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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!

Doc@DrIrene.com

Comments for My Husband

Comments for My Husband

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
 

B1: Submit
Date: Sunday, March 18, 2001

S1

Jane,

I am now looking at leaving my wife as you have your husband. My wife refuses to believe that she is abusive or even has an anger management problem. But I know that I cannot force her to understand that. I only know that by being a submissive person who tried anything to win her affection, I gave her permission to abuse me verbally and emotionally.

We are now in counseling and I can say that the only things keeping me here now are our two little children (a 3 year old and a 5 month old). She has been a good mother to them, a good friend to others - just a nasty person to me.

At this point, I am willing to work for our marriage, but I know that if I leave, I don't plan on coming back (except to be with the kids of course!). I have told her enough times what I feel is wrong with our relationship and have admitted where I messed up - she needs to meet me part-way to salvage what we have. If not, I must move on.

B1: Submit
Date: Sunday, March 18, 2001

S1

Dear Jane,

It is common to feel the way you're feeling. I was in your shoes about 5 months ago when I left my "domestic partner" of 2 1/2 years. Truthfully, she was verbally abusive from the beginning & I was just too naive to see it. And sure, we had some good times, but they were few & far between.

Right now, you have to focus on the bad times... on what made you leave. You say your husband REFUSED to go to counseling...doesn't that make you mad? Focus on that anger...at least when you feel that you want to call him or go back. It seems like you didn't mean enough to him to make him want to see a counselor.

And please, Jane, please move on. Although it will take time, you are far too good of a person to allow this man to bring you down. Time will heal, as I have come to realise, and you will find someone who is worthy of YOU! Good luck!

ejc

B1: Submit
Date: Monday, March 19, 2001

S1

Jane, I very much understand your mixed feelings, but respect yourself and stick to your guns. You WON'T stand for abusive treatment any longer...that is the message you have sent to your husband. Now take care of YOU...work to meet YOUR needs. Be with supportive friends and family...do nice things for yourself that make you feel nurtured. Treat yourself with love and respect and give yourself a huge pat on the back for being brave enough to take this step.

Something Dr. Irene wrote above touches a chord with me...having misgivings out of depression. I got out of an abusive long distance relationship at the end of last year (with the help of this website and many supportive comments from people who read my story). Yet, when I am at a weak moment...usually when I am feeling depressed and out of sorts...I long for the closeness I shared with Lee. There were some good times...but the abuse I endured and her constant blaming me for HER anger and subsequent verbal abuse absolutely ripped me to shreds inside...I constantly remind myself of how much those things hurt me, and then I realize that I would NEVER NEVER NEVER want to go back to that. I could apologize to her a million times and "get in" on her good side again, but I know it would only be temporary, and she'd start in on me sometime in the near future when I didn't do something she thought I was supposed to do for her. WHO NEEDS THAT????

Hang in there and be strong...you are on the right road, and you're among friends here.

Alan

B1: Submit
Date: Monday, March 19, 2001

S1

Dear Jane, I know how you feel. I am sending you some courage through the web! You have done the right thing, so don't spoil it by groveling to him. He seems "yucky" all along. Do your best now to forget about him, and make a long list of what YOU want to do now. Isn't it wonderful to take care of yourself without anyone using or abusing you? Decorate your place how YOU want it, meet YOUR friends, pamper yourself, do all the things you want to do, that make you happy. Make a lot of efforts to DO WHAT MAKES YOU HAPPY. I love dancing (my H hates dancing), I love walking, especially in nature, I love music that makes my heart happy. What about you? It's time you think of you. You deserve a loving, warm, kind, cooperative, respectful man - not this cold angry guy, who uses you as a verbal "punching ball".

Please start to love yourself! You are not there yet. B.

B1: Submit
Date: Monday, March 19, 2001

S1

Dear Jane,

Dr Irene has always pointed out that when you leave, you leave WITHOUT expectations. In other words, the healthy attitude is , it would be nice if he woke up and started counseling, but if he doesn't, that's okay too. You must be prepared to deal with your life alone. I think you were expecting too much and that's why you are depressed now. You tried to control his behavior and it didn't work. Put the FOCUS on You! What are your needs? What do you want your life to be like? Try being completely selfish instead of worrying about his reactions. And, Dr Irene is right--stop calling him! Be extra kind to yourself and move on with your life. Sis

B1: Submit
Date: Monday, March 19, 2001

S1

I left my abuser 8 months ago, and sometimes he is still in my head. Sometimes I feel angry, but I really feel sad.

Besides working on my own issues and my own life, I pray for him. I accept that he has problems so deep, I couldn't begin to help him. He must be in a lot of pain to act the way he does, but my being around doesn't help him and wears me down. I pray that God heal him and thank God for helping me leave.

After the shock and sadness subsides it is really wonderful to be on my own again!!!

Take care of you, SK

 

B1: Submit
Date: Monday, March 19, 2001

S1

Dear Jane,

I have walked in your shoes, "why doesn't he miss me?" "why won't he do what I ask". There are many possibilities to list. Dr. Irene is right about allot of things and personally, I think the first thing to do is call your doctor and confess all!! Anti-depressants are wonderful meds that can bring a person to their senses through grief, or whatever. The second thing to do is to call someone from Codependence anonymous. You NEED the support that is derived from people who have also been there. You deserve to have a better life. Stop looking to ANYONE else for that life. Go get it. Looking back too soon can distort the truth because you are hurting. I understand the commitment part too. Been there. You can't have a marriage if only one is willing to make the commitment to it. N'est pas? Also, those lonely nights, you really miss the companionship, not that particular person. The "contentedness" (not happiness) that will come as a result of having pulled yourself out of a tough situation will come, give yourself some time. My suggestion, fix yourself. You WILL want to start over again and it will not be fair to the next Mr. Right to have to deal with your baggage as a result of this failed relationship. Please don't sit around wasting a valuable precious life waiting for someone else to change. It doesn't happen!! Been there, done that, my shirt says, Codependent No More!!!!

Jill (businessend@hotmail.com) write and "dump" any time, my door is open!!

B1: Submit
Date: Tuesday, March 20, 2001

S1

Hi everyone! This is "Jane". Thank you all for responding to my post. It is immensely helpful to me to know that other people have been through the same thing and know what they are talking about, not to mention Dr. Irene. I truly believe the saying "time heals all wounds" I've been hurt in a relationship before (not with abuse though) and I've been able to move on and get over it. Although this probably sounds callous, I am very grateful we never had children together! Does not sound callous! I never wanted kids, though he has a daughter (full custody of) and would have probably wanted another child. I cannot believe the courage and emotional strength some of you go through when leaving a marriage or partner when small children are involved or any children for that matter! I guess I better just start not worrying about my husbands motives or actions (or lack thereof!) and pay attention to myself. Yes. But as you all know, it IS lonely. At first... Oh well, going back to him would be masochistic at this point and I totally realize that. I'm getting a two hour massage next Wednesday, yay! Yay! and trying to plan a nice long vacation to Mexico with my nice sister in Northern Calif who is only 2 yrs older than me!!!! Thank you guys for writing back and I just welcome any and all replies or information. My warmest appreciations, Jane. Excellent on the massage Jane. Now is the time to do everything you ever wanted to do to pamper yourself. Get that new outfit... Do what makes you feel good.

B1: Submit
Date: Tuesday, March 20, 2001

S1

Jane, please read Melody Beattie's awesome book Beyond Codependency or Codependent No More. They're fun, quick reads and absolutely worth your time. My sister went through what you're going through and found it very hard to ignore or stop groveling to her jerk of a husband. Once she finally did, boy was she happy! She could not believe how much better things were. I truly think that if you read one or both of those books you will be enlightened, empowered, and will just plain feel better about things. Good luck!

B1: Submit
Date: Tuesday, March 20, 2001

S1

Jane,

I know where are you. In a lot of ways, I'm in the same place myself. It's hard not to call. It's hard not to question why they won't try to change when they have said (and still say) how much they love you! (Please keep in mind that their definition of "love" is different from yours...)

What the doc said was hard to read, I'm sure. It was hard for me in some ways, even though it wasn't directed at me! However, it's obvious that she's right. We all have a tendency to focus on them rather than ourselves. That's what co-dependency is all about!!!

Hopefully, you can change your focus to yourself too. Just like we're all trying to do. You CAN get through this... just take it one day or one-half day or even one hour at a a time!!!

Good luck!

B1: Submit
Date: Tuesday, March 20, 2001

S1

Jane

I sympathize with you. I have been in a similar position and am doing something about it now but with great difficulty. I was verbally abused for 18 months before I found this website and realised what had been going on!!! To cut a long story short, I have now asked him to leave, asked him to get help for himself and even recommended books and put him in touch with a counselor. Now that's it. I am now going to concentrate on making and keeping good promises to myself and moving forward with my own well-being in mind, rather than his!! This is very hard!

I have spent my life worrying about other people and trying to sort them out. Now I have to learn to give responsibility for his abusiveness 'back' to him. This is also hard!

One of my main problems now is that I find when I am low, usually when I feel lonely, I remember the good things about him and strangely, I forget the desperation that led to me ending the relationship! It's then that I want to pick up the phone and ask him why, to give him yet another chance to say sorry, to tell me that he has finally changed and is a new, non-abusive person etc etc and that the pain is over. But I have to get real! I have to concentrate on remembering why I ended it, remembering what really happened, how hard I tried and how it really was hell living with verbal abuse. I have to force myself to remember the reality and not the dream I started out with that was shattered! It's very difficult! Yes...

