28/02/2017 02:56 GMT | Updated 28/02/2017 02:56 GMT

The Unseen Wounds Of Emotional Abuse

Wounds heal, the mind doesn't. Emotional abuse can happen anywhere and anytime, it can be at work, school, and even at home.

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Wounds heal, the mind doesn't. Emotional abuse can happen anywhere and anytime, it can be at work, school, and even at home. Parents might think they are disciplining their children, but they might just be breaking them by the words they say to them during an argument or even during a parent-child disciplinary hearing.

With teenagers and young adults, it is very crucial to carefully select the choice of words, not all children will respond in the same manner and they have the right to speak their minds. Calling a child "stupid", "good for nothing", or even "you are nothing" can break them. The results of emotional abuse can go as far as depression and a child might think committing suicide is the easy way out.

With such easy access to social media, there are lots of people preying on vulnerable souls, they are ready to steal, kill and destroy; this might feel like a safe haven for a troubled child. Parents might think all is well because they think abuse is only severe when it's physical; unfortunately that's not always the case. The symptoms of emotional abuse can be recognised by any parent if they are paying attention to their children.

In most romantic relationships, people who are abused normally feel like it's because their partner loves them, that is why they are behaving a certain way and saying certain things to hurt them. A large number of people in relationships believe they have to only report abuse to the local authorities when their partner hits them; it even goes as far as wanting to protect their partner; reason being, they made them mad or are going through a phase, it shall soon pass and they'll live happily ever after.

To escape the pain of being emotionally abused, a number of people would resort to drugs to forget or ease the pain. With drugs in their system and controlling them, there is a high chance of them getting involved in criminal activities to support their drug use.

Emotional abuse does more harm than recognised, you can always heal broken bones, but that doesn't mean physical abuse is right. Words can rip apart someone's soul, confidence and goals more than anything ever could. A lot of people go around looking content but deep down their spirit is in shambles, they are broken beyond repair, the mask they put on is not what they feel inside; it's just camouflage.

There is a high percentage of black parents who think emotional abuse and depression are white people's problems. The majority of black children are scared to do what they love because abantu bazothini? And what will their parents say? Within the black culture, you have to do what the elders say, if not, you are being disrespectful, and you need to be brought to book.

If parents truly want what's best for their children, they will support them in any way possible; instead of forcing them to do things so they could just-get-by.

If you are a victim of emotional abuse or know anyone who is being abused and needs help from a professional counsellor, get in touch with The SA Mental Health Support on 080 070 8090.