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The Emotionally Destructive Relationship: Seeing It, Stopping It, Surviving It by [Leslie Vernick]
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The Emotionally Destructive Relationship: Seeing It, Stopping It, Surviving It Kindle Edition

4.7 out of 5 stars 606 ratings

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Editorial Reviews


“Leslie Vernick powerfully communicates essential truths for anyone even questioning whether they are the victim of abuse. This book is a must–read―not only will it educate the reader to take the necessary steps to freedom, but it will also prevent future destructive relationships. Thank you, Leslie, for having the courage to write this much needed book!”
Michelle Borquez, author of God Crazy and host of I–Life Television’s Shine

The Emotionally Destructive Relationship provides a critical first step down the path of healing and growth for those who find themselves stuck in abusive relationships...with no idea how they got there and no idea how to get out. Those who suffer in these relationships and those who want to help them will find a humble fellow–traveler in Leslie. As always, Leslie meets the sufferer and the sinner with compassion, truth, concrete direction, and lots of hope. I look forward to using this book with my counselees”
Winston Smith, MDiv, director of counseling services and faculty member at Christian Counseling and Educational Foundation

“Emotional abuse is often overlooked, but it is toxic to spirit, mind and brain chemistry. The church rarely tackles it even though the Bible significantly covers it. Leslie wonderfully and practically addresses this tough topic that cripples the body of Christ and our witness to the world.

"The Emotionally Destructive Relationship will be a catalyst to help you see your own story as abuser and victim―and a catalyst to help you let the Holy Spirit empower you to renew your mind and transform relational skills so you will be a lighthouse of hope, shining God’s glory for all to know His love and grace.”
Karl Benzio, MD, psychiatrist; founder and executive director of Lighthouse Network

“Periodically books come along that fill a significant need in the world of Christian counseling. This is one of those books. Leslie Vernick’s new work helps persons caught up in harmful relationships gain perspective on what has gone wrong and what needs to be made right.

The Emotionally Destructive Relationship avoids confusing psychological lingo and places the emphasis where it belongs, on the heart of men and women who must seek Christ in order to make changes in themselves in order to make changes in their relationships. Readers will first find themselves in these pages as a victim of harmful or abusive relationships; as enablers of harmful relationships; and perpetrators of harmful relationships.

“Vernick’s treatment of each situation is evenhanded, tull of clinical insight, practical and concrete, and most important, biblical. Readers will walk away with a plan of action on how to change themselves and how to change the patterns of their relationship. I intend to use this book both for the persons I counsel and the graduate students learning how to counsel others.”
Jeffery Black, PhD, associate pastor of Calvary Chapel of Philadelphia, licensed psychologist, chair and professor of the masters in Christian counseling at Philadelphia Biblical University

“Here is a book I deeply wish didn’t need to be written, but also one I am so grateful Leslie Vernick has had the courage to write. You will be moved by her compassion, be appreciative of her candor, and be helped by her professional skills honed in the trenches of real life.”
Gene Appel, lead pastor, Willow Creek Community Church

“Often the Christian community negates or minimizes the destructive nature of emotional abuse, which destroys the spirit of an individual and leaves invisible wounds that scar the soul. The Emotionally Destructive Relationship connects emotional abuse to its spiritual roots and provides practical tools to help victims heal. The biblical solution is found in the condition of heart, the renewing of the mind, and the refocusing on one’s relationship with the Lord.

“This book challenges readers to take a united stand against emotional abuse...the cancer that is destroying our families. Our ministry will utilize this book as a valuable tool to train pastors and support group leaders, and in ministering to families in crisis.”
Brenda Branson and Paula Silva, FOCUS Ministries, Inc., authors of Violence Among Us: Ministry to Families in Crisis

“If you have been wounded or trapped in a destructive relationship, you are not alone. Your life story isn’t over. These are the life–transforming themes of hope that Leslie affirms as she shares her healing journey, encouraging others to discover what’s wrong in their relationship and find a biblical understanding of God’s solution. As you apply what you read, you will learn how to let go of destructive ways and will heal and grow to become healthier and changed by God’s loving grace. A must–read for everyone longing for assurance of God’s love.”
Dr. Catherine Hart Weber, coauthor of Secrets of Eve and Unveiling Depression in Women; adjunct professor at Fuller Theological Seminary

“If you came from an emotionally healthy family, are contentedly single or happily married, and have good relationships with every one you know, consider yourself very fortunate! Reality for the rest of the world often involves difficult, painful, and even destructive relationships. Leslie Vernick addresses some of the toughest situations women (and men) face in her book, The Emotionally Destructive Relationship. Written from a biblical rather than psychological perspective, the book gives principles of healthy relationships based on Scripture. If you resonate with what this book covers, I would encourage you to read it for your own understanding and direction. If you are a ministry leader or ‘people–helper,’ please make an effort to get this book. It will give you vital knowledge and skills for being a channel of Christ’s love and wisdom to others.”
Poppy Smith, international speaker and author

--This text refers to the paperback edition.

About the Author

Leslie Vernick, a licensed clinical social worker with a private counseling practice, has authored numerous books, including The Emotionally Destructive Relationship and Lord, I Just Want to Be Happy. She completed postgraduate work in biblical counseling and cognitive therapy. Leslie and her husband, Howard, have been married more than 30 years and have two grown children.

--This text refers to the paperback edition.

Product details

  • ASIN ‏ : ‎ B005MJ8XIK
  • Publisher ‏ : ‎ Harvest House Publishers (August 15, 2007)
  • Publication date ‏ : ‎ August 15, 2007
  • Language ‏ : ‎ English
  • File size ‏ : ‎ 703 KB
  • Text-to-Speech ‏ : ‎ Enabled
  • Screen Reader ‏ : ‎ Supported
  • Enhanced typesetting ‏ : ‎ Enabled
  • X-Ray ‏ : ‎ Enabled
  • Word Wise ‏ : ‎ Enabled
  • Print length ‏ : ‎ 258 pages
  • Lending ‏ : ‎ Enabled
  • Customer Reviews:
    4.7 out of 5 stars 606 ratings

About the author

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General Information: Leslie Vernick, a licensed clinical social worker, relationship coach and has authored numerous books including The Emotionally Destructive Relationship and The Emotionally Destructive Marriage.

To view her blog, check out

You can also go to to view clips from interviews with Leslie. Subscribe to Leslie's channel and get updates when new videos are added.

Go to to see The Five Mistakes People Helpers Make when working with Destructive Marriages, to get more information on Leslie or to purchase additional books or CDs.

Facebook Page:

Customer reviews

4.7 out of 5 stars
4.7 out of 5
606 global ratings

Top reviews from the United States

Reviewed in the United States on April 14, 2020
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Reviewed in the United States on September 21, 2018
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16 people found this helpful
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Reviewed in the United States on April 10, 2018
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18 people found this helpful
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Reviewed in the United States on June 25, 2017
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Reviewed in the United States on August 16, 2021
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Reviewed in the United States on February 8, 2015
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Top reviews from other countries

Tina T-bag
5.0 out of 5 stars A great book for those in destructive relationships or those counselling those who are
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on December 10, 2010
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2 people found this helpful
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florence may
5.0 out of 5 stars a must have book
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on September 21, 2010
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2 people found this helpful
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Tilly Tompkins
5.0 out of 5 stars Amazing counselling tool for self or others
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on July 17, 2013
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One person found this helpful
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5.0 out of 5 stars Counselling with a difference!
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on April 3, 2015
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Donald M Bills
5.0 out of 5 stars The last prayer for your marriage is...
Reviewed in Canada on February 26, 2014
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4 people found this helpful
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