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More Covert Abuse

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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

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Date: Thursday, January 25, 2001

Examples of Covert Abuse: My first wife is what I called a "Passive Abuser", that is what she became after I set the limits.

Example: Would agree with me about herself or how to deal with the kids and then act opposite.

2: Would turn the kids against me by explaining my every step as something "male" as if it were bad or my expressed frustrations for what she constantly failed to do as "Mad", thereby making me look unfair and selfish.

3:Constantly failed to do what we had talked about and agreed on. Reasons "Didn't have time, forgot, was interrupted, was trying to do something else 'I' had asked for".

4: Would dress up to go to town but would let herself totally go around me.

Date: Friday, January 26, 2001

I just ended an 18 month abusive relationship with my bf. I am 45 and he is 52. He was wonderful for the first 3 months, then it slowly began. First it was overt; he would just get sarcastic and snappish for no reason, and it would escalate to almost daily. I would ask him "why" and he would respond with "I don't do "why" questions." His behavior became wierder and wierder. Bizarre and irrational. We'd break up several times over. Once, I found rubbers in his overnight bag at my house which it seemed like he wanted me to find, and he got crazy and stated that it was none of my business as to why he had those rubbers. We broke up because he accused me of stealing an extra set of his house keys. Over the months, I slowly became more and more angry at him, however, I wanted to "keep peace" and "make nice", of course, everything I did was manipulative in his eyes. Finally, in July, I found his personal ad that he ran in a local newspaper looking for new women. That did it for me, however, I started missing him in a month's time, and we got back together. A week before Christmas, he broke up with me claiming that he's never done 2 holidays in a row with the same woman. The truth more came out that I was becoming "hypercritical" of his behavior and "hyper vigilant" about his "affairs." He'd lie to my face about where he was going, wouldn't let me complete my sentences, "taunt" me by trying to keep me off guard by saying very hurtful and demeaning stuff about my appearance, the relationship that he didn't want in the first place, throwing in my face the past hurts that he caused me but twisting it around like he was blaming me. All he ever talked about was the relationship in how he felt "blamed." And that people liked his "toxic mouth." How come I couldn't roll with his sarcasm and hurtful mouth? Something was wrong with me, he'd always say. He always told me to shut up even when I wasn't talking. It got very, very wierd. Well, we had a huge fight on Jan. 14 and we have not spoke since. I have no intention in trying to patch things up. I am so fed with his mind games, his trying to make me jealous, his insecurities which he projects to me, his wierd faces and voice that comes out when he is trying to "taunt me". I've never met anyone as wierd, bizarre, and cruel.

B1: Submit
Date: Monday, January 29, 2001

keeps saying we should work on the relationship after specifically told i have no desire to and am seeking a divorce

using guilt to keep me in the relationship

lurking around me while i am busy doing things to the point of startling me

being unnaturally kind esp to the kids, too much change too fast to be real

the feeling that he is using his 3 trips to the therapist to claim a complete change of heart insincere and only so he gets what he wants-namely no divorce

Date: Thursday, February 08, 2001

Well, since my ex was a master at covert abuse, I know a few examples I can contribute. How about this: 1) The covert abuser insists on checking out and commenting on the good looks, sexiness, etc. of other women while you are out in public, right in front of you, as well as women on the television. Then when you say it is rude and unacceptable to you, says, "God are you insecure. Grow up." 2) At gatherings of his family or close friends, leaves you alone and seeks out other groups of people, while you are left to fend for yourself among strangers. When you comment on it, says, "Oh brother! I hadn't seen these people in years and you expect me to sit and hold your hand! Grow up!" 3) Always noticing little flaws in you, but never complimenting you. i.e. Subtle put downs such as, "Why'd you cut your hair? I liked it better before." or "You've got another cold sore, huh?" or "You get a lot of pimples don't you?" or "Why are you wearing a summer dress in the middle of winter?" or "Those pants are too short for you. I don't want you to think you look good, I want you to realize you look goofy so you don't further embarass yourself." 4) Pushes you away when you express affection. i.e. "Oh come on, enough already. Jeez. The honey is over." 5) Questions your knowledge about all sorts of topics, trivia, subjects that you yourself know you are very well-versed in. i.e. "Are you SURE you're right about that? I don't think so. I think you're wrong about that. You don't know what you're talking about." 6) Will never ask you to come over to his place. When you ask if he wants you to come over, says blandly, "If you want." 7) Acts annoyed when you call him at work. Yet will not hesitate to tell you how often his buddies, male and female, call him at work and how they chat all the time, throughout the day. 8) Compliments his female friends, saying they're "good gals", never puts them down. Never compliments you, however. Then when you ask for some type of reassurance, again points to your insecurity. 9) Often forgets to introduce you at gatherings so that you are forced to introduce yourself> When he does remember to introduce you he forgets to say you are his girlfriend or wife or significant other

HOPE THIS HELPS> I HAVE LEFT THE ABOVE mentioned loser< so not to worry!

Date: Saturday, February 10, 2001

If you send emails in response to these posts please do not send one to this account (it is a girl who's boyfriend is really good friends with my husband and I don't want anything to get back to him)

Okay, The examples of making messes and not cleaning up, or the caring for the kids (lack of), I can definitely relate to. Several of the examples of an abuser are present in my husband. There are others I would like to add: 1. Undermining my disciplinary measures (go to your room), then treating me like a child in front of the kids (we have 4), which I feel shows the kids not to respect what I say. Example: I asked my 6 yr. old to throw away a pizza box. She flat out refused, I told her if she didn't want to do that (I was busy getting her younger brothers ready for bed, her dad was watching t.v.) then she could go to her room and go to bed (it was time anyway). She whined and her dad told her she didn't have to, then told me I was being irrational trying to send her to bed because she wouldn't do something I was too lazy to do and I was acting like a complete idiot. Irrational! Coming from a guy who has kicked in the side of my stove, threatened to put my teeth down my throat because we were arguing, choked me twice (denies it.), slapped me a couple times (denies it.), hit my kids and has called all of us some pretty nasty names! There are numerous other things, but this is going to be long enough as it is. Then there's the put downs for my disorganization, I try to get organized but it seems like every bit of effort I put into getting things organized he undermines by telling me my systems make no sense, that I'm taking too much time on trivial unimportant stuff when I should be cooking, cleaning or taking care of the kids. Or he demands a multitude of things (snacks, drinks, glasses, cigarettes, etc.) while I'm busy and he could be getting it. The house being such a mess is another big thing with him, (we have 4 kids: 6, 4, 3, & 1. While I'm trying to get something done he will sit and watch them tear up other things that I finished before! He doesn't offer to help with anything. I don't know how many times I've had to hide bills because he doesn't give me the $150 a week we've agreed on several times in the past 5 years. Then he says he did and what did I do with all the money, why aren't the bills paid and why don't we have this, that, and the other thing around the house. He flakes out and claims I loan my mother money, I don't anymore( I have in the past, but she has also helped me) He says I suck as a wife, homemaker, and a parent, but with some help from him I wouldn't suck so bad at it! Then there's the threat of him taking my van, I pay the insurance and ultimately I will be the one paying his mother back for the loan.

Anyway-I am planning on getting out. As soon as I have some of this videotaped for proof in court. It's not to the point that I'm really worried about being killed by him, yet, so I feel confident that I can obtain the proof I need to keep him away from me and my kids. He has my brothers, his family, and his friends convinced I'm making it all up and they will go to court for him and testify to that, since I'm not willing to hope the courts see through him and assign custody to me (they should just because I am a good parent but my husbands family has money and he has already told me he will lie under oath.) any way I want absolute proof of what he is for the world to see. (He is totally in to how the world at large view him-you know appearances.)

Date: Monday, February 12, 2001

Finds out how you feel about something, i.e. "discusses" a matter with you as if your input is valuable to him, or outright asks you how you feel about something/what would make you happy, makes you feel so special because he's including you, and goes out of his way to do the OPPOSITE. I had three years of that on a constant basis. THANK GOD I'M OUTTA THERE!

Date: Tuesday, February 13, 2001

I previously submitted examples of covert abuse on February 8th. I visited this site again and read some more of people's stories and I am trembling from anger, just reading them. I left my abuser, but come to Dr. Irene's site frequently whenever I start to forget the reasons why I left. Anyway, I've got another example of verbal abuse. When you say things like, "I need to express how I feel. I'm feeling badly about..." etc. the abuser will interrupt you and MIMIC you in a childish, sing-song voice, as if that was how you were talking. After mimicking you, he will say, "You should hear yourself. You sound like a child. You ARE a child. Grow up." How's that for a tremendous slap in the face, a blow to your heart, a middle finger to your struggle to show how you feel? How about this comment: "You are so (insert four letter word here, folks) up, you will never be able to keep any man. Your insecurity will drive every man away from you. You need to know the truth about this." Translation: "You're doomed. You will never find and keep love because you are so flawed, beyond repair." And what I find SO unbelievably, incredibly hard to digest, is that HE IS THIS WAY ONLY WITH YOU. Everyone else says he's a "good guy", so sweet, so nice, so helpful, etc. This is because to so-called friends and strangers and co-workers, he IS a good guy, so sweet, so nice, so helpful to people who don't expect anything from him like commitment or compassion or concern. They are outside the circle of intimacy (if you can actually call your relationship with him 'intimate') If these female friends of his were to step INSIDE that pseudo-intimate circle, they'd have a good time for maybe about a month. Then the nightmare would begin because they would start to require more than the abuser is willing to give --- you know, ridiculous things like LOVE, AFFECTION, LOYALTY, CONSISTENCY, TENDERNESS, COMPASSION, COMMITMENT (EMOTIONAL COMMITMENT). Because the verbal abuser is so insecure, he NEEDS to have people (other than those inside the circle) think well of him and say nice things about him and call him a "good guy". This is his way of socially masturbating himself and denying that he is MONSTROUS, SELF-CENTERED, SELFISH, CRUEL and (ironically) UNLIKEABLE. This is how he justifies his cruelty to his girlfriend/wife/SO. In reality, the abuser is the bad guy hiding behind the good guy smile. He is the wolf in the sheep's clothing. And nobody really knows this except the little lamb who puts up with his abuse. Well, I was that little lamb, and I got out, with the help of faith, friends, and some hidden, inner core of self-esteem I never knew I had until it was pushed to the brink. I hope everyone who visits Dr. Irene's site and who recognizes themselves in these stories, GETS OUT. You have the same inner core of self-esteem in you, and it is there waiting for you to honor it, and to honor yourselves. It makes me incredibly angry that we allow/allowed ourselves to be subjected to such horrible treatment, whether overt or covert. Don't believe the devil when he talks to you anymore. You all know in your heart what you deserve, and it is not what you are getting from your abuser.

  
Date: Thursday, February 22, 2001

when i asked about our finances i was told 'you don't ask the right questions so how can you expect to get the answer you are looking for' another type of response to me >....... put your thoughts in writing and i will give them my consideration................................I found out that he had been keeping a file on me for years....distorting things i had said and had felt.....it was all about control I was treated no differently than any of his employees and maybe a lot worse. In 20 years of marriage I never got a straightforward response........

Date: Sunday, March 04, 2001

My partner would ultimately disappoint me, by doing the same thing over and over, by making plans with his family, and always, on my day off from work, and not explain why, and leave me, to go for the entire day. After 4 years, it has been an ongoing action of his, and I am left with anger, and disbelief. I am now in counselling. Is this considered overt abuse?

Date: Monday, March 05, 2001

He takes over jobs around the house because you don't do it right.

Calls you like a child and then shows you what you did wrong in a very condescending manner.

Notices every mistake you make and points it out.

Date: Sunday, March 11, 2001

Introduces you as "His Driver" to the cute girl that just cut his hair, after he had told you to wait in the car.

Said he doesn't want to take you to his games cuz he doesn't want guys to look at you.

Asking why you are getting dolled up to go to an AA meeting.

That I better jump at this chance to be with him because he is one in a million

Date: Tuesday, March 20, 2001

steels my ring, i end up tearing up my place looking for it. he had it the whole time and said you needed to go through that because you cant take care of your things.

Submit
Wednesday, May 02, 2001

do I ever..........more examples of covert abuse........refuses to exchange feelings on everything...actually, turns his back to me while I am expressing hurt or angry...............over his neglect......recently (2 Days ago) realized how he checks on me, feining concern, but really undermining my confidence to care for my self........"would you like a cup of tea?" translates to you are not capable in the kitchen....I have to do everything for you i.e. power over....friends are envious because he is so sweet to me in public...family tells me I am spoiled rotten.......they do not see how he truly is...because he never raises his voice to me....he rolls his eyes so they can see how "stupid " I am........they do not see the covert control he excerises over me............in 20 years, I no longer know who I am...(sometimes I feel so angry with myself for believing his lies)and how patient he is..I no longer know what makes me happy. I have wanted so to belong... still, I work at being grateful for all that I do have and in a sense I know and feel that I am some sort of a miracle.This comes from way inside me and some how I know I am so much more than his portral of me. Inspite of my family's abuse , which is the foundation for my husband's abuse to me.............I do believe I am on my way to recovery..I hope to never ever call anyone names again in response to their abuses of my spirit . I understand perfectly.The abuse has been severe. The covert abuse is the kind that puts a lump in your throat and your stomach and maybe just both places......it is your reaction that tells it is covert...you want to cry...and eventually you discover how difficult the crying is on you..........covert abuse makes you feel bad when all you really wanted to do was to feel happy and loving.........and eventually you realize that know matter what it is called, no matter how many times he says "I love YOU".................covert abuse is not love because the simple truth is LOVE FEELS GOOD.

