September 4


When a Man Destroys Your Self-Esteem: How to Reclaim Your Power

By Joshua Turner

September 4, 2023

When a man destroys your self-esteem, it can devastate your confidence and sense of self-worth. The effects can be long-lasting and difficult to overcome, whether it’s through verbal abuse, manipulation, or neglect. Understand how relationships can impact our self-esteem and mental health and protect ourselves from toxic influences.

Self-esteem is critical to our overall well-being, influencing everything from our relationships to our career success. When we experience, a loss of self-esteem can affect our ability to make decisions, set boundaries, and advocate for ourselves.

Understanding the factors contributing to low self-esteem, such as negative self-talk or past trauma, can help us identify areas where we need to focus on self-care and healing. We can reclaim control when we build our confidence and self-worth.

Key Takeaways

  • Relationships can have a significant impact on our self-esteem and mental health.
  • Understanding the factors that contribute to low self-esteem is key to overcoming it.
  • Building self-confidence and self-worth is a critical component of healing from narcissistic abuse.

Understanding Self-Esteem

Self-esteem is a crucial aspect of our emotional well-being. It refers to how we feel about ourselves and our sense of self-worth. It is the foundation of our confidence and ability to navigate life’s challenges.

When our self-esteem is low, we tend to doubt ourselves and our abilities. We may feel unworthy of love and respect and struggle to assert ourselves in relationships and at work.

Various factors, including negative experiences in childhood, trauma, and ongoing stress can trigger low self-esteem. It can also be influenced by social comparison and the need for approval from others.

Self-esteem is not fixed and can be improved with intentional effort and self-care. It may be challenging negative self-talk, setting boundaries, and engaging in activities that bring us joy and fulfillment.

Cultivating a healthy self-esteem requires a deep understanding of our worth and value as individuals, regardless of external validation or comparison to others.

The Effect of Relationships on Self-Esteem

When we are in a healthy relationship, our partner can uplift us, support us, and make us feel good about ourselves. However, our partner can destroy our self-esteem if the relationship is toxic.

Men can be particularly damaging to women’s self-esteem, especially when they engage in emotional abuse, gaslighting, manipulation, or controlling behavior. These actions can cause women to question their self-worth and feel like they’re not good enough.

In a toxic relationship, a partner may constantly criticize, belittle, or demean their significant other. This behavior can lead to feelings of worthlessness and inadequacy, which can be difficult to overcome.

It’s important to recognize the signs of a toxic relationship and take action to protect our self-esteem. It may mean ending the relationship or seeking help from a therapist or counselor.

Our partner should make us feel valued, respected, and loved in a healthy relationship. They should support our goals and aspirations and encourage us to be our best selves. Keep in mind that we deserve to be treated with kindness and respect and should never settle for less.


The Role of Mental Health

Mental health is determining in how we perceive ourselves, especially when someone destroys our self-esteem. Anxiety, depression, and shame are common emotions that can arise in such situations, and they can impact our mental health. Seeking therapy or counseling can help individuals work through these emotions and develop coping mechanisms to rebuild their self-esteem.

Counselors and therapists can provide a safe and non-judgmental space for individuals to explore their emotions and work through negative thoughts or beliefs. Through therapy, individuals can learn to identify and challenge negative self-talk, develop self-compassion, and build resilience.

Depression and anxiety can also be a significant barrier to rebuilding self-esteem. Therapy can help individuals manage these conditions and develop strategies to cope with symptoms. Medication may be necessary to control severe symptoms of anxiety or depression.

Shame is another emotion that can often arise when someone destroys our self-esteem. It can be challenging to share our experiences with others, but talking about our feelings with a mental health professional can help us process and move past feelings of shame.

Mental health is vital in rebuilding self-esteem after someone destroys it. Seeking therapy or counseling can help individuals work through their emotions and develop strategies to cope with negative thoughts and beliefs. Through therapy, individuals can learn to build resilience, develop self-compassion, and challenge negative self-talk.

Overcoming Low Self-Esteem

Low self-esteem can be a difficult and painful experience, especially when it’s caused by someone else. However, it’s not impossible to overcome it and rebuild your confidence.

Therapy can be a helpful tool in addressing the root causes of your low self-esteem and providing you with strategies to improve it. It can also help you overcome any fear or anxiety that may hold you back.

Making decisions prioritizing your well-being and happiness can also empower and boost your self-esteem. It can include setting boundaries with toxic people or situations, saying no to things that don’t serve you, and taking risks that align with your values and goals.

Exercise and hobbies can also be great ways to boost self-esteem and improve overall well-being. Physical activity releases endorphins, which can improve mood and energy levels. Engaging in hobbies you enjoy can also provide a sense of accomplishment and fulfillment.

