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4/14 Interactive Board: Codependent Partners

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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

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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 To If Only

Comments To If Only

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 2000. 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: Wednesday, February 23, 2000

S1

Lora- this is overly simplistic but--- You have to access that part of yourself that can stand up to your husband, as hard as that may be for someone as sweet and gentle as you are, and stand up to your husband. As to the why of his behavior- you may as well ask why it rains in Seattle. I had an abusive sibling for several years, and when I kept asking myself why he did what he did, I only ended up double victimizing myself. It has only been recently that I have started to accept that he just was obeying the rules inside of his head, just as a hurricane obeys the rules of nature. He just was. His abuse had about 0% to do with me, except for the fact that I existed, I was small and weak and could be dominated when my brother had no one else available to fill that unfortunate dominating need of his. I suspect your husband may have similar problems. May I suggest you read the extensive works of Dr. Albert Ellis and others in the Rational-Emotive-Behavior Therapy tradition, such as Paul Hauck. Their explanation of neurotic behavior is incredible and enlightening. It will help you to understand that your husband has very little choice in what he does (unless, of course, he WORKS HARD AT HELPING HIMSELF.) At least, then, you will be in a more rational position, able to more calmly evaluate your situation as to whether to stay with him, and under what conditions, including of course whatever your economic situation is with four kids should you and the children depart. This is not easy, but its reality. Anyway I pray for you and bravo to you for raising four children. May you be gentle with yourself anyways. And Dr. Irene- if you happen to read this- what more can I add about what a wonderful and enriching web site this is. You have touched so many lives. Peace, D.

B1: Submit
Date: Wednesday, February 23, 2000

S1

I live this life on a daily basis...I can't believe there are others...I am in the beginning and don't know where to start putting up boundaries I am glad you have. Good luck!

B1: Submit
Date: Wednesday, February 23, 2000

S1

Well, it has helped me to be surprised by his behavior- like it has just started happening. It gives me a fresh prospective. Act like this stranger is coming in to YOUR house and judging how hard you work. "How dare you! I work my butt off to keep up, getting ahead will come after they are grown!", or "I do the best I can. I am a good mother, and that is the most important job." might stop him. I started saying simply "Don't worry about fixing me, fix yourself". It might help. The more he bugged me, the less I felt like trying, and I told him this. He backed off a bit. Good Luck!

B1: Submit
Date: Wednesday, February 23, 2000

S1

Lora, Good for you for recognizing the "crazy-making" selfishness that is going on. Dr. Irene is right, it's HIS problem, not yours!

I had to see my husband for what he really is.... a scared and angry little boy in a man's body. That helps me keep everything in perspective. He's whining no matter what (because he's not getting his way), and even if you could do everything he wants, he would just keep adding to the list.

My best friend went on "strike"...just stopped doing housework. Her husband just got more obnoxious. The light came on for me when I finally realized that no matter how much I wanted him to change or "get it", I COULDN'T MAKE HIM! He has to want to break down those barriers in your relationship by working on HIMSELF. Don't worry about worry about him not doing what he should, work on yourself and what you need to do for you and the kids (minus #5). This is important for you and your self-esteem. You don't say whether you have any daughters, but how you handle this will be included in the legacy you pass down to your children. Ask yourself these questions: Would I want my daughter to marry a man like my husband? Would I want my son to act like my husband? Getting yourself straight starts everything on the right path. You're on your way, God Bless!

Trystan

B1: Submit
Date: Thursday, February 24, 2000

S1

Your husband like's to play the "if only" game. He's a nothing but a bully. I've worked with people who behave this way...always picking on you about something. I say dig your heals in really hard and refuse to allow him to bully you anymore. Don't be afraid of him....he's not going anywhere. Try this tact every time he complains about how you clean...say to him since you can do it so much better.. then you do it your way... and then hand him a mop.. vacuum or any cleaning tool....and walk away. Use this tact every time he opens his mouth to complain. The more he complains...the more you give him to do.. since he can do it so much better. He'll blow smoke for a while...but soon the bully will back off big time. Keep repeating to him like a broken record...if don't like the way I do it...then do it yourself. When he yells back...ignore him and leave his presence. Keep thinking in your mind this is his tough luck...cause he has a problem with this....and it has nothing whatsoever to do with me. It's all about respect....except no less from him for yourself. You'll be amazed how well this technique works on a him. The truth is he feels inferior to you....that's why he acts this way.. to protect having his negative ego discovered.