I miss the good things, despite being clear about not wanting the bad things. I miss being part of a couple, I miss the company, I miss the physical closeness we once had before things got bad. Its only human to want the comfort of a partner but you must be disciplined and firm with yourself. Focus on being good to yourself and getting support wherever you can - from friends, family, counselors etc to keep you going through the really dark moments. I imagine what we're going through is like withdrawal from addiction in some bizarre way - one last fix, one last call! You have to go cold turkey!!! Whenever you have the urge to phone him, phone someone else and talk about it. Arrange plenty of things to do which you enjoy and which involve you being with friendly people or doing creative or sporty activities which make you feel better about yourself. It's really hard going but it all helps to very gradually build up that feeling that life is worth living despite the pain and loneliness and disappointment of shattered dreams. Things will get better. Its hard but things will get better!!!

Mary

B1: Submit
Date: Tuesday, March 20, 2001

S1

Dear Jane, I hope you can get thru this difficult time.. I'm sure you eventually will. I didn't. I HAD to go back.. He had the "martial home" and my 2 big boys and I were living in a one bedroom apt.. Why? cuz it was HIS house and he wouldn't move. (Laws in my state are not progressive in this area of law) I managed to stay gone a year and a half.. then got into a accident and was out of work 3 months and broke. Excuse? Reality. Finances are the biggest single reason women stay... I don't think so.. you do what you have to do for your children.. (at the time they were 17 and 14 years old).. So back I went into the marital home. After begging and pleading with him to LET me go back. That was about 4 years ago. During the time I was gone, he met a woman on the net. She was married with 4 kids, and that would of been fine had he left me alone .. but he came around, to MY apartment placing guilt.. and had me all in a tizzy. He couldn't have this married woman who he fell in love with, so he LET me come back. Yuk! But you knew his game; it wasn't as powerful as it could have been. So here I am, back in the marital home, with a man who values me none and pines for his chipmunk bitch that he can't have. The boys are almost where they need to be thru and in college I'm almost ready to venture out on my own again! :)  :) I'll be fine.. I have my support straight this time! Please don't go back to this man Jane.. you can't go back and have things be OK.. I'm living it .. if it could be done, I'd tell you so.. but it can't. My future is uncertain. But I believe that I will be delivered!!!. Good Luck to you! Kesha

B1: Submit
Date: Tuesday, March 20, 2001

S1

Hi Jane,

I have been through what you have gone through - the only difference is that it was my common-law husband that I asked to leave after he was verbally, emotional, and physical abusive to me. I used to believe that if I made him pack his stuff and GET OUT that he would realize how "good" he had it with me, what a great person I was, how much he loved me, how much he should treat me better, yadda, yadda, yadda. I was wrong. Sure, after a period of playing mind games with me and trying to be cold towards me and ignoring me completely (he loved the power of that, and I fell into the trap time and time again), he would move back in, be loving for a time, and then the cycle would begin once again. This went on for over a year. What a horrible time that was for me. Sometimes, I look back and I don't believe that was even me living that life.

Anyway, I went to see a great counselor, and although I wasn't really HEARING everything she was saying to me . . . there was one thing she said that ended up holding true. She said "just try and stay apart for 6 weeks". I couldn't figure out what was so magical about 6 weeks . . . but believe it or not, once those 6 weeks past and I was finally able to not fall back into the trap and repeated cycles of abuse once again, I never looked back. Once I had moved on with my life, it was amazing how much the ex tried to get me back, make me feel guilty and repeatedly tell me he "loved me to death". How close to the truth was that really??? I am so grateful that I didn't have to find out. What I realized at the end of the day was that I was simply afraid of being abandoned, afraid of being alone. Once I got past that, I was able to truly move on with my life. A year and a half later, I am engaged to a wonderful guy that I knew in my teenage years, and now know what it's like to be truly loved, to love back, and have a healthy relationship.

It can be done . . . Dr. Irene is so right. You can only change yourself, and healing ourselves is a never ending journey.

Good luck to you. I remember how painful this time was for me. Take care of YOU.

B1: Submit
Date: Tuesday, March 20, 2001

S1

Jane- When did the verbal abuse start?? I have been dating my boyfriend for 6 years and he is really starting to call me some awful names. We live together and I feel trapped because I cannot afford to live on my own and I want him to know that he can not talk to me like that. This is a new thing and I need some advice from you. By the way you cannot leave and then call your husband. It makes you look weak and like you cannot live without him. Stay strong. Jenni

B1: Submit
Date: Tuesday, March 20, 2001

S1

Hi again to all, this is "Jane." To dear Kesha, bless your heart! You're doing what you have to do and you are strong within yourself. I am thinking and sending positive thoughts your way! I care about you and will be happy to hear from you! O.K. : My therapist says to forget about him right now & " Plan your life!" I thought to myself, "What the hell does that mean? Plan my life?" All I've been able to plan is trying to work more hours and maybe if I do I can purchase a new dining room set for my place because I don't have one. All of the furniture which I purchased is in our house which is up for sale. I had previously had a decent amount of money in a diversified portfolio, money markets, CD's, and some REIT's, plus an IRA! When we got married I cashed out this and that to get things for "us" and float the mortgage when things got tight in 1998 and '99 (he was in big-time credit card debt) and paid for the down-payment ( $5000.00) on a new Dodge Durango (he wanted that car so bad!) and a new cool travel trailer and furniture, big screen TV etc.... Now I have nothing to show for it. He traded in the Durango for a Honda Civic, and I'm driving my older 1993 -paid off Subaru wagon. He says 'We will split everything up when we sell the house." I feel mad that all that money I put into it -which initially came from a small inheritance when my mom died and left my sisters and I a Lake Tahoe, Calif property.-- is now GONE and for what???? Did you talk to your attorney? It's possible that if you can prove the money used for xxx was your prior to marriage, you may not have a 50/50 split. Check it out.  Thank god or goddess that I never did agree to get credit cards in both of our names! Those always remained separate. My dad had said, hey before you marry and you now have your own assets, make the guy sign a pre-nup! I said "No way, that's for affluent Hollywood people not me ." Well- the joke is on me, 'cause everything I bought and paid for out of personal (prior to our marriage) accounts is gone, gone , gone! Just as though I flushed it down the toilet! O.K. enough bitterness! 

I'm going to get on with things, I hope...yes I feel sad and miss the good things we had together, how could I have been so wrong? I am starting to feel like was I living a total fantasy about him? I know that I excused a lot of things he did and said because I felt sorry for him Please don't do this anymore. Not if  whatever you are "excusing"  hurts you! and what happened to him in his childhood. It is so painful to picture child abuse, I can't stand it! I wasn't raised that way- this is really terrible you guys,.. but I found out one night after I discovered he was looking at porn on the Internet that he was sexually abused by a elementary school counselor!!! I almost threw up when I guessed the situation ( I have a lot of training in psych- I am in the medical field and so is he.) This was not a situation where he was viewing children or anything, just in case you want to know. What I'd like to hear from you (MEN & WOMEN!) straight or gay, I don't care...... is this....I don't feel I am a 'prude' but is viewing porn on the Net just a harmless thing to you? Likely the tip of an addiction iceburg. He's looking for escape. Spending, gambling, drugs & alcohol, etc. all serve the same purpose. Also if you are in a relationship & your loved one is doing this how do you feel about it - I had made a big deal about it and was very upset! He minimized it, like guys just do this like reading Playboy , it's no big deal! I think if you want to see other women etc.... then you should just be single and do your own thing. I'm attractive and fairly thin and have always been told I'm very good looking and have always been athletic... But I am made to feel that he's not interested. No, he is not cheating on me. I even hired a private investigator for a whole week to follow him when I was out of town working at another hospital 3 hrs away from home! And I spent a lot of money & he just went to work and straight home , no other party involved as far as the surveillance showed for 6 days. O.K. what do you guys think of this porn thing (?) or any other comments- that has always bugged me... thanks Jane. I think you had good reason to be upset. 

Jane, I want to apologize for the web site's behavior over the past week. I imagine many posts were lost, we were down for a while, etc. Hopefully that is behind us now. I am back and will be hovering... Dr. Irene

B1: Submit
Date: Tuesday, March 27, 2001

S1

Dear Jane, I am just coming out of a similar situation. My husband has finally gone crazy. It took him six months to actually miss me and actually talk about it. Although we went into counseling immediately after I left, it did not help too much. He now admits to be abusive but has not changed too much although there have been some improvements. Please just count your blessings and be glad you got away. Did you ever think that he is still abusing you by acting like he does not care? I think that the only thing that will actually wake him up is his own affirmation of himself. This man is renting too much space in your head, but that is sometimes the clue to abuse. Remember that losers do what they want to do and winners do what they have to do. I think you are a winner for making the move and will reap the benefits of helping your self 10 fold.

