The Water Torturer



I am excited to share with you the 9 abuser types that Lundy Bancroft talks about it his book “Why Does He Do That? Inside the minds of angry and controlling men”.  Lundy tells us that most abusers are a combination of 2 or more of these types.

The Water Torturer– The Water torturer will assault you with his words and never raise his voice. Fear will run deep through your bones and he won’t have ever have to hit you. He proves that anger doesn’t cause abuse. He stays very calm in arguments and pushes all your buttons on purpose. His even tone, condescending and mean words are enough to trigger deep anger inside of you.   When you respond to his psychological torture with crying, yelling or any kind of negative emotion, he then turns that against you. He calls you crazy, calls you the abuser and ensures that you are the major problem because you are the one who over reacted.

A conversation with him is fraught with various aggressive and covert tactics. He will use sarcasm and derision freely. He will cut you down with cruel remarks, degrading comments and cutting words. He will use consistent, subtle, covert and discrediting manipulation to make you look like an idiot. His attitude will be superior and full of contempt toward you as he stonewalls all your attempts at adult conversation. Keeping track of your conversation with him is almost impossible because what ever is said will be twisted around to make you seem ridiculous, crazy and absurd.


The stress that you will experience trying to make sense of his crazy making tactics will make you ill over time. The things he says and the way he says them make you feel confused because he is inconsistent. It is very difficult to explain what he is doing and if you try, most people will tell you that it isn’t a big deal or you are imagining things. These responses just work to make you feel even more isolated and unbalanced.


Some of the most used tactics that the water torturer will use are:

  1. Rage – This is an intense, furious anger that comes out of nowhere, usually over nothing (remember the wire hanger scene from the movie “Mommie Dearest”). It startles and shocks you into compliance or silence.
  2. Gaslighting – Water torturers lie about the past, making you doubt your memory, perception, and sanity. They claim and give evidence of your past wrong behavior further causing doubt. You might even begin to question what you said a minute ago.
  3. The Stare This is an intense stare with no feeling behind it.  It is designed to scare a victim into submission, and is frequently mixed with the silent treatment.
  4. Silent Treatment Water torturers punish by ignoring. Then they lets you“off the hook” by demanding an apology even though you aren’t to blame. This is to modify your behavior. They also have a history of cutting others out of their life permanently over small things.
  5. Projection They dump their issues onto you as if you were the one doing it. For instance,  abusers may accuse you of lying when they have lied. Or they make you feel guilty when he is really guilty. This creates confusion.
  6. Twisting – When confronted, they will twist it around to blame you for their actions. They will not accept responsibility for their behavior and insist that you apologize to them.
  7. Manipulation – A favorite manipulation tactic is for him make you fear the worst, such as abandonment, infidelity, or rejection. Then they refute it and ask you for something you normally would reply with “No.” to. This is a control tactic to get you to agree to do something you wouldn’t.
  8. Victim Card – When all else fails, the water torturer resorts to playing the victim card. This is designed to gain sympathy and further control behavior.**

You can learn these maneuvers, remain silent when they are being used, and end the conversation as soon as possible. This will keep them from being a victim of the water torturer.


What the Bible says about the Water Torturer:

Psalm 55:21 His talk is smooth as butter, yet war is in his heart; his words are more soothing than oil, yet they are drawn swords.

Jer 9:8  Their tongue is as an arrow shot out; it speaketh deceit: one speaketh peaceably to his neighbor with his mouth, but in heart he layeth his wait.

Jer 9:5   And they will deceive every one his neighbor, and will not speak the truth: they have taught their tongue to speak lies, and weary themselves to commit iniquity. 6   Thine habitation

2 Thessalonians 2:12
in order that judgment will come upon all who have disbelieved the truth and delighted in in the midst of deceit; through deceit they refuse to know me, saith the LORD.




**Hammond, C. (2016). Eight Mental Abuse Tactics Narcissists Use on Spouses. Psych Central. Retrieved on October 31, 2016, from










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