 

B1: Submit
Date: Thursday, February 24, 2000

S1

This sounds a lot like my life. If only my house were cleaner. I am afraid he will try to take my two boys and blame everything he can on me. I have severe scoliosis (curvature of the spine ) and it prevents me from doing a lot that needs done at home. If I am on my feet much such as sweeping, mopping etc. I have to walk almost doubled over for awhile. My husband isn't working and is drawing unemployment and spends almost all of his days and nights in bed watching TV. My stove and refrigerator went out over 2 yr. ago and he hasn't replaced or fixed either of them. My mother lives beside me so the 2 boys and I go over there to do the cooking. My husband won't eat hardly anything if it isn't cooked in a restaurant. He goes out and gets something and most of the time eats in front of us. He keeps the money he draws each week and I get about $30 to buy food for me and the boys for the week. I can't work due to my back and have been turned down for disability. On top of everything else my washer has quit and I have to take our clothes to my mothers to wash them. My dryer quit a year ago so I can only wash when the weather is good. He has started now to refuse to pay our phone bill so it will be turned off. My mother had to pay our eletric bill this month because he wouldn't. I am to the point I don't know what to do. We have been married 17 yr. and he hasn't always been this way. He has just gotten this way in the last 2 yr. I just don't see how it can go on much longer. I stay sick most of the time lately and I am sure it is due to stress. We have no health insurance so I can't go to the doctor when I need to. The children don't seem to be affected too much. They are 9 and 15. The oldest one is a lot of help to me. They have always raised different kinds of animals as a hobby and they are very attached to them. My husband says if we want anymore money we can sell them . He has quit buying any feed for them and I have been making a little money off of surveys on the internet that I let the kids have to feed their pets. My mother pays my internet charge each month. If I didn't have this I think I would go crazy. If I leave him and take the boys with me to live with my mother, would he have the right to come and get them and try to get custody ? I just don't know what I am up against and I would stay and put up with this forever rather than to lose my children. Any help you can give me would be greatly appreciated.

B1: Submit
Date: Thursday, February 24, 2000

S1

You do not have to put up with this. It seems to me that he may not even try to get custody of the boys since they may just be a burden to him. (Since his only thing to do in life is to sit and watch t.v.) He may do it at first just to spite you but will give up knowing that he can't even take care of himself. Start right now to document everything he has done to you or the children. Even if it is leaving you without heat or electricity. Keep it in a journal at your mother's house so he can not see it. Your mother seems to be a great help and support to you. Can't you just move in there with the boys so that you can get your thinking clear? It sounds to me like she would take you and this may signal to him that you are not going to live in these conditions. This may make him get up and get a job.. anything...even if it is flipping hamburgers. You say this has just started. Could he be in depression from losing his job? Maybe he needs to see a doctor. If you check the social service offices you can find so many organizations for help whether it is counseling for you and the boys, food stamps, utility money. There are Samaritan centers that have used appliances and stuff in good condition. Just call and they can help. I know my parish priest has things that he would just love to give people who could use it. He gave me a new kitchen table and 8 chairs because I couldn't afford one and my family of 7 were sitting at a little table with any chair I could find. A business gave it to him as a donation and he gave it to me still in the box! There are so many places now to get what you need. I do not know if you can apply for Medicaid. This way you can get your health problems taken care of and I think that would make you feel so much better. The stress in my house gave me tension headaches which felt like migraines and I could not even cope. The doctor put me on medication and it makes it so much better. The stress in the house can run you down to the ground...be careful. Start now to look up these organizations and do not be afraid to ask what you need. You and your boys deserve to be treated properly. Do not take any less for yourselves. Once you get stronger you will be able to give him some sort of ultimatum that he must straighten up or you are gone. As I said before...maybe it is time for you to go to your mom's and just worry about you and the boys. You might also want to see if you can get a public defender or someone in the woman's crisis center who knows the law and can tell you about custody battles. Good luck to you and I wish you well. Start dialing the phone to a new future!!!! Karen

B1: Submit
Date: Friday, February 25, 2000

S1

Dear Lora,

My abuser/husband came to my house last night after his anger management group session and said something fascinating. "Dr. H says that most of his clients complain about their wives' housekeeping abilities." I realized years ago that knocking myself out at menial labor didn't satisfy him or me. I believe my husband's intent was to keep me doing the most menial and degrading tasks available. It kept me away from the creative things which I found satisfying. When he told the children they didn't have to be tidy, that cleaning was MY job, I went on strike, and I stopped feeling like a maid!

