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4/14 Interactive Board: Codependent Partners

3/23 Interactive Board: He's Changing... I'm Not...

3/1 Interactive Board: D/s Lifestyle

1/14 Interactive Board: My Purrrfect Husband

12/12 Interactive Board: What if He Could Have Changed?

10/23 Interactive Board: Quandary Revisited

8/24 Interactive Board: Quandary! What's Going On?

7/20: Dr. Irene on cognitive behavior therapy and mindfulness

6/12 Interactive Board: Unintentional Abuse

11/7 Interactive Board: Is This Abusive?

12/29 Interactive Board: There Goes the Wife...

11/4 Interactive Board: A New Me!

10/8 Interactive Board: Seeming Impossibility

9/8 Interactive Board: My Ex MisTreats Our Son

5/1 Interactive Board: I feel Dead - Towards Him

4/26 Interactive Board: Why is This So Hard?

4/19 Interactive Board: I Lost My Love...

4/7 Interactive Board: Too Guilty!

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Comments for Catbox 24

Comments for Catbox 24

Material posted here is intended for educational purposes only, and must not be considered a substitute for informed advice from your own health care provider.

Courtesy of Dr. Irene Matiatos   Copyrightę 1998-2001. The material on this website may be distributed freely for non-commercial or educational purposes provided that author credit is given. For commercial distribution, please contact the author at Doc@drirene.com

Back to Catbox 23

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B1: Submit
Date: Tuesday, February 27, 2001

S1

hi, I am stephanie.....new to this site. I am a codependent struggling to make it on my own after 20 years of marriage with a verbally abusive man (and very controlling). I have been on my own for over a year now, after reading Patricia Evans "the verbally abusive relationship". this is the book that gave me the courage to leave. sharon.....the longer you stay away....the stronger you will become. so many times I wanted to run back because I was scared. terrified of the unknown. hang in there. keep coming here for support.

stephanie

B1: Submit
Date: Tuesday, February 27, 2001

S1

Hi catbox cats, feel really out of touch from not posting for a couple of days! I will read the posts later. In the meantime I want to know if I am being unreasonable. My daughter is not speaking to me but sending the washing home! I think she shouldn't until she gets it right with me and that Jake is encouraging her to be abusive by doing it? Input welcome please!???jay p.s Sharon it is o.k to email me now.

B1: Submit
Date: Tuesday, February 27, 2001

S1

Hi, nice site here! I am currently the scapegoat in my family of origin. At 38 I am finding it more and more difficult to recover from my sisters attacks through verbal abuse {name calling} and emotional abuse {refusing to speak to me, angry letters and phone calls, assessing my mental health, calling me crazy etc.} I have done allot of emotional work over the years trying to recover from the effects of growing up in such a hurting family. Trying to set boundaries has only backfired and given her more opportunity to twist my words and attack me even more cruelly. I need information on the dynamics of this situation, as most of the information here is about husband /wife relationships not specifically between sisters. So far haven't had any luck finding info anywhere about sister relationships like this one. Anticipating your reply.

B1: Submit
Date: Tuesday, February 27, 2001

S1

I stumbled on this site by accident about a week ago and felt like many of the people here have gone through what I am currently. It's a nice feeling to know you're not alone in all of this. It's hard because I know I have co-dependency issues and it makes it harder to move on and out of a verbally abusive relationship. I lived with a verbal abuser for almost 2 years. At first he was so charming and wonderful and made me feel like a princess. His entire family loved me and I was told I was a member of his family since there was no doubt in his mind we would be married. We moved in together only after about 3 months and he kept pushing to buy things together like cars and electronic equipment. All on my good credit, which isn't too good anymore. He would have some outbursts but they were never directed toward me and I thought they never would be because he "loved" me and I was "different." Well, after about a year things changed and he became very verbally demeaning about my Mother who he decided he hated and about how weak I was. He made me choose between my Mother and him and refused to speak with her or go to any holiday or family gathering. His mother agreed with him and he would use that for ammunition. So things between us became strained he got a new job and started working 12 or more hours (his father is a work-a-holic) and I became more insecure and needy. He withdrew all affection toward me told me I was "annoying" and "talked too much" because when I would make dinner and look forward to him coming home he wouldn't want to speak with me, unless it was him telling me something about work. It's just all so disillusioning and disappointing. Now we are no longer together. The last straw came when he told me he "wouldn't care if I walked out and never came back." So I left but it's been the worst time of my life. I miss him terribly and don't know why. Must be the co-dependency rearing it's ugly head. I just need to know I'm doing the right thing, he has become even more verbally abusive then before now and calls and berates me about money (we shared all finances). Any support would be greatly appreciated as I hope one day I'll be able to give some to those in my situation. Thank you Susan

B1: Submit
Date: Tuesday, February 27, 2001

S1

Dear Stephanie: Thanks for reading my postings. Yes, that book, plus her other one, really turned the corner for me. I left then last spring after reading it. It really had opened my eyes - everything FIT - its the residual push/pull, I'll be good to you promises that are hard because you want to believe them. You want and hope for change. And they do.......for just enough time to go at it again. I have changed so much in my whole belief system through dealing with this almost 2 year relationship. But you know what? I'm glad - because I wouldn't be who I am today. I like myself again and I feel wonderful. Every day I make no contact, it feels better and better.

Hugs, Sharon

PS - Jay, I'm with you on this with your daughter. Don't give in! Stay tough mom and don't let the laundry get done until things get cleared up between you! Jake's behavior is a little on the "disrespectful side" - stay on your OWN SIDE. Do "tough love" for now and you'll gain their respect back. Plus your own.

B1: Submit
Date: Tuesday, February 27, 2001

S1

Hi everyone,

Trubble, I'm sorry your are having a bad day!

I don't have much time right now, but wanted to pop in and say hi. My husband and I are going through one of those "peaceful" times, and I am beginning to doubt myself. He's not being ugly. Last night, he even asked me to come outside with him to look at Venus (it is at it's brightest this week- won't be this bright for 8 more years). Times like this I think I'm a horrible person for thinking some of the things I have about him! It's funny... the "peaceful" times are almost more unnerving to me now than the bad times! Does that make any sense?

Love and Peace,

Anne

 

B1: Submit
Date: Tuesday, February 27, 2001

S1

Hi everybody, I’m new to this board, found it a few weeks ago. I’m not sure if I’m co-dependant and if my husband is real verbal abuser. We are together for more than 20 years and it was classical “abuser vs. co-dependant” relationship some time ago. It became better over the years, because I tried to set limits and explain to him that if he is unhappy with me or something, he could try to talk normally and not to scream and yell and call me stupid idiot etc. He didn’t call me names for about a year now (until two weeks ago) and didn’t scream as often as he used to and changed in some other good ways, but it took me years to get to these results and the funny thing is 10 years ago I would be happy with how he is now, but not now. Why? Because all these years his verbal abuse was killing my love for him and I cared less and less. That’s what happens if you stay with verbal abuser for a long time. First I want to talk to Susan, because she is new and looks like hurting the most. Susan, you are strong! You found courage to leave. You miss you man terribly not because “the co-dependency rearing it's ugly head”. You just still love him and you miss good times and you probably are not sure if you did the right thing. I never had the courage to leave. Maybe I’m stronger in other ways, but I’m terribly afraid of being along at least I was. All these years I would rather tolerate any verbal abuse than to leave. Am I sorry I didn’t? Not really. I think everybody has his own time. You leave when you are ready. For me it took 20 years, for you just a few. But it’s done. Try not to dwell on it. I think this man is not good news in other respects too. He looks like a user, he used your good credit “which isn't too good anymore”, meaning he is not responsible person, he just used you credit, money, etc. (In this respect my husband was and still is a good provider and frugal spender. One more reason for me to stay with him). Your partner doesn’t respect your family and just making you to choose between your Mother and himself is very disrespectful and controlling. Doesn’t he understand that he hurts you by asking this, because how can you not to keep in touch with your own Mother? Anyway, Susan, just hang in there. Try not to think about him right now. Pain will subside. Read this board, books about the subject if it helps you. I would also recommend trying to meet new people: men and women. Be outside a lot. Don’t just sit and cry. What helped me once: I found an ad on Excite.com site from a very nice man and I answered and we wrote to each other for some time. I never met him and he stopped writing back to me, (I think he just found right woman and I don’t blame him), but he was a good listener and he helped me to find strength and believe in myself. Maybe you can post your own ad. Just be careful (don’t use your name, don’t give your address etc before you know the person better). You don’t have to meet with him right away (or ever). Try to talk on the Internet at least for a while first and see if it feels right. Or you can post here and there are always people to listen! I’ll tell about my own questions and confusions next time. Good luck to all! Almost strong.

B1: Submit
Date: Tuesday, February 27, 2001

S1

Hello, I have been returning to this site and absorbing all it has to offer for about a week now. It's wonderful. I would appreciate any input regarding this situation... Background first: I was married for 21 years to a physician who was a totally different person behind closed doors. I was 25 when we married after a courtship that was much too short, but I was a perfect 'target' for this man, and he called the shots, and I let him. I met him at work.( I am an RN) and I marveled at his gentleness and bedside manner. I grew up very socially out going and active in high school student councils, sports and clubs, but had great difficulty academically. I had confidence verbally and in my organizational skills, but knew I was a visual learner. Getting though college was a real challenge, but I made it. I look back now and even read yearbook notes from friends...and I see that I was always a listener, a helper of the underdog, patient and not self-centered. I mention this because I realize now that he saw those characteristics and was drawn to relationship because he knew I could be controlled and manipulated. He started slowly, by minimizing my accomplishments and abilities. He'd say, ""well you aren't a very good nurse, and you shouldn't try and work in the Intensive care unit.." (my evaluations were always great and I was 'recommended' by my supervisor to take the job), so I stupidly believed him and doubted myself and everyone else. I soon left the big city hospital and worked as an office nurse to accommodate his hectic schedule as a senior resident. The pressures of his job would lead him to unwind with 5-6 beers when he got home. After even the first, I noticed a different, almost scary look in his eyes. before long, he would be saying demeaning things, and withdraw into his own nasty world. I had had a intimate relationship while in college with a young man who I was engaged to, and after 2 years, it broke off, and we went our own ways. I mistakenly shared that with my husband, and as he got drunk he began to bring it up and twist it into something dirty and disgusting. I was actually a bit of a prude growing up and it was nothing I was ashamed of.....yet. I became pregnant after 8 months of marriage. He became worse and worse, never touching me, holding me. Into my 5th month I found out it was twins....I guess I knew then that I would be trapped in this marriage, so I had better figure a way to make it work. His family lived near by, and were great to me. I would be at family events, and hear everyone marvel about this' favorite son' and I'd die inside, knowing that when darkness came, the evil other person would come out and make my life hell. He would always drink too much, and start on the names.. I was a slut, a c--t, a whore, etc. He would either not want anything to do with me, or he would want to have sex.. but couldn't because of the 8 beers now, and because he couldn't 'do it', it would be my fault, because I was a.. whore..etc. If we ever actually got close to a tender intimate moment. and if I responded with any show of desire. he'd be outraged, and accuse me of probably sleeping with everyone I ever dated and everything would stop, but the verbal attacks continued until he passed out. If I tried to stop in the midst, to use a diaphragm for protection.. I was a whore. If I put the diaphragm in ahead of time, just in case, then I was a whore. Of course, just like the typical enabler and victim, I began to think it really was my fault, that I could work harder on being a good wife. From what I know now, he was a classic case. The would' cycle' on a regular basis. ANGER - REMORSE- etc. I would anxiously await for the good days... when he wasn't mad at me, when I would perhaps get a hug or tender look. I always walked on egg shells. My parents would drive 5 hours to visit, of course staying overnight a few nights, and he would be nice until about 6 o'clock. He then went into nasty mode, and be ever so rude them and make them feel unwelcome and uncomfortable. One night he even got so drunk, he had me locked in the bathroom with him, with my back up against the wall, and when my dad heard yelling, he came to the door, and my ex screamed to him through the door that his daughter was a slut and told dad all about the other relationship I had had. Over the years, I always knew I'd eventually divorce him...but the time had to be right..??.. There was always something that would make me put it off. The birth of my 3rd daughter ( the twins were beautiful identical girls) and 5 years after that, the birth of my son. I began substituting in the schools as the clinic nurse, this was not well received, but he tolerated it because it was only occasional. I absorbed myself in the children. Room mothers, brownie leader, volunteer director..etc. Everyone saw us as a perfect family. We were financially comfortable, the kids all excelled in athletics, class leaders....but no one knew what our lives were really like... Egg shells all fragile egg shells. There were countless events and episodes at home, through the years, the kids knew no other life, than 'don't upset daddy' He never was physical. Just moody and critical. Actually, most of his 'behavior' he kept hidden and only subjected me to it. We couldn't socialize...because my friends were jerks, we would go out to dinner, alone, but, he wouldn't talk to me. I was ridiculed, insulted, I wasn't up on current events, I wasn't very bright, but he'd take care of me. Meanwhile, as the girls got older, they would hear things, and they now tell me, they were scared and confused. The twins senior year in High School, the health teacher arranged for an exhibit called 'the clothes line' I found out that all 3 girls worked on a t-shirt depicting my relationship with their dad. (The clothes line travels around the country, each t-shirt is created with a victims story on it. it's a very moving exhibit !!!) After that, I seriously began the process of separation-divorce, etc. I have now been divorced 3 years, separated 2 before that. I have become a much stronger person, but I still break my heart for the innocent ones affected by this. My children will always be scared, and put in the middle. They are great kids! The twins are 23, their sister is 19 and my son is 14. My dad died 15 years ago. I truly believe that he and God have helped guide me and strengthen me when I thought it was too overwhelming and easier to give in. Because of my relationship with the schools, I was welcomed with enthusiasm to a full time position as a school nurse in an elementary school. I met a wonderful man 1 and 1/2 years ago that has added great joy to my life. But... here is my dilemma..... My ex has never stopped his veiled threats of financial destruction, emotional abuse and character assignations. He is truly a troubled man, who continues to bounce the kids around emotionally, one moment loving and supportive to them, and the next, angry and telling them daily, that their mother is responsible destroying the family and the financial well-being. He has left messages on the answering machine calling me names, criticizing my every move. He has nasty names for my gentleman friend and doesn't hesitate to make up lies about him and about me. He bought a place 2 blocks away, and until I took out a restraining order to have him stop calling and entering the house, "his house' as he calls it. He continued to make his own rules, and ignore it all. Last month, the phone rang at 8 am, when he heard my voice, he screamed "F--k you, you bitch" and hung up. There was so much anger in his voice, at that early hour, I was truly concerned (scared). So after great consideration, I went to the police station and reported it. I knew it would alter my future drastically, but I KNOW that it is wrong and I DON'T deserve this. He made himself unavailable until the next morning, when he went to the arraignment. I am sure this was very embarrassing for him. He is a well respected doctor, who I can honestly say, has not allowed this to affect his practice. The pre-trial conference is next week. He expects the girls to go with him and stand there. He has the kids asking me daily if I am going to drop the charges. He's in panic mode, and is embellishing details, and has the kids convinced that we will loose the house, we will end up all over the local paper and radio stations, that he will loose his medical license, etc. He has become a VICTIM. They know that these are the consequences for the actions he takes, but they are upset with me. I checked and was told that all this will be unlikely, unless he creates attention. I see this as another attempt to be in control, to beat the system, to WIN. He is so similar to text-book descriptions, it's remarkable. I can check off each step of the way, his actions and reactions. He has never stopped haunting me.( and he vowed he never will). He twists things around, criticizes everything I do, and drills into their heads that I am a selfish person. (They all choose to live with me, we have joint custody, but I have physical custody) He has been dating a very nice woman for 3 years. She is very vulnerable... just what he likes. Yet he still has refused to move on. Instead he chooses to hold our children emotionally hostage while they are forced to watch their dad attempt to dismantle and destroy their mother. There is sooooo much more to this saga. I don't dwell on the past, I use it for reference, and I will always remember it. I need to get through the next few days. My gut tells me to not drop the charges (which only the DA can drop, but I could beg him to). This man will never stop, so even if I did get them dropped, he'd start up again, anyway. I know this is terribly long, I wish I had found something like this, years ago. This emotional and verbal abuse so often is not taken seriously. My scars are hidden inside my soul. Thank you, Susan