B1: Submit
Date: Tuesday, March 27, 2001

S1

Neil here. I just moved out of my girlfriend's place for the third time in two years. Three times moving in and three times moving out. We went back and forth from abuser to victim. At worst she would yell, "F.U.!" She would also stop talking altogether for days and expect ME to solve the problem by just doing what she wanted, whatever that was. She expected me to know intuitively like her ex husband. At any rate, since moving I have called her to ask her to go to church or come to our counselor whom I am still seeing, or just to talk. I've written her brief thoughts, apologies... It torments me that it is over. I feel alone with my grief. I feel cut off from everyone because the only feeling I have sometimes is grief. But then I think what I did to cause all this, and what she did. We each did not get our needs met, through no fault of the other really. We, just did not have IT. We tried and tried. But she got angry at my old friends saying they held me back in life. In many ways she was right. She got angry about my motorcycle riding. She got angry about my family not accepting her. I can see her side. She made sense. But somehow I felt I lost myself at times. I felt like I was living HER life, not ours. I did not know what I wanted. She did. My situation is different but I relate Jane. The pain is excruciating. I'd rather die sometimes than feel it. But I DO understand that I have to move on and work on the things about me that were not working. I also have to accept our differences. Some things are simply me and I need not change them. - Neil

B1: Submit
Date: Tuesday, March 27, 2001

S1

Hello to everyone on this site, it's Jane. To those of you who agreed it was stupid for ME to leave and then call my husband - you are right! It stems from confusion on my part, it all seemed kind of unreal though- and actually my leaving happened really quickly! I didn't think it through too much, just sort of wrote him a letter and gave him a choice re: getting counseling for the anger/abuse or I'm outta here type thing! When he said to me "F--- counseling" I went out and within a week, found an awesome little house to rent in town! To the person who wrote to me 3/27 (no name on post) Yes! I absolutely DO think his acting like he doesn't give a rip about me or even make any attempt to acknowledge that we're married and have taken vows, had a life together for the past 4 & 1/2 yrs is an attempt to emotionally hurt me and wall himself off from his feelings as well. I have a feeling he is trying to get back at me this way. Probably. I mentioned , (I think?) that we work together- only every other weekend. He is making an effort to get some of the younger girls (only in their 20's and very cute and very NAIVE!) to "get on his side". I went to work and overheard one of the girls chatting about how they all went out to the bar after work "for beers" and mentioned my husbands name as being one of 'them.' Then another co-worker told me when the subject came up "You know what Jane? He never acted married when he was here at work, just some comments he would make sometimes were offensive, I'm GLAD you left him!" Wow! I know she meant to be supportive but hearing these things and what he's up to with the cute young things in our department - trying to go out and hang around with the 21 yr old crowd is upsetting and hurtful. I talked to our boss. She is being really great and supportive and said she thought it was inappropriate for him to run around with these girls and then I have to come to work and hear them talking about it. I told her for gods sake! we just separated March 1st!!! Don't these girls have any scruples? This is not about the girls Jane. It's about him. Or are they trying to create some stupid little soap-opera drama -' cause I'm about ready to set the record straight since he seems to need to corral our co-workers so he can cry on their shoulders! ...My boss says she will handle it, that I have a right to be upset & that kind of talk is mean and unprofessional. She says, 'you just come to work Jane and smile & do the great job you always do, I love your husband too- but he IS acting immature right now! I hope he gets counseling for his issues, and as a manager it's my job to suggest it and refer him, And I have and will continue to do so!" Wonderful boss!  I thought that was so validating and cool of her to do that. Yes, the abuse continues! I am going to concentrate on "Taking the High Road!" :) I am working on doing things I want to do! I am signing up for outdoor sports classes, (starts in May) I am planning on going rafting this summer, and I am signing up for a 3-day backpacking trip. I think this way I'll be able to meet some people who are into healthy activities and get out in nature and explore the areas / hike like I want to. My husband does not like hiking & that is my favorite thing! I was always too busy with day to day , mundane child care crap and doing 95% of everything else around the house in addition to bringing home more than half of "the bacon." Ahhhh, SERENITY???? Well , for today- YEAH I am feeling pretty dang serene! Hope to hear form one or all soon, happy Spring! - Jane. P.S. that Serenity Prayer is very applicable to us verbally abused persons! (not just for alcoholics anymore!) :)

 

B1: Submit
Date: Wednesday, March 28, 2001

S1

Jane, You are on the right track. You may never quench that last little bit of hope for you to reconcile and your romantic fantasies to come true, but you can live your life with dignity and integrity, not compromising what your SELF for your relationship. I left my child's father seven months ago and it has become much better. I have my own place, my own space, my own decisions, all of these things that I thought we would have easily shared like a loving couple, but couldn't. Or he wouldn't, is more correct. I spend a lot of time on this site and reading various books, especially the Evans book to make sense of "what happened" so I could put it to rest in my mind. Since I've taken charge of my own self-control and worrying all the time about everyone else's emotions, I have been much saner and happier. It's hard when you see him frequently at work, but your best bet is to just be polite, honest and stay out of his business. I have to talk to my ex a lot and see him occasionally because of our son. At first it was quite difficult. His tone on the phone was laced with disdain, he would be contrary just to have a different stance then me on child issues, and he raged occasionally... just like when I lived with him. After a few incidences of this and with thorough studying and processing of Dr. Irene's information, I began to calmly and efficiently "shut down" his antics. When he spoke with disdain, I asked him to call back when he could drop the disdain from his voice, said goodbye politely and hung up. When he raged, instead of engaging him, I simply said: When you can discuss this without raging, please call me back, said goodbye politely and hung up. You get the idea. Dr. Irene and the Evans book both talk about how this type of stop tactics can sometimes work wonders on the abuser, but I was shocked at how quickly it did work.  The second time I asked for what I wanted (stop raging) without engaging and hung up, he called back five minutes later to apologize for his anger. AMAZING!!! :) Anyway, that's my story.... Dr. Irene is right though, the more you beg for his approval and love and for him to show emotions toward you, the more power you give him over you and the more contempt and coldness he is likely to show to you. Sadly, that's how it works for the abuser. There is little empathy and partnership, mutuality is too frightening as it leaves the abuser open to the possibility of getting hurt. I found that with my ex, everything either was his way and he would exert his power in various overt and covert ways to get his way or my way, and he would sulk and punish me covertly for what a wench I was and how I always had to have it "my way." Ha. My point is: there was no negotiation, consideration or cooperative solution finding for the problems is our relationship, with child care issues, with stuff as simple as setting the alarm clock. Stick your ground, remember that you have to look out for yourself, especially when you spent a good chunk of time focusing on your husband and his needs. Take care! --DJ

B1: Submit
Date: Wednesday, March 28, 2001

S1

Jane: I was married to a verbally abusive and physically aggressive (never hit me but was really rough - still abuse though) man for six years. I finally left after tons of therapy and Al Anon under my belt. My husband said he wanted me back but never made any effort to work on our marriage. He hated the marriage counselor (she once told him to "grow up" and his feelings got hurt so we never went back). He would cry on the phone and through email but never made an attempt to get together. It was always me seeing him, not the other way around. After about six months of being separated I finally figured out that my husband was "no show, all blow". He made zero effort to work on our marriage. It was up to me. Well, last time I checked, marriages were partnerships, not for sole proprietors. I began to realize that I wasn't interested in doing all the work all the time. This was his relationship too and he needed to do the work. Bottom line for me, and for you too, is when people show you who they really are, BELIEVE THEM! Your husband is telling you that he's not interested in making the effort to work on it. So listen to him! It was a very dark day for me when I figured that out, but it was also a very liberating day. I didn't have to depend on someone else to make me happy - that was MY job. For a long time I thought it was my husband's job but it never was. You did yourself a huge favor by leaving. Keep your poise and don't call him. If he's really and truly interested in working on your marriage, let him start. If not, well, you have your answer. It doesn't sound like you have kids, and I don't either, which turned out to be a huge blessing. Be grateful for that. Your stepdaughter is his business. Take your leaving for the gift that it is. Give yourself time to grieve and heal, and to find out who you are. I bet you can't even begin to tell about how wonderful you are, all the gifts you give to the world. Start making a list of all the great traits in you. You are worthy of all the gifts available on this planet. Don't squander them on someone who's not interested in making your relationship work. Good luck to you!

B1: Submit
Date: Thursday, March 29, 2001

S1

I've lived with an abusive husband for 26+ years and have decided that my "quit day" is Friday, April 13th - I'm taking off from work early to pack my bags and stay with a friend. Sure, I'm fearful that this man will try coming after me (he's also a physical abuser) but that is the chance that I am willing to take/make. I've had it and want my life back after coming to the realization that I do have a life and that I am not responsible for his life. I must find my own peace and happiness. And, the only way to do that is to get out on my own, despite might or could happen. Di Our good thoughts are with you Di.

B1: Submit
Date: Thursday, March 29, 2001

S1

Jane, I know exactly how you feel. I too am going through the exact same thing. I was not married but I was in a six year relationship with this man that did produce a wonderful baby boy. I still call, and he still can take me or leave me. Your story and Dr. Irene's comments have given me to courage to stop calling! I have to move on with my life. I think the problem though is my self-esteem. when someone shoots you down for years, it's hard to believe that anyone will want you. I just pray and I will pray for you too. Please pray for me. OK!