Your abuser is forcing you to choose between trying to keep HIM happy, and what is good for you and your children. Valuing yourself and your time and raising your children to be emotionally healthy are far more important than dusting and waxing, etc. " Needs" should be satisfied before "wants." If you make your self and your children your priority instead of your husband, it will be infinitely more rewarding for you. You all are worth the effort, and he is not. He will kick and scream. Let him. Can you see that he has placed his own happiness above everything else, and tried to make you responsible for it?

My Abuser used to complain about the way I hung his trousers. I finally told him to do his own laundry and NOT to over-load the machines, because he wouldn't like sitting at the Laundromat much. And Dr. Irene is right. As soon as I had that straightened out, it was something else.

Setting limits with your abuser is going to be hard, because you have little practice, but it needs to be done! How would it feel to say this to him: "Since the quality of my work rarely satisfies you, I have quit TRYING to satisfy you. From now on, I will devote only x hours per day to housecleaning, and I will do only those chores which I feel are important." THEN DO IT, and do ONLY that. If he insists on being the King of the Castle, then be the Queen, not the slave.

My abuser and I were already separated when I read "The Verbally Abusive Relationship" by Patricia Evans, (please order this from http://www.drirene.com/book_shelf.htm ) but it was all that I needed to kill any doubts that I had done the right thing... even if it was 20 years too late. Then I read the book "Boundaries" by Cloud and Townsend. Dr. Irene recommended a different one for you. That's fine! This one was everything I needed to know about boundaries, both mine and his, what they are, how and when to set them and defend them, and a whole LOT MORE. Now we have a separation which is far more successful than our marriage, and he is getting the help he needs. And in the evenings, we are studying the Boundaries book together. I have actually seen true remorse on his part, which is SOOOO much better than a sneer with an apology. REALLY, there is NO substitute for reading these books. A boundaries book and Patricia Evans' book are a fast start to insight and healing.

As to whether a separation is necessary, it takes whatever it takes, and sometimes you have to leave (or throw him out) just to get him to pay attention!

One thing is certain. You can't start this "yesterday," so today will have to do. Please don't put it off. Your children are paying heavily for this, too, and if it isn't stopped, they will pay for it with their happiness, their relationships, and their lives.

Hugs,

B1: Submit
Date: Friday, February 25, 2000

S1

Hello. I am the one that wrote in that has back problems. To answer the question that could it be possible that my husband is suffering from depression, I would have to say that it is very possible. About 4 yrs. ago he lost his business through no fault of his own. He started it right after high school. The main company that he done business with cut way back and this hurt a lot of people in our area. We tried to make it by starting to work for another company but then this company went out of business in 3 months. On top of that part of our equipment was vandalized during this time and after it was taken in to be repaired, it was stolen from the repair shop and taken out of state. During this time we fell behind at the bank and everything was forced to be sold. We had been paying the payments on his parents farm and after this ,it had to be sold and they had to move and start over. My husband then took a job and worked for the last 3 yr. working about 50 hours a week and for the first time in his life had to work for someone else. Last fall he was offered a better paying and easier job so he took it. Then they shut down his department about a month ago for remodeling. The layoff is supposed to last 4 months. This is why he is on unemployment and it is the first time in his life he has drawn any. He was 39 yesterday. This is why it is so hard to leave him because if this were me I might just feel like going to bed and staying there too. I think he has just given up. This is why I think it might be depression.

B1: Submit
Date: Friday, February 25, 2000

S1

It seems he may be depressed but this is still NO EXCUSE for him to treat you and the children badly. He is keeping money from you and then eating in front of you and you have to spread a few dollars out between the 3 of you? That is just not right! He is also criticizing your housework while he lays down and watches t.v. all day. If he was doing what he was supposed to be doing he would take this time that he is drawing unemployment and fixing the necessities in your house. If not he should be out trying to pick up some work to bring some extra money in. You do not need to be there letting him treat you like you are beneath him. You should both be deciding what is done with the money. You are not feeling well and he should be helping with the chores...he lives there too. The idea of selling the children's pets is very sad. He should try eating eggs for dinner and save some money so that the children can have these pets that mean so much to them. Do not feel like you have to listen to him when he is demanding what you should and should not do. Go to the Yak board on this site and you will get alot of advise. It is under the support and info on top of this page. Go down and go to the yak board. There is alot there you can learn and you can post some concerns of your as well. See you there..I am there all the time and have learned alot as well as getting support from people who care.