Finally, learning to be more independent and self-sufficient can also improve self-esteem. They can include developing new skills, taking on new responsibilities, and learning to rely on yourself for emotional support and validation.

Overcoming low self-esteem is a process that takes time and effort, but it is possible. Prioritizing your well-being, seeking support when needed, and building your confidence, can help you overcome the impact of someone else’s destructive behavior and regain your sense of self-worth.

Influence of Social and External Factors

Social and external factors can significantly affect how a man can destroy your self-esteem. Social media can be a major factor in this, as it can lead to constant comparison with others, making you feel inferior.


Money can also be an external factor, as it can create a power dynamic in the relationship, leading to emotional abuse. Addiction, alcohol, and beauty standards can also affect how a man can manipulate your self-esteem.

A competitive environment can also be a factor, constantly questioning your abilities and worth. Suggestions from others can also be a factor, leading to self-doubt and a lack of self-confidence. Recognize these external factors and how they can impact your self-esteem, so you can take steps to protect yourself and build your confidence.

Dealing with Narcissistic Abuse

Dealing with narcissistic abuse can be a challenging and overwhelming experience, and you are not alone. Narcissistic abuse is a form of emotional abuse that can leave you feeling drained, confused, and worthless. Recognizing the signs of narcissistic abuse, including manipulation, gaslighting, and feedback designed to break down your self-esteem, is necessary.

One of the most important things you can do when dealing with narcissistic abuse is to set boundaries. It means saying “no” when needed and standing up for yourself. Surround yourself with supportive people who can help you rebuild your self-esteem and provide the validation and love you need.

Another key step in dealing with narcissistic abuse is to seek professional help. A therapist or counselor can help you work through the trauma and provide coping strategies to help you move forward. They can also help you identify behavior patterns that may contribute to the abuse and help you develop a plan to break free from the cycle.

Healing from narcissistic abuse takes time. Be patient with yourself and allow yourself to feel your emotions. It’s okay to be angry, sad, or confused. Allow yourself to grieve the loss of the relationship and the person you thought your abuser was.

Dealing with narcissistic abuse can be a difficult and painful experience, but you are not alone. Set boundaries, seek professional help, surround yourself with supportive people, and allow yourself time to heal.


Dealing with a man who destroys your self-esteem can be a challenging experience. It can leave you feeling worthless, helpless, and hopeless. However,  remember that you are not alone. Many resources are available to help you rebuild your confidence and mental health.

Therapy can be an excellent option for those struggling with self-esteem issues. It provides a safe and supportive environment to explore your feelings, thoughts, and behaviors. A therapist can help you identify negative patterns and develop healthy coping strategies.

Surround yourself with healthy relationships that uplift and support you. Make conscious decisions to distance yourself from people who bring you down and seek out those who bring out the best in you.

Self-care is another critical component of building and maintaining self-confidence. It involves taking care of your physical, emotional, and mental well-being. It can include exercise, healthy eating habits, meditation, and mindfulness practices.

You are in control of your decisions and your life. Take ownership of your choices and not let others dictate your self-worth. By practicing self-confidence and self-love, you can overcome any challenges that come your way.

Frequently Asked Questions

How can you rebuild your self-esteem after a damaging relationship?

Rebuilding self-esteem after a damaging relationship can be a long process. You can start by focusing on self-care, such as exercise. Surrounding yourself with supportive friends and family can help. It’s important to change negative self-talk and replace it with positive affirmations.

What are some signs that your self-esteem has been lowered by a partner?

Signs that a partner has lowered your self-esteem include feeling constantly criticized, belittled, or controlled. You may feel like you can’t do anything right or that you’re not good enough. You may also find yourself constantly seeking validation or approval from your partner.

What steps can you take to protect your self-esteem in a relationship?

To protect your self-esteem in a relationship, setting boundaries and communicating your needs and expectations with your partner is important. You should also prioritize self-care and make time for activities that make you feel good about yourself.

What are some common tactics used by people to destroy someone’s self-esteem?

Common tactics used by people to destroy someone’s self-esteem include constant criticism, belittling, and controlling behavior. Gaslighting, or making someone doubt their own reality, is also a common tactic. Making someone feel guilty or responsible for the abuser’s behavior is another tactic.

How can you recognize if a partner is intentionally trying to lower your self-esteem?

If a partner intentionally tries to lower your self-esteem, they may constantly criticize or belittle you. They may also try to control your behavior or make you feel guilty or responsible for your behavior. Gaslighting is another tactic that can be used to make you doubt your reality.

What are some healthy ways to cope with the effects of a partner’s actions on your self-esteem?

Healthy ways to cope with the effects of a partner’s actions on your self-esteem include therapy, journaling, and practicing self-care. It’s important to surround yourself with supportive friends and family and to focus on building a strong sense of self-worth. Challenging negative self-talk and replacing it with positive affirmations can also be helpful.

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