-Cori

B1: Submit
Date: Thursday, March 29, 2001

S1

Jane! you GO girl! I'm still reading and praying for your success! I know you can do it! I stay gone about every weekend, busying myself with friends and family 100 miles away! This is doing me a world of good! I'm not there for him to verbally abuse and I'm gaining knowledge about myself. In the meantime, I pray his chipmunk b*&ch Giggle! comes to get him or he finds another one while I'm gone! Actually I'm just kidding, I pray for God to show me what I need to do, and don't focus on HIM much at all. Its just a matter of time before I can get FREE!! Keep posting Jane! I want to know your success! Kesha

B1: Submit
Date: Thursday, March 29, 2001

S1

Dear Jane, I know how you feel. You were really brave to leave. I know that I only see the good in my husband and that only occurs about 1 day out of 10. You have to remind yourself of all the bad. The look on his face when he screams at you. the terrible things that he says... and most of all how afraid it makes you feel. I am about to leave tonight in order to be safe. My husband is really scary and I am a coward. I love him very much and wish that he would change, but I finally know that he will not. I can't continue. think happy thoughts and remember life if too short for sadness. R

B1: Submit
Date: Friday, March 30, 2001

S1

Jane,

Hang in there. You did the right thing. Believe me, I know from experience. Take care of yourself. You cannot change your husband. Get over the guilt of breaking your marriage vows--living with an abusive husband does not fall into the "for better or worse category". No one in their right mind would want you to stay in an abusive relationship. If you aren't seeing a counselor, maybe you should consider it. It helped me tremendously, and I would not be at the stage where I am, (getting divorced from an abusive husband) if it were not for my counselor. Sure, the whole situation is sad, but not as sad as it would be if you were to go back. Take care of yourself and nurture your soul.

B1: Submit
Date: Friday, March 30, 2001

S1

Dear Jane,

I moved out of the house and was immediately criticized by my previous Pastor, church, "friends" and family (my children)!!!

It was very very difficult for a whole year. This October will make two years we've been apart. Two of my four children lives with me for three months last year but then went back to their dad. My oldest daughter finally realized my husband was verbally and emotionally abusing her since I was no longer there. She moved back in with me about four months ago.

Life is finally becoming stable. we are not legally separated and I completely support myself. My family has been an incredible support, but more importantly; my new church and Pastor have been strongly encouraging me to "take care of myself" and not worry about what my husband has or has not been doing. As soon as I began doing this it became much easier to just say "no!"

My children are finally seeing that I had a legitimate reason to leave; especially since they are experiencing his "crazymaking" first hand.

Please, please, please, be good to yourself and heal first!!! Who knows? He may come around once he sees your solidarity!

As Shakespeare said, "To thine own self, be true."

Chrissa in Tacoma

B1: Submit
Date: Monday, April 02, 2001

S1

Hi guys, it's Jane. Thanks for your posts, Kesha , Cori, Di and "R" I think a person who is going through abuse such as ourselves is already becoming strong and waking up to reality just by the action of getting on this web-site and learning about abuse and reading about other people in the same situation. Right on for you all, it's great to hear your stories. Abusive relationships are wasting of your energy and robbing us of our real potentials. I am trying to be strong, it's very hard. I saw my husband at work all weekend long and he won't even say hello or make eye contact unless I address him directly about a work related thing first. It's as if he is a person who doesn't have any connection to me and furthermore doesn't like me at all. I have to be straight and civil and smile and be professional during all of this. I am telling myself that this behavior is HIS problem right now, and to just let it go. It IS his problem! It's hard to believe that just a couple of months ago he was my "husband" who I loved very much and still do. But he IS abusive and I have to recall those times he gets angry, yells loudly "gets up in my face" cusses and threatens me.  Yes.

I used to cope, I think with repressing each episode and trying to forget it, the frightening impact it had and the pain it caused me. Yes. Some episodes I truly did forget, like amnesia...my sister brought up a few things that had happened before where I was having stress and crying and breaking down...and I swear to you, I DID forget them. Even when she said "Don't you remember the time when he ....?" And I couldn't really remember much about it!!!! I hope he faces himself - but he will do whatever he wants and I have nothing to say about that. I'm learning to get out in the community and am planning a trip to Calif. to see my family for a whole week in May. And signing up for self enrichment classes "just for me". And I damn sure DON'T miss running my life and schedule around taking care of his daughter and all her activities wants and needs. It feels nice to have time to go walking out on the trails alone and doing my own thing with no pressure or time limits! I haven't cried my eyes out from sadness in over a week now. My friend from work wants to get a group of us girls together for pizza and a movie next weekend and I can't wait! I hope you all are welcoming Spring and daylight savings time and remember Spring is a time to renew your spirits- out with the old, in with the new? (think, Spring Cleaning for your life!)...... keep posting nice people, Love Jane Good progress! Did you check out to see if an antidepressant would help you through this period?

B1: Submit
Date: Tuesday, April 03, 2001

S1

Dear Jane, I read your letter to Dr. Irene and would like to give you some comments that will hopefully help give you strength to go on with YOUR LIFE! I've been where you are right now. I did the same thing as you. I felt the same way. I called him, I was hurt that he didn't show that he was lost with out me and the whole nine yards. It appeared that he was going on with his life and I was stuck. And I was angry about that. I felt like he abused me just to get rid of me. I couldn't accept that he didn't love me. I was depressed, I didn't go any where, I didn't make any new friends, I didn't join any support groups. I just existed. I had my freedom! I did not take advantage of it. The difference between your situation and mine is that my husband did agree to go to counseling. Big deal. Every week he would come in miserable. We would sit in the waiting room waiting to be called in and his body language would be just wreaking of anger. He didn't want to be there any more than the man in the moon. He wanted to solve things his way and his way was blaming me and not accepting any responsibility for his anger and abusive behavior. Well eventually we stopped going to counseling and I allowed myself to be controlled by my emotions and him. I loved him and I wanted us so much to have a happy marriage. I went back to him. Guess what, nothing changed. Oh in the honeymoon stage we were OK but that wears off and the abuse starts all over again. Well I lasted 8 months. I left him again after being told numerous times to get out and I should of never let you come back. This time I found an apartment that I really love and found a lot of enjoyment fixing it up. I was lonely though, very lonely. I didn't shed as many tears this time over him as I did before. But I still didn't make any new friends, I didn't join any support groups, I didn't get with other people. I with drew. This is depression. I told myself I was healing. To some extent I was. My husband was calling, I was listening and little by little I was feeling the blame for the problems between us once again. We went into counseling again this time with a woman. Then she wanted to see us separate. So that is what we did. My husband didn't really want to do that either. Counseling was not a priority for him. At least I didn't have to see the anger in him every week. Well we spent last summer doing that and spending week ends at at our camp. During all of this I was the one who was reading the books on marriage seeking the answers and solutions for our life. I was getting tired. I began to daydream and fantasize what my life would be with out him. The man was driving me crazy. I was getting depressed, still didn't have any friends. I just wasn't me. The counselor each week after telling of the latest abusive episode would ask me "When are you going to get off the merry go round?" I was sitting on the fence. I knew it too. It is an awful place to be. Well instead of listening to my inner voice, I listened once again to my heart. I let my husband move into my beautiful apartment last November. Guess what nothing changed really. As of last Friday I am now sitting in my beautiful apartment by myself, And I am loving it. I had my locks changed. I am screening my calls and I mean business now. I have taken control of life and happiness. I finally accepted that I could not change my husband. That I am not to blame for his anger. I feel bad, of course I do, but I have to take care of myself. No one else is going to. And the same goes for you. You can still love your husband but that love is not going to get him help. He has to want to get help for himself whether he continues with the relationship with you or not. It is his choice not yours. You left for reasons only you know. Don't second guess your self. Don't do it. Take it from some one who has been there. Take care of you. Live your live and be happy. Stop dwelling on him and his problems. You can't do anything about it. Reach out to supportive people. Go to a support group for abused women. Do what you can to help your self grow beyond this problem and control. You will be better off. There are many good people in this world who will find you very special. Believe that with all your heart and you will make it. My counselor told me once that when you change, maybe he will change. Maybe. This time I am not sitting here waiting for the maybe. I have a life to live. I only get one. I need to make it the best that I can. I need to be happy. I want to be happy. And I am sure you do too. You have the power in your hands. You moved out, you have your freedom, use it to your best. Do all the things you always wanted to but couldn't because of him. After a while you will realize that you have grown and that you are happy despite what has happened in the past. I hope some how I have helped you. We need all the help we can get to get through this stage. Take good care of your self and God Bless. If ever want more advice or need to vent you can always send me an e-mail. Tcitro@twcny.rr.com BE STRONG. DON'T BE AFRAID! Tina Thanks Tina.

B1: Submit
Date: Wednesday, April 04, 2001

S1

This seems to be a hard time for Jane, yet I believe she can make it with or without him. She chose to leave and she did take the 'first step'. Congratulations to Jane! Jane seems to be more concerned about hubby than self. She needs to get on with 'her' life, maybe figure out what she wants for herself and take one day at a time! To live in the dysfunctional and emotionally abusive situation must be worse than living by self where she can have peace, and be in charge of her own decisions and own life. Why would she want to go back into a burning building? (so to speak) I pray now that she is OUT that she builds good boundaries for herself and protects herself and stays out of the cycle of abuse.

B1: Submit
Date: Thursday, April 05, 2001

S1

Hi Jane,

This is your sister in Calif. I finally took the time to read these posts. As you know, I was in a physically abusive situation a few years ago (precipitated by verbal abuse) and I went back a few times because I missed the closeness (the 'good' times). The going back part was worse than the being alone part, because you're having to re-live everything in your head to try to find some justification for going back with the jerk, and there's a lot of shame involved which brings on even lower self-esteem (they can see this & it gives them power in a perverted way). Although they're nice at first they always repeat their antics AND they respect you even less for taking them back! Since they don't like or respect themselves and are not happy people, they can not possibly like you for liking them!

