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1. Low self-esteem and self-blame. If you have low self-esteem and you are not confident enough in your thinking, you are partially to blame for the wrong turn in the relationship. It might not have originated from you, but it can be the effect of the regular undermining tactics: labeling, judging, put- downs and constant critique. You might even adopt your partner’s opinion: “You have to be fixed.”

2. Confusion, frustration, anger, helplessness and hopelessness. You are confused of what is happening. You are hurt from the put-downs. You are angry because of the unfair treatment you’re getting. You are embarrassed about the relationship; partly because you think it’s your failure and partly because you put up with your partner’s behavior.

Most of all, you feel hopeless, helpless and entrapped in the relationship, not knowing why it’s happening and what you should do about it.

3. Imbalance in power and control. If you listen to the actions instead of the words, you see that you give way more into the relationship than your partner, while she/he is the one who sets the rules. There is a definite imbalance in the power and control.

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