Unseen Harm: Emotional and Verbal Abuse in Divorce

Unseen Harm: Emotional and Verbal Abuse in Divorce

Nov 05

There is a popular saying which goes “sticks and stones may break my bones, but words can never hurt me.” In some circumstances this can be a great morale booster, but when hurtful or demeaning words and actions are coming from a close family member, this maxim no longer holds true.

How many sit-coms are based on dysfunctional families where the wife nags the husband, the husband wisecracks about the wife, parents scream at their children, children bad-mouth their parents or each other, and so on? People find it funny, but these are all examples of verbal and emotional abuse which in real life can do immeasurable but unseen harm when brought to extremes.

An article on the BB Law Group PLLC website, a law firm based in Woodlands, states that domestic violence in the form of emotional and physical abuse is common in the US, and significantly traumatizes its victims. Physical harm is easy to identify and prove, but bruises and broken bones heal. Emotional and psychological harm, on the other hand, don’t always, and can affect the outlook and personality of people especially when the victims are young children. Systematic and incessant emotional and verbal abuse can turn a person into a mass of twitches and tics, foster antisocial behavior, and cultivate an environment of fear and distress.

Under Texas law, emotional and verbal abuse is grounds for a fault-based divorce, which can have consequences for child custody and visitation, child support and spousal maintenance. However, since there are no visible signs, it is tricky to prove emotional and verbal abuse in court. If you want to file for divorce where your abusive spouse will be barred from contact with you or your children, ask a divorce lawyer in your area about your legal options and how to prove emotional and verbal abuse against your spouse. An experienced lawyer would know what kind of proof will be acceptable in divorce court as a basis for an order of protection.

Recreating the Marriage Bond through Couples’ Therapy

Recreating the Marriage Bond through Couples’ Therapy

Oct 12

Any kind of relationship will have its own rare case of ups and downs; the good things is, couples can take advantage of these situations, converting these to elements that will eventually make their relationship or marriage stronger and, perhaps, even sweeter.

Some say that living a married life is hard; that after the few months of bliss following the union, problems start to set in. And some couples, who allow themselves to get overwhelmed by problems, end up falling out of love with each other.

One way to discourage couples from seeking divorce after years of marriage is by enumerating the many complicated divorce-related issues that they will have to face and settle. These many issues  include domestic violence, divorce, nullity, and legal separation, alimony or spousal support, child custody, support and visitation and division of property and debt, among others.

There are also couples, however, who choose to address and mend problems rather than turn away from them. Some even seek the help of a marriage therapist in order to keep alive their love for one another. One expert whose name has often surfaced in talks concerning couples’ therapy is Kathleen Snyder who, for the past two decades, has dedicated her time and talent into helping couples “recreate that strong loving bond they once enjoyed.” Probably more than Kathleen’s expertise, which has effectively helped and enabled her to guide couples in resolving conflicts, rebuild their friendship and renew their intimacy, is her direct, yet gentle and easy-to-talk to personality –traits that any problematic couple would really appreciate.

Knowing what specific problems beset your marriage and realizing the symptoms that may lead to them would help a lot in checking them before they get out of hand. Clinical psychologist Susan Heitler Ph.D., has a unique way of describing these symptoms:

  • Yielding: when you would rather give up than fight for what you really need or want. This usually leads to resentment and depression
  • Freezing: this is avoiding or delaying sensitive issues or complex discussions that often results to emotional distance and anxiety
  • ‘Fight till you win’ strategy: this is characterized by quarrels and arguments by one who disagrees. In order to get what one wants, this would be the strategy resorted to
  • Flight: turning one’s energy and interests to something else due to failure in addressing specific issues concerning the relationship; this may lead to infidelity, workaholic tendencies, alcohol abuse or other forms of activities that would while away time.

There are obviously other types of problems that affect married couples. To be able to keep and hold the relationship intact, they only need to realize that if there are problems, then, definitely, there are solutions.