Nonviolent Communication can be emotionally violent


Nonviolent Communication (NVC) culture facilitates abuse in part because NVC culture has very little regard for consent. They call it nonviolent, but it is often a coercive and emotional violent kind of interaction.

NVC has very different boundaries than are typical in…

sorenandjoey said:

Chilling is right, another response I’ve noticed that seems to be standard to any critique of NVC is the whole “oh well that was a misapplication of NVC, if you’d been doing it correctly that never would have happened”.

It’s been incredibly refreshing to see these posts and then reading the comments even though it’s sad to see how many people have been hurt by it, just being able to know I’m not the only person in the universe who rejects NVC has been so helpful, it’s just like my god, finally.

realsocialskills said:

NVC advocates say that to me a lot. Every single one of them who has ever said that has also quickly done the exact things I say are pervasive and awful in NVC culture.

They also often do a thing where, no matter what you say, they interpret it as though you have said something they agree with. NVC people can make it impossible to express disagreement with them and be heard. That is also an act of emotional violence.

cool-yubari said:

The “oh, you’re objecting to the misuse of this thing I’m in favor of” is endemic to privileged groups. I’m reminded of a sexual abuse survivor that I have a lot of respect for, who has been pointing out how little mainstream Christian culture accommodates the idea of consent being important or necessary, and is sick to death of hearing “the Christians who abused you were not real Christians” as a justification for why the culture doesn’t need to reevaluate anything or change.

“The NVC users who silenced you were misusing it” is exactly the same willfully oblivious derail. It’s a knee-jerk refusal to engage with the subtance of what you’re saying because people don’t want to confront the fact that their communications tool is abusive. When used as directed, it’s exploitable. If someone doesn’t understand that, my assumption is that they’ve been raised to believe they don’t have the right to decline emotional intimacy, or they’re the person in a position of power. I’d find it hard to believe, with NVC techniques being as widespread as they are, that anyone has only run into them in situations where both people had the other person’s best interests at heart and better understanding can solve everything.

This is also, by the way, where a lot of middle-class activism gets stuck: at not being willing to confront that conflicts of interest exist. They’re collectively so invested in believing that everything can be solved non-violently that they keep spinning their wheels with “education” and “outreach” when those things do not, cannot stop abuse. 

realsocialskills said:

I’m not a Christian and I’m not familiar with Christian communities, but I’ve definitely seen this kind of refusal to acknowledge systemic cultural problems in other contexts.