B1: Submit
Date: Friday, February 25, 2000

S1

Dear Lora,

Paragraph 8 of your letter really got me!! Your husbands said, "I am taking responsibility for my behavior..." and in the very same breath says, "and if you want me to be happy at home you have to.....".

I would suggest to you, and countless others, to read that line over and over and over and over again. Then go back and read it 20 more times.

One of the most important things in recovering from verbal abuse is to develop your ability to recognize an assault. If you can learn to see them at the onset, you can immediately disengage from "inappropriate conversation" (for lack of a better term). Whether you stay in your current relationship or move on, this skill must be learned to avoid an endless cycle of abuse.

Best wishes to you and your family.

Stacey

B1: Submit
Date: Friday, February 25, 2000

S1

this is where I have spent every day of the past 16 years... sometimes I thought I was losing my mind. now i have made what I HOPE is a positive step forward, I am filing for divorce. he only wants to attend amateur counseling and the counselor seemed to think that my housekeeping inabilities was equal to his verbal abuse. maybe it is a drastic and wrong move, but I have 8 children that I want to grow up with healthy attitudes about priorities. thank you all for writing, now I don't feel so alone.

B1: Submit
Date: Friday, February 25, 2000

S1

Lora, I am married to a house-obsessed man, also. His thing is the carpet. He is forever griping about spots in the carpet and cleaning spots and yelling at the kids for drinking in the living room, etc. Drives me nuts!!!!

I just try to block it out. Sooner than we realize, our (hubby and me) kids will be out of the house, and he can have his clean carpet. And loneliness.

Marie

 

B1: Submit
Date: Sunday, February 27, 2000

S1

After 26 years I can say that things will only get worse. Get out now, escape, save yourself and your children. Contact a local abuse center for guidance. I did and my life is so much better.

B1: Submit
Date: Sunday, February 27, 2000

S1

This sounds like the last 17 years for me. I too woke up 15 years into it and now I've been separated from my husband for 8 months and have filed for divorce. I too, have 4 children and have had to go back to work full time, and do everything he always had control of. He lives in a different state so there isn't much help with the kids. Yes, it is difficult and people ask me "Don't you miss your husband"? I say " Do I miss the tantrums, the threats, the put downs, the lectures, holes in the wall, yelling etc. NO I can't say I do. I too had every stress related illness as well. I am slowly getting better but it takes a lot of work. I have to say the day he was out of the house, I have woken up every morning knowing that I could come home at the end of the day and find peace... Im getting to know myself all over again, so much of ourselves get lost inside due to always trying to please the abuser so we wont get abused. Ask yourself Am I happy, Are my children happy, Is the a safe situation, is this a healthy situation. You can do this, you will find the right answer. S.B

B1: Submit
Date: Wednesday, March 01, 2000

S1

I thought that once my husband admitted he had a problem, like yours did, that he would change. He didn't want therapy either, he said he could handle it. That is a very telling sign. My husband was just telling me what I wanted to hear, so he could continue the abuse. Is yours? It took me four painful years after the initial recognition of verbal abuse for me to realize that he was never going to change, no matter what verbal defense techniques I used , no matter what medication I took, no matter how much therapy I got, no matter how much he "tried" to control his contempt for me. We are now divorcing, and I wish I had those years back (total of 28) but at least I have my future. Working full-time, single parenthood, none of it is a stressful as living with someone who is a verbal abuser.

B1: Submit
Date: Friday, March 03, 2000

S1

Dear Lora, I too was in such a relationship. It is NOT going to get better until he sees what he is doing to you and your kids. This will not happen unless gets help. He has to want it however. I must tell you, most men who are like this never change. He will always blame you for everything that goes wrong, only what's wrong to him is o.k. with the rest of the world. The chances of him giving up control are slim and none. I hope you have a good job, and a strong family. Please get out before your kids start to treat you like he does. Don't you deserve a peaceful life, and someone who makes you smile? I know you do!

