When married to someone that emotionally abuses you, you honestly have no choice but to get out of that situation as quickly as possible. Is emotional abuse really something that you can base a divorce on? Is it really going to hurt you to stay in a relationship such as this? Below, you will find the answers to these questions and advice for proving that the emotional abuse is real to the court when you file for divorce.  

What constitutes emotional abuse?

There are various behaviors that constitute emotional abuse -

  • Manipulation – a spouse that makes you feel scared or ashamed into doing something that he or she wants.
  • Worthlessness – a spouse says and does whatever is necessary to make the other feel worthless, untrustworthy and without confidence.
  • Unstable – a spouse causes the other to feel as if they are losing their mind – makes you feel like you're going crazy.

A spouse can go about making you feel these ways by doing a number of things, like: using sarcasm, giving you dirty looks, playing the silent treatment game, slamming things around the house, using intense body language and outright verbally insulting and demeaning you.

Why should you get out of this relationship now?

Even though your spouse may not be putting his or her hands on you, the damage that is being done can be just as bad. Emotional abuse is something that tends to go on day or night, whereas physical abuse typically comes in spurts.

After suffering through this type of abuse for weeks, months or years, you will begin to feel the impact psychologically. You could begin to slip into a depression that takes years to recover from and lose the ability to trust another human for as long as you live.

How do you prove that verbal abuse is real in your marriage?

Everything that you do to gather evidence must be done carefully. A spouse that is capable of putting someone that they supposedly love through this emotional abuse could very well become physical if your efforts are found out.

Keep a journal of the daily occurrences. Log the date and time, what was said and name any witnesses that may have been present.

Talk with people that have witnessed what you have gone through and ask if they would be willing to testify in court.

Audio or video recordings can be the winning ticket, but they can be difficult to get without putting yourself in danger.

Talk with a divorce attorney (such as one from LaCroix & Hand PC) to learn more about filing a divorce and proving your case. He or she likely has experience working with situations such as yours and will be able to assist you.