Why people get trapped by Emotional Abusers & Why it’s not their fault
(these apply to platonic and romantic relationships)
The Emotional Abuser gives you attention: they make you feel flattered, loved and important. You start to believe that they genuinely care about you. They might even think that they do by themselves since they internally justify all their doings. Normally this kind of attachment would lead to a healthy bonding and a closer relationship. With the Emotional Abuser it leads to some levels of addiction and dependency on the victim’s part which is never their fault. Emotional Abuser’s behaviour exploits normal emotional bonding to another human being.
In some point in the relationship you notice that it’s all about their needs. The Abuser might do something that hurts your feelings and bringing it up leads them to reason why it’s actually your fault and why you have to take responsibility for it. They make up convincing excuses why it’s not their job to do it, why it’s absolutely unreasonable of you to ask for it and so on. In other words: they Guilt-trip you. The Emotional Abuser believes they have no responsibility for their behaviour or feelings. If they feel uncomfortable by something in the relationship they will manipulate you to take the blame instead of trying to work things out. Guilt-tripping makes the victim submit and erodes their sense of emotional and physical boundaries since they are made to believe it’s their job to cater on Abuser’s needs.
3. Cognitive dissonance
After the idealization pace the Emotional Abuser will move to a devaluing pace. Catering to their needs is not enough anymore and you feel you can’t do anything right no matter what you do. The pace starts when the Abuser feels you are getting emotionally too close and/or you are trying to hold them accountable for something they have done. Emotional Abusers are afraid of responsibility and in some cases intimacyso they will try to push you away.They use manipulation: Gaslighting and Guilt-tripping to force you into silence and to take all the responsibility for the relationship. They give you Silent Treatment which is justified by some clever excuses. Emotional Abusers believe they are entitled to absolute emotional comfort even when it means abusing other people.
Because you remember how well they used to treat you, your mind has a hard time accepting they are not the person you thought they were. In fact you might start to make excuses for them in your head because they have manipulated you to think nothing is their fault. It is extremely difficult to get away from the Abuser’s emotional trap because they take advantage of the victim’s emotional bonding to them and give false hope that the relationship could be “fixed”. You are misled into thinking that if you just learn not to be so
“needy” and “selfish”, the Abuser will reward you with the loving behaviour they demonstrated in the beginning.
The Emotional Abuser has no intention to take responsibility for what their abusive behaviour has caused you because they have normalized and justified it in their head. Not all of the Abusers are so sure of themselves but need a lot of internal convincing and validation from others so that they can feel good about themselves which is their goal: not having to deal with responsibility or emotional labour. After all Emotional Abusers are not Disney villains but people who are so selfish that they lack of motivation to learn how to not hurt people.
There are two ways how the trap can break: the victim quits all contact with the Abuser or the Abuser leaves the victim. The latter one occurs if the Emotional Abuser feels they have to deal with too much because of the victim. The Abuser might feel threatened by the victim if the victim is making the Abuser feel bad about themself by calling out their abusive behaviour. The Emotional Abuser thinks that they are actually the victim in the relationship because the real Victim is making them feel bad and scared. The Abuser is genuinely afraid that they would have to deal with negative emotions that taking responsibility would require.
In the end the Emotional Abuser ends the relationship with some dramatic note in which they project all their feelings into the victim: you are the abuser, you have harmed them, you have threatened them. This is their way of securing their own emotional well-being as they refuse to acknowledge the reality. Just remember that it was NOT your fault and you are not responsible for their horrible behaviour. While mutually harmful and violent relationships can exist abusive relationships are based on a power imbalance and therefore there is no such a thing as “mutually abusive”. You are nothing like your abuser.
The next day, you woke up to Steve’s arms around you, clothes nowhere to be found. Steve grinned as he felt you move, letting you pull back from him to stretch. He demanded a good-morning kiss, waving away your protests about morning breath. You ate breakfast together, laughing together and feeling giddy by just looking at each other.
“Oh, my mom called,” remarked Steve, taking a sip of his coffee. “Basically screaming.”
You cringed. “She saw your Facebook?”