Submit
Wednesday, May 09, 2001

Your daughter planned a wonderful surprise birthday party for you, but he did not have a gift there for you. Said he wanted to give it on your "real" birthday, 2 days later. His job was to get the cake. Said he wanted to do something really special and make "Baked Alaska" but could not find a recipe. So you had no cake either. His total contribution to the party=0.

Submit
Thursday, May 17, 2001

Hi,

I'd like to post about my experiences with an abuser. They're fairly ghastly, though.

Submit
Sunday, June 03, 2001

Dating a year, engaged another year, then married for 2 months: " I was not really ready for marriage. This was my mother who thought I needed to marry." (He is 5 years older than me :)

"I have something to confess, to have a clean heart before you. I just got a thought, that if you crashed with the airplane, I'd marry Anne." {names changed here and below}

We have planned a day in nature, he's driving. He picks up 2 hitchiking young girls, before leaving one of them asks a small sum of money from him. He gives her the money and tells me afterwards that the girl was "offering herself" for return. (Actually she did not, as I heard everything).

Image of another girl on his computer's desktop.

A door of his quite old car does not close easily. When I'm trying to close the door, he mentions that Susy has never problem with it.

Attributing all his health problems to restrictions put on him by life with me and children. I say: "I have never forbidden you to travel more, if this is what you need, do it". Then he starts to threathen me with "terrible things" he could do when travelling alone.

I say to our 8 y child: "No more sweets today". He asks aloud: "Why cannot she have some?".

Submit
Wednesday, June 06, 2001

Treats you disrespectfully in public by walking ahead of you on the way from the car to the store.

Submit
Wednesday, June 06, 2001

I wish you had more on covert abuse. Even though I've identified myself as co-dependt and am working on taking care of me and not trying fix things for him, I find it hard to call him abusive. He gets angry and won't listen--ie communicate. He throws things, threatens to leave, forgets my birthdays, "forgot" Christmas this year--but is he abusive? I suppose so. Now that I am sticking up for myself and insisting that my needs get met (I am a strong woman) he says i blame for everything. Here is our pattern: * Bob gets mad about something I am or not doing-- * We fight. (I used to try and placate him and make it better but now I’m trying to be honest from the get go)He used to get really angry--but now I’ve noticed that he tries to stop showing that so much (i.e. instead of throwing something across the room, he kicks over the tomato plant outside). * I try to talk about incidents or facts and persuade him to see it another way (control?) * he can’t hear me. he says I blame him. he gets angrier and has bursts of anger either throwing things, kicking things, slamming doors, stomping out, cursing, threatening to leave me. * I generally get mad too and use sarcasm, sometimes I curse * He or I leave--usually him * I write about it and sometimes give him a note of explanation * he may or may not read--will usually throw it away. * he punishes me by withdrawing for 1 day to two weeks. Issue is never addressed * when he feels better he pretends that everything is all right and can't udnerstand why I am not appreciative that all is well--(I used to be so grateful things were "good" now I am reserved becasue i know its the lull before the storm) * I will tell him where I see my part in our trouble and apologise for my shortcomings and outline how I will try and change * He will agree with my shortcomings and may or may not apologize for his angry outburst. He will never admit to contributing to anything but his anger * if I bring up past fights or complaints, he will say that I am blaming him, he says I’m bringing up the past and he refuses to discuss it or we fight again. He will say that I caused the whole thing--(IE I did or did not do something that originally displeased or angered him and started the whole thing)

He has now latched onto the co-dependt thing that he can't "make" me feel bad or make me miserable. So If I feel bad that he forgot to buy me a Christmas prsent or forgt my birthday--or didn't really get me anything i'd life for my birthday--then its my problem becasue he isn't resposnible for my feelings. my husband left me tonight. He forgot my sobriety birhtday (last year he was mad and refused to go to the meeting to get my tolken) this year he just forgot--He got angry at me when I told him calmy i was hurt. Later, he really apologised in a sincere manner but said he got angry at the situation becasue i made i pulle d away when he tried tohug me--interesting that he balmed me for his anger!. Then we fought over turning the lights out. He "gently" reminds me that i don't turn off the bathroomlights--Both of us forget to turn off lights frequently. I laugh and ignore it--but he often points it out to me--even though in reality he leavesmore lights and appliances on then i ever do. So he "remeinded' me to be more diligent about the bathroom lights. In my co-dependent days, i just blow it off and let him critisie and point out my "defects. But now, I'm fed up. He left the house in themorening right after telling me to remember to turn them off, then he leaves them on when he leaves. I thougth--I could let it go like I do so often--Pick your battles-- type of thing, yet I am resentful that he is always pointing out my shortcomings as if I'm a child (try to do this better sweetheart, or put the window downnow, or why isn't the air ocnditioning on?blah blah blah). so Id ecided if he wants us to point out our appliance turning off habits to each other we would. I asked him how he would like us to do that? eAch time, every three times? How? He was infuriated with me. Stomped all over. Called off vacatin to Mexico (we lose $400--but I will still go). He pointed out that I didn't get him anything for his sobriety birthdya--I told him I wished him a happy AA birthday (I did) but that i wasn't going to keep making Christmases, birthdays, and holidays wodnerful (which I do) for him and his son and have everyone of mine runined. he set the tone for our holidays and I was simply following suit. If he wanted to change it, he could. Again he repeated that he couldn't make me miserable--i repeated that he didn't make me miserable he was the one acting angry,not me--I wasn't going to any longer pretend that's it OK for him to trash all my holidays. I wouldn't get mad, but if i have no holidays, neither does he--9from me, anyway). So he left me. I could have averted the whole thing by simply do what i used--make it all better, let him hug me and pretend that its OK. that I "fogive" hi little oversight. Last week was my regualr birthday and he got an antenna booster for me! told me it wasn not me 'real" gift-- that I was getting something else nicer--and of course it never materialized. Tehn he picked a horrble fight withme on my birthday becasue his son called me to wish me a happy birthday and handed the phone to him Mom and i was nice to her one the phone! he was furious with me for talking friendly to her. So Ilet him leave me. This the covert stuff we need ore help with. It seems prettys ubtle to me--the "forgetting" teh fights on your supposedly 'happy" days--the total lack of apprecaiteion for anythign big you do (support half the suppor for his son and take care of him all the time) and loads of praise when I bake a loaf of bread! could you do a whole page on covert abuse? it gets so tricky udnerstanding why you're not grateful--i mean me the woman. He doesn't drink, gamble, run around--yet I'm not happy and then everyone tells you, "You are responsible for your own feelings and no one can MAKE you feel anything. But it seems to me that I'm missing somehting here. shelly daybyday@erols.com

Submit
Wednesday, June 13, 2001

Is always talking about how good other women look. pinches the fat on my stomach to "subtley" let me know he wants me yo lose weight.

Submit
Tuesday, June 19, 2001

WHEN HE DOES SOMETHING IRRESPONSIBLE AND YOU CALL HIM ON IT AND HE SAYS "I WISHED I WAS AS PERFECT AS YOU, OR IF I WAS AS PERFECT AS YOU."

Submit
Friday, June 29, 2001

- Says he will go to church and take the children, but I'm not good enough to take --real christian attitude! - Intentionally picks a fight while we're getting ready to go somewhere so I spend the next hour or two begging him to go. -

Submit
Friday, June 29, 2001

In my case, my ex boyfriend was reading my email the whole time we were dating. Sometimes as it happens on line.. someone would send a email saying "so were in southern ca do you live, etc"... I never responded back to any of these emails. SO, here is what my ex did... he would tell me of this "dream" he had were someone was trying to pick up on me.. and "this person had horns"... I wouldnt know what he was talking about. He would be relentless in asking me about this dream.. because after all whenever he has one of these dreams, he is right! Then days go by and I remember OH MY GOD, this stranger named "viking" is who sent me a unsolicited email. Stupid me, would tell him, and validate his pyschic moment! NOT knowing he had been voliating my privacy all along. What burns me is this.. whenever I would sign on line, he would run to the other room saying.. "no I dont want to know you password".. I would say, you can know it, I dont care. (I wouldnt have cared... its the sneaking and setting me up part I loath) Now I know, he was doing this "act" all for my benifit........ so that I would never change my password. GRRRRR, okay so I am still in the angry stage.. its only been three weeks. This is just part of the things that were crazy making, I am so glad that I finally see how this all works.

Submit
Sunday, July 01, 2001

everything is your fault, and refuses to look at any of his behavior, as to why I react the way I do, because if I would just listen to him, everything would be ok..

If you finally prove he is wrong about something, and normally its after youve beat the situation to death..he will point out something else that he knows you have done, no matter how long ago it was..and your left with no other choice but to say...your right, I did do that...and you can either keep on arguing, knowing you will never ever ever get him to agree with you, or walk way feeling guilty for something you did 3 years ago..

Feel like you could walk out of his life, and it wouldn't faze him in the least..because its not like your a part of it any way..

when you try to point out, that he has no time for you in his life, he says, I'm sorry I have to work for a living so we can have a roof over or heads and eat, put gas in the cars. I can't stay home like you and do nothing all day.

when your in the mood for sex, he says, lets wait until tomorrow... and tomorrow never comes...

Find out about things when hes either talking to a friend on the phone or in person, and when you ask, when were you going to let me know that you plan to go to where ever, he says I told you...or I just did..

tells you things in a way that don't fully explain what hes really telling you, until you ask about it specifically, then says, I told you last week remember... when yes you remember and your left so confused..and don't even try and tell him he didn't,

Submit
Monday, July 09, 2001

Tells you exactly what she wants for a present and then when she gets it, acts like its not good enough or not what she wanted.

Receives a gift and doesn't say thank you, but acts as though you owe it to her.

Tells you she will stop by, never shows up and never calls to explain why she will not be able to be there.

Expects you to listen while she rants and raves and complains, but the minute you have a concern or a problem to discuss.. she has to go.

Makes plans months in advance for a special weekend and then tells you, without discussion she has something else to do and assumes you will just cancel the plans she has made with you, no questions asked.. no hurt feelings and expects you to "understand".

Submit
Monday, July 09, 2001

Says things like"no one else in the world would dial my phone more than once". Makes out that all of my behavior is "crazy".

Submit
Monday, July 09, 2001

Refuses to make plans ahead of time with me. Won't spend more than one night at a time with me"because you might get too comfortable". Spends 2 weeks of the month away but won't call while he's away because I haven't been perfect in some way. Sexually abuses me, but tells me it's because he has to have control over me and I won't let him.Calls me a whore .

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Monday, July 09, 2001

When I carefully explain how important something is to me, says "I understand" and then refuses to do it anyway.He wouldn't have any kind of sex with me but oral sex, during which he would hurt me. I explained for years that I hated it and I wanted to have "real sex". H e wouldn't .I always felt rejected and not good enough and he knew it.

Submit
Monday, July 09, 2001

He broke up with me in a vicious way.It took me a long time, but I was finally beginning to get over it. Two years after we broke up, on my birthday, he called. He sucked me right back in. For over a year, he verbally and emotionally abused me on the phone. I never saw him in person because he "couldn't trust me". I spent all that time trying to be what he wanted,knowing I never could be.I am not good enough-that was the message of our whole relationship. He never told me he loved me while we were together. After he started calling again, he told me he had loved me and that I should have known. How? By being told all my faults, by being criticised constantly, by being told what I should think and feel. By being ignored and rejected? I wasn't even allowed to make any plans with him,I always came last. I had been briefly married when I was a teenager. When I told him about that about 6 months into our relationship, he told me that I had lied to him and that not telling him about that when we were first dating had damaged our whole relationship. He told me-that explains why you're crazy. I am a successful, professional woman in my 40's. I haven't spoken to him in 3 months , but I live every day in fear that I will call him .I know he will eventually call me -unless he has found a new victim. God help me, I love him still, but I want out of this prison.

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Tuesday, July 10, 2001

Yeah, how about: always has the TV, PC, or headphones w/ music on, so when you need to ask him a question (what time do you want dinner?) that it's truly an interruption for him. 2) "I'm finished talking to you." 3) "I'm sick of your voice." 4) "Just leave me alone.....I'm just trying to relax" (w/ the PC, TV, headphones EVERY night, for hours. 5) "You're crazy." 6) "She's just a friend.....we tell each other we love each other all the time.......(but) no, you can't read our email (my husband and his "friend"). that's private.

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Tuesday, July 10, 2001

Yeah, how about: always has the TV, PC, or headphones w/ music on, so when you need to ask him a question (what time do you want dinner?) that it's truly an interruption for him. 2) "I'm finished talking to you." 3) "I'm sick of your voice." 4) "Just leave me alone.....I'm just trying to relax" (w/ the PC, TV, headphones EVERY night, for hours. 5) "You're crazy." 6) "She's just a friend.....we tell each other we love each other all the time.......(but) no, you can't read our email (my husband and his "friend"). that's private.