  B1: Submit
Date: Tuesday, February 27, 2001

S1

Susan, your story brought back so many painful memories. I suppose that this is good therapy for me. thank all of you who share your stories with other codependents. but hang in there Susan. DO NOT DROP THOSE CHARGES! you have done a brave thing. my ex also manipulates our children and tells them that I destroyed the family. they hear it on a regular basis. I figure that i cannot control what he says, so I try not to think about it. I believe that our children will see thru all his lies soon enough. I am waiting for that day. stephanie

B1: Submit
Date: Tuesday, February 27, 2001

S1

Hi everybody, I’m back to write about my confusions. It’s not that simple (at least not for me) to define who is right and who is wrong. Sometimes I think it’s my fault. As I already wrote in my previous post, I’m with my husband for more than 20 years and I fought with his verbal abuse and he got better. For about a year he didn’t call me names and didn’t yell at me as often as he used to. He is better, but I’m still unhappy. Sometimes I think maybe it’s me, maybe I’m ungrateful nagging bitch? Well, would you happy if your husband only once gave you something for Valentine Day, once or twice for Christmas in about 10 years? Would you be happy if he would never compliment your appearance, but you hear him complimenting other women and worse, he would make criticizing comments about your appearance? Would you feel loved if he only hugs or kisses you, when he wants sex? Would you be happy if your husband always refuses to make a picture with just him and you alone, but when it’s everybody in a picture, he is the very first to join? OK, here is an episode #1. We were grocery shopping. My husband rarely joins me, but this time he did. I’m picking a jar of spaghetti souse and he asks: “Why are you taking this small jar?” “It’s the size I always buy.” “ No, you don’t, this jar is smaller” “It’s just different company, but size is the same” “No, it’s smaller” When we came home, I showed him an old jar of souse and we read on the labels that there is the same amount of oz. “So, it’s not smaller” I say. “But it’s a different shape” Here I started laughing: “but we were talking about a size, not the shape, shape couldn’t be smaller or bigger” He just looked at me for a second and said: “You don’t look pretty, when you laugh. You chin is shaking and your stomach is shaking” I was startled and just ran upstairs crying. My son said: “ don’t listen to him, nothing is shaking, he just can’t loose.” You probably will say: why were you trying to win anyway. Because he is never ever wrong. He would always divert conversation. He doesn’t know the words “sorry” or “I made a mistake” in big things or small things. This time he just couldn’t deny it, so he made me feel bad anyway. But maybe it’s still my fault, why didn’t I just stopped arguing? How many times I did, but it didn’t feel right. Am I bitchy? Was it my fault? Maybe, I shouldn’t have laughed, because it sounded like: “ha-ha, you lost!”? OK, episode #2. We were at the party. Everything went well for some time. I was cranky the whole day, probably PMS or PMDD, I don’t know, but these days I just want to cry the whole day and very irritable. Here comes the photographer and starts taking pictures of everybody. My husband waves him away as usual, when he comes to us. But when the hosts of the party called to join them and he jumped right up and told me “let’s go” I just snapped. I said that I don’t want to, you don’t ever want to make a picture with you and me along, I’m too fat and ugly for you, and you are so eager if it’s with anybody else. (Later he told me that I made an ugly face and was loud. Maybe.) But he started screaming at me: “What’s wrong with you, you are snake, you are f.. bitch, shot up your stinking mouth. How can you do this? I thought this morning that everything was so nice between us and you are spoiling everything. How can you do it so sneaky when I least expected it? You remember everything bad I did for years and trying to get revenge! I shouldn’t have ever met you. I want you to burn.” And so on and so forth. After that episode we didn’t talk for 2 weeks. (Our usual practice, actually usually it’s more). I felt so bad that I spoiled the evening. I wanted to apologize so bad, but couldn’t, because he called me all those names and wished me to die. Well, there is a third episode, but I’ll write about it later. Please, I will appreciate honest opinion. Thanks, Almost Strong.

 

B1: Submit
Date: Tuesday, February 27, 2001

S1

Dear almost strong, I read your post and wanted to cry......is there anyway you can remove yourself from this? Do you work outside of the home? Can you take the kids and live somewhere else?

That is so sad on what he is saying to you. If you can, do the research on abusive partners, read books, get into therapy for YOURSELF. It sounds like he likes things as they are, you sound miserable. Please save yourself and your children -- get out!

Sharon

B1: Submit
Date: Tuesday, February 27, 2001

S1

Hello again! I couldn't wait to check the computer tonight, once my son finished his report, and I could read everything alone. This is like having a guardian angel that you can actually speak with!. I noticed that there are now 2 Susan's that are writing. I am the one who wrote about the pre-trial dilemma- maybe it would be easier to call myself ... Susan # 2.

Have to sign off again. Another one needs the computer... Thank you. I hope I can be of some help to others, also. Cheers! Susan #2

 

B1: Submit
Date: Wednesday, February 28, 2001

S1

Hi, everyone, Jay here and welcome all the new people named or unnamed!

There is just so much to read in the catbox it is hard to know where to begin and I am going to write a lot from memory. Yeah!

Dear Sharon, do I get this right? You are in contact with Dr Psycho again. Please be careful. Leopards don't change their spots overnight and don't forget you had to call the police on him.

Dear Theressa, I thought you were amazing to keep as calm as you did with your boyfriend but that in the end it came down to communication. If he had said he was unwell it might have eased the situation.

About the responsibility thing. I can really identify with that as I used to think as you did and want to be really laid back. As you say it isn't the adult option though and all I can say is it is something you have to give yourself time to get out of or you will set yourself up for failure.

Dear Scapegoat, I think you need to put the problem back where it belongs, on your family of origin. They will think what they think but you and only you know about you. Do what is right for you and ignore them.

Dear Anne, I think that is the difficulty: that they are sometimes so nice and then it gets confusing and we think it is all our fault. Writing it down sometimes helps me keep a reality check. :)

Dear Susan. Hi, I think you are really brave and were right to leave. His subsequent behaviour shows it.

dear Almost Strong, I agree with Sharon, I think you need a break. he sounds horrible.

Feeling really disappointed I didn't manage to keep centred once the anger took hold, but I guess it was too big to bury and at least I have said all I needed to now. I'm trying to get more centred today which is fortunately a busy day and I have loads of good stuff to do and a love story to write by 6.30 for my writing group. I stood up to Jake this morning and told him that he couldn't organise my affairs for me - which he didn't like and told me that was not how it was going to be - and hard luck Jake it is! Is a kind of aggressive no nonsense. Is my stand up for myself attitude a stage on the way to recovery? Yes. Maybe I need the anger? It's always been there. You are just accessing it now. What I would like though is to feel calm again. (actually I just remembered that there is a stage like this described on the victim pages: stages of recovery) I guess I just grew up learning that Christians weren't meant to be angry and that feeling anything other than perfect wasn't o.k. I AM o.k I am just one more person who has had bad things happen and who is not going to let themselves go through life unsorted. Right. Even if you're angry about something at Xmas.

I guess at the moment; even if we are in the same house I just have to learn to think and live separately from Jake and hope that in time enough will heal to get us back together. Or if it doesn't then splitting up will be a natural thing to do. Jay

Your goal: Be immediately aware of your anger while it's still at low levels and effectively and calmly make your statement (if appropriate.)

B1: Submit
Date: Wednesday, February 28, 2001

S1

Hi Jay,

Thanks for the encouragement.

 

Firstly I think It has helped me to see how much my lateness affects my life and all those around me. I never thought of it as showing lack of care for others before. :) Yeah! Otherwise, your behavior is "passive aggressive!" Also I realised I have to learn to limit the time I spend on things so I get balance in my life. It did help me when I can't remember who posted it, SOMEONE on the I am responsible board said "Theressa choosing how to spend your time and how much time you spend on each task and having some structure in your life". ISN'T externally being controlled,  which is what you wanted to eradicate. IT is in actual fact SELF CONTROL (Controlling once self) which is what we need to aim for if we are to become healthy. Yes, so you run your life with your head, thus giving you a better shot at making it work. WELL THIS WAS A REVELATION FOR ME. Cuz you see I was fighting again being controlled, but I guess I was just confused. Yippeee! She got it!

I think myself I did well with my boyfriend. Since I did keep saying, "Yeah lets not waste the rest of the evening, and lets make the best of it." Instead of trying to talk him out of his feelings.

I think though I ENGAGED when he started to behave how he was telling me not to. My therapist spoke about this in our session on Monday evening. HE said "Theressa how your partner works is this, HE firstly tried the direct approach, The pity pot. " Poor old me" as he went on and on about how the night was ruined etc, but you told him it wasn't. SO he tried another button, one that usually ALWAYS works. The Acting out button. Whereby he behaved like a spoilt child and threw a tantrum. He sat with his pint and sipped it slowly, he knew it would ENGAGE you because, No one likes to be accused of wasting time and then have someone else waste time. SO the thing that bugged him, he turned around on you, GIVING YOU A TASTE OF YOUR OWN MEDICINE SO TO SPEAK. Giggle! I like your shrink!

He knew such a PEOPLE PLEASER would hurry her drink. And she would go even further to make sure she didn't mess up anymore of the night by nagging you to finish your drink. (You knew she'd do this, then finally you'd have your revenge, HER reaction, and then you could blame her, THAT IS PUNISHMENT isn't it, for her.) SO YOU PROVOKE AND SHE REACTS, Then she looks like the crazy one who caused all this. HOW CLEVER.

So Jay, I know that when he sat sipping his pint, I should have just enjoyed my drink and not rushed (I mean drink it in a reasonable manner, not purposely being slow) then I should have kept quiet and not pay any attention to his dwardling. THEN he would have finished his drink.) 

You see I noticed that he usually ACTS OUT, I engage, (As in nagging) and he feels controlled, he feels I am telling him what to do, and he carries it on longer, then he blames me.

What is interesting about this is that whenever I feel controlled, or like he is telling me what to do, I also see RED. So I might be acting out of the child part of me. (the part that still has childish habits and patterns) The poor victim bit of me. Now if I feel he is pressuring me I feel angry. AND controlled. Like he is trying to force me to do something. But he can't.   

I will try to use an example: When the other week he parked my car in an awkward spot, (I instantly told myself I can't move that car, it is too hard, SO I lacked confidence) he told me how I could move it, he told me he knew I could. BUT I felt controlled, cuz he said "I am not moving it for you, so it is your choice move it or don't) This left me feeling abandoned, wanting him to fix it for me like as if I was a victim. HE had handed me back the control of the situation and my fears were evident. I felt he was pressuring me to do this task, which I didn't have confidence in. He was forcing me to face my fears.

Well I did move the car.

What this helped me see is that: Whenever one of us feels the other is pressuring us or trying to control the other we REACT. So I think this is a boundary issue, I have to stop trying to look after his side of the street and I have to stop expecting him to look after my side cuz now I am an adult. SO I need to keep out of nagging and trying to tell him what he is thinking and trying to fix him. AND he needs to continue not fixing things for me, but continue to pass me back the responsibility.

He doesn't always pass me back the responsibility. BUT that day he did.

SO I am working on MY TIME KEEPING. Now I have no reason to see it as being controlled, but as caring for others, and being responsible for my own life choices and the consequences.

It did help me when I saw the consequences if I wasn't on time for work. THE supervisor was gonna change my hours, which would inconvinience me and everyone else.

SO I guess it does take something this dramatic to change things. :)

Thanks for listening Theressa

B1: Submit
Date: Wednesday, February 28, 2001

S1

Dear Scapegoat....

I'm new to this site - just found it today. I too have always been the scapegoat in my family. I grew up with a verbally abusive father and my brother has followed his pattern (at least with me). I sought counseling a few years back and learned about co-dependency, etc. Things were easier for me when I avoided my family and only saw them a few times a year. I now have a 2 year old son and have been back in the family ring since he was born. Just this past week-end my brother "went off" about my husband taking a hammer of his fifteen years ago. My husband was out of town so I'm not sure if that's why my brother "went off" on me or if it was just an excuse to "vent". Either way, when he has these "times", it truly scares me. The look in his eyes and the anger/hatred in his voice make me shake. I don't want my son exposed to this kind of environment - I not only worry that he could be the recipient, I don't want him continuing the cycle and learning this behavior. To make a long story short, when I told my Mother (who was watching my son 2 days a week so I could work) that my brother scares me and I really don't want my son exposed to this - I was told there was nothing wrong with my brother and that I was the mean, crazy one and was trying to hurt my brother. I know in my mind that this isn't true but it's opened old wounds again. My brother is currently taking anti-depressants for depression caused by a chemical imbalance. He even talked about electro-shock treatments - which I thought sounded pretty serious for depression - but I don't know a whole lot about it. I'm sorry if I'm sort of rambling but the last few days have been very stressful and with my husband out of town I guess I'm feeling pretty alone and vulnerable. I too would like to find more information about sibling and family abuse. Thanks

te

 

B1: Submit
Date: Wednesday, February 28, 2001

S1

Hi I am new here. I just found this website today while searching on anger management. I'm not sure if what our problem is but let me know what you think. I have been married for almost 4 years now. My second husband..I have 2 girls from previous marriage. We share joint custody with my ex. For the first couple of years of our relationship my husband was everything I had been looking for. Understanding, caring, helpful, supportive. Then is started to go down hill. We started fighting. When we fought he got extremely anger beyond what I call reasonable. I had told him in the beginning of our relationship that I didn't deal well with anger. My father had been very verbally and sometimes physically abusive and just got anger with no warning. He assured me before we married he had no anger problems. WRONG! Well at first I thought it was just the strain of the blending family etc etc. but the last year or so I can't use that excuse. He has gotten so anger once he put his fist through the wall. He yells terrible things at me You stupid bitch etc. I get very afraid and start to cry and that seem to just make him more anger. So I try not to cry. This last time was almost the last straw for me. We had a very busy month in FEB we were going to take the RV for a long weekend. Well Saturday night it happens again. He goes off to walk the dog and stops to talk to some people in the rv park. I am left alone building the fire myself and having a glass of wine. He comes back sits down asks what I am doing I say watching my fire and he gets up throws the chair and it starts. I have an attitude he says I go inside he follows and the yelling continues. We both say things we shouldn't. Now I have tried not fighting back that didn't work so I have been trying yelling back that isn't working. We go to bed separately. Next morning he wants to act like all is right with the world. I can't so I wanted to talk..he gets even angrier..says we are leaving packs up and starts driving like a maniac. Beating the steering wheel yelling. Scottie one of our dogs gets scared and trys to go up to him He picks him up and throws him to the back of the RV. Well now I am scared of what he will do next. I am sitting in fear when he comes back at me...yelling DON'T CRY I DON'T CARE ABOUT YOU..I CAN'T WAIT TO GET AWAY FROM YOU. I look up so he sees I'm not crying I was just scared something he told me he would never do again. He drives on like a maniac trying to scare me more I guess. He keeps yelling throws my cellphone at me at telling me to call my mom and tell her what a bastard he is. He stops several more times trying to get me to leave the RV and take the care we are towing home but I was afraid to leave the dogs with him. I flinched once when I thought he might strike me and of course he says I'M NOT LIKE THAT YOU STUPID BITCH. We got home and he had calmed down by then thank goodness. Now let me also say he has been to doctors already and he doesn't do anything they suggest. He says my drinking is a problem. I think it is because his mother was an alcoholic. I don't think 2 glasses of wine warrants all that anger and I wrong? Right now I am not sure what I want to do. I see all my dreams for the future going down the drain. We had talked of one day getting a bigger Rv and traveling the country when the girls are grown. But right now I feel very depressed because all I have worked for is gone. I don't trust that he will change he has said he would get help before and he doesn't. He doesn't follow through on many things he says he will do. I can't just let it go over and over again. Usually he is very nice after one of these outbursts helping around the house but not really saying he is sorry. I told him all I can give him right now is co existing until he proves to me he is going to get help. Am I being to harsh? I don't see myself being a victim and I don't think I will put up with it for long. I am just still coping with the feeling of all my hopes and dreams being gone. I am very heartbroken. I am still hopeful he will do something. Anyway thanks for letting me vent. Carla

B1: Submit
Date: Wednesday, February 28, 2001

S1

Dear Asha, just replied to you and accidentally deleted the post! I was just wondering. Probably completely out of line, but I have seen a few businesses go under as they wouldn't diversify. Having managed to so my share at one time in not effectively running a tutorial school in a financially viable way (only it wasn't my money that was lost) I know how stressful it is. My own method is to ignore the bills! so you are at least a lot more responsible than me.

