Fall semester topics
- Week 36. Benefits of volunteer work
- Week 37. Living with learning disabilities
- Week 38. Personality disorders
- Week 39. Setting up healthy boundaries
- Week 40. Learning to improve concentration
- Week 41. Suicide prevention – learning to help
- Week 42. Phobias – dealing with fears
- Week 43. Sleep disorders
- Week 44. Sexuality – the biochemistry
- Week 45. Addictive relationships
- Week 46. UNESCO day of tolerance
- Week 47. Improving self-confidence
- Week 48. Helping friends or others in distress
- Week 49. World AIDS day – living with illness
- Week 50. Value based decision making
- Week 51. Being assertive in a diverse world
- Week 52. Spirituality – spiritual growth
- Week 1. Dynamics of intro- & extraverts
- Week 2. Orientation – a career that fits!
- Week 3. Living in a foreign country
- Week 4. Overcoming test anxiety
- Week 5. Understanding dysfunction in a family
- Week 6. Smoking – giving up methods
- Week 7. Valentine’s day – commitment
- Week 8. Communication – focusing on skills
- Week 9. Domestic violence
- Week 10. Work-life balance – expectations
- Week 11. Loneliness and feeling alone
- Week 12. Understanding of joy and happiness
- Week 13. Racial discrimination
- Week 14. PTSD
- Week 15. World health day
- Week 16. Panic disorders
- Week 17. Academic honesty – authenticity
- Week 18. Death and dying
- Week 19. Job interviews - good impression
- Week 20. Characteristic of sound families
- Week 21. Celebrating cultural diversity
- Week 22. Growing up in a single parent home
- Week 23. Act of love (self and others)
- Week 24. Focusing on personality tests
- Week 25. Childhood traumas
- Week 26. Relating to the elderly
- Week 27. Grief – dealing with loss
- Week 28. Drug and substance abuse
- Week 29. Dealing with depression
- Week 30. Procrastination
- Week 31. Recovering from shame and guilt
- Week 32. Perfectionism
- Week 33. First generation university students
- Week 34. Compulsive obsessive behaviors
- Week 35. Body image – eating disorders
- Week 36. School bullying - mobbing concerns
Spring semester topics
Domestic violenceDomestic violence is a pattern of behavior which involves violence or other abuse by one person in a domestic context against another, such as in marriage or cohabitation (e.g.: children, relatives) One big segment of abuse is psychological/emotional abuse. We'll discuss it more in details now.
Psychological abuse is any behavior that is designed to control and subjugate another human being through the use of fear, humiliation, and verbal or physical assaults. Emotional abuse is any kind of abuse that is emotional rather than physical in nature. It can include anything from verbal abuse and constant criticism to more subtle tactics, such as intimidation, manipulation, and refusal to ever be pleased.
Emotional abuse is like brain washing in that it systematically wears away at the victim's self-confidence, sense of self-worth, trust in their own perceptions, and self-concept. Whether it is done by constant berating and belittling, by intimidation, or under the guise of "guidance," "teaching," or "advice," the results are similar. Eventually, the recipient of the abuse loses all sense of self and remnants of personal value. Emotional abuse cuts to the very core of a person, creating scars that may be far deeper and more lasting than physical ones (Engel, 1992, p. 10).
Types of Emotional Abuse
Emotional abuse can take many forms. Three general patterns of abusive behavior include aggressing, denying, and minimizing.
Aggressive forms of abuse include name-calling, accusing, blaming, threatening, and ordering. Aggressing behaviors are generally direct and obvious. The one-up position the abuser assumes by attempting to judge or invalidate the recipient undermines the equality and autonomy that are essential to healthy adult relationships. This parent-to-child pattern of communication (which is common to all forms of verbal abuse) is most obvious when the abuser takes an aggressive stance.
Aggressive abuse can also take a more indirect form and may even be disguised as "helping." Criticizing, advising, offering solutions, analyzing, probing, and questioning another person may be a sincere attempt to help. In some instances, however, these behaviors may be an attempt to belittle, control, or demean rather than help. The underlying judgmental "I know best" tone the abuser takes in these situations is inappropriate and creates unequal footing in peer relationships.
Invalidating seeks to distort or undermine the recipient's perceptions of their world. Invalidating occurs when the abuser refuses or fails to acknowledge reality. For example, if the recipient confronts the abuser about an incident of name calling, the abuser may insist, "I never said that," "I don't know what you're talking about, "etc.
Withholding is another form of denying. Withholding includes refusing to listen, refusing to communicate, and emotionally withdrawing as punishment. This is sometimes called the "silent treatment." Countering occurs when the abuser views the recipient as an extension of themselves and denies any viewpoints or feelings which differ from their own.
Minimizing is a less extreme form of denial. When minimizing, the abuser may not deny that a particular event occurred, but they question the recipient's emotional experience or reaction to an event. Statements such as "You're too sensitive," "You're exaggerating," or "You're blowing this out of proportion" all suggest that the recipient's emotions and perceptions are faulty and not to be trusted. Trivializing, which occurs when the abuser suggests that what you have done or communicated is inconsequential or unimportant, is a more subtle form of minimizing. Denying and minimizing can be particularly damaging. In addition to lowering self-esteem and creating conflict, the invalidation of reality, feelings, and experiences can eventually lead you to question and mistrust your own perceptions and emotional experience. For the source of information above click here!
Recommended booksEngle, Beverly, M.F.C.C. The Emotionally Abused Woman: Overcoming Destructive Patterns and Reclaiming Yourself. New York: Fawcett Columbine, 1992.
Evans, Patricia. The Verbally Abusive Relationship: How to Recognize It and How to Respond. Holbrook, Massachusetts: Bob Adams, Inc., 1992.
Janet Geringer Woititz: Self-Sabotage Syndrome: Adult Children in the Workplace 1989.
Janet Geringer Woititz: Adult children of alcoholics 1989.
Janet Geringer Woititz: Lifeskills for Adult Children 1990.
Elayne Savage: Don't Take It Personally - The art of dealing with rejection, 1997.
John Bradshaw: Homecoming: Reclaiming and Championing Your Inner Child, 1992.