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Friday, July 13, 2001

I ASKED MY HUSBAND IF HE WANTED TO SPEND THE DAY WITH ME AND THE BABY AND HE SAYS, SURE WHAT DO YOU WANT TO DO? I SAY ANYTHING- THE PARK, THE MOVIES, LUNCH. JUST BE TOGETHER SINCE WE HAVEN'T BEEN GETTING ALONG I THINK IT WOULD BE GOOD FOR US. HE AGREES, HE TAKES A SHOWER AND SAYS I AM GOING TO THE STORE, I WILL BE BACK SHORTLY----8 HOURS LATER HE RETURNS. I SAY, WHAT HAPPENED TO YOU? OH, HE SAYS I CALLED YOU AND THERE WAS NO ANSWER AND I TRIED YOUR CELL PHONE AND NO ANSWER, I WANTED TO GO PLAY HORSE SHOES ANYWAY. HE IS VERY PASSIVE AGGRESIVE TOO.

WHY AM I STILL HERE IN THIS FRIKIN JOKE OF A MARRIAGE.? HE MAKES EVERYTHING OUT TO BE MY FAULT. I WAS ONCE A SELF ASSURED, CONFIDENT, TAKE NO SH-- CHICK. WHEN YOU'RE IN IT YOU SURE DON'T KNOW UNTIL IT'S TOO LATE. YOU'RE SUCKED IN! BUT IS IT TOO LATE?-- I THINK NOT!!!!!!!!! I'M PAYING OFF MY BILLS, PUTTING ALL MY EGGS IN MY BASKET, PREANING MY WINGS--READY FOR FLIGHT.

TINA TURNER SINGS A SONG ON HER TWENTY-FOUR SEVEN CD--"WHEN THE HEARTACHE IS OVER-I KNOW I WON'T BE MISSING YOU" "WON'T LOOK OVER MY SHOULDER----------

ANYONE WHO IS STUCK IN THIS KIND OF RELATIONSHIP AND HAS KIDS GET OUT!!!! IF YOU'RE TOO AFRAID TO DO IT FOR YOURSELF-THEN DO IT FOR YOUR KIDS. WE ARE TEACHING OUR SONS TO ACT THIS WAY AND WE ARE TEACHING OUR DAUGHTERS THAT IT IS OK TO BE TREATED LIKE THIS----BULL SH--. STOP THE INSANITY.

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Friday, August 03, 2001

He says the relationship just isn't working out because he needs to find someone he can trust and someone who trusts him. Meanwhile, he never trusted anyway and purposely does things so I wouldn't trust him, yet he is the one who needs to leave.

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Saturday, August 04, 2001

When in a public place, he may be talking to you, but his eyes are roaming up and down every pretty lady or teen that walks by him. He is checking them out right in front of you. When you remark about his "roving" eye, he tells you that you're crazy.

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Wednesday, August 08, 2001

Plays games with money to manipulate things. Checkbook tends to show only $100-$200 at any given time or so when actually I found the balance to be as high as $7000! (I checked the ATM machine, then verified it by balancing the checkbook myself.) He does this by not writing his paycheck deposits into the checkbook. He bitches and complains constantly that we have no money, and says that it's my fault because I spend too much. I've gotten to the point that I have very few clothes and haven't bought anything for the house (pictures, dishes, etc.) in about 2 years. We live in a $250K house and drive nice cars, have a combined income over $120K (I earn over $50K) ... He spends money liberally on his special building projects (hobbies), on expensive gifts for me and the kids, computers and electronic gadgets. I have been trying to get closer to my family after years of distance but they all live about 1000 miles away ... He says we can't afford for me to visit them. I went to visit anyway recently - he hardly spoke to me for 4 days, then complained about the cost, wanted to know all the places we ate out, etc. etc. .... it only cost $300 total for the trip.

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Wednesday, August 15, 2001

August 15,2001 Insisted on watching TV, playing video games, doing crossword puzzles while I asked to discuss the relationship or something important to me. Asked me if I thought so and so women are pretty or beautiful on television. He told me he thinks "Britney Spears will surely have a lasting career with 'that face and those boobs.' Tried setting me against my family by saying how I should move away from my mom and sisters. Constantly saying he strongly disliked my family and my mother. He "hates my family." I would call him to discuss something important and he said he would call me back later and when he did he was on his cell catching a bus so it wasn't a good time to talk. So then he called back from his apartment with food in his mouth saying he'd have to call me back because he was making dinner. And so on and so forth. Ugh! Always praised himself how hot he looked but seemingly purposely withheld gaving me compliments on my appearence when we went out. When I showed him my art porfolio he had a very difficult time acknowledging it. When I played for him my favorite cd he mocked it and stopped it and put on the radio. When I shared some great news with him he changed the subject by focusing on himself. Thank God he's OUT of my life!!!

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Wednesday, August 22, 2001

complains of headache or other unseen ailment on the night/day of something important to you (out of town guests, concert, etc) asks personal, intimate questions suggesting a golden moment of 'sharing', then when the same question is posited to him declares 'It's really none of your business' Never ready to go to time sensitive events that are important to you on time takes you out to eat to 'celebrate your 20lb weight loss' gives you 'joke presents' for something you specifically asked for, ex. a watch shaped wall clock when you asked for a wrist watch

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Monday, August 27, 2001

Try to discuss something you feel is a problem, and it gets turned back around, reflecting something you did in the past.

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Tuesday, August 28, 2001

Makes big plans to do something together, then finds some reason to get upset with me just as we are getting ready to go and blows up, saying, "Well, I just won't go then!", or "We just won't go then!", I then bend to his wishes, he calms down, and we end up doing the activity. This can be as small as a shopping trip or dinner party to a vacation!

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Friday, September 14, 2001

-Goes along with a major decision you think you both made together and backs out at the 11th hour -Knows he's supposed to meet you and your family for a meal; doesn't show, no phone call and won't answer phone at home -Asks you to take day off from work so you can go somewhere as a family, you call in ill, and he's now too tired to go anywhere. Objective: didn't want to take care of toddler while I worked -Makes a "deal" with son, you can have expensive Lego for 5 weeks of back-rubs. When son is tired of doing this, states "I'd think better about those Lego's if I had a rub". PS: I did not allow this to go further than the first hour! Then, when I told him exactely what I saw him doing he "couldn't believe" this conversation coming from a women of my age!

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Tuesday, October 09, 2001

THANK YOU, Dr. Irene for the "Covert Abuse" page & links. Here's another "covert operation" that the abuser (that I am detaching from, One Day At A Time!) just used today on me. However, his plan was foiled, thanks to your site I just happened to read last night! We have a counseling session scheduled for two days from now. Up until today, "my" abuser has been very verbally abusive. NOW, he's being as sweet as the icing on my grandmother's birthday cake; knowing full well what will no doubt come out in the counseling session!! ( I just smile at him over our phone calls.......saying "Okay" alot, while committing to nothing!) God Bless You, Dr. Irene *S* Sara

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Tuesday, October 16, 2001

"Does not have time" to get you something in time for your birthday, but apologizes and tells you he will "owe you". Then a week and a half later when you come home with something you bought yourself, gets annoyed and tells you that it was what he was going to get you (and you were supposed to know this), but since you already bought it, here's a check to pay for it.....

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Friday, October 19, 2001

Disconnects the phone line where it enters the house when he leaves so the phone is "dead". You call the phone repair service from a neighbor's; the phone company can find no obvious reason for the interruption of service. Service is magically restored as soon he returns home--you must have been mistaken all along (gaslighting).

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Friday, October 19, 2001

He knows I like to park my new car in the garage so he junked up the whole place so I couldn't get my car inside. When I asked him to clean the garage he ded but he took his time about it. Then he disabled the garage door opener--by unplugging it or disengaging the chain mechanism. When I came home and the garage door wouldn't open he said the batteries in the remote must be dead. He promised to check them for me shortly. After a few minutes he called me to the garage (he had reconnected the garage door opener) and showed me that the remote and garage door worked fine. The batteries had been OK--I must be too stupid to use a remote correctly. After I figured out what he was doing and learned to reconnect the garage door opener myself he padlocked the garage. I found some bolt cutters and cut the lock off. He thought that was a great joke since the key was on a shelf next to the garage door just high enough to be out of my line of sight.

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Friday, October 19, 2001

I was in a traffic accident and had to be transported to the hospital. A few days later I realized that my bag with my purse, Bible, and day planner was missing. When I asked my husband about it he said he had not taken it out of the vehicle before it was towed away. He insisted that I call the towing company and ask them to return it to me. I was told that my husband had signed a form indicating that he had removed all items of value from the vehicle before it was towed. My husband swore the tow truck driver must have stolen it and the company was lying to me. I had to call several credit card and report the cards as stolen. A couple weeks later my husband bragged that he had a friend that was so reliable that if he took an item to him he would safeguard it until my husband returned for it. Six weeks later I commented how much I missed the Bible I had had for 20 years. I said that if it were returned I'd be so grateful I wouldn't ask any questions. Days later my bag, with all the contents intact' appeared one morning on our front porch. It reeked of cigarette smoke (we don't smoke but his trustworthy buddy does). One extra item was inside the bag--a presciption bottle for a little prescribed medication that my husband takes with the name and address portion of the label ripped off. When I confronted my husband with this information he said, "I knew you were lying when you said you wouldn't ask any questions if your things were returned."

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Saturday, October 20, 2001

On New Year's Eve, my husband kissed me 4th at midnight (sister, son, dog then me). I told him right then that that upset me, he laughed and said whatever.... We turned on the TV and there was another countdown on. At the "second" midnight, he kissed me 4th again. We agreed that our new baby would sleep in bed with us. We made a rule that we could not drink alcohol and sleep in the bed with the baby. He would drink several beers before he went to bed and blame me for asking him to leave the "family bed" every night.

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Friday, October 26, 2001

Oh yes yes i have. (I should point out that this is an online relationship, or WAS) *Talking to a female friend on the internet who has previously tried to split us up, and letting it slip later, only when I ask him why he had been so quiet (He would make me wait while he talked to her) *Making me wait till 11.30 at night to talk to him online, when he would be sitting doing nothing at home--just in order to control our time together. *Limiting his time with me by saying that being online 'bored' him (hmm thanks) *Saying that he avoided coming online because 'I never stop nagging' and 'everything would be alright if I would accept that my attitude was to blame for all our problems'. *Abusing others publicly and when I asked him to stop because he was hurting people 'they can't take a joke' or 'well you would take their side' *The recurring theme was always if i would get my attitude right we wouldn't have a problem, and If i hadn't had friends to support me I might have believed it. I will say that having just emerged from this relationship I had an abusive e-mail telling me to point the finger at myself, and learn to take the blame. I felt, and still feel, completely bemused that anyone could be so callous and cruel (if i said 'hi' to a male friend he would flood my pc for hours with abusive names for me), and still say they loved me. My message to anyone else, is just RUN.

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Thursday, November 01, 2001

-A few Christmas' I didn't even get a present, as he said he didn't have time to shop. This was done in the presence of the rest of the family who laughed it off. -At a professional dinner it was customary for the recipient of any award to aknowledge the support of their spouse, that was the was it was done for years. When he got his award I got none. this was worse than the gift, as I felt publically humiliated.

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Thursday, November 22, 2001

uses langauage to manipulate your thoughts and feelings, by the time he is finished you have no idea what you were thinking.

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Wednesday, December 05, 2001

Throws food away if not cooked "perfectly" or refuses to eat it right in front of guests. They ask you to do a favor for them, but you didn't do it exactly right, and they say "how difficult is it to...", accompanied by much anger. Puts down a raise or promotion you got as insignificant. Accuses you or your children of ridiculous things. Hides things from you or children, or locks the door to keep someone out, signifying great mistrust. Always finds an excuse why they can't do a favor for you. You get to where you don't even ask anymore, to avoid the negative response. You are not allowed to be angry or to have a bad day or be in a bad mood, this just triggers their anger and disgust, certainly no empathy.

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Wednesday, December 05, 2001

Throws food away if not cooked "perfectly" or refuses to eat it right in front of guests. They ask you to do a favor for them, but you didn't do it exactly right, and they say "how difficult is it to...", accompanied by much anger. Puts down a raise or promotion you got as insignificant. Accuses you or your children of ridiculous things. Hides things from you or children, or locks the door to keep someone out, signifying great mistrust. Always finds an excuse why they can't do a favor for you. You get to where you don't even ask anymore, to avoid the negative response. You are not allowed to be angry or to have a bad day or be in a bad mood, this just triggers their anger and disgust, certainly no empathy.

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Wednesday, December 05, 2001

Throws food away if not cooked "perfectly" or refuses to eat it right in front of guests. They ask you to do a favor for them, but you didn't do it exactly right, and they say "how difficult is it to...", accompanied by much anger. Puts down a raise or promotion you got as insignificant. Accuses you or your children of ridiculous things. Hides things from you or children, or locks the door to keep someone out, signifying great mistrust. Always finds an excuse why they can't do a favor for you. You get to where you don't even ask anymore, to avoid the negative response. You are not allowed to be angry or to have a bad day or be in a bad mood, this just triggers their anger and disgust, certainly no empathy.