I guess though either reaction is just stress. maybe it would help to see where the high points in the year usually are? I just wondered if things got tough anyway at this time of year? (Don't answer that I am just kind of thinking back about what I wish I had done differently).

As for the parents thing. I think seeing it is half way to conquering it.

dear Carla,Hi, no you are not being too tough. You shouldn't put up with his behaviour and I think he sounds really stressed out and in need of medical help. Can you leave, or get him to leave until he does? love, jay

B1: Submit
Date: Wednesday, February 28, 2001

S1

Dear all, Sharon here. Well, nothing really new on Dr. Psycho. I am daily getting my own "revelations" about him by meeting new people and waking up with different outlooks about things and life in general. Now that I am not in his "web" so to speak, nor am I in a relationship with him again, I can really feel the difference NOT having his crazy behaviors in my life. I can see him - I can talk to him - we run into each other at the store and at restaurants where we used to eat together. Its VERY impersonal between us. I look at him with some different feelings, and I know I can never feel the same about him again. In fact, last night I was eating at a local restaurant alone and he came in and automatically joined me. It was friendly - yet impersonal - we both laughed at some things going on in our lifes - but yet we did not get connected together like lovers in the past. I almost felt "indifferent" about him - and I guess that is why being in contact almost helps me because it is taking the "sting" out of the abandonment issues I had about the break up of us. In essence, there is nothing else we can work out. We know we can not live together. I will not live with a man that treats me that way. He acted wierd and irrational towards me when he was tired, hungry, stressed, "low blood sugar spells" and the sick, twisted blaming/accusation cycles were enough to make me feel somewhat suicidal at times. I haven't felt that way - those low times - since we split. So, nature is running its course with my feelings for him - falling out of love with an abuser DOES NOT happen overnight, contrary to what some may think. There is a process. I just hope mine gets over soon. I am very jaded at this point about getting involved with another man on a deep level until I stay in therapy for at least a few more months. But feeling the "indifference" is feeling grounded right now. I hope it lasts!

Hugs, Sharon

B1: Submit
Date: Thursday, March 01, 2001

S1

Dear Sharon, sounds like you are getting over him! that's great, love jay.

 

B1: Submit
Date: Thursday, March 01, 2001

S1

Hi Asha,

SORRY I posted your e-mail, I really should have asked you first. A BIT of the people pleasing part of me. PERHAPS?

I have been using a book recommended by Steve, I just can't remember its name. David described the techniques on Buddah, First you identify your triggers: Does your heart race, do your palms become sweaty, does your breathing increase, do you tense your shoulders, do you tense your stomach. I think the book you're talking about is The Anger Control Workbook. 

Then you learn to remove yourself when you feel these triggers and breathe in one, two, three, four, and out four, three, two, one.

Then you correct your cognitive thoughts. THIS is especially useful: You fold a sheet of paper in half, on the left hand side you write down the negative thought about the thing that is making you angry and give it a percentage, Then you write on the right hand side of the paper a positive logical thought that could be true about this negative thought.

e.g Your partner is late. Negative thought: He is doing this on purpose, he knows it hurts me 100% (you feel this 100%)

Positive thought: He could have been held up in traffic, or something unavoidable came up 10%. (you feel this 10%)

NOW each time you feel negative you tell yourself the positive logical explanation. At first you will find it hard to believe but no matter, just say it. Eventually you will see evidence that this person isn't necessarily always late on purpose.

ANOTHER EXCELLENT THING IN THE BOOK: Fear, surprise, anger. WHICH IS IT? Can you identify the difference:

Surprise - Your not sure if this is a threat so you check it out. YOU FIND IT ISN'T AND so you calm yourself down.

Fear - There is physical danger, and you see there is a real threat to your health, or physical well being, so you plan to remove yourself from this REAL attack. HOWEVER, there may not be physical danger but you have built an image up in your mind so you need to push through this fear using action. USING The cognitive technique above.

FINALLY: Anger - threat to your emotional well being, your true self, your value, your self esteem.

When someone threatens your self esteem you can firstly, check for triggers, then decide to remove yourself from the room, then cool off by breathing, and then use the Cognitive negative thought stopping technique.

Eg: He said I am useless, This is true *% This is not true because I can do xxxxx 100%.

Then you decide what you want to do about the verbal attack. You may want to tell your partner this is not okay and I will do xxx, if you continue to do this.

 

FURTHER AS you learn to identify your triggers you might also want to note times and situations which make you most annoyed. You can plan ahead for these. YOU might decide when you are feeling ill, sick etc you will spend time alone, since you are especially going to blow.

In the mornings you might be on edge so maybe you need to give yourself more time.

I hope this helps. Take care Theressa

 

 

B1: Submit
Date: Thursday, March 01, 2001

S1

Hi Asha,

I am still working on the above techniques myself, so don't worry if they don't all come at once. DOES Steve not have any books on Anger management?

As for the bills maybe you can get a box and put each bill into it and set aside one day only to deal with the bills. I would also suggest you priorities the bills. (HENCE MAKING CHOICES THAT ARE RIGHT FOR YOU), Now you pay the most urgent ones. If you don't have enough to cover them. YOU RING THE COMPANIES AND ASK can you defer payment, and get a date off them when the deadline is.

Further some companies will give you longer to pay, or installment methods of payment.

YOU also in the future might want to pay things by a direct debit that comes out every month, so that the payments are spread over the year.

OR maybe you could in the future set a standard amount you can spend. AND the remainder put into a savings account so that when things are tight you can use this money.

COULD you sit down with Steve and brain storm on ways to drum up more business?

I THINK GOD sent these times so that you and Steve can work together on problem solving. What do you think?

Also be kind to yourself and spend some special time not worrying about the bills.

Take care Theressa

B1: Submit
Date: Thursday, March 01, 2001

S1

Hi Jay thanks for listening and at least I know I'm not the bad guy here. It is not my normal nature to be so cold towards another person but I don't see any other way to get through to him. As for one of us leaving it will not be me for sure and he won't leave without me having him thrown out. I'm really not ready for that my two girls really love him and thankfully have not seen him at his worse yet. They have been through one divorce and I am not ready to put them through all that again just yet. He has been to 2 different therapist but he usually convinces them that I have a drinking problem so it is not his problem you see. The therapists have made some good suggests for how he can handle his anger but he just doesn't do any of them. We are kind of at a stand still right now. He is being very nice..he left me a card yesterday saying how much he loves me and the girls..how he doesn't want to lose us...he wanted to hold me but didn't think it was time yet. All this is suppose to work on my sympathetic side. You see I told him I didn't believe he would get help or change because I have heard it before. He wants me to stop drinking cold turkey he calls it and he promised to get some anger management help. Well I don't really like making deals but if it will help..I can not drink that is really not a problem and then he will have nothing to blame. So far he has made no moves to seek help not even as much as what I am doing right now. He plays on the computer alot at night..it took me only a few minutes to find this site..he has not even tried. Oh I forgot to mention maybe he accused me of having an affair..a ridiculous possibility since I barely have anytime to myself and I have been home with the family every night. He just couldn't understand why we having been physical...kind of hard to get in the mood with someone you calls you names. Well it is for me so that is part of what is going on too. We have no physical relationship right now until he proves to me he is getting help. I am afraid it will anger him more if I don't give in soon but then maybe that is not a bad thing. If he loses it now maybe he will see it is not my problem but his and get help fast. Anyway thanks again for listening. Helps just to right it all down sometimes. carla

B1: Submit
Date: Thursday, March 01, 2001

S1

Hi Carla here again.

I have a question also. Every time we go through one of these spells or what ever you call them. He refuses to leave the house. This last time for instance...We got back early as I had said and we still had 2 days off from work. I ask him to leave and give me some time alone and just won't. He said ok you leave for a couple of hours and then I will ok so I go to the mall. He never leaves me alone....the next day still no time does he leave the house. What is that about? I don't really get it any ideas?

B1: Submit
Date: Thursday, March 01, 2001

S1

Carla, It sounds like he might be afraid that someone you like will come over while he is gone. It is also a control thing. If you ask him to leave he won't do it because the idea came from you and not him. I am curious as to why he changed so after 2-3 years of being so loving. Has anything occurred that could have made the difference? Have you asked him why he was so good to you in the first couple of years and isn't now? It seems like you need to physically get away from him. Separate. If you do not want a physical relationship with him right now and he is being impossible why live with him? When you make a physical separation they start to see you again as a separate person. This is very important because the abuse is the worst when they can't seem to respect your individual nature and have no sense of your boundaries. Heidi Lynn

B1: Submit
Date: Thursday, March 01, 2001

S1

Dear all, Sharon here. Nothing real different to report other than my continuing process of elimination of "riff-raff" aka Dr. Psycho. Had another experience with his dragon coming out of him again......it doesn't take long for him to get toxic again. So, I'm back in detox. Again, I know its this process that I'm learning to lean into - and actually embrace.

Hugs, Sharon

 

B1: Submit
Date: Thursday, March 01, 2001

S1

Hi Heidi I can't figure out why he was so great in the beginning and not now. I have ask him this many time and he doesn't have an answer really. He is not a pain to live with after the anger tantrum really...he usually starts trying to make up. He helps with housework gives me cards etc. He is not verbal abusive on a daily basis..just kind of comes in spells. Physically separating is not just that simple 2 girls 3 dogs money etc. I have heard alot about just leaving ...is it not possible that with anger management things can improve? Carla

B1: Submit
Date: Thursday, March 01, 2001

S1

Dear Almost Strong, Boy have I been there. My ex told the kids he's leaving because Mommy is too fat and can't keep the dishes done. He never, unless forced to, took me anywhere. He said he was embarrassed to be seen with me in public. I didn't know how to behave. If, heaven forbid, he had to take me to a wedding, he would put me in a corner and tell me not to talk to anyone. It would be too embarrassing. The funny thing is that at the time I was a size 12 and in sales. Now that he's gone I've lost 20 lbs and do some modeling for a jeweler and a photographer I know. Nothing major but a real self-esteem boost. I've had as many as 8 dates in 5 days (long story). So don't believe for a minute that his opinion means squat. I would work so hard to be pretty enough to maybe get a compliment. What a waste of energy. I could go to out of town soccer tournaments with him but my job was to stay in the room to take care of the kids and do the teams laundry between games. I used to call it being locked up. I could go to the grocery store if I needed to get stuff for the kids. But that was the extent of me leaving the hotel room. The first time my boyfriend took me out of town for the weekend, I mentioned that I still had to get reading material. He said "what for?" I said "for when I get locked up" it was then I realized that it was going to take a long time to be "normal" again. Normal people enjoy each others company. Normal people are proud of the person they are with whether they are a size 8 or a 12. Normal people are happy doing even the mundane things as long as they are together. Normal people don't use the "C---" word. Normal people don't take away your financial freedom. Normal people don't keep you from friends and family and the outside world. Abusers Aren't Normal. Stop trying to treat him as such. Read, Read, Read, and Listen to your Gut. It was my mother-in-law who told me her son was abusing me and I needed to get help. I blew it off. Thought I could handle it. I was wrong. March 3 is the 2nd anniversary of my freedom (divorce). The hurt and confusion is overwhelming at times. Be patient with yourself. It took a long time to get here and it'll take time to get better. Freedom is good. Knowledge is wonderful. Fear can be overcome. Love is out there. Cinderella

B1: Submit
Date: Thursday, March 01, 2001

S1

Hi Almost strong A very loving friend told me about Dr Irene's site yesterday and so today is my first. I want to write to you because you are in the same place I was for 23 years. I left my ex in 97 after 23 years of hell. All I can tell you is to get out. I wish I would have earlier. I never did anything right. And I would always keep changing as I would listen to him complain about something else that was wrong within me and about me. To the extent that after years and years of this I lost the person who God created. They say that a person can not change another. WRONG. If you are a codependent like I am, another person can force you into loosing yourself, and I started to notice that my daughter was being damaged by his verbal abuse too. If he is abusing you verbally, he is abusing your children too. And I see it in both of mine. My son is a pleaser and my daughter is full of anger.

 

I'll warn you...the demons don't end even when the marriage does. Since I left four years ago, I am slowly learning to be the person I was in the early 70's. Even my children tell me I'm different, I am happier, I smile, I am relaxed. But deep inside the codependency, emerges. I get so lonely and I panic when I am alone. I don't like to be home now. My kids are grown and I fight the loneliness. Does anyone have any suggestions on how to be what my therapist says "Your own best friend" To be happy to be alone and to like who you are. After 23 years of someone telling me I am ugly, I am fat, I have holes in my face, I am a lousy lover, I can't raise the children right, I am selfish, I am cold as ice, I am a heathen etc....when I have learned I am not. I am a smart pretty size 8 petite woman with a nice personality and I am warm. I have learned these things from my friend...but it has been hard for me to believe what I am now being told. How does one do that? How do you battle the dragon that battled you..how do you get the voice out of your head, the sayings the visual images? Do they ever end?

B1: Submit
Date: Thursday, March 01, 2001

S1

Dear all, Sharon here. Wow. What a day. No news on the Dr. Psycho home front - per se ----however, an ex-co-worker committed suicide this past Tues. night. He left this agency around 6 months ago, but we found out today that he and his wife had problems for years - on Tuesday night he kept his wife and 3 children hostage in their home. He beat her - they then found an exit and left the home - and he killed himself in the bathroom. This is really hitting home for me. This could have been a situation I may have entered into with Dr. Psycho as there was that element of abuse. Last summer he talked about his guns and saying wierd, bizarre stuff. This man was not right. I don't know.......this is all happening for a reason. Almost like my dead co-worker is trying to send me a message here. We are all in shell-shock here at work.

Life.

Hugs, Sharon

B1: Submit
Date: Thursday, March 01, 2001

S1

Dear Trubble,

I'm sorry you're having a bad day! But you look so cute there under the covers! Anyway, there's nothing like getting under the covers on a bad day, so snuggle away! snuggle snuggle!

Hi everyone - I've been lurking. This site helps so much. When I post, I can re-read what I said, and my last post seems to me like textbook codependency when I describe losing my Self in the presence of my ex, even my looks magically disappeared to reappear when I wasn't with him. Note to Self: Don't forget who you are, no matter what! Enjoy your Self!!

Welcome new folks, you've come to the right place. Sharon, I'm sorry about your co-worker. There is something really psychically hideously out of balance about an unnatural death, a suicide or a murder. My sympathies for you and your co-workers.

