Sent: Wednesday, May 26, 1999 5:03 PM
Subject: E-Mail Advice
Please, I need advice on verbal abuse:
Last year I was a volunteer at a drug recovery center and met this young man
me). After some time, we both fell in love and started dating. After a few
months of dating and finding myself alone since my son was going away to college and all
my family lives in another country, we decided to live together. This person has a
lot of anger within himself due to the fact that his parents divorced when he was six
years old, he was sexually molested by one of his mother's boyfriend's brothers and led a
teenage life of drug addiction. He has two sides, the angry side and the very
kind, caring, loving and wonderful side.
At the beginning of our relationship when
the angry side came out for the first time, his verbal attack was something out of this
world as I had and have never in my life heard such things said to me like "f----n
bitch, etc" or called any names related to that nature, that I lead a sorry-ass life,
that what I need is a corn-flakes toy of a man, that I think like a white person (I am
Hispanic, educated and make good money and I am a U.S. citizen). I was slammed
against a wall, thrown to the floor. I did not know how to defend myself from these
insults because if I did, it would aggravate things. Then, his good side would show
up, and, of course, I would forgive him just because he would tell me he loves me.
About three months into the relationship he relapsed into drugs again (he is not an
everyday user anymore) but he
has done drugs every two months I would say since we started the relationship. For
two days after his relapse, which is the time that his fury lasts, he becomes verbally
abusive, angry, etc. But still, I forgave him and kept on going with the
relationship. When his good side
takes over he works hard and is dedicated.
Anyway, to make my story shorter after
all his verbal abuse and attacks against me for almost a year now, I am running on thin
threads. I don't care anymore what he says, but whenever we had arguments I have
picked up his same pitch and I answer back (I don't like myself being angry and saying
things that hurt) because I was not raised that way. Throughout our relationship I
always asked him to seek help to get whatever troubles him out of his system in order to
have a healthy relationship. He never did.
For the past two months he has been
kind because we have not argued -- all it
takes is an argument to set the bickering off. My son is back from school for the
summer. He has been raised with the highest standards and I don't want him to
know or see what kind of person his mother is living with. This person I am living
with not only has turned me into
something I don't like, but he has no manners. So, two weeks ago, I decided to kick
him out of my apartment and threw his things out the door one Sunday evening that he came
home drunk at midnight and then expected to go out partying some more when I told him why
would he want to go out some more if he was already drunk and probably who knows what
else. I gave him an ultimatum that if he went out again he would stay out and that
this time was for good. He walked out and left. Right there and then I threw
his belongings out. But he still calls me constantly, he twists things that I have
never said, he tries to control my life. He holds me hostage at my apartment when I
ask him to leave, he calls me every dark, dirty name there is out there. By the way,
he says he is checking himself today at some recovery program again because he says he
needs to change. The only problem is that I don't know whether he will change
and that I don't understand the love he has for me, it is so unreal, but on the other hand
I don't know what to think anymore. Please e-mail me with your advice.
This man has too many problems, and you have let him drag you down. I'm surprised the
staff at the center did not discourage you from getting involved with an addict in early
recovery! Step programs strongly discourage any dating the first year.
First he needs to deal with the chemical dependency. It doesn't matter if he doesn't use
every day. He is an addict who binges. He can NEVER use. He is also an anger
addict. I'm really sorry about what happened to him as a child, but it is his
responsibility to take care of himself now. It is your responsibility to take
care of yourself and your child. You have compromised your self-respect enough!
Good for you for throwing him out.
He can say whatever he wants, what do you care? So what if he twists your words? He is
just trying to engage you emotionally. Don't. Do not let him into your home, do not
talk to him, do not accept phone calls (hang up immediately), send back any mail. If he
bothers you, call the police. He is harassing you. Get a restraining order if you must. He
has already hurt you.
Do not believe that he is OK when he is done with rehab. He is not. Do not try to help
him; he will manipulate you, and you will enable him. Recovery is a process that takes
many years. Work on your own recovery. Attend ALANON meetings. Get on with your life; you
have too much to lose.
My very best wishes, Dr. Irene
Thank you for your prompt response. It has boosted my spirit and
made me feel better about myself. Maritta