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Sunday, December 30, 2001

Two examples of covert abuse from my ex...."come and see what I have found - a better car than the one we have now!" "Do you think we should buy it?" "Can we afford it?" "You get a say in the decision too....I'll leave the final say up to you". Six months later when the car needs repairs done to it, it's, "I KNEW we shouldn't have bought it". Implied but never said outright, "You shouldn't have agreed to buying it.....you made a bad decision". This totally ignores the fact that I wasn't the one who went looking to buy another car in the first place. This kind of 'passing the buck' happenned constantly in our 19 years together and I never did figure out a way of stopping him from doing it short of saying, "No, I don't think we need it, nor do I think we can afford it". No matter what "it" may have been that he wanted, if I disagreed or refused to make the final decision to purchase, he would spend weeks espousing the items virtues and advantages, and deriding whatever item we had that he wished to replace....worse still, was when he would begin telling me what a bargain buy I had caused us to miss out on. His other 'favourite' was to TELL me what I was planning, thinking or feeling and then insist that he was right when I denied thinking, planning or feeling what he said I was. Effectively, our marriage ended when I travelled interstate to get some much needed grief counselling over the sudden death of my 42 year old sister. At the time, we lived in the Northern Teritory, Australia, where therapists are few and not known for their excellence in this area. The day I left on what we both agreed was to be a six week absence, he started saying, "You're leaving me aren't you?...I'm never going to see you again am I?....you've been planning to leave me for ages haven't you?". When I denied this - stating that I had a return ticket and would be back in six weeks, he reiterated, "No you won't be. Please don't lie to me....you're leaving me forever aren't you?...tell me the truth". Needless to say after a week of daily phone calls from him telling me what I was doing / planning, I agreed with his version of the truth in an attempt to stop the harassment. The moment I said, "Okay, I'll tell you the truth, I'm leaving you and have been planning it for ever", he came back with, "Please don't leave me - I need you. You know I love you.....I've always loved you and only you from the very first day we met....I'll wait for you forever if thats what it takes.....I'll take you back today, tomorrow or in 30 years...it doesn't how long I have to wait....it doesn't matter when you want to come back to me....Just say the word - I'll be waiting. I could never, ever love anyone but you". For him, "waiting thirty years" for me to decide to come back to him meant precisely 12 weeks.... Sue. P.

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Sunday, December 30, 2001

Wants me to do a lot of his work in his business so as to save money and not hire anyone.... Wants me to like his sense of humor that includes killing babies...calls my daughter a spoiled brat and me a bitch on a regular basis...tells me how my sister can run her business better..continues to discuss me with a person I had expressively asked him to not to....makes jokes about my prosperous lifestyle...tells me how lucky that he came along because no one else could "help me"...constantly talks about his ex-wife and how she screwed up their relationship...tells me my child is not very smart (she's on the "A" honor roll)...

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Thursday, January 03, 2002

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Thursday, January 03, 2002

drives very aggressively, scaring me. when asked to slow down, and drive patiently, he says i drive like an old lady, and he's just trying to get past the traffic congestion, and does not change his driving. control with fear over me? or incredible self absorbtion with no empathy?

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Tuesday, January 22, 2002

You are constantly reminded how much of a loser you are and how you cannot support yourself and that you are lucky to have him there for you (while withholding more than three times his income for child support.)

Hiring beautiful assistants and bringing them by your workplace for some vague reason.

Getting in an arguement and being determined to leave, then getting a phone call from his insurance agent a few days later politely persuading you that you should take out an insurance policy for yourself.

Being used as the butt of jokes with his friends.

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Monday, January 28, 2002

Going out to dinner and he is constantly looking at other women. Has to sit where he can see who is coming and going. If a nice looking woman is sitting near he is looking at her as if she is going to come on to him right there. Would have me come to his business on my days off and I would wait sometimes for 2 hours for him(because he is so busy and just couldn't get away when he said for me to be there). Going to visit a couple that had both been our friends but he and the female have a special relationship even though the male is supposed to be his best friend. He has told me that I should be as good as she is--she is wonderful. Has always told me that I was not a good mother to our children. I didn't do much of anything right. I am not very good with teenagers so before he volunteered to be the youth deacon at our church I told him it was not my forte'--which he already knew. He did it anyway. I did not prevent him from doing anything. I just didn't attend a lot of functions. I was also going through nursing school at the time. So lots of Sunday evenings after church I would study. He has never forgiven me for that. I hope and pray that God is more forgiving of me. He can never be praised enough for anything that he does. He has many titles and honors and has been president of just about everything. I certainly cannot remember all of them. He is extremely critical of my not remembering all of the details(times etc.) I was married for 28 and 1/2 years and finally walked out. Only because I had supportive friends who have degrees in psychology and family counseling. I had become so depressed that I only saw one way out--death. I, of course, did not recognize my depression. My spirit was killed!! I saw the book, The Verbally Abusive Relationship,on line. I went as fast as I could and bought it. I was fascinated by what I read. It was my life. Who could know that others were going through the same things? One time he disabled my car on a Saturday so that I could not go to my hair appointment. He took off the battery cables and the distributor cap, but I was able to put it back together. I learned never to go anywhere without a spare key to my car. Never leave the hotel key without my key--he might lock me out. He would get in a fight with me when we would be out of town and then tell me to get out of the hotel room. One time after he had looked at this woman at a social function and totally disregarded my presence I went outside. When I came back in I sat and watched him as he had gone over and was talking with her. Later that evening after a fight he admitted to wanting to talk to her and that he had probably had been looking at her all evening. Then, he got mad at me and told me to get out of the hotel room. I had gotten to a point where I was fearful all of the time and I didn't know what I was afraid of. Going in vehicle with him was a very bad situation--he would start yelling and he is so loud and he would not stop. I would say I give up. I just can't keep fighting and yelling anymore. I would just cry. I hopefully am much better, but not complete. I have been through counseling and have left him. He has physically abused me 3 or 4 times over the course of the years together. He is soooooo wonderful to all other people. Now, he is writing letters to my mother to tell her how he has tried to stop the divorce, but he realizes that is what I want. He tells her how much she means to him and how much my family means to him. He wants to visit with her because he now feels that he is ready to talk about our situation, and if there is anything that he can do for her please call him.

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Monday, January 28, 2002

Dear Dr Irene,

I've come across a few covert tactics that I don't find on any lists:

Most verbal abuse seems to take place when there's no one else around, but my abuser took great delight in using others to "bounce" abuse off:

He would sit next to me but leaning back and shake his head while I was talking to someone. (Read as: "Don't believe what she's saying.") or just pull silly faces (Read as: "She's not to be taken seriously") or he'd ask the kids: "Where's Mom? Gone back to bed?" at midday!! (Read as: "Mom's lazy and I expect she's doing nothing."or similar) Of course, this would have been pointless if I didn't know about it, so he made sure that he repeated it to me or he made his gestures so obvious that I would turn around to see what my friends were looking at while I was talking to them.

I'd like to hear more of this type of abuse.

Thanks for a very helpful site. F.

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Wednesday, January 30, 2002

Yes,and I left and came back b/c I felt I needed to give it one more chance...first my husband took me for a nice two day trip for my birthday and (no warning)then went camping w a single woman and her kid and w HIS KIDS who had treated me poorly for the following weekend. SHE said for me to come on down there and apologize to THEM. This man asked me to HELP HIM PACK for the campout!!!!And that it was "like scouting" and I should lighten up about it (nothing happened he said/ separate tents,etc.) Well am I not cool or what???? I was pissed! Absolutely no responsibility there for any wrongdoing!!!!

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Wednesday, January 30, 2002

Yes,and I left and came back b/c I felt I needed to give it one more chance...first my husband took me for a nice two day trip for my birthday and (no warning)then went camping w a single woman and her kid and w HIS KIDS who had treated me poorly for the following weekend. SHE said for me to come on down there and apologize to THEM. This man asked me to HELP HIM PACK for the campout!!!!And that it was "like scouting" and I should lighten up about it (nothing happened he said/ separate tents,etc.) Well am I not cool or what???? I was pissed! Absolutely no responsibility there for any wrongdoing!!!!

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Thursday, January 31, 2002

When you're sick, you're still expected to cook and clean for your abuser. Your abuser rarely, if ever, offers to take care of you when you're ill. Your abuser complains you go to the doctor too much. (Usually, you go because your immune system is compromised and you get sick REALLY often !)

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Tuesday, February 05, 2002

discussing serious issues that affect the family and me with his mother - then telling me what "they" think we should all do - this is something he has done from day one and is still doing this 10 years later!! It is a big red button with me now - but I do remember that when we first got together I was told that someone who treats him mother so well would also treat me well - I made the mistake of believing that! reading my posts over my shoulder! He didn't manage that today! saying that he wants to talk then literally falling asleep when I talk back! I just find this plain rude - so I now walk away and refuse to discuss - ooh and of course he isn't asleep - he was just resting his eyes!! I have said that he needs to see the doctor because it does not seem physically right for someone to be snoring when they are awake!! telling me that his mother has a point regarding her latest criticism of me - this still stings and I get to feeling like being flip - I don't care what she thinks of me - the trouble is I still do because for some reason I would still like her approval - I cannot work out why because this is not an issue for me with my own mother that much these days. getting annoyed when my friend calls - and not leaving me alone to chat - I have nothing to hide but I would like the respect of being offered some privacy - I do give him privacy in this. comparing me to one of his fantasy women and always finding me wanting - I am 11 years older than him and I do feel insecure about my looks especially when I am compared to a younger woman - I am working on this! telling me that I should always back him up when he is yelling, or threatening the kids - telling me that I undermine him when I do not back him - no way I am going to show any of my children that I condone his aggressive or controlling behaviour. I know this maybe abusive and probably confusing to them too - but I feel the need to protect the kids from his behaviour - I feel bad that I cannot be around to do so all of the time. Maybe that will change at some point!! diminishing the things that he knows are important to my son - my 15 year old son is a constant target at present - he is apparently to blame for all the arguments we have - who is he kidding!! always insisting on touching me all of the time - never recognising that I do not want to be touched, kissed or cuddled all the time - then when I say NO he says I am cold and unloving. I feel guilty about pushing him away like I am with holding but I really do not feel particularly loving towards him so do not see why I should return his affection if I don't want to. asking me what I want to do, where I want to go or what I want to eat - then when he has my answer - he tells me this is not what I want! I probably abusively either refuse to answer these questions now - because really I just do not want the argument that comes with them OR I state what I want and refuse to change my mind - so I make my own meal, go where I want to go if it is that important or not go at all. I do more of the stuff that I want to do now since I found this site! Insisting that I entertain his mother when she comes around - says I am being rude if I leave the room or if I just stay quiet. Tells me that his mother has every right to criticise my older children but will not allow them to speak up for themselves. I am working on this one! calls me "white trash" "frigid" " a haggard old bitch" says that I should return from the gutter that he pulled me from - but these are not working anymore because I don't believe what he says anymore - I do know different! Just my thoughts Love and hugs NoAngel

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Thursday, February 07, 2002

You are not my childrens mother. You cannot tell them what to do. They do not have to listen to you. If the behavior they are doing is bad (pot, Porn), you will just have to put up with it because they are my children. I love them. Their alcoholic mother loves them and because you won't accept this behavior...you are a *B*!

I am allowing my child (who has behavior problems) to stay with their alcoholic mother. She loves him!

I have the same problems....so its not a problem for me...why would you have a problem with it? You smoked pot 1 time in your life and now you cannot accept this as normal behavior? You are just as guilty so why fight it?

I need to take care of my son while my ex-wife goes to jail. I will stay at her house with him and you need to be a loving wife and accept this as okay...because this will make me a loving, responsible father.

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Thursday, March 28, 2002

Discounts every thing you say, like The dog urinates when she is excited...I saw it today, he says," she does not I would know that if she did"

Doesn't think about signing moms name to a birthday card to your child only his

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Friday, April 05, 2002

Dear Dr. Irene: I hope you don't find this obnoxiously long, but it is a letter I wrote to my past (covertly abusive) partner's therapist. I never mailed it. It was intended as a healing tool for myself first and foremost. I wrote it a couple of days before valentines day, 2002. It has only been 8 weeks since the breakup.

Dear Dr: I may mail this, I may not. You may believe me, you may not. Part of me is inclined to write as a form of healing the emotional wounds that I have borne over the last year or so, and partly for the sake of possible damage control. I probably could do with some therapy myself at this point, but can’t afford it. I know that T re-writes history to his own advantage and he is very smooth and manipulative about it. Please don’t think I underestimate your abilities, I certainly don’t, but another perspective on the situation can cut through a lot of BS. That is what I am hoping to accomplish. I also want you to know that I was more than willing to come to therapy with T to try to work some of this stuff out, but he wouldn’t let me. He went around the neighbourhood telling everyone, I would NEVER go with him. I want you to know the truth, too.

It’s a long story, so I’ll start at the beginning. I met T when he moved into our small, close lakeside community. We started spending evenings together and at the three-month mark, I make the first move and it became an intimate relationship. (We were beginning to think there was something wrong with T, how prophetic we actually were.) Just before this point, he brought along a woman (P) who he worked with, to a party at my friend Ms house. He said she had just lived off him for two years and he couldn’t get rid of her, When P saw the attraction between T and myself, (which T was certainly playing up) she cried aloud and fled the party in tears. I told T if he was involved with her and playing her along I would give him hell myself. He assured me no, it was all in her mind and he was free. I then interpreted her behavior as manipulative and pushed it aside. But so shall it start, so shall it end.

The relationship progressed along from mid-September 2000 until mid December. I complained to M that I had the feeling T didn’t seem to need me around when his son, or any other friend was there. He would ignore me in front of company, not even saying goodbye to me, that sort of thing. I realize now how good my intuition is and I should listen to it more. Just before Christmas T told me he loved me and I reciprocated. Up to this point I had noticed other behaviors that I should not have ignored – highly misogynistic jokes with the guys in front of women, improvised songs when I played my guitar that were like schizo word salad songs, again filled with ugly, cruel references to women and torture. I was in love and blindly ignored these signs. It was only 3 weeks after declarations of love that it started. I saw his angry, unreasonable side the first week of January 2001.

