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Acknowledgments. Introduction. Part One: Identifying and Understanding Emotional Abuse. 1. Emotional Abuse?The Destroyer of Relationships. 2. Patterns of Abuse. 3. Not All Emotionally Abusive Relationships Are Alike. 4. Patterns That Begin in Childhood: Why We Abuse and Why We Take It. Part Two: Stopping the Abuse. 5. Action Steps for Those Being Abused. 6. Action Steps for the Abusive Partner. 7. Action Steps for the Abusive Couple. 8. When Your Partner Has a Personality Disorder. 9. When Your Abusiveness Stems from Your Personality Disorder. Part Three: Where Do You Go from Here? 10. Should You Stay or Should You Leave? 11. Preventing Emotional Abuse in the Future. 12. Continuing to Recover. Epilogue. References. Further Reading. Websites and Chat Rooms. Index.
BEVERLY ENGEL is an internationally recognized therapist with an expertise in abuse, women's issues, relationships, and sexuality. She is the author of several nonfiction books, including Loving Him without Losing You, Honor Your Anger, The Power of Apology, and The Emotionally Abused Woman. Engel has appeared on many national television shows, including Oprah, Donahue, Ricki Lake, Sally Jessy Raphael, and others.
According to therapist Engel (Partners in Recovery), "even the most loving person" is capable of emotional abuse-that is, "any non-physical behavior designed to control, intimidate, subjugate, demean, punish, or isolate." In a reasoned, sensible tone, she encourages readers to become responsible for their behavior and for changing it. Identified are ten "patterns of abuse" (verbal assault, character assassination, etc), different kinds of abusive relationships, action steps for cessation, and suggestions for recovery. Using dense writing and cogent examples, Engel clearly shows how this type of abuse, either intentional or unconscious, leads to low self-esteem and misery for one or both partners. A difficult and draining yet important read for those who suspect that their relationship has entered abusive territory, this book is highly recommended. For books on remedying less severe marital stresses, try Howard Markman and others' hokey but well-intentioned Fighting for Your Marriage. Copyright 2002 Cahners Business Information.