OK, I made a mistake.
I admit it. And its a doozy. And now I have a little girl and
a crazy husband.
The divorce is filed, and the restraining order is granted. Now my
problem is: he won't let go. This man does not feel empathy or
remorse. The only reason he changes his behavior is if it causes him
pain. He will not give
up on me being his wife. Not because he loves me (although he says
he does), but because I'm something he's being denied.
He comes to the house for some inane, "harmless" reason and it
ends up being a soliloquy of how much he loves me and doesn't want the
divorce, and he wants his family. When he sees that he's getting
nowhere with me, he
turns angry. "Why are you doing this to me?", "Why
are you being mean to me?", "We have a little daughter!"
On and on.
He has a cycle he goes through
every time I see him. He's talky, talky, like everything's ok. When
I'm not excited enough or lovey-dovey, he gets mad and wants to know what
"my problem" is. I try to make non-committal sounds
(because I know what's coming up). He gets madder and madder at what
I'm "doing" to him. He demands I give him a chance and trust him
even though he's a HUGE liar. (Even with really stupid lies that are
extremely easy to check up on - the man wrote me a bad check last week!) Then
he starts telling me I can't do this to him, and I can't keep him from his
family, etc, etc. Than he comes around and says how sorry he is for
saying/doing all these things. Promises and tears follow. He's hurting
since he's not getting what he wants - not because he's sorry for the pain
he's causing me! All this goes on within the space of an hour or so.
Most of this time, I'm silent. And, like I said, every time I see him we
go through this - about every day; the guy will not stay away!
Sometimes he'll really get my goat,
usually by telling me I'm a bad Mom, or something to that effect, and I'll
verbally waste him. But, most of the time I just say, "OK,
alright, if that's what you believe, We'll talk to Dr. So-and-So about
that, the psychiatrist he sees for his anger and impulse control problem.
He is such a consummate liar, I hope his doctor can see through this stuff.
He's still going through tests.
I don't want to keep him from his daughter, I truly believe he wouldn't
physically hurt her. But, I can't handle worrying all the time about
when he's going to call or show up at the front door. If I ignore
the call, he comes over. If I ignore the door, he calls and calls,
and gets angrier and angrier. If I answer the door, I am pretty much
held hostage until he cycles through. And quite frankly, I'm tired
of keeping my mouth shut. But, if I tell him what I really think, I'm
afraid of his reaction. He has been violent before.
So what do I do? Like I said, I have a restraining order, but what
kind of line do I draw? I feel funny about calling the police
because he's talking me to death. Don't get me wrong, I've called
the police several times
before when he forced his way into the house or wouldn't let me leave with
our daughter. But because he won't shut up? I'm wishy-washy
about this because I know how the cycle always goes, and if I play my
cards right, he
goes away with the misguided notion that there's hope-BUT AT LEAST HE GOES
AWAY! Not by anything I've said, but by what he "heard" in
If I'm continually combative and
telling him "No", and "Leave," he gets violent and I'm
scared all the time. If I keep my mouth shut and let him think
whatever he wants to think, he's misguided, but I'm not as frightened.
I do not lie to him. I tell him often, "You become a totally
different person, and we'll go from there. I don't want to live with
you the way you are and I don't want to live with a work in progress
(referring to his psychotherapy - which so far is a wash)".
I could tell him, "I never want to be with you again" and he
would think, "She loves me because she doesn't want me dead."
Oops, you know what? I have said that, and he did think that.
I'm basically a pretty nice person, but this is turning me into a real
bitter bitch who sees things in very black and white terms.
HE'S TURNING ME INTO HIM! Don't blame him.
You're the only one turning you into him! At least when I'm dealing
with him. How long before this rubs off into my dealings with other
In re-reading this, I can see how it might seem as though I just upped and
changed my mind about this marriage business and didn't give him a chance.
Well, he's had plenty and has done plenty to destroy any hope of life
together. From lying to me constantly, to destroying my property
that had any connection with life before him, to trying to rape me when I
denied him sex (I was pregnant and sick, and tired, and NOT INTERESTED),
letting me sit quietly without demanding (yes DEMANDING) that I tell him
what I was thinking, for getting angry at me for going somewhere with my
mother for the day, for my not bringing anything back for him after being
with my mother for the day ("Didn't you even think about me
today?"), for constantly berating me for not telling him that I
loved him enough, or showed him enough affection, for getting pissed out
of his mind because I didn't include a card with the present I got him for
his birthday, for constantly rubbing my arm when I had phlebitis and then
laughing and saying he just wanted to hold my hand, and "What's your
problem, anyway?" I could go on and on. He is
manipulative, passive-aggressive and just plain MEAN. Did I defend
Now, what do I do? -Agnes
responsibility and you learn to set limits. You've already come a long,
long way. You've got his number, you got him out, and your divorce is
around the corner. Good for you!
But you seem so
understandably angry and traumatized right now, you can't see up from
down. There are tools at your disposal that you don't use, like the
restraining order. I could recommend steps to take, but I am reluctant
since I think you will need ongoing guidance to implement any
steps. I don't want you to mis-implement advice and end up feeling even
more stuck, angry, and worn out than you feel now!
You've been through
Hell. You're hurting lots. Get into counseling so you have some support in
getting him off your back - and so there are no more "doozies."
Good luck to
you, -Dr. Irene