I understand your personalizing your colleague's death with Dr. Psycho. Put a post-it note in your brain but don't obsess! I thought about that kind of thing often with my ex - I also worried that he might be the kind of person who would forget to drop the baby off at day care on the way to work, leaving it in the car all day. He said he thought it was normal that his father often forgot to pick him up, and was angry that this horrified me, his dad leaving a little kid waiting for hours on a street corner (as he himself described it). Egad, why am I talking about him again! because I must need to...

Carnaval here in Brazil was a total blast. Everyone is so cheerful! They seem to really know how to put a bad mood away and have a great time. I wonder if our problems with abuse aren't mainly cultural. Well, I can answer that - it's because the US is the best place for women to be free, and so we get attacked more AND we accept it less. Much as I love it here, it's a really macho place. I wouldn't want to go back to having to accept macho behavior again - can't put us back in the box. I wish people knew how to have a good time AND honor and respect women.

Well, I'll go back to lurking now. Hang in there, everyone.

Love, Perdida

B1: Submit
Date: Friday, March 02, 2001

S1

help i just went thru 5 hrs of extreme verbal abuse

B1: Submit
Date: Friday, March 02, 2001

S1

TO poster,

Who said help I just went through 5 hours of verbal abuse.

FIRSTLY go and spend some time alone close the bathroom door and run a bath and have a long soak, then pamper yourself. Take the day easy and try to go off alone today and if you feel like crying let it all out.

Then you grab the phone book and ring for an abuse therapist. YOU need help handling all of this.

Don't at this moment go over what happened, you need to be calm to work out what you should do next time. BUT for know go and take care of yourself as I said above.

THEN revisit catbox tomorrow and we can look at what you could do next time.

Take care, you have our support Theressa

B1: Submit
Date: Friday, March 02, 2001

S1

theresa thank you for being there this am i had 3 biopsies done on my breast,,plus much trauma in the last 3 yrs,,,now this, sheesh,i was told to call harry, dick, tom, etc, and talk to them about my t*t,,,imagine,,,,

wendy

B1: Submit
Date: Friday, March 02, 2001

S1

Hi Wendy,

Sometimes people say things out of anger and sometimes that anger is cuz they don't know what to do so out of frustration they get angry. THIS IS not a good excuse but YOUR PARTNER MAY HAVE LEARNT THIS PATTERN TO DEAL WITH THINGS HE HAS NO CONTROL OVER. Like your illnesses.

I recently discovered that the times things go mostly wrong are when CONTROL IS involved. That being lack of control that one feels or if one is trying to control the other.

For instance if I feel a lack of control (maybe fear) I tend to feel angry. AND then if I feel the other person is trying to force me to face this lack of control (fear), I feel even more angry. THE same seems to happen with my partner. If he feels I am nagging him or trying to fix him he tends to get angry (since he thinks I think he isn't good enough)

BUT for now Wendy just concentrate on taking care of yourself today. TOMORROW you can work out how to sort this out.

Take care Theressa

 

B1: Submit
Date: Friday, March 02, 2001

S1

Hi Carla,

Setting boundaries will help you. THIS IS WHERE YOU SET LIMITS ON HOW MUCH YOU will let others behaviour affect you. By saying I will not listen to you speak to me this way.

Also you can learn not to engage when he ACTS OUT. By not reacting. (THIS NEEDS PRACTICE) but as you will see we are all trying here.

At the end of the day Carla you can't control him, you can only control you. You can't force him to practice anger management but you can refuse to be present when he is acting out.

You have to be strong and know you don't deserve to be treated badly.

You have to learn to say NO when giving ends up being not taking care of yourself. YOU need to learn that what you do is just as valuable as what everyone else does.

(YOU ARE A PIECE OF THE LARGE JIGSAW THAT MAKES UP THE UNIVERSE IF YOU WERE MISSING IT WOULDN'T BE COMPLETE, REMEMBER THIS, YOU ARE IMPORTANT TO)

Good luck Theressa

 

B1: Submit
Date: Friday, March 02, 2001

S1

Hi Catbox cats, Jay here and I haven't looked at the posts today yet so I guess I will post twice. I am just so angry with me. SHOUTED AND RAGED BIG time at the therapist and Jake today and it just made me look and idiot again, WHY???? can I never see this particular woman without ending up laterally shaking with rage and crying?????

I am never ever going back. Not unless God drags me by the ears. I can't afford another day like today. Felt like I needed therapy to recover from the therapy and the woman insisted on making four more appointments even though I told her I wasn't coming back.

I will never ever go back. I will never ever feel safe with her again. How dare she!!!!!!!!! Other less nice polite words......Oh boy I just hope I wouldn't be like this if it was Dr Irene who was the therapist. FakeMommy can be awful at times! It might be worse!

Why is this so bad for me?????Pain in therapy is one thing. Feeling a fool is another. I give up, The only therapy I will respect from now on is on this site. maybe therapy just doesn't work for me.

Perhaps I am the hopeless case.

Oh boy. I just have to vent how very mad I feel. WHY are there no English therapists who understand codependency?

Just now. I will never go near one again. (Dr Irene excepted) ever.

I despise myself too much when I leave.

Trubble! If you do ever prowl the boards with a blue pencil???? I'm sharpening one right now...

Otherwise HELP! jay  

B1: Submit
Date: Friday, March 02, 2001

S1

p.s the really bad bit is I can't stop the raging and spent almost all day in private calling her names. have I displaced all the rage I feel onto her? Probably.

I feel angry as I thought we were beginning to get somewhere too and now I just feel that it leaves me in a Dangerous emotional state. Jay It's not dangerous. It is yukky for sure.

 

B1: Submit
Date: Friday, March 02, 2001

S1

Dear all, Sharon here. No new news on Dr. Psycho, other than the fact that his friend "Ted" was a friend of the coworker who killed himself. Ted and I began talking about Dr. Psycho. Ted is very supportive in my breaking up with him saying he was the "good, bad and ugly" and "u go girl". All of this time Ted was an advocate of Dr. Psycho, so it surprised me that he is not saying favorable things about his friend. Could they have a falling out? Ted asked me if Dr. Psycho was ever condescending or if he ever hit me.....I think he is also affected by the death of our coworker. Ted's reaction was very interesting.

Hugs, Sharon

B1: Submit
Date: Friday, March 02, 2001

S1

To the new person fighting loneliness, looking for who she is. All I can help with is what worked for me. I was in the same boat. When I separated I was very lucky that people came out of the woodwork to run to my aid. I was locked up so long I had no friends, or so I thought. Here's what happened to me. Work acquaintances would go out with me after work once in a while. Only for an hour or so but it was a start. Neighbors started inviting me to their parties, again I didn't stay long. Partying wasn't too comfortable then. Then I started joining networking groups for work. You meet a lot of people who love meeting people. Some of these people would go to dinner with me or have a drink somewhere. Still not for more than a couple of hours. Slowly I built a network of people who truly care about me. Now I'm starting to take 1 day seminars that interest me. I take day trips just to clear my head and get away. I'm on several committees for different groups and the kids school. You meet really good and kind people in these places. Take it slow and do what you want. Swimming, start going to an indoor pool. Reading, go to a big book store with a coffee shop. Always wanted to paint, take a class at the community college. Love animals, volunteer at a local shelter. Miss being with children, you neighborhood school would love some help or volunteer at a hospital. There are ways to help yourself slowly and at your pace. I hope this helps you find yourself. I keep a list in my wallet of things around town that I've always wanted to do. Restaurants, Museums, day trips, whatever. When I feel lonely, I get out the list and just go. I cross off what I've done and add some more. Freedom is good. Cinderella

B1: Submit
Date: Friday, March 02, 2001

S1

Jay again. The doctor came out and gave me something to calm me down. He doesn't think that the therapy should have left me in this state and wasn't too happy about it. BTW I mean I don't think Dr Irene would be like my therapist I realised from my last post it looked as if I did! I meant I hoped I wouldn't get as hysterical. Is anyone out there to reply cos I could do with not feeling isolated just now! jay Keep scrolling...

B1: Submit
Date: Friday, March 02, 2001

S1

Hello everyone!

I need some advice. I have a friend who is very special. She is so sweet and calm, etc. Recently she has looked into doing what I do to add income to her husbands. She is a wonderful mother of an 18 month old and would like to stay home and still help support the family. She was very interested but her husband refused to let her do it. It's funny because he has been telling her recently that he would like her to go to work so that they could have more money. She cried when she told me this because she doesn't want to be away from her son all day. Anyway, I got strange feeling that she might be verbally abused by her husband. Her neighbor - my friend also, confirmed my suspicions. Her friend says that she is complete denial and won't admit she's being abused. We also think she is being physically abused.

What's interesting is that I've come to know some of her sisters and they have also married into a "controlling" relationship. Does this mean that possibly their father was abusive and they are "co-dependent " personalities???

WHat can I do if she's in denial and doesn't want the help. She really needs it!

Holly

B1: Submit
Date: Friday, March 02, 2001

S1

Hallo, everybody! Thank you Sharon, Jay, Cinderella and all who answered and listened to me. It helps a lot. Jay, I’m sorry for what happened at your therapist. Would you like to write it down at least a little bit about it? It helps just to write sometimes, isn’t it? Also we would understand your situation better. I personally still feel kind of uncertain toward therapists. Maybe it’s my upbringing or maybe I’m just extremely shy. Anyway, good luck and hugs to all! Almost Strong.

B1: Submit
Date: Friday, March 02, 2001

S1

HI Cinderella This is Barb, the lonely one. Your advice sounds like it is a good path to follow. Part of my problem is that I have also moved in the past 6 months and no no one in this area, which is an extremely small town. I liked many of your ideas, and have wanted to join some groups...I just haven't. The new job has really taken up so much of my time. I am hoping that starting this spring I can go slow.

Jay, I had times when I would get angry at my therapist also. I used to vent and then try to write down the things that made me mad, put it away for a few days and then relooked at them. Then I would look to see if the anger was justified or if it was the codependency kicking in. After while I also looked for patterns. Do you journal? I have found that journaling really helps me get the anger out.

What about panic attacks. Do any of you have those? I sure do. When I get lonely especially. I start to panic and feel so afraid.

B1: Submit
Date: Saturday, March 03, 2001

S1

greetings i am so upset he is ranting again how can i get out of this

B1: Submit
Date: Saturday, March 03, 2001

S1

Dear Catbox

I am just so tired of writing it and it is my fault as I write in 3 places on the site that I am confusing. But I think I have written some of it in an email to you, Sharon. I guess if I am honest the stuff with my daughter TRAUMATIZED me. I do wonder if I have post traumatic stress; but no counselor or doctor has ever agreed. What happened to your kid would wreck any mom Jay...

I am so tired of being thought strong and also a victim. Is this not a contradiction? Nope.

So tired of looking an idiot as I can't keep my cool when anything about my daughter comes up with my husband in any context.

So angry with myself for hating where I want to be forgiving and knowing hate destroys. Angry with myself for my own self destruct mechanism.

And really frightened by not being able to keep calm. Maybe some of it is hormonal and I should get the doctor to press for a quicker referral to the specialist. Hormonal or not, how about the Anger Management Book from above?

But what is was all about yesterday is there are 6 pages my daughter wrote with all that was going on for her. She refuses to let anyone read it and I think it NEEDS to be heard by my husband and the therapist wouldn't agree to this. It shows her need. Has some really hair raising stuff. Shows me as a good mother and disproves her accusations. I have to bear all the things in the letter alone. For a year now, Nobody has heard. What is in there is enough to send any mother round the bend and seriously worry about her daughter's mental state and my husband refuses to hear. I felt like the therapist was just one more person justifying his denial and leaving me still with ALL the worry and pain. If someone would read it then maybe she would get some HELP. Damned if you do; damned if you don't. Read her letter and you've stepped on her boundaries; don't read it and she gets to hold onto her pain...

I am starting to understand why other people use capitals so much!

I am just so tired of bearing all the pain alone and unsupported and sick that my husband puts his need for his daughter's "love" above her need to be well. He just won't cross her in any way and the two are in collusion and destroying the family. Maybe it would be abnormal if I DIDN'T rage. Yeah. But, it's just not productive when you do.

I am the one who set boundaries and he is the one who undermined them and the result is a child who is mentally sick, living alone and who along the way to this got raped by a 14 year old at the age of 15..Taking drugs, continually in really ill health. Not going to\ school and I was the only one who tried to get help for her.

In the next crisis with my daughter, my husband will ignore it while I listen and do whatever needs doing. She will not speak to me again and all I know is this will go on until the next crisis happens. This is not a good pattern. The two of you are working against each other vis a vis this kid.

As soon as there is no crisis, She will be daddy's girl again.

Oh yeah and the therapist didn't come out and say my husband's abuse of me was unacceptable the week before and that is what he needs to hear. He moved forward by saying "I am not proud of what I have done."????????????? Only ashamed or SORRY would mean anything to me.

How dare she expect me to think THAT was good enough. Now, Jay...

Yeah I am ANGRY, ANGRY, ANGRY again. Not good for me to be so angry and I guess I am going to have to face how my anger is just making everything worse. But I am so tired of working on myself when everything my husband does seems to be justified by others. So angry with myself for making me look the idiot. I would probably have thrown me out of the therapists office if the truth be told. She was certainly abused by me in the end. I think I was one step away from hitting her. Why DID she keep the session going and WHY is she refusing to not cancel appointments and why do I feel this morning, having complained to my line manager I will have to go back. Am I some kind of masochist.

Or am I afraid I am running from the pain? AM I JUST STUPID? None of the above.

I HATE this part of my nature that can't express things calmly any more. I HATE the fact I partly feel as if my anger is manipulative as it is about not getting what I so badly want.

I wouldn't have put up with me in any therapeutic situation I ever worked in and I don't want to say sorry.

What my husband is getting from me now can't be justified as it is abusive. By the end of last night I was screaming at him he had caused my daughter to be raped by his actions and swearing at him for giving me an Ice Cream.

This isn't justified. This is BAD and HE has a right to complain of abuse.

I am really frightened that the tables have turned. This victim anger is too big and way out of control. just now I think I despise what I have allowed myself to become. hate myself for my lack of self control. I also hate the feeling of being ashamed of my actions. I am a Christian for heavens sake. Although maybe it is time Christians were more real?

I don't even know who is the abuser now and who is the victim. What kind of lack of self knowledge is that? Jay Jay, what you're going through is normal victim rage stuff. As you begin to touch the anger that's been piling up for years, it is overwhelming. It's part of recovery Jay, and certainly better than what you used to do: get depressed. It won't stay like this though. You do need to work on anger management though. That will help everybody. More motivation: Help yourself in order to help your daughter.

 

B1: Submit
Date: Saturday, March 03, 2001

S1

my ex got a high powered, paper-generating unreasonable lawyer. I am en pro per and I am scared. He is using this I am sure, to intimidate me. He switched lawyers on thurs and I got the name on fri and court is monday. He had a reasonalbe one before.

I would like to tell the judge I am intimidated by him and his attorney, and my paralegal told me I have a good chance of losing my kids, just because of her not because I am unfit. He emotionally abused me the entire time we were together, and he uses the kids to get ot me now. This was the reason for filing in the 1st place.

i don't think quickly on my feet, and he still can overpower me and get his way.

I am scared....help.

B1: Submit
Date: Saturday, March 03, 2001

S1

This site casts men in a terrible light. For shame. 

B1: Submit
Date: Saturday, March 03, 2001

S1

By the way, what is a "codependent?" Sounds like self-defeating psycho-babble to me.

