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How Self-Esteem Can be Affected by Emotional Abuse

Updated: Jun 25, 2022


Have you ever been in a relationship that made you feel like you were nothing? Like you were worthless and couldn't do anything right? If so, you're not alone. Emotional abuse can take many different forms, but the ultimate goal is always the same: to make the victim feel like they're not good enough. In this post, we'll explore how emotional abuse can impact self-esteem and discuss some ways to rebuild self-confidence after being in an abusive relationship.

What is emotional abuse?

Emotional abuse is a type of abuse that is often difficult to detect. Unlike physical abuse, which leaves bruises and scars, emotional abuse can be more difficult to identify. Emotional abuse can involve verbal assaults, controlling behavior, intimidation, or neglect. Emotional abuse can have a devastating effect on a person's self-esteem. Victims of emotional abuse often feel unworthy and unlovable. They may struggle with depression and low self-esteem.

Signs of Emotional Abuse

Emotional abuse can be hard to identify. Often times, it's hidden behind a facade of niceness or good intentions. The abuser may be someone who's always there for you, always willing to help. They may make you feel like you're not good enough and that you need them in order to survive. There are, however, some signs that can indicate emotional abuse. If your partner regularly puts you down, criticizes you or makes you feel guilty, they may be abusing you emotionally. They isolate you from your friends and family, if they control what you wear or how you spend your time, these are all also warning signs. If you think you're being emotionally abused, please reach out for help.

What are the long-term effects of emotional abuse on the brain and body?

Emotional abuse can take a toll on your self-esteem and can leave lasting effects on your brain and body. When you're constantly being put down and made to feel inferior, it chips away at your self-confidence and can leave you feeling unworthy and undeserving. This can have a serious impact on your mental health and lead to conditions such as depression, anxiety, and PTSD. Emotional abuse can also have physical effects on your body. You may experience problems such as headaches, chronic pain, gastrointestinal issues, and more.

How Emotional Abuse Can Affect Your Self-Esteem

Emotional abuse can have a significant impact on your self-esteem due to different reasons. It can make you feel like you're not good enough, that you're not worthy of love and affection, and that you're somehow responsible for the abuse. This can lead to a feeling of worthlessness and lead to low confidence. If you're experiencing emotional abuse, it's important to seek help. Talk to someone you trust about what's going on, and find a therapist who can help you work through these issues. It's not going to be easy, but it is possible to heal and rebuild your confidence.

Tips for Healing and Recovery from Emotional Abuse

Here are a few tips to help you begin the healing process and reclaim your self-esteem.

1. Acknowledge the abuse and how it has affected you. Don't try to brush it under the rug or pretend like it didn't happen. This is the first step in healing and will allow you to start addressing the trauma that you experienced.

2. Seek professional help. Talking about your experiences with a therapist can be incredibly healing and can help you understand what happened and how to move on.

3. Build a support system of friends or family members who will listen and offer encouragement. These people can help you get through tough times and remind you that you are not alone.

4. Take care of yourself on a physical as well as an emotional level. Eat healthy foods, get regular exercise, and take time for yourself to relax and de-stress.

5. Finally, be kind to yourself. Give yourself time to heal, don't put too much pressure on yourself, and remember that you are deserving of love and respect.


Self-esteem is often one of the first things to be attacked in a relationship where emotional abuse is present. Abusers will often aim to make their victims feel small and unworthy, in an attempt to take away their power and keep them stuck to them or stagnant in life for one reason or another. If you're dealing with emotional abuse, it's important to remember that you are not alone, and that your self-esteem is worth fighting for. Seek out help from friends, family, or a therapist, and work to rebuild your confidence from the ground up. Remember that you are deserving of love and respect, no matter what the abuser tells you.

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