuse. Making you feel like you can’t say anything. Making you feel like you can’t do anything right. And always, always be so called sorry afterwards.
    Phyllis, if you actually found one that changed, good. But I have failed to see that yet, in anyone that I know that is this way.
    And yall, please pray for me. I have been divorced from my last husband over ten years. And he still gives me problems occasionally. But I have learned he can not control me any more. But recently he has been actually telling our 17 yr old daughter, that he is gonna come kill me.

    1. Hello, Jeanette.

      I’m glad you shared your experience here and, as I’m sure you know, I can relate to all of it.

      My greater concerns is what your husband said to your daughter. I think that needs to be documented and reported to authorities. Furthermore, please take every necessary action to protect yourself, whether it means carrying pepper spray, not going places alone if you can help it, get a home alarm, and get a gun and perhaps a CCW permit if appropriate. Whether or not he means it, your safety is the highest priority, and perhaps if local law enforcement has a little chat with him, will realize that others are paying attention.

      I wish you well. Feel free to write anytime.


  4. Cindy,
    I have wrote before. I actually go by Joy. Thanks for your feed back. I really am upset also for him talking to her like that. He was saying all kinds of things to her, that he shouldn’t have. I didn’t know till afterwards. Some time before that, he was texting me things that were awful, and I just didn’t respond. I believe that was why he was
    upset with me. But I knew that I didn’t have to respond. He will get messed up on drugs, and that’s when he wants to act out. After he told her this stuff, I learned that he’s broke into my oldest daughters house and stoled a loaded gun. So then I took precautions to not be home for a few days. Then, I did not want him controlling me in this way, so I came back home. My daughter realized he also took her camera. So we figured he took the stuff for drugs. But I do know I need to be careful, this is the worst he has ever been. And I am wanting to see about getting a gun, for safety.
    Last I heard, no one has heard from him. Don’t know where he is.
    Thanks for listening and caring. Anyone in this position please do be careful.

    1. Hello, Joy.

      I am glad that you are being extremely cautious. If your daughter will testify to your husband’s threats, and you think it appropriate, you may also want to consider getting a restraining order. That will put your husband on notice that he is seen as a potential danger, law enforcement will come to your aid, and he will not get away with anything. They will have to locate him to serve him, and if they can locate him, that would probably be good for law enforcement to know.

      Be careful.


  5. Cindy,
    I do thank you for your advice. I don’t think that my daughter will tell the police, because she don’t believe he would really do anything. She did take up for me to him. Cause she knew he shouldn’t be talking about me the way he was. He is already wanted by the police for other things, and cause he owes me thousands in child support. But he is good at hiding out. Don’t stay in one place long.

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