Children react differently to Verbal and Emotional Abuse and that determines the route they will take. Some children make the choice to become a victim, abuser (themselves), or an overcomer.
Many people wonder, Why did I have to travel down this path of abuse? You may not know the exact answer for some time, but you can know that as long as you continue to entrust your life to the Lord, He will direct your path each step of the way, and you can be an overcomer. “In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world.” (John 16:33)
- Some children make the choice to become a Victim as the result of Verbal and Emotional Abuse: Children internalise abusive experiences; blame themselves for the abuse; feel deserving of abuse; seek out abusers who look strong; remain victims of abusers.
- Other children choose to become an Abuser themselves because of Verbal and Emotional Abuse: Children internalise abusive experiences; blame others for the abuse; feel that others are deserving of abuse; seek out the weak in order to look strong; become abusers.
- Other children choose to Overcome Verbal and Emotional Abuse: Children initially internalise their abusive experiences, but later externalise them; initially blame themselves or others for the abuse, but later forgive all involved in the abuse – including themselves; initially feel deserving of abuse, but later feel deserving of loving, trusting relationships; initially seek out abusers or victims, but later seek out well-adjusted people; initially remain victims or become abusers, but later reject both roles and become emotionally healthy;
“Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways acknowledge him, and he will make your paths straight” (Proverbs 3:5–6). “Heal me, O Lord, and I will be healed; save me and I will be saved, for you are the one I praise.” (Jeremiah 17:14)
“Why do people who are being abused continue to stay in abusive relationships?”
Answer: One major reason is fear. Isaiah 21:4 say, “My heart falters, fear makes me tremble.” Instilling fear is a powerful weapon used to control another person. One effective strategy that instills fear is the use of demeaning messages, such as verbal threats to inflict physical harm. Another fear tactic is to leave or to withdraw emotional support. The basic underlying fear, however, is the fear of not having the three basic needs met—the needs for love, for significance, and for security. Yet the Lord wants us to turn from fear to faith and to trust Him to meet our deepest needs. “Fear of man will prove to be a snare, but whoever trusts in the Lord is kept safe.” (Proverbs 29:25)