I had started a new job that week after 6 months of unemployment, and on the Friday went to my friend M’s to have a celebratory drink. T called me there and I went up to his house to have dinner, about 8:00. When I got there he was in a very foul mood. I pressed him and he blew up. Why wasn’t I up there doing his dishes for him? He raged on and on. I tried to reason with him - I don’t live here, I have my own house to keep up, etc.’ It made no difference. I left miserable and confused, and wondering if I really was not being very supportive. From then on he brutalized me every time I spent time with M. M enjoys a drink or two when she has company, but we are true friends and our relationship is not based on alcohol. He tried to keep me from seeing her, I think because he knew she was supportive of me. The fighting over me seeing her was relentless. He knew he couldn’t reasonably tell me not to see my friend, so he started accusing me of drinking too much, something not so socially acceptable. I realize now that his criticism was based more on control than on any problem I have with social drinking.

I know this sounds like I’m trying to justify something but I want to assure you I am a social drinker. I feel that my character has been somewhat maligned with T running around telling everyone he knows (and I’m sure yourself as well) that I am some kind of drunk. I never want it to get out of control. My father killed himself with the stuff. When I have a few, my personality does not change and I’ve told my friends to let me know if it ever does. I hold down and cope with a very stressful job in Advertising, and own my own home, which is the toast of the neighborhood for being well maintained. T on the other hand should never drink. He turns into a monster. He becomes crazed like my father did in the last throes of his alcoholic life. Thankfully, he does avoid alcohol most of the time, but he probably never leveled with you that he smokes dope every morning, noon and night. He never has a moment of clear thinking. He smokes it, buys it and sells it right in front of his 15 year- old son. Rumours have circulated around the neighbourhood that the son has been trying to get the other kids to try it but T won’t listen and doesn’t care.

Shortly after Christmas, I learned another thing about T. Don’t tell him what will hurt you, because he will use it to his advantage every time. P’s brother Ty is another taker like his sister P, and T’s good buddy. (It seems the only friends T has other than Mand B are takers.) It was Ty’s intention to move in with T, rent free, and the good old boys could have a good old time. This terrified me, because when Ty was around I got the big round of ignore. T went to pick up Ty at the airport on a Tuesday night in January. I didn’t hear from him until Friday. (We usually saw each other every day.) On the Friday I wanted him to come and be with me at my house. After all, the man was going to be his roommate. He wasn’t going anywhere. T came down and was extremely put out. I tried to tell him my fears, how he always disappears on me with Ty, and what did he do? Of course, he blew his cork, walked out on me and I didn’t hear from him for another 3 days. I was in agony. But I later saw this cycle again, anything I was unhappy about, if I dared mention it, it was used against me. I also started seeing a pattern of fights being picked with me on Friday nights. I think to avoid closeness on the weekends. I started to feel that I was just a Monday to Thursday convenience. I tried to talk to him about it. Things got worse. Now I realize how right I was. When T started seeing you, which is a good thing and I never complained. I then became a Monday to Wednesday convenience. Whenever I mentioned this, I was told there was nothing we couldn’t do from Monday to Wednesday that we could do on the weekends!

In order to get a grip, I decided not to rely on him for the weekends and started making plans of my own, but that always backfired. I was punished every time. He accused me of having an affair with a young man who had come to join in on one of my jam parties, and dumped me for a week. I was told I must ask permission to ride my horse (something I’ve been doing on Saturdays for 4 years.) I was berated for not calling him when he was out on a Saturday and I made spontaneous plans with a girlfriend. I’d argue, who am I supposed to call, you’re not there! Ridiculous control issues.

Likewise, I know he had a conversation with you later around Thanksgiving, whereby we had made plans to go to the Royal together. I asked him if he wanted to invite his kids, too. He made excuses for his daughter not to come and predictably dropped our plans an hour before we were to leave because a buddy called and wanted to come over. I know you supported him, because he did ask and I did say, OK, but I am inclined to think that T didn’t tell you that this happened every time he had a social obligation with me and somebody else called. He did this to me a couple of times when I had planned an elegant meal. Once on a Sunday, his brother called just as T and Ty were due to my house for dinner and I was left babysitting an overcooked meal for a couple of hours. They came, ate and left. The same thing happened on his birthday last August. I invited him for a nice dinner and his close friends M and B were invited on the sly. He ran into them and they were obliged to visit with T before coming to my place but yet more friends dropped by. He eventually showed up with a whole slew of extra people (not knowing I had planned a surprise dinner party for him) about 2 hours after he was supposed to come for dinner. There I was again, playing short-order cook while he partied with his friends – drinking copious amounts of alcohol, I might add. So, I stopped including him in my dinner parties.

The hockey would be another issue he probably raised. I stopped going, not because of his ex-wife particularly, but because of the way he acted around her, and treated me. The first time I went he didn’t even warn me that she would be there. I found that very manipulative and inconsiderate, but OK. The next time, it was ‘Hey A – get me a coffee’, just plain rude, one-up behaviour designed to hurt. I got tired of being forced to stand there and listen to then reminisce about the good old days in front of me. I found it cruel. I didn’t say much, just stopped going. I’ve had friends who think this constant Saturday and Sunday night contact with his ex is a bit over the top. I don’t know, I don’t have kids, all I knew is that something in Denmark was stinking. Needless to say, as soon as I tried to live my own life all hell broke loose. I could go on and on with examples of control and manipulation, but the worse of it was his cruelty. T aims to hurt the one he supposedly loves.

I have been thinking about it further and I think that the reason I feel so compelled to write to you is that I feel T should be made aware of the pain he has caused me and the bridges he has burned in his neighbourhood. I would ask that you do not mention I wrote to you as I am afraid of his cruelty. If I were to confront him directly (as is my personal style) I have learned that I will only be humiliated further. I’m hoping that, even if I can imagine he has been presented with the truth about the impact of his actions, that perhaps I can get some closure. I must find this sense of closure as my emotional state is getting the better of me and I am in jeopardy of losing my job. I own my house and this is very hard for me.

My ex husband and I didn’t have sex for seven years but still managed to treat each other respectfully, end the relationship before pursuing others and are still very good friends. He has been a comfort to me through the difficulties I’ve had with T over the last while.

I sensed something was up before Christmas. I saw T driving through Newmarket with a woman in his car on my way home from work and when he phoned me later he lied about where he was. When I confronted him he projected onto me again, angrily saying it wasn’t worth the trouble to tell me. I decided not to make a fuss because I was so fed up with his insane jealousy and I wanted to set an example. But I asked him some questions about the woman he was driving and this is the same woman he so unceremoniously dumped me for. I think I am not too off the mark by intuiting that this new involvement was a good part of the reason for his excruciatingly cruel treatment of me in Mexico. Like a drowning rat, he had his next ship lined up. I can’t imagine, that given time, he will be no less cruel in a new relationship and face exactly the same problems. If not, I will gracefully stand corrected.

K, I really want you to hear my side of the story about Mexico. I know I didn’t behave admirably, but believe me, it was completely out of character. I felt like a trapped animal, or a butterfly being skewered and I lashed out and scratched his back. My first mistake was to organize and plan the booking. I know realize that I was setting myself up for failure because I took control. I would have to pay.

On the plane we sat next to a lovely woman, C, and her boyfriend Te, who were booked at the same hotel. They played a critical part in all this unhappiness. On the plane T started drinking and became a bit of an ass, but he was pretty patient while we waited 2 hours to clear Mexican customs. We drove down the coast to our hotel in Akumal and he was starting to heat up. When we got to our booked hotel to find that all four of us were not registered it began. We were shuttled off to a sister hotel, not far away. When we got there, there was confusion at the desk (there were many of us). I speak some Spanish and negotiated a great room for our trouble. We were given armbands so that we could eat and drink and relax by the beach.

T refused to leave the bags and I went to the beach alone, disappointed and miserable. I sat with Christine and Te. Finally T joined us and complained constantly and loudly. The rest of us were relaxing and making the best of it. I went to get our room key and the room was gorgeous. I returned to T to tell him to check out the room but he wasn’t impressed. The fact of the matter is that the replacement hotel was probably better suited to him than the first, there was far more activity at the second hotel and he can’t sit still. (When I first met T, I thought he may be ADHD, I have already experienced that horror.) So, anyway he wouldn’t leave the beach now to check out the room with me so I told him I was going for a nap before dinner. His response was ‘I’m going to the bar SEE YA’, in a nasty tone of voice. I went for my nap and no T.

I decided I would have a bath and go for dinner alone if he didn’t show up. He did show up, drunk and moody again and fell asleep. I was so fed up with him I went out for dinner alone anyway and left him there. I was very unhappy about being alone for dinner the first day there. It was not my idea of a romantic holiday. I met C & Te in the restaurant, we ate and then went for a walk, just for an hour or so. Tof had some smoke and I knew T was probably missing it, as he is a self-professed addict, so I invited them to our room hoping it would cheer T up. I was so humiliated. He was rude and angry at all of us and told me I had better book him his own room tomorrow. (I replied that HE could book his own room.) C and Te left thoroughly shocked and told me later that they were worried for my safety.

We fell asleep unhappily and during the next day at the beach T was cool to me but kept it contained because we were with our new friends. The minute they left us in the evening he started again, blaming me for the booking mishap, the cost of the holiday, just everything, starting it all over again, and then said, “I’m going to the bar – SEE YA!” in that cruel way he has. I couldn’t stand it. We caused a scene in the courtyard, T blaming me, and me yelling, “You take it with you!”. In tears I went to the bar again by myself. He went to a different bar. When we met in the room again, he was so cruel I started crying again. I told him to go get his own room and he told me if we wanted to be friends when we got out of there I should just be quiet.

My heart was breaking. Why would he go to Mexico with me and treat me like that? It was Christmas Eve. I was alone in a foreign country away from my friends. I tried to pull the mattress off the bed and sleep on the floor, when he wouldn’t let me do that I scratched his back. I cried almost all night and into the morning. (This is extremely painful for me to recount, I’m almost crying again and I’m not a crier.) In the morning, now about 10 am. T put his arm around me (the only kind gesture in 2 days)_and I faced him to kiss him. We were headed toward making love, but T ejaculated prematurely with absolutely no physical contact with me. At the time I thought he was just to happy to make up – but know I realize it was because he had enjoyed hurting me, really got off on it. He has the capability of being unspeakably cruel.

Apparently within the first few days Tof had a chat with him and told him to smarten up and quit ruining my holiday. We made up for Christmas day but it all continued after that. He was moody and unreasonable when we took a day trip to Tulum, not allowing C and I to spend 10 minutes in a shop. The next night I took him out for dinner and that was not satisfactory to his highness because we had enjoyed a good meal there the night before. I asked him why he didn’t say he didn’t want to eat there before we ordered, but I think it wouldn’t have made any difference where we ate. He did not want to be there with me, and that was all there was to it. I came home totally heartbroken.

I can tell you ten more tales for every one I have told you so far, but in a nutshell, when we got home it was just more of the same treatment, cold, indifferent, controlling. My last words to him were on the last Wednesday evening of January. He said he might come over to see me, I said if he was coming for certain, I’d be there, if not I was going to visit M. He said go visit M. My last words were, ‘well T, when you have time for me give me a call.’ He said OK and hung up. I had called him every day that week except the Monday so I waited. No call Thurs, Fri, Sat. Sunday I went to a show with a girlfriend and when I got home M told me he had been over there to tell them that he had left me a note.

I was stunned and when I got home, yep, a short note, friendly tone, can’t see you anymore, affecting my emotional stability, best of friends, blah, blah and a box with all my things from his house in it. I got to thinking over the next couple of days how cowardly and insensitive that was and left him a voice mail message to that effect. The following Friday he had his new girlfriend and her son over at his house for the weekend, flaunting her to the neighbours. I must say, that is the cruelest treatment I have ever received from a man. Now I have this in my face, I have to pass his house every time I go out, and it is making it very difficult for me to deal with.

You see K, I’m the kind of person who would be kind under the circumstances and be discreet for a few months until every body got stable again. I guess I shouldn’t expect consideration from such an inconsiderate man, but this is the worse relationship I have ever tried to have. I am searching my soul for my part in it. T is similar to my father, a cold, emotionally twisted, angry man. I believe T is MY imago partner, but I was HIS victim.

I will do my best not to do this again. If I had kept firmer boundaries at the beginning, the relationship wouldn’t have lasted and it would have been for the better. I need a relationship between equals. T can only cope if he is in total control. I tried to operate in healthy ways, but he wouldn’t let me without threatening the relationship. I guess it was inevitable.

Dr. Irene - I have since wondered if T could be borderline. I'd love to know what you think.

Lem

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Wednesday, April 17, 2002

Tells you that certain people wouldn't even talk to you if you didn't know that person.

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Thursday, April 25, 2002

Says he is with other women, then later says that he was 'really' with a relation. ( I think he WAS with the relation but he just liked to punish me for being assertive by making me feel insecure)

I arrange to stay at his place, it is in my diary. He tells me that I can't stay that if I had got his email he would not even be giving me 'this' much of a welcome (he opened the door) and when I leave the next morning at his behest he tells me that 'I don't know when I will see you again' (he is going overseas for years). Then, when I end up involved with someone else who helps me move (for his own purposes), I am treated as though I have been unfaithful and 'forgiven but not forgotten'. This is after I asked for him to come and help but he was too busy helping relations (again).

