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The Secret of Overcoming Verbal Abuse
by Albert Ellis, Ph. D. and Marcia Grad Powers
The Secret of Overcoming Verbal Abuse
...If you feel as though you are on a runaway emotional roller coaster with your partner at the controls, this book is for you! It can save you years of torment, tumult, and tears.

The Powerful,
Life-Changing
Secret of Overcoming
Verbal Abuse

If you are being mistreated by your partner, The Secret of Overcoming Verbal Abuse can dramatically change your life. You will learn an entirely new way of perceiving and coping with your relationship and your feelings.

The time-tested, proven secret contained in this book will wrap itself around you like a thick, warm, protective blanket, insulating you from your pain. And the next time your "Prince Charming" takes aim and tries to pierce your heart with his unkind words, you will be ready. Y
ou will feel strong and be in charge of your own reaction.

Whether you want to stay, need to stay, or plan to leave, this book can help you to:

Set yourself free from confusion, anxiety, frustration, self-doubt, guilt, anger, and depression
Restore your dignity, self-respect, self-love, and personal power
Create the inner peace and happiness you have wanted, wished for, and in tearful private moments prayed for—perhaps for years

Now get ready to begin an exciting journey of enlightenment and empowerment that will help you regain control of your life. Your guides will be one of the most famous and influential psychologists in the world, Dr. Albert Ellis, and Marcia Grad Powers, accredited psychological educator and bestselling author.

Preface
We have learned much since the 1980s when the first major books explaining the dynamics of abusive relationships became popular. We now know about such things as codependency and dysfunctional families, and have begun to learn how to take care of ourselves emotionally, making our lives better–whether we want to stay, need to stay, or plan to leave our verbally abusive relationships.

Those of us who stay, as many of us do, unfortunately find that knowing why things are as they are and learning some new ways to make them better doesn't necessarily make us feel much better. No matter how much we have come to know about our situation, how much we practice new ways of responding to our abusive partner, and how much better we try to treat ourselves, the daily battle to hold on to our sanity continues. The insecurity, guilt, anxiety, and depression continue too. We struggle valiantly to find some semblance of inner peace and bring some modicum of happiness into our existence. Yet, often inner peace and happiness elude us, even if we leave and life becomes immeasurably better.

Why, if we've learned so much, can't we stop the torment? Why are we still so unhappy? Why do we still get caught up in self-analysis and feel overwhelmed by our own emotions as we attempt to cope with our abuser? Why do most of us stay, hanging on to our cherished happily-ever-after fairy tale, even though it has disintegrated before our eyes? Why do so many of us who leave, return again and again? And why do so many of us who finally leave for good end up in another abusive relationship?

As an author of self-help books, a psychological and personal growth lecturer at colleges and universities, and senior editor at Wilshire Book Company (which specializes in self-help books), I (M.G.P.) have heard these kinds of questions asked time and again by people who are being or have been verbally abused. Such questions have come up repeatedly in letters from readers of my books, in discussions with my students, and in manuscripts submitted by aspiring self-help authors. These people, predominately women, express the pain and emptiness of feeling alone, the frustration of not being understood, the systematic crushing of their self-acceptance and self-love, and the disillusionment and disappointment of having had their fairy tale destroyed. They feel as if they are on a runaway emotional roller coaster with their abuser at the controls. They are drowning in a sea of emotion, calling out for help, searching for a lifeline to save them.

Having once felt overwhelmed myself in a verbally abusive relationship and knowing how much it can help to have even one person understand and try to help, I wrote lengthy answers to my readers' letters. And I stayed long after my university lectures were over, laughing, crying, hugging, and sharing personal lessons with the groups of students who clearly couldn't bring themselves to leave with the others. For some, it was the first time they had been able to identify the mistreatment they had been receiving as verbal abuse. Others knew they were being abused, yet had denied it, even to themselves. Few of them realized that what they were experiencing is a painful type of psychological and emotional battery that has been classified as a form of domestic violence by the American Medical Association.

Aware of the immense need, I became determined to find a way to help the millions of other verbally abused people I knew were out there, trapped all alone in their emotional prisons. Being preoccupied with this goal and being a writer, it wasn't surprising that soon a sweet little princess's voice in my head began calling to me and insisting upon my helping her tell her story. So began my book The Princess Who Believed in Fairy Tales, an empowering allegory that reveals the pain of abuse, feels the pain, heals the pain, and changes one's perception of it forever. Being able to validate, inspire, guide, and empower others with the hard-learned lessons that transformed my life and the lives of those who have told me their stories is one of the most rewarding aspects of my career.

