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Emotional Blackmail: When the People in Your Life Use Fear, Obligation, and Guilt to Manipulate You Paperback – March 4, 1998
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Copyright 1997 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
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Top Customer Reviews
Something that was particularly important for me personally in the book was the part at the end where she talks about not emotionally blackmailing *yourself*! What an insight! I realized that even when rigid, controlling people are not around to inspire guilt, fear and shame in me to get me to do things that are hurtful to me for their selfish benefit, I have a "voice" in my head that does the job for them, telling me that whatever I do that doesn't fit the world view of past and present blackmailers is "wrong," "selfish," or even "evil." So I beat myself up on behalf of my blackmailers even when they are not around to do it.
I also was impressed by the insight that not only does it "take two to tango," that no one can blackmail me if I don't let them, but that it is also possible for me to actually "train" people to blackmail me. This is particularly, true, I think, for those of us raised in rigid, controlling homes with emotionally blackmailing parents. Thereafter, we are, so to speak, fertile ground for any future emotional blackmailers.
I had rather been realizing these sorts of things the past few years now that I'm in my 40s (the middle years when we suddenly reevaluate our whole life), and gradually eliminating emotional blackmailers from my life, without exactly using that term. (The term I used was ridding myself of people whose presence felt like "being nibbled to death by ducks.") This book has validated my innate human "right" to not be eaten alive by the selfish demands of others.
Kudos to Ms. Forward!
It is impossible for an author to address every specific detail of every reader's personal situation. But this is as close as you can get. Forward gives stories and testimonials of people she has worked with who have used her techniques with success. Unlike other authors that do this, however, Forward does not simply apply the techniques to those situations and expect that you'll be able to apply it to a scenario of your own. She separates the stories from the guidelines. She provides some fantastic exercises for further clarity of the techniques she describes.
One of the techniques I especially enjoyed reading about was "buying your time". Don't respond immediately to your blackmailer. Give them time to "stew". In other words, try to avoid snap decisions when dealing with blackmailers. She groups manipulators into different categories. "Tantalizers" are the group I deal with most often. They are the ones who get you to do what they want by making it appear there is something incredible in it for you. This may sometimes be the case, but it's important to realize that your needs are not the manipulator's true motivation. Forward explains and clarifies this beautifully.
This is a very well-written book and I recommend it highly.
I had such a loved one in my life, who was manipulating me with her own pain, keeping me from growing up, keeping me from being a man and doing what I needed to do.
I won't go into the details, but you know if you are a victim of manipulation by this "emotional blackmail". Does someone threaten to write you out of their lives if you do such and such? Does someone break down and cry or get sick every time you bring up a certain subject? Does someone make you "walk on eggshells" around them, around certain subjects?
If any of the above ring true, then you are a victim of emotional blackmail and should read this book.
I read it, and it made so much sense to me, it was like I was seeing clearly for the first time in my life.
This, along with therapy for only a couple months, really helped me change my life, release me from this blackmail, and in the end, the blackmailer "got over it" and I now have just as good - actually much better - relationship with her than before.
My therapist read the book and is now recommending it to other people like me.
Thanks to Susan Forward for writing this book! Do yourself a favor and read it!
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Very useful and informative book - amazing actually. I have recommended this book to over two dozen people. Read morePublished 1 month ago by M Fitzgerald
Not that useful for me. I am emotionally, verbally, spiritually and financially battered wife for 21 years. Read morePublished 2 months ago by BSNRN
This is a great book to help you recognize "toxic" people in your life and how to manage them and their, as I like to call it, "Crazy making". Read morePublished 2 months ago by HLS
I have a masters in forensic psychology and this is one of my all time favorite books on spotting manipulation tactics. It is a powerful book in it's content. Read morePublished 2 months ago by William
It looks like it could be a good book. However it was printed poorly and is missing the first 46 pages.Published 2 months ago by Computer Geek
There's good advice in here but the use of test cases is very distracting. There's 20 or so sample cases that are introduced in one chapter and then referred to again much later... Read morePublished 3 months ago by Suzanne
This book breaks down the various forms of emotional blackmail. The author takes us to the point of views from the blackmailers, to those who are the blackmailed, and shows us in... Read morePublished 3 months ago by D.G. Kaye