Tells me that if I am concerned with my reputation that is my fault for being involved (overnight) with someone else even though he is MARRIED to someone else, wears their ring and has no outward intention of divorcing - not to mention that I originally gave him the option of helping. (It was quite urgent)

I expect him to be divorced at the first opportunity (considering that this is what fits with my expectations of his integrity)... I wonder why he is not... He says he is not going to be 'forced'... I respond that I never realised it would come up as an issue because I thought too much of him to expect otherwise.

Tells me that he is going to spend a week off work in another country with someone originally (and emphatically)described to me as an old work friend when he never has time to spend time with me, has only taken me out once and spent all his other holidays with his wife and children.

Tells me that said friend is going to give him assistance (while they stay together for a week) with his transition to an overseas appointment at least three times... Tells me that said friend is flying over to take him out to dinner... Is enraged that I don't TRUST him implicitly and my punishment is to be rejected as a potential partner.

Tells me that he has some overseas job offers. Tells me the next morning that he is going to take an overseas appointment. Walks away and starts using the computer when I am upset enough at this statment to use a swear word (at the situation).

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Friday, May 03, 2002

Refers to his Family - of - origin as "his family". Despite the fact that you have children together. Makes jokes about your family in public. Both behind your back and in front of you.

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Sunday, May 05, 2002

Dr. Irene,

I have nothing to add to your list of Covert Abuse examples...in reading through it, I practically inflicted whiplash on myself as I nodded my head up and down, in agreement and recognition of all of the examples that you provide.

I am currently, working through the after effects of an abusive relationship...primarily verbal and emotional abuse.

In your last paragraph, you ask, what you would do if the tables were turned, would you go out of your way to reassure, explain, respect, etc, etc. The answer is yes, as I'm sure it is for most "victims".

It's odd how most victims continuously search for ways or avenues to right the situation. The way that we assume, we can fix the problems for, after all, it is our fault (as the verbal abuser constantly reminds us)...I did this for well over a year and each and every time, I tried to talk heart-to-heart, it only made matters worse. It was during these times, that the name calling started, being described as "pathetic" and "moaning"...eventually, what happened within myself was silence, I felt as if my feelings were certainly not acknowledged nor embraced and no matter what I wanted to say, it had no place in my partners life...it did not matter what my feelings were, what mattered more, was the way in which my actions and my words, made my partner feel. It was always about my partner, never about me.

Over time, indeed, one's self esteem and self worth does suffer. Part of the illness that I felt I've now taken on, is the guilt and the responsibility of making matters worse by wanting to talk about them. Rationally, I know this is ridiculous but there is a part of me that still is looking for acceptance by my partner...not so much that my partner will wake up and say oh my God, what a jerk I've been, but to understand, that my actions are based on my partners words, actions and manipulation.

Bottom line, I can no longer allow that to happen for the cycle will never end. I am the one, that must change my reactions, not to get along, but rather to perserve my self...I can no longer look to this person for validation or even compassion.

It's sad for in the beginning of our relationship, I felt as if I had found my soul-mate, now of course, I recognize that what I had done, was in actuality, sell my soul.

This is a wonderful site and I'm so very thankful for having found it. Thank you for all of this wonderful information, it is a wonderful supplement to regular therapy (which I am involved in).

Thank you again.

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Wednesday, May 08, 2002

More covert abuse:

--Make changes to plans both of you previously agreed upon, and does NOT tell you. You think you understood what was said, then now you think you're going crazy. In my case, I told him that he has to pay for my computer book since I'm in a budget. He nods yes. But when time comes to collect, he says it is my gift to him. Adding to this : "Remember that I paid for your airplane ticket <but he really bought the ticket because he owed me money on something else>.

Another scenario: We both agreed to return home early because I have a very early flight. Had to be at the airport at 530 am. Driving home, he says we are picking up his friend and the friend's girlfriend. We're having dinner with them. I told him I thought we're going home. He said, they're waiting for us. We ate out and finished dinner around 10 pm. So upon dropping his friends home and saying goodbye to them, so I thought, he invites himself to his friend's house for tea without telling me. Tea time lasted for another hour. I still had to pack my luggage when we got home, and map my directions to the airport. HE WENT TO BED WITHOUT HELPING ME PACK OR GET ME A MAP. I only slept for 3.5 hours. I felt so frustrated and used by this man.

--Telling you that you have so little to offer. He said " You're not a financial asset to me." " You are sexually inexperience." Who does he think he is? I told him in my last phone call with him, "I learned from this relationship that looks and success is not everything; substance and character are lacking on your part." I felt so mistreated by this man.

--Criticizing you for your behaviour in public. You talk too loud, you eat your food noisily, don't fold your arms, etc. I felt like I was still in kindergarten.

--Telling you that he's not seeing other people. But with a little snooping in his house, you know that he's corresponding with other women like in the internet, writing and calling them. I found out mine has subscriptions to mail-order brides online and offline.

--Having the answering machine's volume at LOWEST so when a call comes, you would NOT hear the woman's voice talking.

Good riddance of him. Such a warped personality!! Ella

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Wednesday, May 08, 2002

-Conveniently "forget" to wear wedding ring (interesting that this only happens when he's angry). -Come home late without calling and then say, "I knew you'd make a big deal out of this," or "you're too insecure," or even better, "I have every right to spend time with my friends." Wow, I'm so selfish. -Complain about my Saturday work hours interfering with his time with me (sits around the house all day while I'm gone), so I practically do back handsprings at work to get my schedule changed. Then he gets angry with me for "automatically expecting" him to spend time with me on Saturdays. Denies that he cared I ever worked Saturdays. -Hide my book, change the position of my bookmark, hide my sandwich, move my keys, deny, deny, deny and I think I'm losing my mind. If I catch him in the act, he just laughs and I do to. -bump me, step on my foot, trip me, oops, oops, wups -Listen attentively while I talk about my day, then say, "Gee, that is sooo interesting." Gosh, I must be so boring. -Say, "I'm really hungry for some cottage cheese. I don't know why I'm thinking of cottage cheese." This was in reference to my cellulite problem. Of course, he denies it. -Ignore me, refuse to look at me or talk to me or respond to any questions. Sits in a chair and watches television in the dark. Very strong sense that he's not there. Just shrugs if I ask what's wrong. -Eye-rolls and "Here come the tears," when I finally reach a breaking point. -If I try to initiate sex, "Huh-uh. I don't think so," or "God! We just did it the other day!" If he complies, he just lies there and doesn't participate. -If he initiates sex (and I never, ever refuse), afterward he says, "That ought to hold you for a while," or "I noticed how white you are." Immediately afterward pulls away and puts on clothes. -Refuse to choose a restaurant, movie, activity for the day, but will go sullenly with my choice and then complain later. If I try to make him choose, I must deal with eye-rolls and statements like, "You are too indecisive," or "Why can't you make decisions?" -Make fun of friends and family members and is jealous of my time with them. As I slowly stop spending as much time with them in order to be with him/keep him happy, he says he feels oppressed by my inability to make friends/keep friends. Why does he have to be everything for me? -The harder I try to look good and get noticed, the less chance of a compliment. -After spending all day cleaning and cooking, he walks in to find a clean house, candles everywhere and me wearing the sexiest, hottest, most revealing bedroom outfit for Valentines Day that I searched high and low for and he says, "Thanks for straightening up." Am I invisible? There's nothing left of me. -Very serious and concerned expression as he says, "We both know that the problem is you're too sensitive about everything." Oh, if only I could learn to be more like other people and not care if he tells jokes about my pale skin and big butt (I'm a size 6)!

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Wednesday, May 15, 2002

takes interest only in himself and things that he wants to do with the guys, runs you into the ground by signed up children for multiple activties and then tells you to take more time to take care of yourself, never compliments you, doesn't want to discuss anything because he is "tired"

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Monday, May 20, 2002

I said that I liked the new shirt he had on and he said, yes, that he liked it too. Then I said, "Didn't I buy that for you?" He said, "Yes, but I am going to wear it anyway."

When going on a rare family outing, he will not join in the conversation, when asked why he is so quite, he will say that he has nothing to say.

At social events, if I start to speak, he will either walk away, or begin a seperate conversation.

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Thursday, May 30, 2002

Abuse isn't only in spousal relationships. How about holistic "guru" types who are out there selling esoteric, intangible soul stuff and then screwing their clients??? My charming, seemingly super-intelligent, charismatic naturopath (ND), at my first visit, declared he was going to change my whole being, and indeed, he did - I nearly died. My ND sure fits the narcissist\sociopath characteristic lists I've read. I will never, ever wonder how people can be so mislead and be so stupid when I hear about cults, because I nearly died under this guy's care, nearly left my husband, nearly dropped acid and took MDMA as a spiritual ceremony to get in touch with my source and to release all my stuffed emotions. I even started working for this person. When I wrote it all down, I asked how could I be so stupid. After reflection, I realize we had a honeymoon period (the hook)where I still think he could have done great things had it not been an act. He must have been trying to figure out how far he could go with me before he started working with his agenda. Some examples of covert abuse, besides missing appointments, not returning phone calls as promised, and dismissing issues and symptoms...

He stated: 1. I need to let go of control and trust him. When I did, by describing a difficult childhood and an 8-month abusive relationship with a boyfriend, he said I was complaining and being a "victim of life." 2. When I said the 5-HTP he prescribed took my appetite away and made me more depressed, he said he never heard of that happening, but that if I didn't want to get well, nothing was going to help me. That's why people have side effects from pills. (I got down to about 500 calories a day intake). 3. There is no self (from Buddhist concept of five aggregates), so my problems are "stories I've made up about events". This added confusion to the mix and I didn't even know what to ask. After taking an intro to Eastern Philosophy, I still can't wrap my brain around this idea. 4. Learn how to be present(which I worked hard at). But then he became frustrated when I was still having my original physical problems, because emotions were "still stuck inside" - a manifestation of not being present. So, he refused to listen to my physical complaints and I felt bad for still being sick and kept my complaints to myself. It MUST be me because he's so smart. 5. The following week, I opened up, only to get, "talking is not going to get rid of the problem. People spend years in therapy talking but there is no emotional release." (I should just shut up.) 6. I should try hypnosis, but he said there was no way I would go under, "because I don't trust." (I'm really, really awful) 7. People can only hope to have the experience you're having. I decontextualized (what a subsequent therapist told me had really happened) and he was happy. He sat with me while I had whatever it was - a breakdown? I felt like I had lost any notion of me in my life. I threw out yearbooks, all my photo albums, stayed away from family, pushed away my husband, nearly announced that I was a different person who didn't need or want to be related in any way to any of my friends and relatives. He asked me to work with him setting up lectures and seminars, and I was honored. Thought I would feel better after this but then I took a dive, which he didn't have time to listen to and wanted to know how I expected HIM to be able to work with me the way I am. Mood swings was the other thing I went to see him for - my social\work\married life was suffering from these ups and downs. (My head told me at this pt. I've failed therapy and I don't blame him for being mad.) 8. I have a surprise from LA. It was pure MDMA, from a lab where he knows the chemist. For weeks we discussed the benefits, I joined MAPS.org, a drug advocacy\research org, and really believed this was it, and even though it was illegal, it was all politics because therapists don't want a quick fix like this. He said the research is twisted to make it sound bad, but the stuff is harmless and very beneficial - life-changing. I backed out and he got very angry, shouting that he was going out on a limb for me, and that he could go to jail. Had he been reliable, I probably would still have done it. I've since found, buried deeply on advocacy web pages, the side effects and adverse reactions (you have to take antidepressants with Ecstasy). What would he have done if something happened? 9. Trust me on this one - don't work with your therapist - it is covert abuse. Mine left the country saying he would be back in 2-3 weeks. He was going to write a book for our business. That was over seven months ago. He didn't pay me, of course. But from Europe, in order to get me to stop calling him (he gave me his number there), he fired me, saying I was sick, whether I knew it or not and that I needed help. He went from covert to overt finally.

It doesn't seem covert, but it was. When I was miserable, suicidal, and very physically ill, he encouraged me, saying he knew how hard it is, (but he wasn't listening to me, but acting concerned). With my mood upswings, he nearly burst with pride on my "cure", but always told me I did all the work and should be proud. He always said things would get worse before they got better, so I let some really dangerous symptoms slide. I felt if I couldn't trust my doctor, who could I trust. He used unusual techniques, and I was desperate, hopeful, and thought I would eventually "get it", but also anorexic and couldn't make a decision or think clearly. I had no support system either. It took months to realize after he was gone, that he was a fake. The reading I've done brought me to the realization that he can memorize passages of books and recite them like they are his ideas. I was raped by a boyfriend, but this feels much worse. He's bad-mouthing me now to mutual acquaintances who asked where I was. He also emailed me back, when I confronted him with knowledge about other issues, and he stated how sad he is that we are where we are. He's also going to bill me for well over 40 hours of time he gave me. I don't think he ever expected me to stand up to him. I'm grateful for the wonderful people I've met through him, who led me to this site and Dr. Irene, who have been life-savers. When I finally got to the anger stage, I put it to good use, exercised, got my physical strength back and my spirit. AND, people in my situation are fortunate to have state agencies to assist them. At the very least, I can call Consumer Affairs and file a complaint. Intimate relationships don't have these kinds of options.

