Verbal abuse can be just as damaging as mental abuse. When a person is being abused verbally, it affects them mentally. The child who suffers verbal abuse during their entire childhood, usually ends up in a verbally abusive relationship because they have been convinced that they deserve it. When they're told over and over that they're bad, stupid, lazy, good for nothing, they will never amount to anything, they grow up believing it.
An abusive spouse may have been verbally abused themselves, turning into that which they had hated for so many years. In their minds, to them, it is normal. It is the way they were taught to behave. A victim of serious verbal abuse wouldn't feel as comfortable in a non-abusive environment at first because it is alien to them.
No one enjoys being abused, it's just that the mind becomes accustomed to a way of life and when they're introduced to a different lifestyle, it can feel strange to them. The only kind of attention they got as a child was verbal abuse, so to them, not being verbally abused, is not getting attention; which is how verbal abuse affected them mentally.
One would think a person who was verbally abused throughout their childhood would avoid that kind of behavior in a relationship and would be able to spot it immediately. But most adults who end up in verbally abusive relationships were verbally abused as a child. Sadly, they find themselves attracted to persons who belittle or berate them. It is familiar to them.
And more likely as not, the abused party will defend the abuser with things such as, "Oh, she doesn't mean those things," or "That's just the way he communicates. He doesn't really mean it." Some have been so verbally abused that they fall into a state of serious denial and no matter what you say to them about the abuse, they cannot see it. To them, it is normal, or unintentional.
When someone is being verbally abused and refuses to acknowledge it, or passes it off as nothing, they are in a deep denial, and you can talk to them until you are blue in the face. It more than likely won't do any good. They honestly cannot see it. Verbal abuse IS mental abuse.
Regardless of whether you're a Christian or not, if you're the victim of abuse, lift the abuser up to Jesus. God is merciful to all.
for he maketh his sun to rise on the evil and on the good, and sendeth rain on the just and on the unjust. (Matthew 5:45)
And Jesus doesn't expect us to stand still while someone uses us to vent their anger and frustrations. Hold your abuser up to Him.
Pray for them which despitefully use you, and persecute you. (Matthew 5:44)
No one deserves to be mistreated ... Ever.