B1: Submit
Date: Saturday, March 03, 2001

S1

dear catbox, Jay again and I feel like I am still blowing it. Husband brings flowers. have to remember here Jake doesn't ever say much. I mean to say thank you and out comes don't bring me flowers if you never say sorry. I hope you just get tired of being angry. I don't think I have the energy for any more anger and yet everything is coming out angry. have I just turned into a white ball of rage? I can't see this is getting me anywhere at all and it certainly isn't healing a marriage. Jay

 

p.s to the really terrified lady. i wish I had the right words. Could you keep speaking to your attorney and also make notes on everything your husband does.

To the person whose husband is ranting. I think the only thing you can do is walk away.

To Sharon, I've lost the thread. Which co worker killed himself. Maybe his friend has seen what Dr Psycho is like.

Just wondering Steve??? Asha has he stopped posting for good?

Jay

B1: Submit
Date: Saturday, March 03, 2001

S1

Dear Jay, just go out for a walk. Walk for an hour, two. Think or don't think if it's too painful. It helps me sometimes, just to walk. You sound desperate and you are not thinking clearly. You should calm down first, then you can decide what to do next. I didn't read back too far and don't know the whole situation about your daughter, but from what I know, it sounds like I would be angry and acting crazy too in a similar situation. It's so hard in a first place to decide what to do in this situation or that situation with kids and when your husband doesn't support you, it's even harder. Well, my husband says that I let my son do whatever he wants and that he is mama's little boy and because he is trying to discipline him, our son doesn't like to talk to him too much and loves me more etc. I just know one thing: when my husband talks to our son about something he didn't do right, most of the time he has a point, but, big BUT, he expresses himself in such humiliating disrespectful way, that our son doesn't listen and all he gets out of these conversations is bad feelings about his father and next time he has a problem or a question, he comes to tell his Mom and says "don't tell Daddy". Could it be sometimes in your case too? Again, I didn't read back too far and promise to do it as soon as I have time. I'm reading little by little now in between other things. Just calm down. You are smart and strong lady, you will figure out what to do. We are here to help. Good luck and hugs to all! Almost Strong.

B1: Submit
Date: Sunday, March 04, 2001

S1

AArgh! jay here again and calmer. Went for a very long drive yesterday trying to leave my brain at home but as we all really know you can't run from yourself so I found it had stowed away and come with me.....But I did feel calmer for the break. Good. When angry, the absolutely positively BEST way to chill is exercise. It also reduces depression!

Then blew it big time again this morning and went off to church feeling like that was about the last place on the planet I was supposed to be which is stupid if you think about the main bit of the Christian message being about Christ dying for sinners; so presumably that is who should be going to church......

Anyway, in the end and I hate this so much as I WANT to shout and scream at Jake still. I had to say that however justified the anger is and was the lack of self control in expressing it was mine.

I don not like thinking I lack self control. I don't like thinking ▒I let my anger control me and that I got out of balance; but I am not prepared to have and even bigger argument with the almighty and so I am going to accept that if Jake is the abuser: my behaviour these last few days has been abusive and I need to sort that for my own self respect.

But it sure does grate he always gets off scott free and has reason to justify his actions...........Yep. Dr Irene is right. Victim anger is huge. time I guess to stop beating myself up and move on and hope I can do a bit better for the rest of the day. jay Yes. And you will blow it again. And again. Each time, notice what you did, and try to do better next time. That's all. No beating yourself up allowed.

B1: Submit
Date: Sunday, March 04, 2001

S1

I've been here several times before, but not for several months. What brought me back? Another descent into hell. Another trip on the downside of the Yoyo effect.. except this time it landed me in the hospital w/ tremors. (I had a kidney infection as well that added to it but the majority of the tremor was simply nerves) That's where it happened... that straw that broke the camel's back. I had just finished talking to a psychiatrist, agreeing that I need to slow down a bit. (I am a full time student and a mother of three) The doc walked out and my spouse (who had been sitting there the entire time in silence) begins singing "sometimes you feel like a nut sometimes you don't" Oh how I cried, but afterward, when my mind cleared it really hit me... I don't deserve this kind of treatment. It's been twelve years of this, twelve years of living on a yoyo and nothing will ever change until I make them change. Time I made those plans but how... oh how do I do it? Go back to live w/ my folks?.. with three kids? Where does one begin? When do you get over the fear? Okay... I've dumped now.

B1: Submit
Date: Monday, March 05, 2001

S1

Dear Mother of three.

Oh boy! You and me both. Our husbands drive us to a point where mind and body can take no more with their inane behaviour and then turn round and call us nuts. They look supportive to the outside world and then make out to others WE have the problem. Who wrote the manual for these guys? Giggle!

He started singing? THAT! UGH. And of course they know we have no way forward. It is the kids that he can and will use, He knows it will be oh so difficult to leave.

Jake has decided I am mentally ill as I lost it with him and the therapist. Er, so the Doctor and the Hospital are not able to do their job????? Funny: but I don't see any straight jackets round here...oh yes, according to him I am also manic depressive......Funny, but the psychologist is so convinced of my sanity he signs me off. The day hospital refuses to take me even when I was distraught: I am managing to socialize and I haven't noticed any funny looks. This is the supreme form of non physical abuse.

Even worse they are so "concerned" about us.

Jake thinks he has the professionals convinced. THEY have a very different picture.

My guess is if his nonsense is getting you to this stage then a refuge would help.

No we don't deserve it and we shouldn't put up with it

I just wish I knew the way forward for myself too. You do. You've been doing it too.

jay

 

B1: Submit
Date: Monday, March 05, 2001

S1

Dear Jay,

I do understand about your anger. I thought I was angry before, but these last weeks I have really felt I could kill and start a war, for no apparent reason. It's scary isn't it? But don't make it harder by being angry at yourself. Try to be as rational as you can under the circumstances and try to take breaks and feel good. I know this is hard to do, but being tired make everything so much worse. As for going to church, I think you are very right to do that. Not cause you are such a sinner, but because church is a place of tranquility and cause God gives us the right to be who we are at any given moment. I go when I need to ‘rest my soul', even though I am not church going. But a church is a place where people can put there sorrow and leave it be, if only for a short while, and that as what you need most now I think.

Maybe you should stop fighting, let thngs be as they are, let them develop as they are.

I found out that for me, being angry has a lot o do with being scared. I am scared to be hurt again, and I do not really no how to deal with it. That's when I get angry, cause anger gives me at least some kind of power, as if it can ward off the pain. It can't in the end and I know it. but it is hard to find other ways to deal with it.

Lots of hugs and love, and keep believing in yourSelf and you strength. You will get trough this anger, and will find other ways to protect yourself. You bet!

AJ

 

B1: Submit
Date: Monday, March 05, 2001

S1

Dear Asha,

I am sorry you are having so much financial problems. I know these panic attacks can be very hard to deal with, cause they are soooo illogical. When it hits, you just KNOW it is not panic, but the truth. Even though what is left of your rational mind tells you it is not. True old saying: "Face the fear and the fear will disappear."

For me in such situations (financial) the only sane thing to do is take a deep breath and make A PLAN. And for the panic, I usually try to ask myself what will be the worst thing that can happen, and then try to figure out how bad that really is. And most of the time this helps, cause the worst thing I can imagine in my panic, usually is something I can handle if I think it through. It's kind of forcing myself to face to worst.

I an glad things with Steve are better. Think of that too. I have come to believe that God does give us no more then we can handle at a certain time. First Steve, now time for the money. You will get trough this was too. Lost of love and keep up.

AJ

B1: Submit
Date: Monday, March 05, 2001

S1

To the poster who doesn't know what CO-DEPENDENT MEANS?

It is a person who allows others needs and wants to take president over their own, Sometimes because they buy into fear, obligation or guilt.

Co-dependents also are OVERLY HELPFUL even when others don't want their help.

The HEALTHY OPTION COMPARED TO CO-DEPENDENT is to take care of your self first and help others if they ask you to and you can help them without not taking care of yourself.

Eg if you are very tired and you say NO to someone and they badger you, If you then say YES you are not taking care of your self.

Take care Theressa

B1: Submit
Date: Monday, March 05, 2001

S1

Hi Jay,

I am sending you a skip full of hugs.

JAY have you also patted yourself on the back for getting up and facing you made a mistake, but you got up and are working now to how to improve. THIS IS IMPORTANT this is positive!!

STOP! dust yourself off and continue. YOU ENGAGED, YOU GOT ANGRY, YOU BLEW!! Now what are you going to do? All you can do. Stand up and take some time to rest. Then get on with your life!!

JAY I blew last weekend, remember? And I spent a whole week analyzing it to death. WE all have our moments. BUT doesn't mean we aren't loveable. I know what you mean when you say your conscience won't let you off the hook. THAT is okay!!

NOW have you listened to your anger's message? USE it constructively and set your boundaries. WHAT are you going to accept? In a therapy session if you feel your triggers can you say "I need to go to the bathroom" Then go and cool off for a few minutes. Or, if you feel the need, go home.

The other thing I have realised is that my partner IS NEVER GONNA BE ABLE TO BE SORRY ENOUGH. Giggle! Ain't that the truth! So what have I done with all the anger: Well I have now set boundaries on what I will accept. (STILL TRYING TO DO THIS, sometimes I unsure whether things are acceptable)

JAY I also feel like you at times, very angry about the past, but I've realised No amount of sorry's is gonna change the wasted time so now I know that I don't want to waste anymore time on past hurts. (I am stuck in current ones though.) I also though find it hard to admit my role. I did last weekend with the cinema incident. I feel like if I admit I did wrong by nagging. He won't admit his bit and he will blame me. THE PROBLEM is he did admit he had a nasty stubborn streak sometimes. BUT I still found it hard to admit my bits. Giggle! So cool to be honest! 

The only time things go smoothly in conflicts is if we both admit our sides. We have managed to do this, but I first had to cool down and sit quietly.

JAY I think you both have to agree to work towards solutions. Hard work YES I Know!!

*SO perhaps you get clear on what you don't want? Then you say what is okay.

I found out that we could mull over the past forever, but unless we worked on how we'd sort out things there on, we kept going in circles.

*Does your therapist work with you two on how you both could work together problem solving, without blame?

*Also Jay maybe you could work on your buttons in a therapy session on your own without husband some weeks?

REMEMBER WE LEARN FROM OUR MISTAKES JAY, IN FACT WE LEARN MORE FROM OUR MISTAKES. So be gentle on yourself. GOD STILL LOVES YOU.

Look forward, now you know what one or more of your buttons are, so now you can work on them. SEE THIS AS A PLUS. Things are revealed when we need to work on them. SO DON'T see this blow up as negative, see it for what lessons it holds.

AND JAY remember you've come along way in taking personal responsibility, and maybe throwing sand in sandpits isn't always a bad thing. Especially since it may of been the only way the therapist learnt about these buttons. WHAT DO YOU THINK?" God always sends away. Maybe this was his way of making sure that the therapist knew about these things. Maybe they wouldn't have been seen otherwise.

EVERYTHING happens for a reason. Maybe God thought Jay needed to show some of her anger, so she knew that she still had hurts to heal.

JAY You hit a bump in the road. SO walk over it now and let it go. I bet you learn heaps about you and grow a lot because of this.

If your still not feeling positive, maybe seeing it as "KNOWING how you behave when your angry, which will reveal your triggers, and help you to know how it feels when your angry. (WHICH IS A LESSON IN SELF CONTROL), THIS is a good thing if you see this as one of the exercise out of the anger management workbooks. YOU See one of the first exercises is recognizing your trigger signs.

SO you see how much positive stuff came out of this, so HOW can you beat yourself up now!!!!

DUST yourself off and use this as a stepping stone in your growth, see how much you've learned, I hope I named some of the growth here, but I am sure you've grown even more.

TAKE CARE, our Catbox friend

Theressa sending a skip full of HUGS And a skip (whatever that is) of hugs to you too Theressa. Thanks.

B1: Submit
Date: Monday, March 05, 2001

S1

Dear AJ

Yep. Real scary to be that angry and I think that scared me a lot: that I could get so very out of control. Not the first time either.

Except for determining never to let myself get in that state again I have left it. Feel better today and as you say I am moving on. I was frustrated and just plain angry rather than scared and maybe it was good to release all the pain.

The good bit is because we are honest about our anger the war will probably never happen. Hugs

Dear Theressa,

There is loads in what you say although having told the therapist in no uncertain terms I will never go back I don't know if I can swallow enough pride to do so!

I'd forgotten what Dr Irene said about therapy being the best place to learn self control. In a way, I think she was guilty of not setting boundaries. I did say I wanted to stop the session and instead of doing that she made a break.

Had she said she was not going to put up with being screamed at and stopped the session I would have been mad but calmed down. Instead, I felt as if I was released onto an emotional roller coaster.

Makes me wonder if therapists should have ground rules.

I am also unhappy that an entire family therapy team didn't intervene. I feel if I go back I will feel about two inches high and as usual guess who thinks nothing has anything to do with him.

If he would just once say we BOTH behave badly towards each other I could let it go and i guess as he won't even get that far this something I will have to accept isn't going to happen.

Deep down I think I want to see him punished. I want the therapist to tell him how awful he is. Instead I act in just the way she could say how awful I am and be justified!

Maybe some individual sessions would be good. I refused them as I thought Jake would just make me look bad. I don't know even if that is justified.

he is insisting on going still. I would love to apologize to the therapist but not in front of Jake it would just convince him he is as right as ever.

And I just realised I am doing what Dr Irene says I do. Worrying about the therapists feelings. She doesn't seem to use her blue pencil here any more but she did put something like that in the George W posts where I did this.

I guess unless I apologize I will not feel right with me...

Even if I think she is wrong about boundaries. I think I needed a boundary on how far I could go. She was acknowledging the pain but it went too far. I don't want ever to be in that position again and I was so out of it it needed someone else to be in control. Or is that a denial of personal responsibility? Don't go here. Or were the hurts just so deep she wanted me to scream them out? I certainly didn't get any hint of that at all. 

If I am honest I have dominated every session so far. I can't trust this woman enough to tell her that I want her to keep me to the point. This is exactly what happened when I paid a psychotherapist. But you are right maybe God did want me to see how I am.

I just wish he would do a bit of work on Jake; that's all. (Oh no now I am arrogantly presuming he isn't!)

I can forgive myself and move on. just now that isn't the problem it is whether I should eat humble pie and go back having complained to her superior; as she is a hospital consultant I have no idea what "rank" I complained to!

I just wish I knew what therapists should do. In the groups I took I wouldn't have allowed me to behave as I did; but then they were groups and the dynamics are different. You know Jay, control of the session belongs to the therapist. But different therapists have different "limits" as well as different objectives. Also, therapists are human. They blow it from time to time, including yours truly. The way I run my sessions, I would not let you go there. But, I've had a couple of those yukky sessions too.  Please stop worrying about what the therapist thinks, what Jake thinks, etc., etc.  

jay

 

 

B1: Submit
Date: Monday, March 05, 2001

S1

Hi everyone,

Trubble, I hope you get to feeling better soon!

Another fight, followed by a long, tearful (on my part-which turns him cold) discussion. He has agreed to get counseling, and I am hopeful but at the same time doubtful. There is SO much stuff that has never been resolved!

I have to say this once and for all to those who say we are bashing men: ABUSE IS NOT GENDER SPECIFIC! It just so happens that, for whatever reason, most of the people who post here are women. As for this "psycho babble" being "self defeating"...HORSEFEATHERS! What's self defeating is twisting oneself into a pretzel trying to anticipate the moods of another human being. Horsefeathers! I like that!

