Comments for Wanda
It is hard isn't it? It is so hard to find a dry place in the rain when you have never realized that there even is a dry place (in the rain or otherwise). Just because we don't have "tools" to learn by, they can be found:)
I really want to feel hopeful with you. Your current relationship hasn't been going on so long that you can't stop abusive behaviors before they are set in concrete.
My therapy encounters (jointly with my abuser) were only part of the cycle of abuse, with me feeling hopeful, and then another abusive period would start. The counseling would be a thing of the past. I would end up feeling like Charlie Brown when Lucy yanked the football away... again.
We tried using a phrase that meant stop too. He said I was abusing the privilege just to make him shut up, to avoid having to listen to what he had to say. It wasn't rtue by the way.
I pray that none of this happens to you. I have to say though that it is a bit too soon to relax and get comfortable, in my opinion.
Best of luck to you.
I did similar just over a week ago. I left home, I took some time out. I wrote my abuser a letter, I did for the first time ever admit my problems, my acting out, my fear and people pleasing. I told him I needed to learn to rely on me and that I wanted to do what I thought. I told him it wasn't acceptable to me for me to have to do things just so he'd approve and not go into a rage.
Whilst I was a way from home I worked hard, I read the "Emotionally abused woman" Patricia Evans. I think its a great book for recovery, if you haven't got it its a MUST so get it now!!!!!!!!!! (There is no such Evans book. I think you mean Beverly Engel's The Emotionally Abused Woman. Dr. Irene)
I left things for one week, then he asked could we speak. We did he like you and your partner spoke about our feelings, what needed to change blah..........
We spoke about the way we both were destructive with our anger, we spoke about the difference between anger and rage. I mentioned boundaries and so on......
The biggest problems we thought we had was RESPECT, no surprise to ME!!!!!!!
After all this the other day, I was asking my daughter to do something, she didn't do it straightaway and so I used the broken record technique. This was fine, I thought I handled it my way okay, although I now have new ideas. But at the time it was the best way I knew how to handle this, and that's what is important. I know I have to practice some new skills, such as asking once and then waiting a while to give the child a chance to do what I ask, and to stop being so controlling of her.
BUT: My partner walked over my boundaries. He interfered, he told her to go to her room, he completely over rode me, I noticed this I realized he'd stepped over my boundaries, this is new for me!!!!
I decided to confront him. I said "Will you do me a favor, will you let me handle things myself. He said "I can't stand back and let her disrespect you, I am her father, you need to send her to bed," (We both have different parenting styles!!!!!!!!!!!!)
I felt angry, he disrespected me also but he didn't realize this.
I have written him a letter, I told him what my counselor said about boundaries,
I said: that myself and my counselor were speaking about BOUNDARIES.
She said "That it is respectful to honor someones boundaries. To allow your partner do things their own way. She said it is disrespectful to over ride your partner when she is disciplining your child or doing another task. Instead you should wait until the child is not around and speak as adults, you can then give your views and listen to the explanation of why your partner chose to do things the way she did.
It is okay to give your opinion or point of view and to listen to your partners point of view but it is wrong to force your opinion or ideas on to someone else. They need to listen to your ideas and decided whether or not to take it. They don't have to use your ideas or agree with your opinion. Its up to them if they use their own way or use some of your ways.
I know I have to say something!!!!! and so I hope this letter will get my point across. What I have found is the more you take back your power in one area, the more your abuser tries to gain power in other ways.
Have you found this also???????????????
Congratulations on being brave and standup and taking care of yourself. Take care T.
Hello and love to all...this is me, Wanda...well, I can't deny I am hopeful...but trying hard not to be stupid about it :o) I am usually the one stepping on his boundaries with parenting style issues...although as my original letter proves, he is perfectly capable of same.....we are going to a parenting class together (Becoming a Love and Logic Parent) which seems like a happy medium between our two parenting styles...so hopefully it will help us find some middle ground to agree on and have less trouble in that area. Our first counseling session together was pretty good..but stirred up a lot of stuff we had both been letting simmer...so we were kind of testy with each other for a few days. He tried telling me I was manipulating him with all this info I am getting from the site....I just laughed and said if I was going to manipulate him with it why was I encouraging him to read it! Then he kind of realized how silly that was and started laughing too! So far in four days (well, hey, its not much, but its a start) he has only yelled once (at the kids not me) and caught himself after the third word, looked at me and said "oops..sorry" and then went on in a much calmer tone of voice. He is LIKING the love and logic stuff. (giving kids choices, and empathizing with them when they mess up, instead of getting mad) I think he thought he was just not an empathetic person and couldn't do it...now he is getting the tools and knowledge...and gaining confidence already.. well I am going on aren't I????? I hope it lasts, and I am pretty excited.. but I know it could be temporary...so think good thoughts all of you out there....
Wanda, thank you. I just read your article and I realize that I am you. This is what my problem is with my second husband of one year. Also, with children from previous marriage. He left me today and I have to change me and figure out how to move on. He told me that he hates me - but I still love him. Through all the cussing and yelling, I love him.
I am in the exact same relationship. My other and I start therapy in two weeks. He has already moved out, but says he will stay faithful while we try this one last hope of professional intervention. Your story gives me hope that we can put our family back together. Thank you for sharing your story and letting me know that I am not alone.