The Verbally Abusive Relationship: How to Recognize It and How to Respond Paperback – Feb 1 2003
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Are you now, or have you ever been, in relationships with family, friends, or mates who have been verbally abusive? Is your happiness with someone you love continually threatened by interactions that continually undermine your self-esteem? Do you feel trapped in a relationship that keeps decaying in a downward spiral of overt or passive-aggressive abuse?
If so, this book could be your life raft, either carrying you toward repair of the existing relationship or the effects of past relationships or offering liberation from your current confusion. Its practical approach can help clear your head and possibly change your life. The only criticism that I and other readers have is that the author assumes verbal abuse is almost always directed by males toward females, which, in my experience and that of others I know, is not necessarily the case. Highly Recommended.
"A great, great book." -- Sonya Friedman, CNN
"A groundbreaking book..." -- Newsweek
"This is a new day in America. The most important thing is to realize that you don't deserve to be treated that way." -- Oprah Winfrey
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Top Customer Reviews
I became frustrated, however, when I'd try some of the techniques Evans suggests for responding to VA and end up being abused even more. Saying "Stop it!" or "Cut it out!"was tantamount to telling him "Step it up!"
I had to go to other sources of information to find guidance on what to do if I needed to get away (and I did). She does mention that staying could be unwise if the abuser threatens physical harm or if the victim feels "stunned" or "shocked." Perhaps detailed advice about how to summon the strength to get out goes beyond the book's purpose. That's why I feel this book should be supplemented with others about abuse and recovery from it.
I'd also like to see some mention of the importance of balance. What is and isn't *abusive* can be ambiguous. Sometimes it isn't the words themselves that are abusive;rather it's the intent behind them that needs examining.
An example is found in a list of discounting statements on page 92: "You read things into my words". I've said that to my abuser because he DID tend to interpret things I said in negative ways when I knew I meant nothing negative at all. Does my saying that make me abusive? Was I discounting him or was I trying(in vain) to *make* him understand me and what he was doing to me? I found this confusing.
I'd also like to see a revision that includes male victims and their stories. I agree that they deserve to be specifically included.
In summary: this book is great in that it validates the VA victim's experience and helps him/her realize that they aren't going crazy!It gives some responses that may or may not be effective in stopping the abuse, but at least offer better alternatives to becoming hysterical, deeply depressed, and even more intimidated.
Alone, however,it's not enough.
This book brought sanity back to my life and I will always be grateful for Patricia Evans for her insightful and well written words.
It is geared towards male and female verbal abuse but focuses more on the women's point of view since they often suffer far more.
Most recent customer reviews
Evans had a golden opportunity to address the issue of verbal abuse but failed miserably in every conceivable manner. Read morePublished on Oct. 30 2007 by beyelie
As a Christian woman, I can tell you this book helped me identify that my husband's behavior had nothing to do with submission, but was/is verbally abusive. Read morePublished on July 16 2004
The book may look at verbal abuse from the outlook of women, this doesn't mean that men cannot benefit. I'm a man and I found the book extremely helpful....Published on June 22 2004 by BasicGuy
I can't understand why two not helpful reviews remain on top, If I had not read the book, those reviews would not help me at all. Read morePublished on June 21 2004
This is an excellent book for anyone who is dealing with a spouse who is verbally abusive. The screaming, namecalling, silent treatment, and other emotional abuse that many people... Read morePublished on June 20 2004
The reason to read this book is obvious from the first page. It is EXCELLENT.
The author, Patricia Evans, has taken the topic of verbal abuse and presented a thorough... Read more
could ever need to build a solid case against her husband or any other man. Would strongly recommend to any woman seeking to end a relationship. Read morePublished on June 15 2004 by nosuchthingasordinary
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