B1: Submit
Date: Wednesday, March 15, 2000

S1

Lora, Wow, as I read your post, you could be me, except for a few details. I'm so glad that I found this site!!! I thought I was the only one who got yelled at for the house not being up to his expectations. We have 7 kids, and I homeschool, which, though I love it, and it is VERY worth it, these precious, messy kids are here all day! Add to that the fact that we just moved and are currently surrounded by boxes. Here's what I did recently in response to a tantrum: When I was pregnant with the last baby, he got abusive about the fact that his laundry wasn't always done according to his timing - he only had two underpants in drawer, etc. I finaly had enough and told him that from then on, he could do his own laundry. He groussed, of course, but I stood firm. With this recent move, I was basically just throwing whatever laundry that was dirty in the washer, just to get it done. I decided (big mistake) to do his just out of courtesy. Well, of course, when he saw that he was running out of undies, he asked me where they were. I honestly answered that I didn't know. I really didn't. There were boxes and stuff all over this new house we'd only been in a few days, and I knew I had done it, but I really couldn't locate his particular laundry right then. He launched in to a tirade that lasted at least 10 minutes, with him literally screaming at me, in front of the children over this. I just blew it off, and later that evening, privately, told him again that from now on, he would again be doing his own laundry. Another tantrum. I stood my ground. Boy, was I proud of myself. This is a big deal for me! So the next thing I know, he's asked the 11yo dd to do his laundry, for pay. I will put a stop to this. I won't have her put in this position. Anyway, through this episode, I have actually remained calm, if nervous, inside, and stood firm. I know, of course, that it will be something else in a few days, but I feel much more confident on being firm and calm, just knowing that I am not alone. I have a question: the day after the second tantrum, I was able to calmly tell him that I wasn't backing down, and I insisted that he get counselling for the anger. We have gone to "marriage counselling" which was really only dealing with the surface stuff. I told him that I feel that he is a very angry person, was angry before we ever met, and until he deals with that anger, counselling together doesn't appear to me to be of much use. So far, it's only been "Band-aid" counselling, dealing with very shallow relationship problems. I also told him that I am very willing to go to counselling with him, but I can't help him with the anger because it's his problem. Of course, he denied that his anger is a problem..yadda yadda yadda. Was this a big mistake? I think I have gotten to the point where I can see it as his problem, not mine. I have told the kids for quite a while, and they really don't need to be told this because they figure it out by themselves by 11 or 12, that they really don't need to worry about pleasing him or weather he'll get mad over something, because it will never be good enough, and/or he'll find something else to comlain about. Now if I can Just convince myself of that all the time! I just love Dr. Irene's comment that the person doing the complaining is the one with the problem. I think I'll write that one in indellible ink on the inside of my eyelids! Thanks again for this website! Lora, stay firm. You deserve it! Laure

B1: Submit
Date: Wednesday, March 15, 2000

S1

Dear Laure: I hope you check back and read this. First may I commend you for having 7 children. You are a hero! Homeschooling too...give that woman an award. You seem to love them. They are great and I never regret having them. (Or the other ones that may come) You are doing great and just what Dr. Irene said in standing your ground. When they see that you are strong they will try to get control again but eventually back down. This is what my husband did. He has changed incredibly in the recent weeks because I HAVE CHANGED. I do not let him bother me and I do nothing that I do not want to do. Don't like the house? Then do not sit down and watch t.v. and we will clean together. (He goes running)Laundry...you hit the head on the nail. If there is not gotchies and socks always available. I have also done the same. I tell him..my plate is full. While I bathe the children you go and throw a load in. Once you stop explaining or jumping up to do it when they command..they really stop it. About the kids, I do the same thing with mine. I do not hide the abuse. I constantly tell them that daddy should have not acted that way. I want them to know that it is wrong. My oldest son is very keen to it and has my husbands number. They say that if they have someone to go to it makes it so much better later on. My husbands mother turned her back and left the room when his father verbally abused him. He must have felt abandoned and I do not want my children to feel that way. I feel guilty enough at times keeping them in this situation just hoping it will change. But it has been. It took 15 years but it is changing very rapidly now. I know the feeling of victory when you talk about standing up for yourself. It is great...isn't it. I feel so empowered. Quite frankly I don't think he knows what hit him. I guess he figures it is better to go with the flow. Sure there are times where the old guy comes back but it is less and less as time goes by. I wish you the best. You are a very special lady to love and care for those little angels as you do! Keep up the good work.

B1: Submit
Date: Wednesday, March 15, 2000

S1

Dear Laure: I forgot...we went to counceling a few years back and they just skimmed over the issues of marriage such as she likes white and he likes black and how do we get to gray. By the 10th visit the therapist said...I can not continue marriage counceling. I need to see your husband alone. He is abusive and I can not work on the marriage until we fix his situation and then we can continue on the little things in marriage that you two can not agree on. Keep in mind that this is like a computer. For years he was programmed all the wrong information until now. We must go and take all the information out until he was a child and reprogram it back in. You (meaning me) must be serious about sticking through this because it is a long road and can take up to 6 years to complete. I almost cried. Cried of happiness because someone finally validated what I have been feeling for so long. Cried of sadness because of the horrible prognosis. So you must find a councelor who understands abuse. At first my husband said that I poisoned the therapist against him and she told him right to his face that her decision was based ONLY ON THINGS HE SAID OR DID! We took some short cuts because I did some major praying and I beleive God sped his recovery up a tad. There is hope for the family and that is encouraging. As I said, keep up the good work.

