7 Things That Look Like Love But Are Actually Emotional Abuse

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Things That Look Like Love

Abuse doesn’t always mean having physical wounds and scars. Abuse can be emotional too, and sometimes it can even look like gestures of love. The important thing to understand here is that just because it looks like love, that doesn’t mean it really is. Unfortunately, many people tend to confuse signs of emotional abuse as genuine love, but the truth is anything but that.

Your partner might do certain things for you that will make you feel like all they are trying to do is show you that they love you a lot. But underneath that sweet, caring exterior they are pulling your strings and playing you like a puppet. You might think they love you, but all they want to do is control you and make you do what they want you to do. That’s why it’s important to understand the difference between genuine, selfless love and emotional abuse.

7 Signs Of Emotional Abuse That Look Like Love

1. They want to know everything about you. Every little thing.

When a person loves you, they would naturally want to know you better, and there is absolutely nothing wrong with that. But as far as an abuser is concerned, they want to know everything about you, so that they can use it against you sometime in the future. They love it when you share everything about yourself – your darkest secrets, deepest fears, things that cause you pain, and your past. You find yourself saying all this easily because they make you feel seen, heard, and safe, and this way you slowly start to trust them.

And that is what an abuser waits for, from the beginning. For you to trust them blindly. Everything you tell them are kept as ammunition, which will be fired when the right time comes. They remember every little thing you tell them, and in case you don’t play by their rules, they hold you hostage by using your trust against you. It’s like a sword constantly hanging over your head.

That’s why it’s important to not give anything away very quickly. Always take some time and try to understand what kind of a person you are dealing with and whether they deserve to know everything about you or not. Take your time, and never trust anyone that easily.

Related: 6 Signs It’s Not Love But Obsession And Emotional Abuse

2. They fall in love very quickly, and move very fast.

Whenever someone seems to move very fast in a very short time, know that it’s a huge red flag. True love doesn’t happen that easily. True love takes a lot of time to blossom. So when someone seems to fall head over heels for you in just a few days and shows a lot of romantic intensity towards you, steer clear of them. If you find yourself spending all your time with them, and it feels like you have known each other forever, when it has been just a few days, run and never look back.

Abusive relationships start very fast and intense, and before you know it, you are in a relationship with a person who only cares about hurting you and controlling you. So if the person you are interested in showers too much admiration and romance on you, make sure that you hit the brakes and take it slow. If that seems to annoy them and agitate them, then it’s another sign that you are with the wrong person.

3. They want to spend all their time with you, and expect you to do the same.

Now, this is one of the biggest signs of emotional abuse and one you should never, ever tolerate. In the initial stages of a relationship, it’s very natural to want to spend all your time with each other, and not do anything else. Wanting to go out on dates, talking on the phone and texting all the time, and making plans every day to meet each other, are just some of the things that people do when they fall in love.

But when the person you are dating insists or rather demands that you spend all your time with them, and throws a tantrum if you refuse to, well that’s a huge red flag. In healthy relationships, both the partners like to spend time with each other, and also like to do their own thing. But when your partner refuses to give you any personal space and doesn’t respect any of your boundaries, then maybe it’s time to rethink the relationship.

Because if you don’t shut this down as soon as possible, you might find yourself in not just an emotionally abusive relationship, but a physically violent one too.

4. They call and text you round the clock.

There are some people who don’t text back or even pick up your calls, and when you ask them about it, they simply shrug their shoulders and tell you that they were busy. And then there are people who call and text you back the moment they are free. It feels amazing, doesn’t it, to have someone who cares about you and what you have to say? Good morning and good night texts and calls at lunch hour, and prompt replies, no matter how busy they might be. Sounds like a dream, doesn’t it?

It might be, except when it gets too suffocating and creepy. If the person you are dating is constantly calling you and texting you and wants to know what you are doing at all times, then that’s one of the biggest glaring signs of emotional abuse. This is their way of keeping a track of your whereabouts when they are not with you, and it shows that they are extremely possessive and jealous.

A healthy amount of possessiveness is alright, but too much of anything is unacceptable. After a point, their jealousy will seem like a noose around your neck.

Related: How To Identify An Emotional Predator And Leave Them For Good

5. They apologize every time, and talk about new beginnings.

“An apology without change is just manipulation.”

You must have heard this adage before, and this is perfect when it comes to understanding this sign of emotional abuse disguised as love. Whenever you call them out on their cunning and abusive tactics, they will instantly dial it down and ask for your forgiveness. But don’t be swayed by their sweet words, as it is just temporary. They apologize because it’s a temporary solution; the moment things go back to normal from your side, they will also go back to their abusive ways.

They will never leave you and will go out of their way to pacify you. They will tell you all the right things about how much they love you, and cannot live without you, and how empty their life would be without you in it. All this is a part of their elaborate act of showing they ‘love’ you. The moment things are okay, they will start doing the same things over and over again, and this vicious cycle will continue.

6. They want to know what you are up to all the time.

When your partner wants to know where you are at all times, when you are not with them, then that’s something you should not take lightly. If you have to be accountable for your every movement, then is that really a healthy thing to indulge in? They might say that they care about you and your safety and are simply looking out for you, but this is all nonsense.

No matter how convincing and sincere they might sound, never let them control you to this extent. Be careful that they don’t take your phone and turn on the ‘share location’ button so that they can keep a watch on you, every minute of every day. No one in a healthy relationship even thinks of doing this to their partner.

Signs of emotional abuse

7. They tell you that no one else will love you as much as they do.

Now this one is probably the most disturbing sign of emotional abuse. When your partner constantly tells you that no one will ever love you as much as they do, they are not being romantic, they are being toxic. Trying to manipulate and control a person by making them feel unlovable and unworthy is a classic move made by emotional abusers.

By saying things like ‘you will never find someone as good as me’, or ‘what I do for you, no one else ever will’, they manipulate you into believing that you will never find someone better than them, and you don’t deserve anyone better. They play this game so that when they leave you out of the blue, you will be left with destroyed self-esteem and self-worth.

Related: 12 Signs You Are Being Emotionally Abused

If you see any of these signs or all of these signs in the person you are dating, then know that it’s not love, it’s emotional abuse. You deserve better than this. You deserve to be with someone who knows your worth and respects you, not someone who only cares about belittling you and controlling you, just because they get a kick out of it.


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