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Friday, May 31, 2002

He says he wants to make plans with you for the weekend and when you follow up with him he says-look, can't you understand how busy I am? my friends know not to place demands on my time.

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Sunday, June 02, 2002

Compliments that are not directed at you. ie. "You are dressed to kill", after me cooking his favorite meal "You did good" Compliments that were not directed at me and absolutely no reassurance - You are great, you are pretty, you are a goop person. When reassurance is requested - I am so insecure.

Insulting my friends - ie. "They are all losers"

Making comments about how I'm boring "All you know about is raising kids and clothes" "You really should get some hobbies and interests"

Telling me that his impotence is my fault - that he was prepared to accept the fact that I just do not satisfy him. Also saying that "I" am the only one that he has ever had this problem with.

Dictating sex - ie we always have to do the things that he likes - and when I am uninterested in doing it his way I am selfish and I do not care about him.

Blaming me - I brought his bad mood on by being insensitive.

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Sunday, June 02, 2002

Compliments that are not directed at you. ie. "You are dressed to kill", after me cooking his favorite meal "You did good" Compliments that were not directed at me and absolutely no reassurance - You are great, you are pretty, you are a goop person. When reassurance is requested - I am so insecure.

Insulting my friends - ie. "They are all losers"

Making comments about how I'm boring "All you know about is raising kids and clothes" "You really should get some hobbies and interests"

Telling me that his impotence is my fault - that he was prepared to accept the fact that I just do not satisfy him. Also saying that "I" am the only one that he has ever had this problem with.

Dictating sex - ie we always have to do the things that he likes - and when I am uninterested in doing it his way I am selfish and I do not care about him.

Blaming me - I brought his bad mood on by being insensitive.

Saying things like "You offer nothing to my personal development" "My needs are the most important"

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Friday, June 07, 2002

Giving you flowers for important occassions : the ones he knows you associate with funerals. Of course you would be ungrateful to comment.

Calling your eighty-year old father a pauper : while the "pauper's" car is standing in his garage, his house is filled with the latter's furniture, and the "pauper's" well-educated daughter is earning a good salary for his bank account.

Never climaxing or allowing you to climax during sex, then blaming you for being cold and unresponsive! Deliberately handling you in a rough way during foreplay. Wanting sex IMMEDIATELY when you're on your way to work, the baby is yelling, the kids have friends (toddlers) over ... Pinching any bit of fat or flesh you may have, between his thumb and forefinger in an absent-minded way - his girlfriend being an anorexic - stunning, according to him, but that you find out only much later. Having had unprotected sex with same girlfriend for three years. You get to have the STD testing done.

Pretending not to hear you when you are talking to him. Or giving only mono-syllabic answers. Refusing to ever have a conversation with you, then talks about great conversations he's had with others, or even using your ideas and thoughts in conversations with others.

Always having to be the blue-eyed boy in any friendship/acquaintance. It's always a competition to be the most popular person of the couple. In the end you have no friends left. Those you had, he scared off by being rude, or he flirted with them, so you stopped inviting them over.

Ignoring you at social functions, not even offering to buy you a drink. When you ask for one, YOU look silly.

Never taking any photographs of you : the only time my ex-husband did, was of me in a bathing suit after my second baby's birth : imagine that sight!

Blaming you for having to get infertility treatment - "You always want other people to solve your problems"

Telling you that he's going out about ten minutes before he has to be leave. Then insists that he told you before. You have no time to find a baby-sitter or get dressed. Then you are blamed for being anti-social.

Driving criminally fast, knowing that you are scared to death, especially when your kids are on the back seat.

Treating you like a complete idiot. You enrol for a master's degree, he never shows any interest, never offers to baby-sit so that you can study. You put HIM through three years of university, supported him on a shoe-string budget while he was doing his doctorate overseas, etc. He does not even think of returning the favour, in fact, he tells you you never did anything to support him. He only complains that your lowly job as a teacher/lecturer does not bring in enough money for the family (his bank account of course.) Then he leaves you for doctorate student girlfriend, whom he supports. She does not have to work, as it is important to complete her studies.... You now have to moonlight to make ends meet.

There's always the hint of extramarital relationships or sordid sex : breakfast/lunch with female "colleagues" or "clients", playing squash/pool with the same; these ladies turning up at the same holiday resort as you, quite by accident ; over-attentive gay friends hanging around .... His insisting on anal sex after you were sliced up during child-birth : "You'll see how good it feels".

Any interests you have, from reading Chaucer to doing needlepoint, are trivial. They are never mentioned, you never receive any praise for anything well done.

While you're asleep, he gets into bed and starts thumping his forearm and fist on the bed. When you awake, frightened, you are blamed for overreacting.

You cook a wonderful meal. He does not touch it. Then he tells everyone that he hasn't eaten all day. When you don't cook, he opens a can of beans, and eats it cold, right in front of you, to make you feel guilty.

When you divorce him, on the same day you move out, he has a load of new furniture delivered to the house for girlfriend. A week later he takes her on holiday to the same fishing village where the two of you spent your summer holidays for 26 years. He gives her your car to drive, the one he gave you on your birthday, when you were pregnant with your first child. On mother's day he takes girlfriend and your children to the holiday lodge you have always wanted to visit, but there never were time and money for that when you were married to him.

AND OF COURSE, ALL OF THE ABOVE IS JUST YOUR IMAGINATION/YOU ARE OVERREACTING/HE NEVER MEANT TO HURT YOU /PROBLEM? WHAT PROBLEM?/ I'M EVIL? YOU'RE EVIL....

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Wednesday, June 12, 2002

First of all, I want to say I love this site!! I started reading a book yesterday that I had planned to get several weeks ago. I've been dating my boyfriend for 4 1/2 years.

Reading this book and finding this site too were sparked by yet another incident that happened this past weekend (after reading half the book last night I can't stop applying everything to my life).

While at the beach this past weekend and stuck in two-lane/stopped traffic (I was driving), my boyfriend mentioned that I could take a left turn at the next light to get to the main highway. Because we were literally not moving, I didn't turn on my blinker at that moment. He said "are you going to turn here?" I said, "yes, but I just haven't turned on my blinker," and he said "what, do you think you are supposed to turn it on in the MIDDLE of the turn?" I said "I just didn't turn it on yet, because I knew I wasn't turning at that moment because we're sitting here in traffic!" I started to raise my voice, half-laughing almost, until he said, "Don't get upset, you don't know how to drive, and I'm just trying to teach you!" I yelled back "I DO know how to drive!" From there the conversation just got louder and I don't even remember how, but not more than 10 seconds later he was screaming in my ear, literally right in it, spitting on me as he yelled, told me I was worthless and when I didn't say anything he said "AND I HATE YOUR GUTS!!!" and I cried for 20 minutes driving home then was quiet because he slept the 4 hour ride home.

After that, everything is always fine (to him, of course). I have many other things too that I've realized have been verbal/emotional abuse, but too much to write here. Just wanted to share.

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Wednesday, June 12, 2002

Cheats on you, then comes back, admits to it. When he is asked about the continuation of it, he cannot tell you it is not continuing.

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Saturday, June 15, 2002

Tries to convince you that your misinterpreting conversations both of you shared. That you are losing your mind.

Blames you for losing objects, i.e - car keys, important mail, etc.. You are not a responsible person, (although you were for years before you met him. This is implied in subtle terms, but heard enough you may start to believe it.

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Thursday, June 27, 2002

*wants a divorce (one day) - doesn't want a divorce (the next day) then gets angry at me because I feel insecure about him and our marriage *agrees to go to counseling then doesn't go *Has a tremendous anger against parents and siblings *Complains incessantly about everything taking no responsibility for his own choices

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Monday, July 08, 2002

Wants to pass judgement on the way you raise your children but will not introduce you to his own.

Says when you assert yourself, "I don't have to answer this, I can replace you like that!"

After saying this last thing, you ask for twenty-four hours of no contact and he calls you in three hours.

Talks on his cell phone while you are at dinner together, in the car together, etc. but switches off the cell phone before undressing for sex.

Lays with his legs spread for hours while you perform oral sex, then tells you that was the best sex he ever had. It seems like hours anyway, oral sex is a dark and lonely place for a woman to consider her value within a relationship. LOL

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Wednesday, July 10, 2002

This story is so embarrasing to me, but at the time this was all happening, I thought this woman was my friend.

I went out of town about a month ago, and when I had come back, my h was telling me about all the fun he had had with "Kristy", his best friends wife. I didn't think much about it, she was nice and I don't care if he has female friends. Well, then her kids were away for a week, and she came over every night, and get drunk with my h. Well about the fourth night of this her and my h stay up until about 3 in the morning. So, instead of going home, she climbs in our bed with me and my h (between us by the way). Again I pass it off, bad idea. She comes over the next couple of nights and gets drunk with my h. Well, we all decide to go out with a bunch of friends. Well, on the way to the club, "Kristy" and my h are in the front and I'm in the back, and I realized that I was always in the back seat, and I started to get irritated. Well, of course she came back to our house, stayed up with my h until it was daylight, climbed in our bed. And her and my h, slept all the next day. By this time there was a lot of cuddling going on, but I also excused that by telling myself that he was just comforting her because her h was being mean. this crap went on for about a month, I had started voicing my concerns, and they seemed to have backed off. But then I had to go out of town again. When I got back, h was being mean, "kristy" had made up with her husband, and to make a long story short. They ended up staying together at one of my h's friends houses. Leaving me and her husband at my house. I was pissed and ready to divorce my h. But he apologized, said they were just friends, bla bla bla... of course i decide to give him a another chance. But that I didn't want him to call her period. He fought it and I finally told him I would divorce him if he called her, so, he called her. I flipped out screaming and crying, calling my Mom and, calling my lawyer. I finally calmed down, we talked, and decided that he would only call her once a week, until I was comfortable with their relationship. He said he would do it, but of course he didn't. I talked to her and told her what I told him. I sorry, this just goes on and and on, so I'll sum up. It took me over 6 weeks to realize that this was covert abuse. Even though he was being nice to me. Everything he did to me, was disrespectful, and way out line. The same is true for her also. I was took a back seat to her, and it hurt. Now he makes me feel as if I'm some jealous, controlling woman, out to make him whipped. So, I'm left feeling guilty because I want to "break up" their friendship. Go figure.

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Friday, July 12, 2002

Lectures routinely on "how,why,when,etc." I should do something. Takes the statements I make "out of context" & then uses them to attack me verbally. Threatens my sanity/ memory by misquoting me or saying "You didn't tell me that!" When I even leave memos now to avoid this problem. Threatens to "burn the house down" if I leave. Will not allow "Time out", instead, follows me around the house continuing his tirade of insults or criticisms.

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Monday, July 22, 2002

When he can't fall asleep at night it is my fault and he is going to make sure that I won't fall asleep next time.

When caught with card for call girls he said he had to do this because of his unresolved anger about a boy I slept with when we were 19 and not even going out. (We are now in our 50's)

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Monday, July 22, 2002

When he can't fall asleep at night it is my fault and he is going to make sure that I won't fall asleep next time.

When caught with card for call girls he said he had to do this because of his unresolved anger about a boy I slept with when we were 19 and not even going out. (We are now in our 50's)

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Saturday, August 10, 2002

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Monday, August 12, 2002

Said things that he later denied or changed in a very obvious way, but he was absolutely incredulous that i had misunderstood him. I basically believed for a long time that i was losing my mind, but that he was able to help me through this - the very person causing the feelings had the power to trap me into this way of thinking.

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Tuesday, August 13, 2002

My marriage is full of covert abuse. When I am wearing my glasses and because my hair is short, my husband keeps saying "You are the weakest link" meaning I look like the host of that show. I have said over and over not to do this and he says he will not after apologizing, but it keeps on happening. I have turned into a hardened being. I try to "not feel". It is hard. I don't necessarily like the person I have become around my spouse. It hurts my child. I want to change. Thanks for this site. I just found it today.

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Thursday, August 15, 2002

Hi, I'm a middle-aged man who came to this site looking for a bit of validation about my feelings. For the last two months I have been (platonically) seeing a woman who I am feeling increasingly bad to be around. I've felt bad about it for several weeks now, and I've just started to get an inkling that her behaviour may be very subtly (covertly?) abusive. Here are the main things that bother me: - She constantly cuts me off in mid-sentence to talk about something different or to say "I know that". When this happens, I feel as though she is not interested in anything I have to say. In the last few weeks this has started to happen almost every time I open my mouth. - She jokes about aspects of my lifestyle and tells me I 'need' to do some things differently or eat more healthily because she read it somewhere. I feel like she is trying to control or change me. - She often reads the paper or does housework while I sit staring at the wall, after I have travelled across town to see her. One day she started surfing the web. Another time, she came to visit me, and ended up reading a book while I sat next to her. I felt as if I had ceased to exist. - She often snips parts of my emails where I talk about my day, doesn't comment, and then writes about her own day, most of which is complaints about work, pains, money etc. Sometimes she simply disregards my email altogether and starts a fresh one. I always try to answer her emails properly. - She tends to keep walking ahead while I trail behind her. If I don't keep up, she will simply walk out of sight. On a similar note, she does things like go to the bathroom without telling me where she's going. She's just... gone. One night she actually walked away and went home without telling me where she was going (she was angry with me about a misunderstanding that had occurred). - She mimicks some of my mannerisms and speech patterns. I know it's done in fun, but somehow I feel an underlying contempt. - She makes 'joking' digs about me drinking alcohol, even though we consume about the same amount when together (one or two beers). - She makes no secret of her contempt for things or people she dislikes, even if the person is someone I know. For example, she points out how 'awful' a person's clothes are (she's looking at my personal photos). - If I try to talk about our friendship she goes quiet or says "I don't know what to say". Fair enough, I guess, but I don't know what to do about this. Interestingly, I now feel guilty for writing this, and fear that she may stumble across it some day and recognise herself. Thanks for listening. Any comments would be appreciated. Oh, and to the woman whose man says "that program is starting on TV so get up and I'll finish you off later" -- I'm a man and I can hardly believe a person could do something like that. Utterly despicable. If someone did that to me, I know I would feel destroyed. It reminds me of the time I was seeing a woman who insisted that during sex I had to 'finish' exactly with her or not at all. One other thing about 'abuse'. My father is a good man, but once, while watching a news report, I heard him saying to himself "Abuse, abuse, abuse. Everywhere you go they're moaning about abuse. If you ask me, there's too much psychology in the world today". What can you say to someone who thinks like that?