Love,

Anne

B1: Submit
Date: Monday, March 05, 2001

S1

To the person who says this site put men in a bad light. HOW DARE YOU! Men and women are out there verbally terrorizing their significant others and children and you are worried about how this site makes them look? When you are afraid to speak, afraid to do anything for fear of being abused for hours or even days, then you can make the statement you did. Most of us have been in these slow evolving hells for more years than we'd like but are too afraid to even breath sometimes. I returned lost money to someone once and was yelled at for almost a week. These abusers, both men and women, are skilled manipulators. Masters at lies and deception. At the same time they make it appear that the one being abused is the one who's nuts. Just because there are no broken bones or bruises, that doesn't mean that it's okay. Verbal abuse is extremely damaging. It's slow, deliberate, and will kill one's spirit. Don't worry about these people, they always look like terrific people to everyone else. It's only the ones closest to them who know the terror. And not a lot of people other than those who are hurting know about this site, so men's reputation is still safe. This site won't harm it. Cinderella

B1: Submit
Date: Tuesday, March 06, 2001

S1

Dear Jay,

I am going to share what I think about your situation.

Jay wrote:

There is loads in what you say although having told the therapist in no uncertain terms I will never go back I don't know if I can swallow enough pride to do so!

Theressa thinks:

PRIDE is ego based, now if you don't go back your not being true to your REAL self, so give your ego a kick in the butt and STAND tall and you walk back into therapy without any guilt, or regret, you aren't perfect but neither are any of us. YOUR husband can hold his head up still and look at all the things he has to feel bad about. A STRONG healthy person makes mistakes, blows up sometimes but they also GET BACK UP AND CARRY ON TRACK. SO go back and continue to grow, DO IT FOR JAY, no one else. AND let Jake say what he likes. YOU know you owe this to yourself, not him or anyone else TO JAY. Excellent.

 

Jay wrote:

I'd forgotten what Dr Irene said about therapy being the best place to learn self control. In a way, I think she was guilty of not setting boundaries. I did say I wanted to stop the session and instead of doing that she made a break.

Theressa thinks: Your therapist did set a boundary that was the break. (COOLING OFF PERIOD), how would it have helped if she would have just called off the session? In my opinion the therapist was right not to call off the session cuz you needed to get out all this anger and show all these buttons - this is awareness. It has to come out to get sorted so if every time you blow, which we all do when there is a lot of hurt involved. She said STOP we are ending the therapy session!! HOW would you ever get over this anger? How would she ever know what you two need to work on?

THIS is all good stuff believe me. DR Irene tells us all that the anger must come first so we can learn to control it. SHE doesn't say stuff it all back down and feel totally a failure when you do blow. SHE does say VALIDATION, VALIDATION must come first. So your therapist is allowing you to totally let out all that is bothering you which is a form of validation.

I remember STEVE saying to Dr IRENE why is all the focus on Asha on how badly she has been treated. Why do I have to listen to all this and why aren't you making Asha responsible also. DR Irene replied saying "You are both going through different things, for Asha she needs to show her anger and feel validated. For Steve he needed to work on his anger first and get in touch with his feelings. That is not saying Asha doesn't need to deal with her anger in self controlled way nor that Steve is all to blame, it just means they are in the process of doing dealing with what is most pressing for each of them." Right. And it's why Jay, a victim, would greatly benefit from anger management techniques right now.

NOW Jay you also like Asha need to show that anger and feel validated. (YOU feel validated when you are allowed to take up the session, in other words like you said you felt the session were focused on you.)

Now your husband is working on getting in touch with his feelings about what he has done, he may not show how he feels in therapy but his actions away from the session are showing he is getting in touch with his feelings. They may look disguised under all his ACTING OUT, but this is hurt. ANGER is a secondary emotion which covers HURT. So he has to sit and hear what you are saying. Right on target, again.

SO JAY don't think things are not happening as they should because they are!!

Jay wrote: Had she said she was not going to put up with being screamed at and stopped the session I would have been mad but calmed down. Instead, I felt as if I was released onto an emotional roller coaster.

Theressa thinks: See above, you needed to go on this roller coaster. Giggle!

Jay wrote:

Makes me wonder if therapists should have ground rules.

Theressa thinks: She more than likely does have, however she has to allow certain amounts of anger displays if you are ever going to get it out in the open. As the pot of anger is validated it stops spilling over so much and then we can start to use self control skills, at present you are overwhelmed with anger and so she is letting you let a bit t of steam out of the pressure cooker.

Jay wrote:

 

I am also unhappy that an entire family therapy team didn't intervene. I feel if I go back I will feel about two inches high and as usual guess who thinks nothing has anything to do with him.

Theressa thinks: And if you don't go back you will look 1 inch high, Giggle! ADULTS make mistakes and then they dust themselves off and carry on, KIDS sit and expect miracles. Whether or not your husband takes responsibility YOU HAVE owe it to yourself to take responsibility for your self and GO BACK to therapy. NOT FOR ANYONE BUT YOURSELF.

Jay wrote: If he would just once say we BOTH behave badly towards each other I could let it go and i guess as he won't even get that far this something I will have to accept isn't going to happen.

Theressa wrote: NO not short term, since he is still trying to learn to deal with feelings and at present he is still stuffing them down. Yes. This doesn't happen over night. Yes. In fact, I think it's real big of Jake that he goes to therapy, that he seems to have a real commitment there. My Partner wouldn't admit not until we were separated for seven months. In this time he was able to see his role. IT takes time. EVEN myself at times find it hard to admit my role. Cuz I feel that would mean I am to blame. NOT true!! I can accept responsibility for my part and if he doesn't that is his choice. Doesn't mean I am then to take total blame. So smart... 

 

Jay wrote:

Deep down I think I want to see him punished. I want the therapist to tell him how awful he is. Giggle! Instead I act in just the way she could say how awful I am and be justified! (Trubble thinks they both deserve a spanking!)

Theressa thinks: YES I know and this is part of your anger. Eventually when you have let a good amount out, you will be ready to say what you will accept and then Jake will have to either work with you or you can say what you will not put up with. In time if things turn out better then you won't be so bothered about punishment, you will be focusing your energies on the future. 

As for you acting just the way she could say how awful you are and be justified! YOU ARE JUSTIFIED IN WHAT YOU ARE DOING and the therapist knows this. This is why she is letting it happen. She isn't judging you. IN FACT she expects this if you two are ever gonna sort this out. IF you went there and never blew or spoke she'd know you weren't recovering cuz you'd be still stuck in denial.

THIS IS A POSITIVE STEP OUT OF DENIAL, DON'T FORGET THIS!!!  She's right Jay.

Jay wrote: Maybe some individual sessions would be good. I refused them as I thought Jake would just make me look bad. I don't know even if that is justified.

 

Theressa thinks: JAY take the individual sessions. Yes. THEY are about helping you to cope with things. To hell with Jake making you look bad, you are actually showing that you are prepared to admit your side of the problems. It is not about Jake making you look bad. IT is about Jay getting all the help GOD sends. Don't see it as a reflection of you looking bad him looking good. See it as Jay helping Jay to feel better and taking care of herself.

 

Jay wrote: he is insisting on going still. I would love to apologize to the therapist but not in front of Jake it would just convince him he is as right as ever. Who cares!

Theressa wrote: YOU have nothing to apologise for in my opinion. The therapist wouldn't take any of it personal, she/he expects this will happen. I wouldn't say anything, I would just go along to the session. This will show her/him that you are able to dust yourself off and continue which an adult does. Yes. To that I would add that it's a sign of the mature person you are if you can walk in, apologize for the delivery of your message.

RING your therapist if it bothers you greatly though, and you have no need to mention the call to JAKE. You can do that too.

Jay wrote: And I just realised I am doing what Dr Irene says I do. Worrying about the therapists feelings. And Jake's and everybody else's. She doesn't seem to use her blue pencil here any more but she did put something like that in the George W posts where I did this.  Well, see, here I am, blue penciling you to death! You can thank Theressa for that since she emailed me that there was trubble in the cat box.

Theressa thinks: YES you are worrying about the therapists feelings, but that is the thoughtful part of you that is okay. Exactly. See silly Jay, you have all the good stuff. You have the stuff nobody can teach: the empathy, the consideration. You'll get a handle on the anger and you'll be amazing...

I think Dr Irene mainly came here to help Steve & Asha so we could learn from them. She also may be having to do a lot more paid work now. No. She has a lot of people writing to ask for her advice, and she does have bills to pay, but the value of the posts she blue penciled of Steve and Asha gave us all a lot of help in seeing the process. The Catbox started with Lynn and Dan. Lynn had such an outrageous sense of humor, somehow an interactive board evolved into an ongoing thing. I loved it; it was tons of fun! But, there is such a thing as burnout, especially when you find yourself up all night blue penciling!  I started charging for blue penciling, less for the money; more to reduce the number posters I had to reply to. It was still too much, so despite the success of the CatBox, I pulled away. It's OK to come in from time to time. That feels OK and is a pleasure.

Jay wrote: I guess unless I apologise I will not feel right with me...

Theressa thinks: Do what gives you the most peace, if you need to apologise GO ahead and make a telephone call. Yep.

Jay wrote: Even if I think she is wrong about boundaries. I think I needed a boundary on how far I could go. She was acknowledging the pain but it went too far.

Theressa thinks: TOO far in whose opinion. Maybe she did have a boundary and you never crossed it. Giggle!

Jay wrote: I don't want ever to be in that position again and I was so out of it it needed someone else to be in control.

Theressa thinks: Jay you were on unfamiliar territory, you aren't use to getting in touch with your anger. Give yourself time and you will learn a lot about your anger, the triggers etc and how to cool off and refocus on what you can do about what is making you angry. BUT for now learn to drop the guilt, you will get angry and out of control at times in therapy but this is meant to happen. GIVE YOURSELF TIME. and give yourself credit, for being brave and facing your anger.

Jay wrote:

Or is that a denial of personal responsibility?

Theressa thinks: It isn't either, It is actually fear. Yes. Fear. Not to mention being overwhelmed! Just when you are a novice and don't know how to deal with anger, you get showered with a TON of it! Kinda backwards, no? You are fearful of the unknown. You haven't befriended your anger yet, you are still battling with the guilt of being angry. Cuz in your head Good girls down get angry. WELL healthy ones do. Though in time they learn to manage it. You can't rush this process. Yes. You can only make it more painful by bashing yourself for going through it.

Jay wrote: Or were the hurts just so deep she wanted me to scream them out? I certainly didn't get any hint of that at all.

Theressa thinks: She wanted you to get at that hurt and bring it into awareness.

 

Jay wrote: If I am honest I have dominated every session so far. I can't trust this woman enough to tell her that I want her to keep me to the point.

Theressa wrote: Okay so do you know the point? There isn't a point; all of this is important and all of it feels overwhelming. It is only when it is brought into awareness that any kind of structure can be set up. IN my own sessions I sit rambling on and my therapist asks me questions, we don't have a structure. What we do have is understanding, all the things I am experiencing have a common thread, we route this out. SO to you it might seem disorganized and overwhelming and confusing but it all has a common thread that your therapist is helping you to see eventually. 

Jay wrote: This is exactly what happened when I paid a psychotherapist.

Theressa wrote: Psychotherapists may choose one item to work on at a time and analyse it etc, a therapist may listen to all your experiences but all the things you experience have a common thread in all areas of your life and on multiply levels. SO it doesn't matter if you are working on one item at a time or Lots at once, THEY ALL have one thing in common - the thread that runs through them that is the MAIN PROBLEM.

Jay wrote: But you are right maybe God did want me to see how I am. 

Theressa thinks: YES he did but not so you could judge and give up. God helps those who help themselves. Like you. He let you see so you could gain awareness of the hurt and then beginning slowly through your therapy sessions to work on these hurts and heal.

Jay wrote: I just wish he would do a bit of work on Jake; that's all. (Oh no now I am arrogantly presuming he isn't!)

Theressa thinks: GOD sends and does things exactly as they are meant to be done. EVERYTHING happens for a REASON in the appropriate SEASON. You can't rush GOD'S WORK, he reveals things at the right TIME always.

 

Jay wrote: I can forgive myself and move on. just now that isn't the problem; it is whether I should eat humble pie and go back having complained to her superior; as she is a hospital consultant I have no idea what "rank" I complained to! So? 

Theressa thinks: Jay ring the therapist and tell her you got very angry and acted out, but you learned from that anger and have grown and now you would like to come back and grow some more.

When we admit our mistakes and accept them, apologise and show we are ready to move on WE ARE NOT EATING HUMBLE PIE, we are taking personal responsibility for our well being and we are taking care of ourselves. Yes. We are saying it is okay for people, INCLUDING MYSELF TO MAKE MISTAKES AND LEARN FROM THEM AND THEN MOVE ON.

Jay wrote: I just wish I knew what therapists should do. No hard and fast rules Jay. Lots depends on the therapist's orientation, objectives as well as personal style. 

 

Theressa thinks: Therapists should listen to the client, they should prompt the onion to be unpeeled by asking questions that pushes buttons so they can then be discussed and healed and out of this new ways of doing things come. As the old values and beliefs are challenged. THEY help us to find a purpose in what we are doing. THEY also have boundaries (even if you aren't sure what they are, she will be) In fact she should you when she called a break. They allow us to let the pressure off bit by bit.

Jay wrote: In the groups I took I wouldn't have allowed me to behave as I did; but then they were groups and the dynamics are different.

Theressa thinks: DO YOU THINK YOU BEHAVED ANY DIFFERENTLY THAN ANY OTHER VICTIM HAS? Well you haven't. So stop beating yourself up. Amen.

YOU give Jake compassion and understanding, how many mistakes has he made? Many and you still give him the benefit of the doubt and are working on things. GIVE JAY THIS SAME COMPASSION. Let her make mistakes, and grow too. What a concept!

Now take this support and know you are loveable and GOD is carrying you, you can handle all of this. He is right beside you all the way. SO go now and do what you need to do so that you can return to therapy with your head held high, cuz you want to be the best you can be FOR GOD!! Not for Jake!! 

May God bless you Jay and you Theressa...

Take care Theressa

B1: Submit
Date: Tuesday, March 06, 2001

S1

Hi Jay,

I have just been reading the posts in the YAK board.

I don't agree with the girls there who are saying that this therapist is behaving badly. WHY? because she sent you a letter, is this so wrong? She hasn't invited you out to dinner or sent a friendly letter asking you to go to the pub? so why is she doing anything wrong? She wrote to your doc etc maybe because she wanted to press on you that it is important that you don't run from this.

NOW I see you say OWWCCCHHH when I said return to therapy, you said you thought I was sensible, OKAY!!

WELL Jay is it not your FEAR that is stopping you returning to therapy with this woman?

Fear perhaps that you might look bad and blamed?

Is it fear because you felt you felt out of control and are not sure if this woman could stop you?

Is it because you don't want your husband to look good? He wouldn't anyway, you'd look strong since you'd be picking up and moving on.

I AM telling you this because I too run from things I fear. THOUGH this is normal!!

I do agree that having some separate sessions will help you to get rid of some of this anger.

BUT I heed you to be careful about why you are choosing not to return to counseling?

IT IS also a good idea to ask the counselor if she will help you set directive goals which is what DR IRENE DOES, she is a directive therapist. THIS WAY YOU FEEL PROGRESS AND AREN'T JUST SORTING OUT THE PAST. Lots of this stuff depends on therapist style and orientation... But, it sure won't hurt to ask.

Jay it is your choice, but I am concerned about the girls on YAK board, and to me sometimes seem to be against the abuser. I felt this last week when I felt some of the posts to me about my two incidents - they seemed to be helping me fuel my rage. We all have some victim rage but we have to be careful we are not forcing this on to others.

WELL it is justified validating you, they also need to help you to see progress. I am not sure they do all the time.

ASHA always was helpful to me, AJ, you, Lynn because they helped me see all sides. They never helped me to stay stuck in my rage, this is what I see these girls doing helping you to stay stuck in your rage.

Jay you choose if you want to return to therapy, BUT make sure it isn't just fear that is stopping you going back, OR because you feel like a failure, YOU ARE NOT a failure and remember how many times did STEVE get angry at DR IRENE but she didn't abandon him. Nor did she abandon any of us when we said things out of our ANGER. Dr Irene saw we all have to go through this process to get to the other side.