 

B1: Submit
Date: Wednesday, March 15, 2000

S1

I was never able to put a finger on what was happening in my own relationship until I read this letter. I feel like i just read my own story. My husband often reacts the same way. I will have you in my prayers.

B1: Submit
Date: Thursday, March 16, 2000

S1

Thank you SO much those of you who responded to my post!!! I didn't want to horn in on Lora's story, but there were just so many similarities. Today was a lovely "empowered" day, and I usually don't use terms like that. BTW, I calmly confronted him and told him that dd will not be doing his laundry because I will not put her in a position to be yelled at like that. He said that if she did it on time, he wouldn't have to get angry (HA!) I told him "Nevertheless, Mandy will not be doing your laundry", and that he was responsible for figuring out how to get it done without getting mean. He kept saying "Just do the Laundry!!" and I kept saying that the laundry is not the issue. He grumped about it before he left for work (after lunch!) but then was sweet as pie this evening, even asking if I wanted to ....well, you know AARRGH! (I said no). Anyway thank you again for this site! I have been searching for months for a place to talk about this stuff where I would be understood! Love and PEACE, Laure P.S. I went and bought "Boundries" for myself today..hardcover, yet!

B1: Submit
Date: Wednesday, April 12, 2000

S1

Boy, does this stuff sound familiar. After therapy, one year in couples therapy, one year in therapy on my own, and now back to therapy for me only, I am still struggling.

The comments about him needing the house to be kept clean to prove I love and respect him, my body to be in shape to prove I love and respect him, to keep purchases to a minimum to prove I love and respect him, to allow him to yell and scream at me, the baby, the dog, his teenage daughter because we don't respect him. It all makes my head spin.

Previous therapy was really helpful in understanding that the "perfect" family life I thought I was brought up in was only "perfect" in my mother's eyes. My husband thinks I am still dealing with issues from my family of origin and a previous boyfriend who abused alcohol and me. He simply refuses to entertain the thought that he has responsibility for his anger and his verbally abusive outbursts.

After my meeting with the therapist last night she recommended Patricia Evans' book. I went out and got it and started reading last night. I left it on my nightstand in hopes he'll find it. Last night is the first time I recognized his behavior towards me as being verbally abusive. I am really struggling with how to explain this to him without shutting him out completely. How do you say to someone nicely, "By the way, you are verbally abusive and really difficult to live with" when they refuse to see themselves as responsible for any of it? Any tips or suggestions would be really helpful.

My therapist has a saying on the back of her business card that has really helped me change my behavior. It says: "Nobody can make you feel inferior without your consent" I re-read that statement about 50 times and then decided to start defending myself and my family. When he yelled at our dog and shook her by the neck, I told him in a very firm voice (not yelling) that I would report him if he continued to treat her that way. After he got done yelling and telling me I didn't know what I was talking about, I told him his anger was unacceptable. From now forward when he has these outbursts showing me and the rest of the family he is out of control, I intend to gather the kids and the dog if necessary and leave the house until he calms down. I just refuse to subject the kids and dog to that kind of behavior any more. I stopped arguing about the housework and keep my activities to my own schedule rather than his. If he is uncomfortable with dirty dishes in the sink for too long and complains to me, I just tell him if it bothers him, he should do something about it. He does. Eventually if something really bothers him he takes care of it. Sometimes he sleeps in a separate room because he can't handle our relationship. I want him to get help because I love him. No matter what he has done, I still love the guy. But I am not going to be accepting of this behavior anymore and have my son grow up to act like what he sees. So, I think its important for the abusers to change our own behavior without being abusive back to the abuser. So, how do you tell an abuser who thinks he's superior to you and Mr. Nice Guy that he's not in a nice way?

B1: Submit
Date: Wednesday, June 07, 2000

S1

They should'nt have porno

B1: Submit
Date: Monday, December 25, 2000

S1

 

B1: Submit
Date: Monday, December 25, 2000

S1

My question is "What makes both her parents codependent?

B1: Submit
Date: Sunday, February 25, 2001

S1

 

B1: Submit
Date: Sunday, August 11, 2002

S1

B1: Submit
Date: Friday, July 04, 2003

S1

i like her parents