Intimidating questions to ask your boyfriend

Stopping non-verbal emotional abuse requires skills different from those used to put an end to explicit verbal abuse.

Non-verbal emotional abuse can be harder to spot and harder to stop than verbal abuse, especially because the former tends to be more hidden and subtle, and is often not executed in the open or even in the presence of the victim.After all, you can either spend the rest of your life in disguise after admitting “your most terrible memory” (question 18) or “the most embarrassing moment in your life” (question 29), or marry them. And six months after Aron’s study, in which 52 sets of male and female strangers and 19 sets of all-female strangers were thrown together in a lab under these conditions, one pair did exactly that. Before making a telephone call, do you ever rehearse what you are going to say? Unsurprisingly, it’s easy to exchange musings about the weather, but much more intimidating to swap stories about your “secret hunch about how you will die” (question 7) or “the last time you sang to yourself – or to someone else” (question 5). But if you’re tempted to try, then persevere – for if you get through all 36, as psychologist Arthur Aron mooted in his original 1997 experiment, then you greatly enhance the probability of forging a lasting relationship with your partner. Common forms of verbal abuse include withholding information or purposely failing to share thoughts and feelings; countering the victim's memories, thoughts and feelings; blaming the victim for things that are outside his or her control; calling the victim names or using hurtful and defining labels such as Verbal abuse often occurs within the boundaries of romantic relationships, friendships, and parent-child relationships.

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