Take care Jay, I just don't want you to make rash decisions out of FEAR. Theressa

 

 

B1: Submit
Date: Tuesday, March 06, 2001

S1

Hi Jay,

Have you ever gone to the I am responsible board. PEOPLE THERE ARE fighting for their marriages.

 

B1: Submit
Date: Tuesday, March 06, 2001

S1

Hi all,

Anne here. Have any of you read "Men Who Hate Women and the Women Who Love Them"? I need some clarification. I know that all misogynists are abusers, but are all men who abuse misogynists? No. Mine exhibits some of the traits, but the specifics are different, and the characteristics are a little off. He exhibits about 95% of the characteristics in P. Evan's book, "The Verbally Abusive Relationship", though again some of the specifics are different. The feelings are the same, though.

I have been feeling at fault lately, because I have almost totally withdrawn from the relationship. But then I think, "Why should I hang around downstairs if we are just going to sit in stony silence?" During our "discussion" last week, he tried to tell me that everything would be fine if I contributed more financially. In other words, he would be "nice" if I made more money. He said that money is the fundamental problem in the relationship. I said that, unless we address the "emotional problems" (I am reluctant to use the word "abuse" with him, though I remember saying it once when we were fighting), then all the money in the world would not make a difference. I work on commissions, and lately things have been slow. I don't know how, aside from getting a second job, I can make more money. I work 9-5 every week day, sometimes on weekends, and he works part time. He makes enough to pay all the bills, plus a healthy chunk from me when things are going well with my business. It used to be that I would just turn my checks over to him (sometimes I would hold some back for myself, which I always heard about later), but I finally got him to agree to me paying him a certain amount each month. He said, at the time of the agreement, that if things were slow for me, that one month could roll into the next. I am now six days late with this month's "payment", and suddenly I "never contribute" and I am "sitting here without a worry in my head". I am trying to tell this as fairly as possible, not to make him the "bad guy", and trying to make some sense out of it. I know that money is important, but I am starting to hate it! He says that I am irresponsible because I am breaking our agreement by not having March's payment. I did spend a little money on myself last month, so maybe he is right. Maybe taking a second job would be good for me... it would get me out of the house!

Does anyone have any ideas on how I can deal with this?

Love,

Anne

PS- Trubble, where are you? Napping,....

 

B1: Submit
Date: Tuesday, March 06, 2001

S1

Dear Theressza. WoW you took the time to write all that for me! Must have taken ages.

I understand your point about the message board. Somewhere in the catbox someone does the same thing to me and Dr Irene calls it a loving error.

I kind of try and sift what I hear there. I like posting there as the response is so immediate and that kind of helps get through the day and it's not a bad way out of self absorption to reply to others.

I didn't sleep last night which wasn't really about the therapist at all. Just about being a bit hot and wound up. So I think as there is so much to think about I am going to think about it for a while.

I did sign up for I am responsible: but then I got totally lost in the emails as I felt like I was always coming in in the middle of a conversation. I haven't unsigned so I could go through the emails there. Trubbles Yak is as Dr Irene said, small. I get a lot out of GOD Help Us.

Guess I am just so desperate to get through to the other side of codependency I will look anywhere.

The therapist is going to ring tomorrow. I will talk to her having read through your posts again then.

A lot of my ambivalence is about what if I am not going back because of fear. So after a good nights sleep I am going to look again at what you wrote and reply then. I found the "Dance of Anger in a threesome with the dance of Deception and the Dance of Intimacy for 4.99 in Borders earlier so I am taking the anger one to bed with me.

(I hope it' o.k to name the shop in case you have one where you live ) falling asleep at the computer.......zzzzzzzzzjay G'night Jay...

 

B1: Submit
Date: Wednesday, March 07, 2001

S1

Hi Doc and everybody, B. here. Hi RealMommyB!

Came to visit (awfully busy lately, work from 5:30 in the morning, don't ask...) and read "ask the Doc Board". There I found your answer, Dr. Irene, to the man who said he was a verbal abuser in a new relationship, and asked what to do.

In your answer you said to him: "you have poor impulse control (you blow up), and you have difficulty taking responsibility for yourself (you think that she can "make" you feel guilty/inadequate)"

Now I have a question: let's say I behave the healthy way. I take responsibility for myself, I know H can't "make me" feel such-and-such, I become angry but I don't blow up, but I do feel Yucky when he does X. So? What's the difference? I don't get it. Your integrity doesn't suffer. You can't do anything about the other person, but you don't have to do things to make you feel yukky about yourself or to further muddle an already muddy situation. 

Let's say he continues to do X. I get upset about X. I tell H: "when you do X, I feel upset because..." (where did I read it just yesterday? Ah, at the "http://www.naturalchild.org" in an article about non-adversarial communication) so here goes an example: "when you leave the sofa all tumbled, I feel unsupported in my efforts to keep our home tidy and aesthetic (plus I can't sit on it), and that makes me frustrated and upset". Good. 

Great. I kept my cool, I kept in touch with my feelings, I told him that I am upset and why. But still: If when he does x I feel yucky, isn't it just semantics whether "he made me" feel yucky by doing x or not? He still continues to do x. So? He does not care, does he? Where's my mistake? Not semantics; no mistake. You implicitly choose whether or not the sofa being messed up is enough to upset you; you choose whether or not to make it an issue or let it go. By bringing it up once or twice, you give the other person the opportunity to take your wishes into account. That's all.  The other person may choose not to take your wishes into account for whatever reason.

If he doesn't care, there is nothing you can do about his not caring. Your part ended when you communicated your wishes. But, now you have a new choice: how to deal with how to handle his not caring.

Is my mistake in the very understanding that it is *I* who made myself angry and upset? Yes. You can subconsciously focus on whatever it is, or not. In the understanding that it is *my choice* to interpret the way he treats the sofa as something that "should have changed had he cared about me"? You can't do much more other than put your wishes forth and state how you feel when your wishes are not considered. Of course, you can ask him why your wishes have not been considered. He may have a reason! 

How can I tell the difference between my subjective interpretation (in which case I should simply learn to accept his behaviour and stop making myself upset about it) and a justified anger stemming from my correct "boundaries"? The trick is to remember the only person you have control over - is you. In the second case, the interpretation goes: He leaves the sofa looking like a hurricane has just gone through it. He does not tidy up after himself. I can choose to smile to myself lovingly about his careless habits and tidy up after him (sacrificing co-dependent? Perhaps. Or some other reason/s that make putting up with OK for you.), or I can choose to point it out to him and ask him to clean up his act. If he does, OK. If he refuses, then and only then I have a problem, but this time I will get upset about his refusal to clean up his act Right., which is not the same thing as getting upset over his sofa-sitting-habits. Correct. And, if you find yourself feeling upset over and over, you have yet another decision:  Now what? Do I get rid of the stupid sofa? Put French doors in the doorway so I can't see it? Let it look awful? Or, is too much of this type of stuff happening - do I get rid of him? The latter is controlling and suggesting lack of boundaries between self and others. The former - dealing with abuse. Right.

I could complicate things further by suggesting that his sofa habits are actually covert abuse. He knows my feelings, but he chooses to not tidy up after himself. This is his passive-aggressive way. Masked hostility. Also, an unconscious plea of a little boy to accept him just the way he is, even - and especially - when he's a "naughty boy". 

So I may also get upset because I feel, correctly, that this is an act of covert abuse. So, again, what's the big difference between this and "he made me" feel yucky? Because you have control over you so you are free to take yourself out of a situation that hurts you. 

Oh, what a tangled web we weave! Dr. Irene, please enlighten me. These are questions I actually have in mind for a long time, while reading your web-site. I would be glad for some clarification.

Still confused, and Love to the whole cat box, B. Hope this makes sense B.

 

B1: Submit
Date: Wednesday, March 07, 2001

S1

Dear B.

Good to see you back! I have the same confusion you voice in your post. It feels I can recognize lots of things we label abusive, like this blowing up and I also tend to ask myself where does justified anger stop and abuse begins and is not complying to someone's wishes covert abuse, or is complying codependent behaviour. It is so hard to see the difference.

For myself I sort of have decided that you will probably never know, that there is no textbook with rules to apply. The only thing you can do is keep asking yourself what your motives are and be as open as possible about them, at least to yourself. For me the motive is one of the most important things if you want to discern between right and wrong.

Example: I had a confrontation with C. about him not contributing enough in the past and how that had upset me. At the time I was sure that I was totally justified, cause I spoke the truth ( finally) and it had bothered me for a long time. Later I felt that deep down it might have had something to do with wanting control, wanting to hurt (he was leaving for Africa in a couple of days and I was so scared of loosing him) to distance. I was so angry, but did not know it. These past two weeks I got rid of the anger and could see more clearly, that there might have been underlying motives. But without this confrontation I would not have been able to learn this, see this. I should not have said what I said, the way I said it, but at the same time it helped clear up a lot of old garbage and actually brought a better understanding between us. I did not act ok, but my prime motive was not to hurt and I do feel that makes all the difference.

There is more then right and wrong in a conflict. But you are the only one to judge for yourself and take responsibility for yourself. And in doing so time and time again, I think we will learn to see more clearly and behave in a more appropriate way.

Hope Dr. I will also give her view, cause I do think it is important. For me this fear of being abusive, makes it hard to keep my boundaries, to say what I need to say. At the same time, you recognize it in yourself and work on it. Excellent.

B, thanks for putting this confusion so clearly on the board. Hope answers will come.

 

Love to all of you,

AJ

B1: Submit
Date: Wednesday, March 07, 2001

S1

Hi B and AJ and Teressa and everyone posting here. jay again, Seems like all the catbox oldies are discussing anger!

I woke up this morning after 2 hours sleep and immediately got into yet another argument/angry/ This time over of all things about whether it is right ever to call anyone "mad." Made me MAD! (But in the angry sense and not the literal, which is what we were discussing.

The really stupid thing is I am so angry anyway with Jake that (although in other contexts I can be angry as yesterday he was applying the term to me) this morning we were both actually in agreement, but so angry with each other generally that we HAD to argue.

Of course we are both angry about things unrelated to any discussion about whether it is abusive to call someone "mad" even if they are! 

Just to REALLY split hairs. I had said I could make a distinction between people who were having difficulties and those who were really "mad" and I didn't think that they should be put together on psychiatric wards. Jake thought it was insulting to call anyone "mad": but yesterday told me I was mentally ill (I am not!) because what I was doing didn't fit with how he thought I should be acting. IE if you are raging, then you are not angry but must be mentally insane!!!)

I was angry as he had been abusive. This morning he denies he ever said it, which is crazy making as I know he did, But then maybe he thought he said something else....

But in the end the point is the argument had NOTHING to do with anything anyone said this morning. In fact if we go down the I am responsible behaviour route,  then I guess I was responsible for starting this morning's discussion and why present him with a button to get pushed?Huh?

Why on earth, given this particular topic should probably be off limits, did I present him with it? End result of course that we now can discuss nothing in a rational manner and both are attributing the other with making provocative statements which are based not on what is said but on what we are hearing. Yes. That's why I think you guys ought to write to each other for a while. Thus: There is a legal document for you to sign (Jake) just got I know. I will show it to my solicitor from me. Replied to by Jake as "You have been asked to see your solicitor. Followed by overload from me..."Please stop telling me what to do. I am responsible .......GRRR GRRRRRR claws out and the inevitable sandbox fight.

All I needed to do was say O>K. Didn't need to engage at all. I am starting to wonder if we are both addicted to our anger. You've both fallen into a really bad rut. One is bouncing off the other. Yuk!

However it began and however justified then there is something not right with either of us now.

And I am of course even angry as I write as Jake will not acknowledge his anger and I am writing this! He may not acknowledge his anger to you, but I doubt a man in therapy, who actually wants to go, doesn't acknowledge anger.

This is just a thought but it is not going to be easy to withdraw from any addiction. Do you get withdrawal symptoms if you withdraw from anger addiction? Yeah. They're called "relief."

Also suppose this is my inner child raging. I am absolutely convinced that children's tantrums are (for the most part and if not connected with illness or crisis ( best ignored. If I become childish in my rage and therefore act out in a childish manner, I guess the trick is to ignore the impulse. Yes. And go exercise instead.

Am I too indulgent of my own inner child? You don't parent that kid well. First you help the kid stop the anger, as in walking the IC out of the room. Then you help the child calm the anger, like by exercise. When the kid is calm, you sit down with her and start the process of articulating exactly what made you feel as you do.

Meantime seeing as the therapist might ring I guess I better look at Theressa's posts.

She asks if I have patted myself on the back for recognising my mistake....NO. Just beat myself up YUK.....Why? Roots in childhood. Memories of being told you are the bad one and you get to believe that kind of thing as a kid. OK more inner child stuff. Yep. Need to tell the inner child she is NOT bad or mad. YES! I think I can home in there. I always make myself out as at fault and it has got me into a lot of trouble. Yes. Doing that the first time we "talked" gave me an entirely erroneous impression of you too. Of course the logic is is if you are bad then why behave? Jake as the critical parent? Try Jay is Jay's critical parent!

Alright . I AM LOVEABLE.

Use my anger to set boundaries? Actually, yes. I was giving double messages. Saying "I want this to stop and sitting there." Next time in that kind of situation it is obvious that I will need to walk out. Right. I'm really bad at taking time out. I just stay there???? Looking at it in the cold light of day it looks silly to do that and also possibly indicative of rage addiction. Why do I stay for the fight? Who cares? If it doesn't work, don't do it any more.

Oh boy, Theressa and the Therapist and Doc are in agreement about moving on from past hurts....Current hurts? Plenty of those. I am stuck on that one though as I feel like I can't just gloss over quite serious physical abuse even if it isn't currently happening. When? I can admit to my bits but not to Jake. It makes me too vulnerable.  And, he feels exactly the same way. Sad, huh?

Agree both of us to work towards solutions? Here we are stuck. STUCK (Which is why we need a therapist!) Actually we did solve the problem of Jake not supporting me with the kids. WITH the therapist. We can't do it alone it seems. Not now.

My own therapy session with just me.. If I could afford.......I am looking and have some avenues to try. You're worth it.

Learn from my mistakes. A plus???? The only way! God still loves me. Lots! Yes I do think that. I wish I could learn or I wouldn't be posting this post. Repetition, repetition, repetition!

It is a good thing the therapist saw how my buttons got pushed? More info for her. To tell the truth I am embarrassed she saw how far they could get pushed. Angry with myself for showing her the extent of my misbehaviour whatever the reasons for the anger. Angry with her for being there to see it! Giggle! Angry with me for giving Jake cause to say 'I told you so." Furious with myself for behaving so badly. BUT at least I can feel something and doesn't that set me apart from an abuser? No. He feels too Jay. I don't want to justify. I want to change. I never have wanted not to. I am aware and not pretending or saying that to behave badly is justified because of the bad things that have happened. Excellent. I have a lot of justification for my anger. Yes. It would be odd if I didn't feel angry Yes. but two wrongs never made a right Yes. in my book and I guess this is what Dr Irene means about victim anger being so big you are the "pot calling the kettle black." Yes. About 5 pages ago I disagreed with her on this. I am not pretending. HEY is this not a long way towards recovery? YES!!! 

Theressa thinks God might have had a hand in things and wanted all that rage to come out as it did so I could see I still have hurts to heal. Now if you could but hear the conversations I have had with the almighty over the years about anger......A lesson in self control and seeing the trigger signs.......Would rather run in the opposite direction: but I am NOT. Good. Cuz running doesn't work.

