Some of us know what emotional black mail is and some of us do not. However, it is a wrong practice and played out in many marriages and relationships. Emotional blackmail is manipulation, dangerous and can tare homes apart.
Emotional blackmail is where a person who is emotionally close to you subtly threatens to punish you; or threatens and implies that you will suffer if you don’t comply with what they want. They know your intimate secrets and vulnerabilities and use this knowledge to get
you to do what they want. They will use your strengths and weaknesses against you if necessary. The one great threat is: “If you don’t behave the way I want you to, I will make your life miserable.” Guilt is often the most powerful weapon the blackmailer uses against the victim.
The components of blackmail are – the victim, the blackmailer, the demand, the threat, the resistance, the compliance and the continuity. Below is an illustration of blackmail.
The victim: Tony has a weakness and a sense of guilt when his wife appears distressed.
The blackmailer: Sandra knows her husband's weakness.
The demand: Sandra wants to go on a shopping trip to Paris.
The threat: The implied withdrawal of love and sex if Sandra didn’t get her way.
The resistance: The initial refusal by Tony to cooperate.
The compliance: Tony gives in to Sandra’s demand.
The continuity: The inevitable ongoing arguments and tears.
The blackmailer makes a demand. She may make it sound loving, but continues to press for what she wants. When you resist her demand, she does not try to understand your feelings. Instead, she continues to apply pressure on you to do what she wants. To make it worse, she will usually take your refusal as proof of your lack of love.
She levels accusations against you, makes you feel bad or guilty and hopefully, you give in to her demands. The more you refuse, the more she makes threats. Under strong pressure from her, you will slowly begin to doubt your decision. Resistance becomes more exhausting and eventually you will give in to her demand. This does not stop the cycle repeating itself in future. Crying is a woman’s age-old manipulative weapon. Some women use this method to have their way whether they are looking for forgiveness or want some favour.
Some women know that the easiest way to make a man uncomfortable is to cry, as most men are easily moved and give in to even the most unreasonable request just to make the tears stop.
Dr. Grace Sola-Oludoyi
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