Anyway, stay strong and see you in a few weeks!

XOXO

Karyn

B1: Submit
Date: Saturday, April 07, 2001

S1

Dr Irene is right I have been separated for 18 months from a marriage that I tried to understand and just could not believe that he meant to be so cruel. I was married for 20 years and even my worse times now and there are many are still better than the bad times with my ex. He continues to be cruel and abusive but I am learning not to buy into the game. He even divorced me on my birthday which is just sick and he knows our friends know as I don't hide anything. His sick thinking still couldn't stop him. Really you have to move on and in the end things will be better for you. Don't count on him ever getting better. Read the information on Narcissistic behaviour it is great stuff. From Down Under.

 

 

B1: Submit
Date: Sunday, April 08, 2001

S1

To the woman who left their husband, The only thing is to make some religious practice of prayer and meditation, that is the only way to break free of an attachment to someone who is Unhealthy for You. And make a list of things to do, Jog, take vitamins, read books, Job interests and goals, music, art, cleaning, fishing...make your list of things you like to do and do them. If you want to meet someone else you can start dating, or spend more time with friends. Stop dreaming of getting him to change, Praise the Goddess for your own space and that You are Okay. Light a candle, and feel the Sanity, of not being someone's whipping post.

B1: Submit
Date: Sunday, April 08, 2001

S1

Enjoy your new life without him. Believe me it can be very wonderful. Enjoy being a woman. Dance, write poetry, garden, create....all these things connect you to the world and help you to see that there is so much more to living than wondering when he will wake up and have emotions. He probably never will. But you will have lots of great relationships and new creations.

B1: Submit
Date: Monday, April 09, 2001

S1

JANE, DO NOT MISS HIM, DON'T CALL HIM, FORGET ABOUT HIM!!!!!! I just left my abusive husband March 3rd, and I went through the missing him phase as well....we put so much of "us" into them, that we lose ourselves. Find YOU....go to church, I did, and I feel sooooo much better...I've been seeing our church counselor, and he's assured me that I need time to think of MYSELF, so do YOU!!! I told my counselor I felt like I needed to help my husband still, and my counselor asked me if I could change him? I said, "no", he then asked me, "what CAN I do for him, then?" I said, PRAY FOR HIM... that's all you can do is leave your husband in GOD'S HANDS...we, as wives, sometimes don't help...it only makes our husbands more angry. YOU ARE WILLING TO GET HELP, JUST LIKE I AM, THEY ARE NOT....SO LET GO AND LET GOD....

GOD BLESS YOU, FELLOW SURVIVOR! Wendy

Hi Jane. How are you? Dr, Irene

 

B1: Submit
Date: Friday, April 13, 2001

S1

Hi again to everyone, this is Jane. Hi Dr. Irene! I'm doing o.k. I guess. I made some hiking and dinner plans with a girlfriend from work yesterday and we had a lot of fun. I'm dieting and trying to get back into my exercise routines. My husband really is not speaking to me much. I did talk to him a bit last week and he is having a lot of financial difficulty since I left. I'm hoping the house sells fairly soon. He seems really depressed and of course, angry- but not yelling at me anymore. He does not ask me about myself or tell me he loves me or wished I hadn't left or any of that stuff. It's just as well that he's not, I think that would make it worse. Yes; you are lucky. I'm working more hours and doing o.k. with money. I know I have to set some goals for myself and try to "get out there" more and interact and meet new people and experience new things. I doubt seriously there will ever be a reconciliation with my husband. It is hard to see him depressed and all that, but I keep telling myself I gave him every opportunity to work on things, seek counseling with or without me and constantly told him I loved him and I believe marriage is a two way street yes - we BOTH have to participate in working out problems and coming to terms with differences. YES I want to be able to feel I really hung in there and did the best I could, but one can't do it all alone. His angry outbursts and yelling and short temper was a major issue and I told him that it was not acceptable, so he can't pretend he "doesn't know what happened." When I start dating again; I'm going to be very aware of all those red flags (re: anger) Look too for selfishness. that I dismissed when dating my husband. Red flags are very important and I think I was so ready to 'settle down' & have some security with someone that I settled for an emotionally screwed up man. For everyone out there who may be trying to date again: Watch out! If your boyfriend or girlfriend came from an abusive background !!!! Unless a person works through those issues completely and is VERY self aware (this might be years of therapy, not a few sessions!) they may turn their anger on you and manipulate you into an abusive relationship such as the one I left. I hope to hear from any of you again, it is truly nice to have support from you. Write whenever! Jane. Wow! Very nice Jane! You are certainly getting it. I know it's hard, but you are beginning to get enough distance to see the light. You needed this marriage like you needed a hole in the head! Keep it up! Doc

B1: Submit
Date: Wednesday, May 02, 2001

S1

Jane, I was in the exact situation you are in now a year ago. I left my husband in early March 2000 because he threatened me. He had always been verbally abusive, but he knew how to manipulate me by being "so sorry" afterwards. I got fed up with his threats, his tantrums and his using me. I wanted him to see the light, but I figured that if he had really wanted to change he would have done it before I left. He would call my parents' house (he doesn't know that I have my own apartment) and harass us. He was so nasty that I had to stop taking his calls because he was abusing me again. I didn't need that in my life. I made a spiritual promise to myself that I will not let myself be abused again. This has meat reorganizing the relationships I have with my own family.

I don't usually give advice, but what I have to say is this: Cultivate your relationship with your Creator and DON'T call your husband. Make a promise to yourself that you will keep yourself safe from abuse.

Wishing all of you the peace of the Lord,

Lesli

B1: Submit
Date: Wednesday, May 16, 2001

S1

Jane, I totally understand how you feel, I just went through a similar situation except I moved to my mothers house with my three children because mine was emotionally abusive and very angry, he used to break things all the time I actually see him quite a bit because of the children, we actually go over and stay over some nights. I am more confused than ever before, maybe it is better that he dosen't call you because now I am on more of an emotional roller coster. I didnt see him for two months and I felt better, now I am sad and depressed!! We all want to teach our men a lesson and it is good but what I have learned is we sometimes sacrifice ourselves instead. I have to learn to do the same thing as you, I have to try to get on with my life and move on I gave mine all the power too. He has seen me crying because I miss the house (which I know he will never let me back in) I had a restraining order on him for two months and made him live elsewhere. We have to show them we are strong, even when we feel weak. Good luck take care.

B1: Submit
Date: Thursday, June 14, 2001

S1

Hello, Jane,

Your story sounds familiar, in many ways. I am curious to know how long you were married, and how old his daughter was when you married him. Has she always lived with him? What is his relationship like with his daughter? How old is she now? Do you have other kids?

Recently I have read some helpful books, one is titled, "When the One You Love Wants to Leave" from a Christian bookstore. Very, very helpful. In it, I found some sound advice of what to do, and how to Let Him Go... in a way that allows and invites a GENUINE reconciliation if he wants to go the distance... Even tho you are the one who left, he pushed you out with his treatment of you, so technically he really had already left you emotionally.

Another book I have found very helpful at the Library is one titled, "The Father-Daughter Dance". It outlines numerous unhealthy father-daughter relationships, and the effect they have on the daughters and the rest of the family. I have finally understood several strange aspects of my ex husband in his relationship with his daughter. She pushed him/pulled him out of our marriage, for several reasons, and his devotion to her was stronger than his love for me. I have tried to get him to reconcile, and he came close a couple of times, but he then asks his daughter if she approves, and of course she does not, so he says he cannot even try to get back together, and he acts as though she runs his life. She nags him like a wife, tho I never did that to him...terrible! He has proven to her that he is willing to do anything for her, and make any sacrifice for her happiness....except she is not happy now...I think it is guilt, and finding out that she needs to be careful what she asks for...cuz she just might get it. What happened to this girl's mom? Did he or his daughter push her out too? I think this happened in my ex's first marriage...his relationship with his daughter from the very beginning of her life was very close, and exclusive of his wife...now that he had his own flesh and blood daughter to be with. Anyway, those books were helpful to me.

Beeleevit(redhen@lds.net)

B1: Submit
Date: Sunday, July 15, 2001

S1

Jane, You are so fortunate to be out of there, I have yet to get to that point, I am actually jealous that I am stuck in my marriage and you had the courage to leave. Give it time reflect on yourself and what you like to do and not what he want's. I am so sick of what my husband want's. SAY= (what about me). I am a good person and I deserve better. There is so much of life go grab it. You are FREE. Do you wan't your life run again and the agony of draging through the day, day in and day out. wanting the sun to go down and then the sun to come up and the day to get over and the night to get over and so on and so on and so on, this is what I do and I know you did too. so please give it a shot before you go back in there again only to get trapped again. Let the hurt get over and you will suvive, just because we took vows should not mean we take abuse.

B1: Submit
Date: Sunday, July 15, 2001

S1

Jane, You are so fortunate to be out of there, I have yet to get to that point, I am actually jealous that I am stuck in my marriage and you had the courage to leave. Give it time reflect on yourself and what you like to do and not what he want's. I am so sick of what my husband want's. SAY= (what about me). I am a good person and I deserve better. There is so much of life go grab it. You are FREE. Do you wan't your life run again and the agony of draging through the day, day in and day out. wanting the sun to go down and then the sun to come up and the day to get over and the night to get over and so on and so on and so on, this is what I do and I know you did too. so please give it a shot before you go back in there again only to get trapped again. Let the hurt get over and you will suvive, just because we took vows should not mean we take abuse.

