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The Emotionally Destructive Relationship: Seeing It, Stopping It, Surviving It
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The Emotionally Destructive Relationship: Seeing It, Stopping It, Surviving It

4.39 of 5 stars 4.39  ·  rating details  ·  165 ratings  ·  19 reviews
Leslie Vernick, counselor and social worker, has witnessed the devastating effects of emotional abuse. Many, including many in the church, have not addressed this form of destruction in families and relationships because it is difficult to talk about. With godly guidance and practical experience, Vernick offers an empathetic approach to recognizing an emotionally destructi ...more
ebook, 256 pages
Published August 1st 2007 by Harvest House Publishers
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Brandon Halvorsen
This is a great book if you're not clear on the definition of emotional abuse, or if you are in a toxic relationship and feel stuck and don't know what to do. It's also informative on how you can work on your "issues" as well as working on your relationship with an abusive person. Leslie Vernick has a lot of Biblically based, practical advice on the subject. It really opened my eyes to somethings and encouraged me to continue to take responsibility for my soul and life. One quote I particularly ...more
I just finished reading Leslie's book and all I can say is that she has such insight and wisdom. I have a family member who abused me. I cut off the relationship over a decade ago; however, the person continues to cause me grief because she uses other people to get to me. It has been a rough road, but I have grown tremendously because of it. This book shows you what an emotionally destructive relationship looks like and how to deal with it. The advice is Biblical and practical. What I found inte ...more
One of the most tragic recommendations I make as a Biblical counselor is for someone to read this book. That recommendation means that after discussing their situation, I believe that two Christians aren't living as disciples of Christ; that they have failed to show the world how we are to love another (John 13:34-35). So for this reason, it is one of the most important resources for pastors and counselors to be familiar with and to recommend in their counseling and discipleship of others.
Jul 11, 2011 Lainy is currently reading it  ·  review of another edition
I came to a particular part in this book a few days ago and stopped. I haven't picked it up since. I am in a place I must face and it is very difficult for me, but this is something I must do. I know this. So, I am picking the book back up tonight and moving foward. This book is a must for anyone and everyone looking to get into, having problems in, or trying to understand different types, of relationships.
Relationships in:
Family (Parents / Kids)
There was one person in my life who seemed set on destroying me, at least emotionally. I've never met anyone like this person. I thought the problem was all me. While I am part of the problem, having someone bent on stirring up and causing trouble in my life is not something I was ready for. I've also gotten alot of flack for not doing whatever to keep this from happening, to keep the peace, etc. I don't think they saw what I saw, there was no way to stop it without totally disengaging, and now ...more
I read this book because of a difficult relationship someone I know is in, but I found some helpful advice for my own relationships as well. It gives biblical and practical advice to help you recognize destructive habits of communication in your relationships and what you can do about them. The most helpful advice, in my opinion, was the fact that while you have no control over the behavior of others, you DO have control over your own behavior and reactions. Vernick helps you learn to set bounda ...more
Difficult to read, to think and pray on, and to come face to face with. Having said that, I think there is much to be gained from Vernick's approach, advice, insight and instruction.

What I particularly like (and loathe) is the focus on MY contribution(s) to these difficult relationships and how I can improve my inner life as well as with other people.

Hard as heck to put into action sometimes, but well worth the effort! Now that I'm done and have spent a couple of weeks consciously applying Verni
Jan 24, 2008 Heather rated it 5 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: counselors and those trapped in destructive relationships -- marriage or family or friendship
Shelves: counseling
Excellent book to help in counseling those entangled in abusive relationships at any level. Presents a good blend of pragmatic steps to be taken and theological/relational truth . I am considering using it for a support group.
Shauna Durbin
Everyone should read this book at some point in their adult life. This book opened my eyes to the destructive relationship and what a powerful effect it can have on a person's life. I bought this book after listening to Leslie speak on a Focus on the Family broadcast. Her words of wisdom and compassion really compelled me to read her book. The title really says it all. The book, "The Emotionally Destructive Relationship" is truly about seeing the bad relationship, stopping it, and surviving it. ...more
I met Leslie Vernick at a conference this year and have been meaning to read this book. Recently I started seeing a new client and she mentioned this book, so we decided to read it together. This book is an EXCELLENT Biblical resource for people in emotionally destructive relationships. It's a great resource for those who think they MUST stay in a relationship because otherwise God won't be happy with them. But not only that, it shows you how you could even thrive in this situation. I really lik ...more
Jackie Bolen
This is an amazing book. Every counselor, pastor and friend of someone who has been in an emotionally destructive relationship as well as every individual who has been or is in an emotionally destructive relationship should ready this book. I wish I had known about it earlier in my experiences. I look forward to deepening my relationship with God through the suggested activities as well as pushing myself further to heal completely. Thank you Leslie for being brave enough to write about this subj ...more
This is one of those books that for me was life changing! Leslie helps women who find themselves in destructive relaionships to recognize and acknowledge the truth of their situation, understand how they are contributing to the problem and then she offers practical suggestions for making changes to help stop the destruction that will ultimately bring healing to the relationship.
Heather Hampton
This book is all about healthy relationships and the importace of keeping all of our relationships healthy. It is written with a Godly, Biblical perspective and highlights not only the importance of keeping our relationships healthy for our own well being but also for our relationships with God and others.
This books fills a needed void and brings to light some things that most Christians don't want to think about. Vernick has given a great resource both for those in an emotionally destructive relationship and those who want to help them.
This book is for everyone! Very informative in the dynamics of interpersonal relationships.
This would be a good group study book for teen agers to help prevent teenage abuse.
Anita Agers-Brooks
Very good read -- enjoyed the author's insights immensely.
One of the best books I have ever read.
Profound. Puts perspective on things.
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