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aflatoon dash (health)     28 September 2010

Emotional blackmail

  1. Emotional blackmailer strikes at home where ther is lot of love affection and care.Pl recognize it and protect yourself from it .Any qusetion will be welcome.
  2. Emotional Blackmail


    Emotional Blackmail - Emotional Blackmail describes the use of a system of threats and punishments on a person by someone close to them in an attempt to control their behaviors.


    In a nutshell, emotional blackmail takes the form "if you don't do what I want then I will make you hurt". In order for emotional blackmail to occur there must be 4 things present - a blackmailer, a victim a demand and a threat.

    The Demand - in order for emotional blackmail to occur, a blackmailer must be demanding something that the victim does not want to give them - otherwise there would be no conflict. So in order for there to be emotional blackmail there must be a conflicting interest between two parties.

    In general the blackmailer is usually asking or demanding something which the victim regards as unreasonable. However, the level of unreasonableness can't be so great that the blackmailer believes that they will never get what they want . In general the demand is for something that the victim is likely to give up if enough pressure is applied. For this reason emotional blackmail patterns are often cyclical - with both the blackmailer and the victim learning over time what level of demand will be tolerated without retribution and what degree of blackmail it takes for the victim to comply.

    The Threat: the blackmail may be a threat to hurt the victim directly, or more commonly will be a threat to hurt something or someone the victim cares about. This could take the form of damaging or destroying an object, an agreement, a relationship or a trust. This could include the blackmailer themselves - and so the blackmailer may threaten to hurt themselves to get what they want.

    The Blackmailer - Although an emotional blackmailer is fighting for control over their victim, they often have little control over themselves. They may use dissociation to escape the guilt they would feel over the way the are treating another. They may feel desperate inside and justify their actions as a means to an end of soothing their own desperate internal pain. An emotional blackmailer is rarely cognizant of the extent of the hurt they are inflicting on their victim and ultimately on themselves or able and willing to "snap out of it" or see the error of their ways.

    The Victim - in order for emotional blackmail to work there has to be a willing victim - a person who is willing to sacrifice their principles, values, goals and boundaries to "keep the peace", "turn the other cheek" and give in to the demands. Victims are often moralistic people, bridge builders - people who have compassion or pity on the blackmailer and are willing to go the extra mile for them. Victims may have low self esteem of their own and generally afraid to stand up for their own ideas and principles. They are caught in a vicious cycle as each time they yield something important to the abuser they suffer a loss of their own self-esteem and begin to fee more powerless, hopeless and trapped in their situation.

    Susan Forward & Donna Frazier invent the acronym FOG, standing for Fear, Obligation, Guilt - feelings which often result from being exposed to emotional blackmail when in a relationship with a person who suffers from a Personality Disorder. It is from this definition that our site - Out of the FOG derived its name. It is our hope that this site may help some navigate out of the FOG in their own lives.

    Examples of Emotional Blackmail:

    • Spouse refusing to speak despite repeated honest attempts..
    • Spouse blocking children suddenly.
    • spouse repaetedly saying " our therapist/friends/family and they agree that you are being unreasonable".
    •  spouse saying I want to be independent 
    • Your family hate me. How can you say you love me and still be friends with them?
    • You've ruined my life and now you are trying to stop me from spending money to take care of myself.
    • I took the money because you always put yourself first and don't seem to care about my needs.

    What NOT to Do:

    • Don't give in to or reward emotional blackmail demands or attempts.
    • Don't stay in a situation where there is a threat or an action of violence towards yourself or others.
    • Don't allow yourself to be blamed for somebody else's bad behaviors or poor personal choices.

    What TO Do:

    • Recognize the characteristic of emotional blackmail and understand that to give in to the demands of a blackmailer is only going to make the situation worse.
    • Recognize that you can't love someone else more by hurting yourself and that no-one who truly loves you will threaten or expect that of you.
    • Recognize that the emotional blackmailer is not like you and is unlikely to respond well to reason, arguments or attempts at counter-manipulation.
    • Work on your own personal boundaries and be willing to defend them.
    • Remove one of the 4 components of emotional blackmailer - the blackmailer, the victim (you) the threat or the demand. Since you can't control the other person that usually means you have to detach yourself from them enough to protect yourself, your children and the resources and relationships that are precious to you. Then allow the blackmailer back in only to the extent that they cannot threaten or destroy what matters to you most.
    • Take legal/professional help if there are any threats or actions of violence.

    ITS A VERY IMPORTANT COMPONENT OF DOMESTIC VIOLENCE USED BY IMMATURE/ABUSIVE SPOUSE.                                                                                                                                                                   Aflatoon

 2 Replies

Tajobsindia (Senior Partner )     28 September 2010

Author's article is good to the point that in normal marriage because of so many inter-woven relationships bonding factors (means Indian marriage are too much pervasive bze of joint family system) the receiving end spouse finds it so confusing to understand these symptoms that this spouse unknowingly continues in the abusive relationship for quite some time. Hence more awareness of what is abusive and non abusive stuff in a relationship may be quoted in “Others Forum” with a folder link in Family Law.


aflatoon dash (health)     28 September 2010


1.       Lets discuss the abuser-    He/she may be the priveleged parner in the relationship.To confuse others he/she may have lot of surface grace and superfecial charm.There may be plenty of talents in him/her like good singer,good professional/good artist.He may be even sucessful in life However when it comes to interpersonal relatedness he or she may be catastrophic using abusive skills of domination or playing victims role to gather aliies(unsuspecting family members) who over period of time beieve his/her "crywolf stories" and begin the intusion in the intimate relationship (inlaws who were earlier loving become "toxic inlaws"This leads to sometimes irreversible damage to relationship.Abuser may be doing things consciuously or unconsciously.He may be manipulative,scheming and desperate and can resort to any extent from homicide to suicide attempts.the techniques used by abuser may be









10.  Raises unrealistic demands in relationship and refuses to be ever be pleased.

Other charecteristics in him are.

  1. Have low self esteem.
    Even though a lot of abuser might appear to be 'tough", "strong", and "confident", more often than not they really suffer from low self esteem.

  2. They rush into relationship through superfecial charm.

  3. Blame others for their actions

  4. Are prone to hypersensativity-Abusers are easily insulted, and may take the slightest setback as a personal attack. They will rant and rave about the injustice of things that are really just a part of living, such as having to get up for work, or being asked to help with chores

  5. NO remorse for their action that they have hurt others.

  6. They love to create chaos and thrive in confusion.   


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