B1: Submit
Date: Wednesday, August 15, 2001

S1

B1: Submit
Date: Tuesday, September 04, 2001

S1

DON'T go back. His rotten behavior will only get worse, if he hasn't already if you go back he will hit you and that to will get worse. file for divocre and walk away. Be thankful you have your health. Find some one to talk too.

B1: Submit
Date: Sunday, September 16, 2001

S1

Jane, Welcome to a better world - away from your abusive husband. It takes some getting used to but the pain WILL leave slowly and as you begin looking after yourself and get healthy you will only wonder why you didn't leave sooner. I crawled out of a 27 year marriage to a very abusive man. I thought that he would eventually smarten up, get help, grow up, change etc. etc. etc. It's called denial or false hope. I understand why you keep hoping or believing that he will change. For all of the years that I kept hoping and numbly and miserably waiting for him to change - I was right - he did change - he got WORSE. It changed from very abusive to Hell's worst nightmare. My husband couldn't acknowledge that he had a problem but I had to admit that I did. After studying lots of books I learned that I was an "enabler" - a word I had never heard of before!!! And I had to ask myself why I was prepared to sacrifice my safety and sanity over a "committment" to a marriage vow. I was so determined to "make my marriage work" that it left me with no boundaries and no bottom line. I contributed to my husband getting nuttier and nuttier by staying with him. He never had to experience the reality of his behaviour. I should have left him a week after we were married!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! and never looked back. He was a BAD character - Period. I understand how hard it is for you to do what you need to do. Maybe this saying will help you. If you are able to do what you need to do when you know you need to do it - you'll be able to do what you want to do when you know you want to do it. Look after your health and strength - you'll need it. There's lots of good books on Domestic Violence and Boundaries. They'll help you understand your situation more clearly. Go Gal Go!!!!!!!!!!! Patricia, a healing survivor (and MUCH happier now)

B1: Submit
Date: Wednesday, October 17, 2001

S1

If he isn't willing to get help, then he must not love you enough to need you back. So why go back to a person who doesn't really care enough??????? Get someone who loves you for who you are and respects you enough to treat you well! If a man treats you badly, why treat him well? 

B1: Submit
Date: Monday, December 03, 2001

S1

Jane, Your husband is an abusive person...(as you know), but if he is not willing to change, you can't FORCE him to change. Even though it is difficult to do, I suggest you promise yourself at least one month of not speaking with him AT ALL (no calling, writing, visiting the daughter...nothing!). That way you may begin to see how good life can be without him. If it helps, get a calendar and mark off the days you have not spoken with him. Also, keep a journal of all your moments of happiness now that you have left him. (ie, "Today I got dressed up and went out to lunch with a friend...If I was with my husband still, this could not have happened." Also, get support from friends, family, or even the local Domestic Violence/Women's Shelter that may have support groups. Don't do it alone!!

B1: Submit
Date: Wednesday, December 12, 2001

S1

Leaving an abusive husband is as hard as leaving a good one!? I felt excatly the same way when I left mine alcoholic X, I even cried, begged, threatened to suicide to get him back. But after 1 yr, I am glad I did. Althogh there is a problem, I can't stand being alone, and now I end up with another one! Even worse- a drug addict!

B1: Submit
Date: Monday, December 17, 2001

S1

B1: Submit
Date: Saturday, February 09, 2002

S1

I have the most abusive husband that ever lived. We have been together for 4 years. I bought my house from my brother prior to our being married. The local police (when I had to call them because he was out of control) advised my husband that he didn't have to leave my house because in Texas it was his house too! What can I do to get him out??????

Sharon in Texas

B1: Submit
Date: Saturday, March 23, 2002

S1

Dr. Irene, My husband is always giving me the silent treatment and going on-line to the pornography sites. He pays for them and then gets mad when I use his computer to find this stuff. I look for it when I discover after he tells me he is not on the sites. I read his body language which created distance and the silent treatment. When I bring up the porn topic and relate it to his distant behaviour and silent treatment; he then says I don't trust him. He also says I read too deep into things. And he takes control of the topic to prevent me from saying another word. His final words are:" There isn't anything to talk about, This conversation is over." What is the next step to take?? I am learning that I get his his attention if I throw a pen across the room; hitting the wall and He responds by saying lets talk about this right now! He thinks I have an anger problem now. I'm very church oriented and he claims to bee an aetheist. Please respond. Lisa.

B1: Submit
Date: Thursday, June 06, 2002

S1

Jane - I left my verbally and physically abusive husband 2 years ago after 8 years of marriage. It was the hardest decision I ever made. On the flip side, my husband promised everything this side of the moon to get me to come back. His actions made it hard for me every day, because I wanted to believe the good things he promised. It was tough, but I stuck it out and now 2 years later I am happier than I have ever been. I have heard from his mother though, and he is currently treating his new wife the same way he treated me. You have taken the hardest step, stick with it, for YOU!!!! I was hurt because it took me leaving him to make him want to change. In the end I did the changing in that I now think about my happiness and surround myself with people who help me towards that end. I know right where you are, please trust that you made the right decision and in the end you will be happier and healthier for it! Good Luck - Sarah

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Date: Thursday, June 06, 2002

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Jane - I left my verbally and physically abusive husband 2 years ago after 8 years of marriage. It was the hardest decision I ever made. On the flip side, my husband promised everything this side of the moon to get me to come back. His actions made it hard for me every day, because I wanted to believe the good things he promised. It was tough, but I stuck it out and now 2 years later I am happier than I have ever been. I have heard from his mother though, and he is currently treating his new wife the same way he treated me. You have taken the hardest step, stick with it, for YOU!!!! I was hurt because it took me leaving him to make him want to change. In the end I did the changing in that I now think about my happiness and surround myself with people who help me towards that end. I know right where you are, please trust that you made the right decision and in the end you will be happier and healthier for it! Good Luck - Sarah

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Date: Wednesday, June 26, 2002

S1

Jane:

At this point of the game, you are as much in need of help as your husband is. The thing is: neither can help the other. It is up to you to focus on yourself and on getting better. The mere fact that you spend so much time focusing on him tells me that you still don't believe you deserved better. Learn to love and respect yourself. The only way to accomplish it is by surrounding yourself with people who love and respect you. The more people treat you well and the more you will realize how bad and unacceptable your situation was. The first thing you need is a support group. Join a divorce recovery group or a church. Commit to it and attend as often as you can. Those groups will love you and accept you for who you are. They will also teach you that you are going through one of the expected phases of a divorce. Start volunteering your time helping people with more serious problems than yours: it will put things into perspective. At the very least, limit as much as you can the amount of time you can spend dwelling. Get busy. Keep on plugging away and slowly you will put him behind you. And keep going to therapy: from what you said, you remained with your husband for a long time. Learn why you didn't leave him before or better yet, why you ended up with him in the first place. And give up the control. Your husband is not your problem. Hand him out to God.

I hope this help. Christine

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Date: Saturday, June 29, 2002

S1

Dear Jane,

I did exactly what you are doing. I had my husband arrested for Domestic Violence Battery and then when we were allowed to communicate by email and phone - I let him abuse me more by withdrawal. I gave up my power, begged him to change, cried, etc.

After two more months of abuse, I finally got a full restraining order (no contact). We divorced a year ago. It wasn't what I wanted, but it was the only sane thing to do. Let it go.

He will not change if you chase him.

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Date: Thursday, August 08, 2002

S1

Jane, I know the feelings you're having. But it is his way of keeping the control. Some how women who have been in abusive relationships tend to look at the good over the bad. We hope for the change. We want to be the one to fix and help him. BUT we can't. They have to want to. My husband and I used to have the best times together and never bored with each other. Everything was perfect...except when I disagreed with him or when he drank. He would go from the most loving, caring person in the world, protecting me from any harm...to the most dangerous person being the one to hurt me the most. Yet after punching me in the head several times or pulling my hair out of my head, he would take care of me and bathe me and cry about how he did that to me. And that he really wanted to not be like that. But he would only go to counseling with me. WE were the problem...not just him. Once I gave in and talked to him again he would gain the control right back by making me feel like I was the one making him angry. I went back over and over. It only got worse. He almost killed me, literally, four times. As long as you contact him, he knows you'll come back eventually. HE should be the one calling and trying to prove it to you. He's not. So he is not ready for the help. Cut all contact off. If he really wants to change, he'll prove it to you. Loving you has nothing to do with it. It's realizing he needs help. If he doesn't prove something to you, you don't want to live like that anymore. It has only been 2 months completely away from my husband and I miss him to death...the good him...but when I think about the bad things he has done to me, I realize he should have made a change for me along time ago. But he didn't. I even moved out of state without telling anyone so that I couldn't contact him easily. He was my life...everything I lived for...as he said I was his angel. But you know what? Who is supposed to be our angel? We deserve the same kind of respect that we gave them. If you hold on to any hope for him to change...leave him be and give HIM the altimatum. A controlling man will never change if he's not forced to. Tell him it's that or nothing. Trust me, Jane, I tried and tried giving the love and support. That doesn't work. My prayers are with you and I really wish you the best. Jai-a friend who understands

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Date: Wednesday, August 28, 2002

S1

I understand where Jane is coming from. I'm in a similair situation with my husband. He blames me for his temper. I don't even have to raise my voice at him and he'll start yelling at me. He has a big problem with anger. For many years, I've tried to get him into counseling (marriage & anger management) He thinks I'm the one who needs counseling. I'm freaking out myself because we got into a huge fight 3 days ago. He left and I have not heard from him. We have 2 kids together and he has not called to check up on his. He left us with his truck which is about to break down. Just to get even with me, he took my car. I want him to come home so we can work this out. He hasn't called me. I know he's mad at me and blames me for everything. I don't know why I feel this way. I should be glad he left. I guess there's nothing I can do to make him change. I can beg and plead with him, but its up to him. I'm so afraid!