I am going to do the subject to death and still post back about Theressa's second post! Please get yourself a book on anger management! I guess the catbox is the best therapy at the moment. I don't like being in this very uncomfortable place of looking at what I do and I will move on. Just now I don't think beating myself up is an accurate description. Sorting my head/self out would be better. Yes. It is just taking some time to work through Of course! and if it is an uncomfortable place I would rather remain there for a few days and get sorted than keep on with the anger in a wrong way. Good. I'm not thinking about this stuff non stop. But if Jake and I are ever to heal, I am going to have to lose the anger so it is worth the pain. Yes, though losing the anger helps YOU heal. It gives Jake the space he needs to heal himself. (Doing plenty of healthy stuff; out to lunch etc.) Just taking a lot of time to process so I hope the catbox cats will bear with me as I am still going to go through Theressa's second post. Giggle!

LOL I haven't even got on to whether to go back to the therapist. I think she has almost become secondary to the issue! Jay She always was...

 

B1: Submit
Date: Wednesday, March 07, 2001

S1

Dear Jay, I think it might be a good sign you said your therapist has become almost secondary to the issue.... This might well mean that in a while you will be able to see she is not even part of the issue. As we discussed before, we seem to get angry at people not because of what they actually do, but because we just feel angry and sometimes direct at anyone who is in our way. The other person is not the issue: we are. Maybe that is also part of the answer to B's question about how can we really say someone is not making us mad, we are doing it to ourselves.

In the past days I have come to realise that my madness (also not in the literary sense of the word) serve no positive purpose but to make me feel bad. Of course I know it serve a purpose to warn me that things are not ok, but the kind of madness i am feeling right now, and which I suspect you are feeling, has very little to do with that. It is more of a very amorph, no directed anger. A kind of out of tune biological response: I am feeling bad -> fight, kill, destroy. Anything to remove this supposed threat.

I am not sure whether I am expressing it correctly, but my main point is that I feel this anger is an overdone reaction because you are momentarily unable to sit and find out the real cause of your feelings bad and anger at least gives you some kind of feeling of power for the moment. Yes.

Dear Jay, face the pain, face the anger, after all is said and done that is the only thing you can sanely do. And belief that after this a period of more peace and love will come. Yes.

Hugs and lots of love, AJ

B1: Submit
Date: Wednesday, March 07, 2001

S1

Dear AJ, Hi. This just has to be a stage. I am quite sure now that the therapist has very little at all to do with the anger however well she managed the session or not. The reasons for my anger are pretty sane. It would in fact be odd if I didn't feel angry; but the expression as you say is not directed at the right things. Powerless comes into it a lot. I can't express the anger to the people who I think need to hear, so I push it onto the therapist. In fact she got it even more than Jake. At least she doesn't "hit" back!

She didn't ring. Probably as well really.

Pride??? Me???? Theressa you are so determined I am going back! You don't mean to say I have another fault! :) :) I don't think the catbox could stand it! Giggle! Would it be pride preventing me going back? I guess as I would have to swallow it to return, yes. But I am not going to let that alone make my mind up for me. If I thought Jake would look at his faults......Hmm still working that through. Stop focusing on Jake! Stay with Jay!

Oh help I was going to go through all you said but you just keep hitting the nail on the head. Fear? YES. The fear is of losing control like that again. i suppose it is difficult to convey; but this was outside any normal reaction and it frightened me. Good; it should.

Theressa I think the message boards are great; but I do treat the replies I get with caution. People are at all sorts of different stages. In the end I promise, I will do what is right for Jay.

All right I will go back. Good! Just one more time as the therapist asks. I talked to my doctor today and she made me feel really ashamed. The response to asking for any therapist at the moment was that she had one counseling session a week and she had patients dying of cancer.

So I guess I should be glad the therapy is there and face the pain. And the rage. I guess she must think there is some progress or she would say I should stay away! She WANTS me to go back???????Yes dear. She WANTS you back.  I guess really the therapist is immaterial. I just have to face my own anger. Yes. Face it, don't let it run you, articulate it, hear what it is saying to you. jay

 B1: Submit
Date: Wednesday, March 07, 2001

S1

Hello cat box! Jay, are you better? Dear Anne, I don’t think that all verbal abusers are misogynists. Take my husband. He loves women and they love him. But he is still a verbal and emotional abuser nevertheless (only with his family though). About your financial problem: it seems to me that you are trying to understand his position and make every excuse for him as we all co-dependants do. He on the other hand doesn’t want to know about your problems and doesn’t want to make any excuses for you. I think that you probably should take a second job, but for feeling better yourself, not for his sake and as how you put it, because it would get you out of the house. I find your financial arrangement a little strange. What if you didn’t work at all? It sounds like he is your landlord or creditor or something. He should be your support at this difficult time, when you are not able to bring more money in the house. He knows that you are working and trying. I just want to ask you: are you big spender? You said, you spent some money on yourself last month. Was it some kind of luxury thing that you could do without? If yes, I can understand why he could be upset, but still he should treat you with stony silence. Also, it sounds like you have to pay for his friendship (love) and if you don’t , he doesn’t need you. Sounds like he is a user alright. Oh, but this sound so familiar! I hate money too! There was a period of time when I didn’t work. We just moved to USA and I didn’t know the language, then got pregnant, had a tough time, (should have been in bed as doctor told me, but who would take care of the family?), was in the hospital for a month and lost the baby anyway. During the following months if I wonted to buy something, my husband often would tell me “you would buy it when you start working”. Once, few years after, when I was working, but was making much less than him, he told me that what I was making are tears, not money. I tried to get a raise and promotion, would stay late at work, he was unhappy again. In his opinion I should work, make a lot of money, but be home at 6 sharp! He doesn’t do it to me anymore, because I talked to him a lot about it and even got his sister on my side. He also stopped making sarcastic comments about my job and if I have to work late, I work late and if I have to go shopping after work, then I go, just call and tell him, so he wouldn’t worry. But still, our financial disagreements are far from over. When I get bonus, he says: “it would be much better if you got a raise instead, it would put you in a better position in a long run”, when I get raise he says “it would be better if it was bonus, because your company is unstable now, you wouldn’t have time to enjoy your raise if it closes”. Two years ago, I was going on a little cruise with our son and friends (he told us to go without him and was sure I wouldn’t go, because I never did before, but I decided for a first time in our married life just go and try to enjoy myself without him. At the last moment he “found out” that he was able to take vacation after all and went with us anyway!), he didn’t let me get outside cabin, he said: “You will get outside cabin when you live on your budget!” and it wasn’t that we couldn’t afford it. It just he thinks since he makes more money, he has more rights to decide how to spend it and more rights to spend it at all and even if he discusses it with me, he has the last word. The very last time we had his latest anger episode it started with the money issue. This time I know for sure it wasn’t my fault. This time he had a conflict with our son. We were at another party at the restaurant (we have so many birthdays in a family in February!) There was a sign at the place where they hang up coats “service $2” or something like that. I think that people working there mostly work for tips and I think that because some people don’t pay, they placed the sign there. Anyway, our son didn’t have two singles, so he gave the man $5. The old fellow didn’t give my son any change back, but offered him a calendar (which everybody else got for free). Now, our son comes to us and tells the story. He found it funny, because he knew that calendar was free, but he decided since he wasn’t sure if $2 was a flat charge or suggested tip, he would just considered that he gave the man a bigger tip. My husband became very mad. He said that the boy should have asked for change, but our son said “let this old man have a bigger tip” and “money is not everything, Dad”. My husband said that “money is not everything for people who have them” and since our son doesn’t work, he can’t throw them left and right. Here he had a point, but you should have listen to him! He made a scene at the coat place with the old man, asking him how he took more money than he supposed to and used young boy for being na´ve and shy etc. It was very embarrassing. The old man was upset, denied all and said “don’t pay me if you think you overpaid already” but my husband just couldn’t stop. Another thing seems to be unfair. Our son is 19 he is a college student. He doesn’t work, but not because we sent him and he refused to work (he worked before, last time this summer), but because we decided together as a family that it’s better that he would spend more time studying and wouldn’t work at least this first year. Actually my personal opinion was that he should work, but since they thought differently, I went with them even I expressed my thoughts. Now my husband is blaming our son for not working! He actually contradicted himself a few more times during our ride home saying at one point that “your study is you work” and that he understands why our son didn’t ask for change, that he himself use to be like that at his age. So what’s the problem then? It’s not like 3 thousand lost at gambling or something! All the way home in the car he was raging and raving about these 3 dollars like it was our last money. I kept quiet. The only thing I said was “does it worth to talk about this little thing for so long and to be upset so much”. It just made my husband madder. He said that it was all my fault. Now our son started yelling: “why do you always blame mom for everything?” After that it just went downhill between them. I didn’t say anything more and tried to make signs to my son just to stop, because I knew that it wouldn’t do any good anyway. A few times my husband said something like he doesn’t want to live with us and he is leaving. At the end he said that I ruin everything everywhere and even vacations we went together, so he wouldn’t go with me ever anymore. He knew very well that our vacations last 2 years were the only thing I liked about us lately or at least he knew that it was the best thing for me. So it made me real mad and I just said: “Oh, is that so? In this case I don’t know why we should stay together at all!” It was just like I saw a glimpse of my future life, plain, loveless, unhappy. I knew actually that he would change his mind about vacations, but it still made me mad, because he said it not because he meant it, but because he knew it would upset me big time! So we are leaving the car and he says that “let’s just discuss what you want from me (he meat financially, I think) and he is leaving as soon as he finds a place. I said that I don’t want from him anything. Our son said that he doesn’t want anything either, but then all of a sudden he said: “We only want your love, Dad” He had tears in his eyes. He said: “Can you just one time in my whole life listen to me? Can you stop deny and “not remember” things even when your son is crying?” He also said that he wished he were never born (and me, stupid idiot was congratulating myself all the time of being a good mother and raising a happy son! I just felt heartbroken), that he feels that most of our problems are his fault. He tried to talk about my husband’s lies, manipulations and also having two faces, one for the family (always angry, criticizing, yelling and humiliating) and the other, pleasant one for the rest of the world. My husband denied and didn’t answer questions directly, diverted them as usual. He still felt right about our last fight, he didn’t remember calling me f. bitch and wishing me to burn though, but he said with a smile: “but if you remember, it’s probably right, you wouldn’t lie” and even if he did say it, of course he didn’t mean it, but I meant every word I said and also meant to hurt him making that ugly face and saying that I don’t want to make that picture. I would stop all this conversation and just would tell him that everything is over at or I think I would, but this time it wasn’t just the two of us and our son wanted to get to the truth and to have his parents love so bad! Before that he told me many times to get a divorce, but also he used to say: “just wait till I am 18 if you can, because he may get a custody and I don’t want to end up living just with him”. After he turned 18, he would just say that I should get a divorce. I didn’t know, he cared so deeply. Anyway, that conversation went for the whole night. Finally, I think, I found the right words that made the difference. I said that I’m not perfect and I’m not trying to prove that I am, but I’m trying to be better and if he loves us as he says he does, why he is so hard on me for things he would just dismiss as a “no big deal” if it was somebody else. Why is he harder on us than on anybody else when we need his support and love and to be on our side. I said: Let’s say I am wrong a lot, I start fights and get upset without a reason. Did you ever try instead of screaming at me to understand why I said what I did and maybe I’m just unhappy. And did it ever occur to you just to say like at the last fight “I do want to have a picture with just you and me. Why are you upset, you don’t feel well or something? Let’s just go and have a picture with everybody, because it’s their event and we don’t want to spoil it”. I said that he never ever said anything like that, but if he did, maybe I would apologize right away and would say too: “I’m sorry, I guess I’m just cranky today.” And after that it could go normal and nice again. He was silent for a moment and then said: “I never said anything like that, you are right. I would be a normal person if I did”. It was a biggest admission ever. I said: why don’t we try to be more kind to each other and try to understand and respect each other’s feelings and be more tolerant and supportive. That’s how it ended and the whole week after that went almost normal. Why almost? I’m not sure, probably some anger is still there and also, we had similar conversations before. It got better for a while, but then slipped back to the ugly old routine. Well, I am still not sure what I should do. It is always hard for me to make a decision. And my husband has his good sides too! He is a good provider. He loves our son dearly (drives him crazy anyway). He doesn’t spend much on himself. I can count on him: if he says that he would call, pick me up or be someplace at certain time, he would always be there, call or do whatever he promised on time. If he were late from work, he would always call. Never ever he let me down in this respect. I also think and almost 100 % sure that he is faithful to me. Sometimes we have a good time just talking about things and he can listen when he is not in one of his foul moods. Doesn’t it count for something? I think that this “money” problem is not really so much about money in our case, because I can’t really say that my husband is greedy. I think it has to do more with his narcissistic personality. Read “Rules in my house” on this site (victim pages), it’s 99% about my husband. He thinks that he has rights to judge everybody and especially his family, his feelings are more important than anybody else’s. If he does something good for us, he expects us probably to fall on our knees and become his slaves and do 10 times more.. If I say something that upsets him, he should say something 10 times more upsetting. He could ask for my opinion and pretend that we have agreement on something, but override it anytime he feels like it and yell at me that I don’t understand and stupid. Anne, I don’t know much about your partner, but it looks to me as he has a lot in common with mine. Take care of yourself, don’t feel guilty. He should act is your equal partner, not your landlord. I don’t dare to advise you to think of leaving him, because I’m staying in abusive relationship myself and even now when I know that I would survive without him financially and probably emotionally too, I’m still here, still unsure of what to do. Just do what is good for you, maybe second job is good, it will make you more independent financially, maybe something else, hobby or sports. Try to enjoy life without him, if he gives you only stony silence. There was time that I couldn’t imagine having or be happy without him. All these years I worked on that (maybe subconsciously sometimes). And it seems to me, that now more often than not I have more fun without him, than with him! And I feel stronger. I’m sorry I took so much space here. Good luck and love to all! Almost Strong.

B1: Submit
Date: Wednesday, March 07, 2001

S1

Hello I am new to the catbox, and can't afford to post a private message to Dr. Irene. i am an abuser trying to recover. My wife has not left me yet, but basically wants nothing to do with me. She won't even look at me. She also has had an emotional relationship with another man. She said that it is over because he has ended it. The problem is that I am always depressed and am having trouble trying to be a happy person while I am recovering. I no longer verbally abuse her, but it seems like everything I say or do is control. I realize a lot of things now, and so wish i could turn back time. She has told me that she does not love me anymore. I love her. She now has moved out of our bedroom, and never wants me near her. Every time we talk, it seems to end up with her upset or me upset. I know that I have hurt her in ways that I should never have, and I wish that I could fix things. I want to help myself, and I want to save our marriage. I get the impression that she does not want me anymore, or anything to do with me. Sometimes she is so sweet and nice with me, and then all of a sudden she tells me to basically buzz off. I know I deserve it all. We are seeing a psychiatrist now. I know she is not responsible for me and my actions, but it seems so hard to make it through the day without a kiss and hug from her, or even feeling love from her. She has so much hate for me right now, and that hurts. I do not blame her, I blame me. I have and am still making so many mistakes, I just don't know what or how to deal with myself anymore, or what I can do. We have kids and I am trying to be a real father and i am trying to be a good husband now. I know it will take lots of time for her to heal and me as well, but why do I constantly fear the other man? She has basically told me that she loves him, and not me? Can someone talk to me, or give me advice? Is there hope to save our marriage? She has also stated that she is scarred to fall in love with me again. Does that mean she does not want to or does? I hate the abusive me, and I am having so much trouble dealing with the fact that I was like that. I do not want to control, but I know that no matter what I say or do, my actions seem like that to her. How do I win her trust back, when she seems to want nothing to do with me? I miss my wife so much, and I so wish I would have realized the anger in me years ago. In my heart i know I can change, and I am trying so hard to find ways to do it. I so wish she would give me one more honest chance at proving I can be a real husband and father. How do I deal with my issues? You've already started...

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