“Was incredibly, epically offended we didn’t invite her.”
Silent Treatment: The manipulator refuses to communicate (while claiming wanting to continue the relationship) and uses emotional and/or physical withdrawal as punishment. This is to convey contempt and communicates that the person is not worthy of the manipulator’s acknowledgement. The goal is to render the victim powerless to change the current situation and induce feelings of abandonment or rejection. If the manipulator withdraws emotionally the victim can become starved for their affection.
who else is sick of those posts that define what a trigger is and isn’t and how your reactions should be based on them
a trigger is just something that triggers bad memories (and therefore feelings associated with those memories)
a trigger isn’t always a panic attack, it doesn’t have to be extreme and those posts that define it like that to make a point about jerks who make trigger jokes aren’t doing much to help
someone do something that your abuser always did, it made you think of them, and now you’re silently having emotional flashbacks even if you’re outwardly covering it up pretty well and would be considered simply “uncomfortable” by others? still a trigger!
someone do something that your abuser always did, it made you think of them, and you have a panic attack complete with loud crying and hyperventilating? also a trigger! both are triggers! congratulations now you know not to invalidate how other people react to trauma
hey there. I'm in a really really bad spot mentally and i don't really have anyone to turn to. I know that it's kinda demanding and everything, but do you have any hcs of shouto recovering from endeavors abuse and deku being there for him? or really, just anything fluffy at all, ill literally accept anything
i’m on the verge of falling asleep but i’ll see what i can do!!!
there are often days where shouto just. can’t handle. being touched.
it’s a stark contrast to how he normally acts with izuku–clingy but not abundantly so, linking pinkies and ankles, brushing shoulders, or knocking their knees together
during these days shouto doesn’t necessarily prefer to be left alone. izuku will often be in the same vicinity as him, in arms’ reach whenever shouto needs him, but never close enough to freak shouto out
izuku will provide him blankets and a plethora of pillows, especially big sweaters, which are often his own–the all might sweaters are shouto’s favourite
he will talk, quietly, whisper sweet nothings that are really disguised everythings
they’re mostly mundane things, like how izuku’s day went, how the homework they got from aizawa was unfairly difficult to complete in a short period of time, and the things the girls of their class have been up to according to the accounts of uraraka and tsuyu
he will never talk about heroes, knowing that the topic will inevitably remind shouto of endeavor, unless it’s about their teachers.
all might is the safest to talk about
hours will pass. shouto will remain curled up in a pile of blankets, izuku a meter away and filling up the suffocating air with his soothing voice
shouto will make the first move–a look is sent izuku’s way, tired and haunted but yearning, aching for touch, but not too much
izuku will keep his touches simple and light
they’re normally taps to his shoulder, his arms, his knees and his ankles
he looks at shouto with each brush of skin, keeping note of every inch of his expression, pulling away immediately whenever his touch lingers and shouto flinches
eventually shouto will give the affirmative for izuku to hug him–usually a tiny nod, or a weak, “please hold me”
izuku holds him, and he doesn’t let go
they will fall asleep with each other ((because at this point, night will definitely fall))
the next day, comparatively, shouto is clingy
doesn’t want to leave izuku’s arms when he knows they’re the safest to turn to, when he knows izuku is home and his house is not
izuku will indulge him; shower him with kisses, particularly his burn scar(s)–they’re all over his body, not just his face, hidden well but not enough to completely hide. enji’s training sessions were harsh.
again, he’ll whisper sweet nothings into shouto’s ear, but instead of talking about the mundane he’ll say I love you i love you i love you, mixed in with i’m here i’m here i’m here
shouto will be silent, but the emotions swirling in his eyes are enough to deduce that he’s thankful
years will pass. shouto is finally out of enji’s grasp, but he’s still suffering.
izuku takes shouto to see a therapist–he joins in on every session he can, and when shouto is prescribed anxiety pills he makes sure shouto takes each one on time, acting as both a guide and pillar of strength
as the new symbol of peace, izuku is expected to provide protection and hope for the world
as shouto is also izuku’s world, he is most certainly under the same umbrella.