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Date: Sunday, September 01, 2002

S1

i went through the same feeling as Jane 3 months ago when i left my husband's house.I had stomach aches, headache, did not eat ,etc.My family and friends could not understand why i was getting mixed feelings rather than happy.But whoever i spoke with told me NEVER to go back.My life would be miserable if i went back to my abusive husband.And he never missed me even for a minute.I was praying and hoping that he would call me ,want me back but little did i know he had filed for an annulment !Abusive men can never be trusted .The important thing is you are out of that relationship .Get over him ,he is and will always be a loser.

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Date: Monday, September 09, 2002

S1

Jane, I feel your pain. I am just a few steps behind you. I am trying to give it my best shot...My husband is very verbally abusive and frequently suggests I cheat on him, or that he's inadequately sized. Which neither of which are the case. Those are the small worries. Stay strong, and I would love to read about your progress.

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Date: Saturday, September 21, 2002

S1

if you had the chance to leave stay away for your sake u have a good job dont't go back i am trying had a down fall lost good job trying now to shool and working in a dept store even if i hear it evry night insults do u want to hear that again

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Date: Saturday, October 05, 2002

S1

First, God wants us to Love ourselves First!. I had been in a verbal and physical abuse marriage for 25 years and hoped he would change. Most times the DON'T change. The longer you tolerate it, the more they become use to it, the more they feed on it. You become their "kicking box". If respect is So Low that they Actually verbally abuse you; then he does not see you as being worth anything too much in his life. Believe me, his past of abuse as a child is only giving him fuel to strike out at you! If he really wants to help his Self and see his self as the cause of the frustration between the two of you then he is ready to at least start a beginning to Change. Otherwise, KEEP ON MOVING! Also, pray for him, not as a person losing herself feeling guilty about his problems; but as a person who loves and cares for Another Human being. God Bless!

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Date: Monday, October 14, 2002

S1

jane i am going through the exact same thing. i don't have any advice for you, i just want to say thank you. it's nice to know i'm not alnoe. it's been 6 days since i spoke to my husband. he leaves me for 2-4 days every 2 weeks and i always begged him to come back. i finally got him to admit to me he likes me too beg him to come back because if i'm begging and crying then that will reassure him i really do love him. That's bull. I decided last wed. was it i can't put up with the way he talks to me and leaving me and ignoring me. he even told me that there is nothing wrong with a man leaving his wife and not speaking to her, it gets her to do what he wants. thats not love. my husband might have loved me at one time or maybe it was infactuation but he doesn't love me now. now it is more a controll factor. he loves to control me. he loves to hurt me. he loves to make me beg and cry to make himself feel better. he loves to put me down to make himself feel better. BUT HE DOESN'T LOVE ME.

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Date: Wednesday, October 23, 2002

S1

Jane I know exactly how you feel. I have spent the last five years of my life with a man who has been mostly verbally and emotionally abusive and a couple of times physically abuse to me and my three boys (they are not his). He moved out of the house (in the middle of the night when everyone about 6 weeks ago and I have been the one that has called him. The only time he has made an attempt to try to get along with the kids and I was about 2 weeks ago when we were in a bad car accident. That lasted for about 5 days. Then it is the same old thing again. He hates my 16 year old son and never misses an opportunity to tell him and me what a f...g punk he is. He thinks it is okay that he throws things and hits things and he denies calling the kids names all the time. As long as he doesn't hit us, it is okay. He agrees to go to counselling if I tell my 16 year old that he is never allowed to use the family computer again and if I tell him he can never drive again until he gets his own car since he was driving when we got into the accident. Like an idiot, I keep telling myself that it is my fault and if I tried harder and was a better wife and a better mother ... then my kids would not bother him the way they do. (He says he should never have to tell them to take the trash out, pick up a shoe, not to put more than one tablespoon of taco meat on their tacos, and not to eat more than 2 tacos for a few examples). If he does tell them something they should jump up immediately regardless of what they are doing. If they don't he says it is his right to punish them whatever way he sees fit. I still love him so much and it hurts so bad inside that we are not together and he doesn't even seem like he cares. Every day seems like a month. I long for 9 pm so I can just sleep and shut out the world. I just want him to love me and the kids. He was nice to us sometimes. Lori

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Date: Monday, October 28, 2002

S1

Hi Jane--- I want to know how you left him? I'm a stay at home mom with two kids and I'm also a student. The last time I was so fed up with my husband I told him to leave. Well he did and he went and wined and dined (or maybe was already doing it) strippers. He told me he slept with them too. Then he had an affair with a 23 year old (I'm 36). He then said his family was the most important thing in his life. Dummy me broke and missed him terribly. He did say he would go into drug treatment (he was using drugs so he says is his justification for all the sins he committed). Here it is three months later and he did not go for treatment but managed to get me to do some drugs with him.. Anyway, He still does wierd things like go out and not answer his phone. He calls to tell me he'll be home shortly and comes home six or ? hours later. I'm trying to live a normal, stable life and I keep getting punched in the stomach. I just want to stop this crap.. I don't want to be treated like this anymore. How do I get out of it?

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Date: Monday, October 28, 2002

S1

Hi Jane--- I want to know how you left him? I'm a stay at home mom with two kids and I'm also a student. The last time I was so fed up with my husband I told him to leave. Well he did and he went and wined and dined (or maybe was already doing it) strippers. He told me he slept with them too. Then he had an affair with a 23 year old (I'm 36). He then said his family was the most important thing in his life. Dummy me broke and missed him terribly. He did say he would go into drug treatment (he was using drugs so he says is his justification for all the sins he committed). Here it is three months later and he did not go for treatment but managed to get me to do some drugs with him.. Anyway, He still does wierd things like go out and not answer his phone. He calls to tell me he'll be home shortly and comes home six or ? hours later. I'm trying to live a normal, stable life and I keep getting punched in the stomach. I just want to stop this crap.. I don't want to be treated like this anymore. How do I get out of it? heidimort1@yahoo.com

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Date: Monday, December 30, 2002

S1

Hi Jane, Hang in there and gain strength through yourself. My situation is just as bad and we (the immediate family) go through a living hell as dad goes off on a rampage about how losey the oldest child is and how he is like he is because of me. He works only a couple months (sometimes up to 12 weeks) a year. I really do love him and other than the emotional rollercoaster ever three months for about 2 weeks, we have what I would call a typical home. Little arguments that are sum what ridiculous. The holidays really set him off...?? go figure. To get to the point: I realized I needed to get my life in order and change myself not him. So I went back to school, enduring all the critizism, got my BA and now have a good job. I could leave him at any time and he knows it, but I choose to stick to my vows. The reason: This is my second marriage! The first one was worst than the one I'm in and I got out quick. I have found that getting yourself in the PRIORTY and making your life what you want then you are strong enough to work through things. Verbal abuse or abuse of any kind should not be tolerated, but once you are out...Do something for youself! Go back to school, change jobs, redecorate your place, focus on you NOT HIM! as hard as it is...He really does miss you, He has no one to abuse! Good Luck, Kara

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Date: Tuesday, March 04, 2003

S1

I TOO AM IN AN ABUSIVE MARRIAGE I TOTALLY DEPEND ON HIM FOR FINANCIAL STABILITY WE RECENTLY BOUGHT A BEAUTIFUL HOME THE DIFFERENCE WITH YOU AND ME IS IHAVE 2CHILDREN BOY15 GIRL12 HE HAS BECOME ABUSIVE WITH MY SON ALSO IFEEL SCARED OF CHANGE AND IM STILL WITH HIM EVENTHOUGH I HATE HIM IT NEVER GETS BETTER JUST WORSE IHAVE GONE TO COUNSELING ONLY TO STOP. I ADMIRE YOU FOR YOUR STRENGTH I HOPE MAYBE ILL BE ABLE TO DO THE SAME.I WAS READING SOME OF THE LETTERS SENT TO YOU AND I COULDNT BELIEVE THE RESEMBLANCE TO MY STORY AND TO THOSE OF YOU WITH CHILDREN IF YOU LEFT STAY AWAY IT GETS MUCH WORSE FOR THE CHILDREN I LOVE MY CHILDREN AND MY NEW HOME BUT HE WOULD NEVER LEAVE.BUT IDO KEEP THINKING ABOUT DOING SO PLEASE PRAY FOR ME AND MY CHILDREN.SIGNED DISAPPOINTED AT MYSELF

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Date: Tuesday, March 04, 2003