I have received many heartfelt letters from readers in the United States and throughout the world (The Princess Who Believed in Fairy Tales has been translated into numerous languages), thanking me for writing “their” story. Many readers said that they no longer felt alone and that The Princess had restored their personal power and set them free emotionally. The book has been hugged against hearts, drenched by tears, and welcomed as a dear friend by a wider audience than I had ever imagined–men, women, and children of all ages from all walks of life.

As I received more letters and talked to more people, it became apparent that something else was also needed–practical, everyday techniques that would help abused people reduce their pain, face their fears, and heal themselves and their lives more quickly and more completely than the usual methods had been able to do.

Given the plethora of books, articles, and radio and television programs about abuse, it was difficult to imagine where these techniques would be found if they hadn't been already. Yet, I believed that somewhere out there in the big world was something powerful that had been missed–a key that would unlock the secret of dealing effectively with verbal abuse. Thus my search began.

In the course of my job as an editor, I worked on many psychological manuscripts and had lengthy discussions about various methods and techniques with psychologists, psychiatrists, counselors, and other mental health professionals from all over the world. Nowhere did I find the techniques that would fill the special needs of the abused people who continued to write me. I wished that magically the secret would somehow fall into my lap, but I didn't count on it, of course. I continued searching.

Then one day a manuscript, the manuscript, did in a manner of speaking “fall into my lap.” It was assigned to me for editing. It was the new, updated edition of a book Wilshire Book Company publishes that had sold 1.5 million copies in previous editions. This internationally acclaimed classic in the field of psychology, A Guide to Rational Living, teaches a unique and powerful way for anyone to stop feeling miserable about practically anything.

One of its coauthors is Albert Ellis, Ph.D., founder of Rational, Emotive, Behavior Therapy and originator of modern Cognitive Therapy. He is a world-renowned psychologist and lecturer, and director of the Albert Ellis Institute in New York, which attracts clients and trains psychotherapists from all over the world. (I highly recommend that you read A Guide to Rational Living as a follow-up to The Secret of Overcoming Verbal Abuse.)

As I read the manuscript, I realized that I had finally found exactly what I had been searching for--the key that would unlock the secret of overcoming verbal abuse. I was amazed that the idea of applying Dr. Ellis's therapeutic methods specifically to verbal abuse had not occurred to me before, since I had been familiar with his time-tested techniques for years.

When I told Dr. Ellis I wanted to write a book that would put his life-changing philosophy and techniques within easy reach of people struggling in verbally abusive relationships, he was enthusiastic. Thus began a collaboration I believe was written in the stars. The result is the book you now hold in your hands, The Secret of Overcoming Verbal Abuse. The secret disclosed within its pages is admittedly one of the worst-kept secrets of all time. Millions of people have heard of it and used it successfully to deal with a variety of psychological problems. Yet few are aware of how particularly revolutionary it is when applied to verbal abuse.

The Secret of Overcoming Verbal Abuse offers you an entirely new way of perceiving and dealing with your abuse. It contains solid, time-tested, proven techniques that will wrap themselves around you like a thick, warm, protective blanket, insulating you from the pain of the mistreatment you are receiving or have received in the past. These techniques can help you to:

• Stop your doubts and confusion about yourself, your perceptions, and what is or was happening to you

• Establish and maintain your emotional equilibrium and put you in control of your emotions and your behavior--whether you stay or leave

• Restore your dignity, self-respect, self-love, and personal power

• Experience the inner peace and happiness you have wanted, wished for, and in tearful private moments prayed for...perhaps for years


Dr. Ellis and I have written the book I wish I had had the first time my “Prince Charming” took aim and pierced my heart with his words. It could have saved me years of torment, tumult, and tears. We offer you the awarenesses and tools that can set you free–free from pain, confusion, and fear, whether you stay or leave. And they will do it more quickly and more completely than you ever imagined. These same awarenesses and tools can help you whether you are a teenager or an adult, a woman or a man, whether your partner is of the opposite or the same sex.* If you have children, these awarenesses and tools can help you become a better role model, which will help reduce the risk of your children carrying a legacy of abuse into their own adult relationships.

Now let's begin the journey of enlightenment and empowerment that will dramatically change your life.

Marcia Grad Powers
North Hollywood, CA

*The terms abusive partner and abuser, although usually used in this book to refer to a man, are meant to apply to any verbally, psychologically, emotionally abusive partner of either sex, whether it be a boyfriend or girlfriend, significant other, or husband or wife, living with you or apart from you. The term abused partner, although usually used in this book to refer to a woman, is meant to refer to anyone who is in a relationship in which he or she is being verbally abused.

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