The title question may seem absurd, but the question is real. In my opinion, the answer to that question is yes, absolutely and without question. Abuse is abuse no matter how you classify it. Thanks to recent events in the NFL, abuse is front and center and we are learning there is far more of it than we ever imagined. When I initially saw the title question in an article, I was kind of angry that someone would even ask what I thought, was such a dumb question.

Verbal abuse is just as devastating as physical abuse and the internal scars can be just as painful and permanent as external scars. The only difference being, I think fewer people talk about verbal abuse and to some degree feel like they should just get over it. On the surface, verbal abuse may not seem quite the same, but rest assured....it is.

I think it is also important to keep in mind that verbal abuse can carry with it fatal consequences, the same as the physical. How many stories have we read over the last several years of teens and some adults resorting to taking their own lives because of things like cyber-bullying, which is clearly more verbal than physical?

Constant negative reinforcement will take a toll on the recipient in the same way physical violence will because at some point you just want it to stop and some will resort to whatever they feel is necessary to make it stop.

Have you ever made a mistake while driving and have another driver pull up alongside you and start yelling things at you that you wouldn't say to your worst enemy? Well,that is abuse, pure and simple and coming from someone you don't even know and may never encounter again for the rest of your life. What gives them the right to verbally abuse someone in that fashion because they feel like you cut them off? They don't have that right.

This is especially problematic with small children and teens because it can come from adults as well as their peers. Verbally tearing someone down is abusive, whether or not the verbal thrashing is an ongoing problem with one particular person, or one single isolated incident, which can be just as devastating as ongoing verbal attacks depending on the nature of the words in the attack.

Bottom line, as i stated at the top.......abuse is abuse and verbal abuse IS just as bad as physical abuse and way too often with the same consequences...think about it.