S1

I TOO AM IN AN ABUSIVE MARRIAGE I TOTALLY DEPEND ON HIM FOR FINANCIAL STABILITY WE RECENTLY BOUGHT A BEAUTIFUL HOME THE DIFFERENCE WITH YOU AND ME IS IHAVE 2CHILDREN BOY15 GIRL12 HE HAS BECOME ABUSIVE WITH MY SON ALSO IFEEL SCARED OF CHANGE AND IM STILL WITH HIM EVENTHOUGH I HATE HIM IT NEVER GETS BETTER JUST WORSE IHAVE GONE TO COUNSELING ONLY TO STOP. I ADMIRE YOU FOR YOUR STRENGTH I HOPE MAYBE ILL BE ABLE TO DO THE SAME.I WAS READING SOME OF THE LETTERS SENT TO YOU AND I COULDNT BELIEVE THE RESEMBLANCE TO MY STORY AND TO THOSE OF YOU WITH CHILDREN IF YOU LEFT STAY AWAY IT GETS MUCH WORSE FOR THE CHILDREN I LOVE MY CHILDREN AND MY NEW HOME BUT HE WOULD NEVER LEAVE.BUT IDO KEEP THINKING ABOUT DOING SO PLEASE PRAY FOR ME AND MY CHILDREN.SIGNED DISAPPOINTED AT MYSELF

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Date: Tuesday, March 04, 2003

S1

I TOO AM IN AN ABUSIVE MARRIAGE I TOTALLY DEPEND ON HIM FOR FINANCIAL STABILITY WE RECENTLY BOUGHT A BEAUTIFUL HOME THE DIFFERENCE WITH YOU AND ME IS IHAVE 2CHILDREN BOY15 GIRL12 HE HAS BECOME ABUSIVE WITH MY SON ALSO IFEEL SCARED OF CHANGE AND IM STILL WITH HIM EVENTHOUGH I HATE HIM IT NEVER GETS BETTER JUST WORSE IHAVE GONE TO COUNSELING ONLY TO STOP. I ADMIRE YOU FOR YOUR STRENGTH I HOPE MAYBE ILL BE ABLE TO DO THE SAME.I WAS READING SOME OF THE LETTERS SENT TO YOU AND I COULDNT BELIEVE THE RESEMBLANCE TO MY STORY AND TO THOSE OF YOU WITH CHILDREN IF YOU LEFT STAY AWAY IT GETS MUCH WORSE FOR THE CHILDREN I LOVE MY CHILDREN AND MY NEW HOME BUT HE WOULD NEVER LEAVE.BUT IDO KEEP THINKING ABOUT DOING SO PLEASE PRAY FOR ME AND MY CHILDREN.SIGNED DISAPPOINTED AT MYSELF

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Date: Tuesday, March 04, 2003

S1

I TOO AM IN AN ABUSIVE MARRIAGE I TOTALLY DEPEND ON HIM FOR FINANCIAL STABILITY WE RECENTLY BOUGHT A BEAUTIFUL HOME THE DIFFERENCE WITH YOU AND ME IS IHAVE 2CHILDREN BOY15 GIRL12 HE HAS BECOME ABUSIVE WITH MY SON ALSO IFEEL SCARED OF CHANGE AND IM STILL WITH HIM EVENTHOUGH I HATE HIM IT NEVER GETS BETTER JUST WORSE IHAVE GONE TO COUNSELING ONLY TO STOP. I ADMIRE YOU FOR YOUR STRENGTH I HOPE MAYBE ILL BE ABLE TO DO THE SAME.I WAS READING SOME OF THE LETTERS SENT TO YOU AND I COULDNT BELIEVE THE RESEMBLANCE TO MY STORY AND TO THOSE OF YOU WITH CHILDREN IF YOU LEFT STAY AWAY IT GETS MUCH WORSE FOR THE CHILDREN I LOVE MY CHILDREN AND MY NEW HOME BUT HE WOULD NEVER LEAVE.BUT IDO KEEP THINKING ABOUT DOING SO PLEASE PRAY FOR ME AND MY CHILDREN.SIGNED DISAPPOINTED AT MYSELF

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Date: Tuesday, March 04, 2003

S1

I TOO AM IN AN ABUSIVE MARRIAGE I TOTALLY DEPEND ON HIM FOR FINANCIAL STABILITY WE RECENTLY BOUGHT A BEAUTIFUL HOME THE DIFFERENCE WITH YOU AND ME IS IHAVE 2CHILDREN BOY15 GIRL12 HE HAS BECOME ABUSIVE WITH MY SON ALSO IFEEL SCARED OF CHANGE AND IM STILL WITH HIM EVENTHOUGH I HATE HIM IT NEVER GETS BETTER JUST WORSE IHAVE GONE TO COUNSELING ONLY TO STOP. I ADMIRE YOU FOR YOUR STRENGTH I HOPE MAYBE ILL BE ABLE TO DO THE SAME.I WAS READING SOME OF THE LETTERS SENT TO YOU AND I COULDNT BELIEVE THE RESEMBLANCE TO MY STORY AND TO THOSE OF YOU WITH CHILDREN IF YOU LEFT STAY AWAY IT GETS MUCH WORSE FOR THE CHILDREN I LOVE MY CHILDREN AND MY NEW HOME BUT HE WOULD NEVER LEAVE.BUT IDO KEEP THINKING ABOUT DOING SO PLEASE PRAY FOR ME AND MY CHILDREN.SIGNED DISAPPOINTED AT MYSELF

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Date: Friday, March 14, 2003

S1

Jane you're much stronger then I. Be proud you left. Screw him and his anger. You are the strong one...

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Date: Thursday, April 03, 2003

S1

Jane, I give you alot of credit for leaving that abusive relationship. I know how you feel because I am married to a verbal abuser too. Its not easy but hang in there, You did the right thing. I am looking for an apt for myself also. Its like an emotional roller coaster. Don't go back to him. Fran franniej@optonline.net

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Date: Thursday, April 03, 2003

S1

Jane, I give you alot of credit for leaving that abusive relationship. I know how you feel because I am married to a verbal abuser too. Its not easy but hang in there, You did the right thing. I am looking for an apt for myself also. Its like an emotional roller coaster. Don't go back to him. Fran franniej@optonline.net

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Date: Saturday, April 12, 2003

S1

Dear Jane, I have lived with my emotionally, verbally and physically abusive husband for 19 years. I have done everything to make things better but he still remains the same. I am leaving him .god please make it easy for me!!! Friend

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Date: Tuesday, May 06, 2003

S1

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Date: Friday, May 16, 2003

S1

Find a therapist quick!! The way you're feeling is part of his abuse. He has made you feel so dependent on him so he can control you. You have to be strong and figure out why you're feeling the way you are. PLEASE don't even think about going back to him. I am in an abusive marriage right now and will be moving out this summer (for the fourth time). Until my husband takes action and responsibility for some of our problems, I will not be back. Somehow (only with the Lord's help), I have realized that I am a wonderful, beautiful person and I can live without my husband running/ruining my life. I would certainly like to work out our marriage, but I have come to the realization that it may not happen. No matter what happens, I believe in myself and love and appreciate myself and he will never take that away from me again!

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Date: Sunday, June 01, 2003

S1

Hi, Jane, wow, I am separated from my husband right now, and WOW you sound just like me , I feel the same exact way as you, and yes I left because I want to give my husband a wake up call too, I know yhey say not to leave for those reasons, but man, I just gotta' at least try it. It is soooo hard because I love my husband with all my heart and I don't want to leave him or be with out him, even though he does verbally and even sometimes physically abuse me , I fight just as hard back with him though so then I wind up feeling guilty like I provoked it. Anyway, my husband owns a paving company, I work for him and we went out of state to see how business would be there we got in a huge fight today so I left with out him knowing it and flew all the way home (from St.Louis to Tx.) I was supposed to come home anyway sometime this week, but I just flew home now, I know you are not supposed to leave to make them change, but I don't want to leave for good!!! If you wanna chat I'll keep checking back, God bless you girl!!!

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Date: Sunday, June 08, 2003

S1

I think Jane needs to realize that this man is beyond her help. He is not the man she thinks he is and he might be more dangerous than she might realize. He might be meaner to her the more she has to do with him and she should stay very far away from him because he will never meet her needs, he's too into himself and not into working on the realtionship.

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Date: Sunday, July 13, 2003

S1

Jane....I just read your letter & I know you must be in a lot of pain at feeling "rejected" by someone you obviously love very much. I've been married for three years to a wonderful person who, just so happens to have a drinking problem. I threw him out of the house today and I'm lonely...weird huh? I have no idea how to help him so I am making every effort to think of myself and it is very very hard to do. I love him very much but the 6-12 beers per day made him verbally abuse me at least once per week and I'm drained...the next day apoligies got old and now I sit here alone....He might call but it's been several hours since he left so I really must not be that special to him or he would have already called....His loss....Hope this helps..Good luck and I know you'll find the strength to move ahead just like you found the strength to realize that no one deserves to be mistreated. Take care!

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Date: Friday, August 22, 2003

S1

Jane, My husband of 5 years is also verbally abusive to me. I am getting very near the point of leaving him too. He is cocky, is seemingly quite satisfied when he gets so ugly that I cry. I try not to cry, but sometime I can't help it. I am pretty, I am smart, and I am stupid. Because I need to wake up and face the fact that he is not going to change. If he hasn't in 5 years, why waste the rest of my life? He only cares about himself and his two children by his previous wife. A very, very selfish and immature man. Hang in there! You did the right thing! Jan