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Saturday, August 17, 2002

Compliments you in the beginning of the sentence and then insults you at the end of it. Example: Of course, I think you are a wonderful person. There are a couple of things, in fact that I would like to get from you (notice he doesn't say "learn from you", he thinks he can extract them somehow). You have such a peaceful way about you. I haven't figured out where you get that? (I try to tell him about meditation and faith but he completely disregards that notion. After all, how would I know where I got it? Must have just stumbled across it somewhere.) Now there are about four shitty things that I wouldn't want anything to do with. WHAM. When I protest about the 4 shitty things and how the 4 balances out against the 2 good things, I am accused of not being intelligent enough to understand what he was saying and being so defensive that I missed the compliment. After almost 2 years I decided to give up the struggle. There was no joy.

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Wednesday, August 28, 2002

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Wednesday, August 28, 2002

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Wednesday, August 28, 2002

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Friday, August 30, 2002

how about telling you it is your fault he had to cheat on you because of someone you knew before him you wrecked his life before you met him you are what he wants now he will never tell anyone or admit to anyone what he said or did to you he will never wreck his reputation he has no idea of why people are saying things about you that only he knows his mother told him to treat people well in front of others, but privately, it doesn't matter, and you find it is your life he tells you that you are mentally ill he calls you another name and denies it has lipstick on his collar and said it is his grandmothers makes jokes about your body in front of you with other people keeps asking you to have plastic surgery for him tells you that his boss is going to tell a "salemans" wife about the afair he is having if he doesn't make it right, and what do you think about it teLls you the womans voice you hear in the background is the TV Criticizes everything about you, from your hair to your job, then denies it and tels you he always thought he was a nice guy and so does everyone else gives you pills and alcohol so you will be near comatose so he can have sex with you the way he wants to, then denies it, [ but stupidly...you do it] stares at you coldly when you tell him your innermost fears and hurts, shows no emotion and then tells you that you are a baby looks up the names of men you work with and gets thier numbers to show you, then deni8es it is his handwriting etc after you kick him out finally, he comes back to the house and runs around the house looking into the windows and knocking on the doors with tears in his eyes, so they neighbors see and the kids feel bad will not listen to you when you are hurting, tells you to talk to someone else, and when it is about him you are hurting, then tells you to talk to someone else and acuses you of "telling everyone" makes constant coments about your domestic abilities, parenting abilities etc implies he has had contact with your work friends, then denies it, but at the same time, this work "so called friend" is wanting to choose you to tell about her experience with a married man, and surprisingly, he also has 2 kids etc, surprise? actively has his family members call your therapist, ot joint therapist, to tell them how bad you are, then denies it nothing he says ever matches what you see and feel. cares more about everyone believing him, than telling you the truth keeps telling you every day what a curse you broought to his life with "children" they are [sarcastically] blessings! telling you "wait until you see what I have waiting around the corner for you" If you want to leave, tells you he will go after any man you see blames you for everything asks you 'what do you want...praise or soemthing?] when you are working, you are just a "part part timer} when you get a job, he is unhappy because " you might find someone else" You embarassed him because of the boyfriend you had before him wants you to change your college plans, because he doe snot like them, and you do, [ and don't you regret it now] takes your photos and portraits and hangs them in the basement or garage gives away the gift you gave him, special gifts is angry at you when you are ill. you get a VD, and he tells you at first it isn't you, then you stupidly tell him it could be from a long time ago, then he tells you it is you!! changes his story about a situation many times/ does not give you gifts anymore, until the kids complain. tells you that your are the crazy one, when you question phone calls from women, pagers going off in the middle of the night etc it goes on and on.

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Tuesday, September 03, 2002

How about, telling friends and family behind your back that you don't work and do nothing for him when in fact you work full-time to help support the family? And then when you hear about it later and protest, he reassures them, again, behind your back, that you really don't work and are just saying that? This has the effect of turning extended family and community against you.....

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Wednesday, September 11, 2002

I was accused of being self absorbed and in my own world because of these transgressions yesterday: I forgot to clean the windows in the car like we had discussed, ran the floor sweeper in the kitchen while he was watching TV ( I did it during the commercial) - how could he come home and relax with all that noise?? Why didn't I do the cleaning earlier??? Also ran the dishwasher. And forgot to pick up the weeds I had pulled earlier. "You only think about yourself - it's the same old s**t." Oh, by the way, did I mention that I spent several hours fixing the computer that had crashed, arranged a job interview and did 4 loads of laundry? - no wonder I didn't get everything done before he got home!! He slept on the couch last nite and I am getting the silent treatment. Another one - "why don't you lose some weight and get rid of that belly and stop looking like a middle aged woman"( I am an attractive 44 yr old about 10lbs overweight and have lost 10 pounds in the last year) " You clueless bitch - I wouldn't hit you - that would be too good for you - why don't you curl up and die" - this is for having a miscommunication about vacation dates and accused of ruining the vacation he had counted on all summer because we couldn't go on a certain date and had to change plans to a week later.

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Tuesday, September 17, 2002

ignores you when you are sick

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Tuesday, September 17, 2002

doesn't ask how you are when he knows you had a rough night with the baby

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Thursday, September 19, 2002

Covert, my partner is a master at this. This man actually tried to make me doubt my own health. After going to our doctor for himself he came home with a comment (coming from the doc. about me). I can't say what but I will say it was something a doctor would immedietly talk directly to a patient about. I was furious that he would actually think I would believe this. Of course it was a friday afternoon so the office was closed. Even though I knew better I worried all weekend. I talked to the doc first thing Monday demanding him to check my chart. He did and of course said I had no such problem, he said my husband misunderstood. Misunderstood I thought interesting that our doc. defended him in a way. I'm looking for a new doc, how sad I can't go to my own doc because I can't trust my husband or him now. I am getting help now but I will say this situation made me feel like what is my husbad going to try next.

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Thursday, September 26, 2002

Your the one I want, but if you and I don't work out I would be with her. I know she doesn't have a boyfriend, and that doesn't bother me , as long as we are okay. Yes, she is a beautiful, intelligient woman, of course I would want to date her, if we weren't going to work out. I want you to be my wife, she is my friend, I want us to be friends together. Why can't she come and spend time with us on my days off, then we can all be together. It is not fair , when we entertain, I can't help but have a bad time , if she can not be a part of it. She really doesn't insult you, it is just her culture is different then ours.

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Thursday, September 26, 2002

Your the one I want, but if you and I don't work out I would be with her. I know she doesn't have a boyfriend, and that doesn't bother me , as long as we are okay. Yes, she is a beautiful, intelligient woman, of course I would want to date her, if we weren't going to work out. I want you to be my wife, she is my friend, I want us to be friends together. Why can't she come and spend time with us on my days off, then we can all be together. It is not fair , when we entertain, I can't help but have a bad time , if she can not be a part of it. She really doesn't insult you, it is just her culture is different then ours.

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Saturday, September 28, 2002

-he gives you money and then asks you to justify everything about your life and actions and money - he tells you that you should care how he feels and give him pleasure and all the while, insulting you and questioning your competency -he asks about every thing you do, how you do it, how you accomplish it and then sets doubt in your mind that maybe you should do it another way, and points out passed mistakes you have made, so you should listen to him (as if he does not make mistakes and since you have, you should do it his way) -he tells you what you are good at and what you are not -he tells you he knows how you feel, think, what your beliefs are -he interrupts you in the middle of a sentence constantly and then finally if you keep trying to talk, he abruptly says, I have to go- don't you care that you are keeping me? -he sends three e-mails telling how to do something, then follows up with a phone call(after he has agreed not to call due to your setting boundaries with him) telling you to read the e-mamils -does not talk about his feelings, thoughts, and asks continually about yours -tells you he loves you more than anything in the world -questions everything you do, decisions you make, acts like he knows more than you and you need his help to survive in the world -criticizes you for not being organized, not planning, not being good with money and the whole time controls you by having you dependent on him for money

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Tuesday, October 01, 2002

never sets a date for togetherness see's me repeatedly for weeks then doesn't arrange date to get together and says i am insecure when i ask why i'm not seeing him....

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Wednesday, October 02, 2002

One of my husband's favorite things to do is to sort and stack the laundry in the hallway for everyone to see that I need to do the laundry. Another is to set out all the items for a meal for me when I haven't provided a meal when he deemed appropriate. I am also in a covert abuse situation and have found so much information and understanding. Thank you for this web site. I am in the process of recovering.

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Saturday, October 19, 2002

HI, I went through a relationship with a lot of covert abuse so this is kind of a follow up. I wanted to share the good and the bad of what I learned. The relationship, with the frequent changes of his plans in regard to me depending on whether I said the 'right' or 'wrong' thing left me finding it very hard to trust my own emotions or my friendships. Somehow, saying how I felt, whether it was 'I love you' or 'I hate you' was always the wrong thing. The only thing I could count on was that it was never right. My whole life revolved around trying to get him to commit to a relationship but everyone and everything else came first. I was an afterthought and only when it was at my initiation- a direct flip from the character of the beginning of the relationship. I was so devastated when he finally seemed to draw the line on our future - a future which I thought was the motivation behind his initiation of involvement with me. I felt like I had been left to fate in a difficult life, basically left to die by someone who said he would never leave. I was so angry, angry becuase I still felt a flickering of love and continue to do so to this day even though I have not heard from him in months; and angry because of what I had put up with along the way. I had put up with so MUCH, given him things I had never given anyone else, but none of it was ever enough. I really wanted to change my personality and my life. If my personality was responsible for how I was treated then I was not going to be the same old doormat. I shut down all my relationships and installed the boundary of respecting me on my own terms but it is awfully lonely when you have to start from scratch, when there is no continutity in your life and no one to tell you you are okay, foibles and all. But I also learned that happiness is not dependent on having a relationship. It was not till I began to do something that meant a lot to me, that was a way to interact with the world, that I discovered how much of my expectation of happiness was tied up in being part of a couple/family. It feels very free to be able to conceive of a satisfying existance without a relationship. Finding someone else just doesn't seem right or possible. I no longer know what relationships are based on. I still hope he will oneday return in some form because I want to see this thing through what it has to teach us both. However, I do not want a return to the past, but then neither do I feel I need to put conditions on things because I no longer feel so desperate, that I can not cope on my own. When I stopped running to other people for help every time I paniced, when I began searching for my own solutions, I began to get more stability and less anxiety. That is pretty hard to do when you as poor and unconnected as I am. I still seeth with bile when I recall what I thought that I was promised, when I think of the walking around on egg shells watching every word until I was afraid to speak. But I no longer feel the grief that my life died the day he withdrew his 'love' because I realise that there is a lot of life left to live and a lot of learning for us both to do. If he ever grows up then he will no doubt be back having a go at continuing our communication because that would seem the only adult thing to do when you have been involved with someone and you take your integrity at all seriously. People are not pit stops that you just pull into for a while and then drive off never to return. He is a big chunk of how I think and feel about life and myself and it was through him that I learned that I DIDN'T need a relationship to be happy. So in a perverse way he actually helped me to be happy. I still have an awful long way to go. I have just begun but that is better than going around in circles from one relationship or crisis to another as I did for the first thirty years of my life.

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Saturday, October 19, 2002

cuts me to the bone with insults and verbal bashing , passive agression like tickling too hard, pretend slaping of the face , pushing, and making it seem like fun. Being horribly abuseive and dark and then talking about how much he loves me , asking me to come to him for a hug and pushing me away when I do go over to him. also bi polar......I am dieing here.

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Monday, October 21, 2002

"I can't help how other people feel about you." "A million other women would gladly take your place!"

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Tuesday, October 22, 2002

Has our names printed on the checks, but will NOT put me on the account, then hassles me every year to endorse the IRS refund check so HE can cash it and put it, you guessed it! in "our" account! Took me on a trip to Reno, where we spent half of what was budgeted, and is still crying about it. Automatically sabotages my suggestions for lovemaking. It appears he wants to be desired, but needs to be the one to decide "when." Stays out in his little "cave" from upon his arrival home after work till dinnertime, then goes to bed. Always late for dinnertime. Incessantly talks about the back problems of a female coworker when MY back goes out- I fixed that one: "we've already established your empathy for her & I really don't want to hear more about it." When I need certain supplies for the household, he STEALS them from work. Everything from paper towels to office supplies to appliances! Will not defend me when his son verbally abuses me, even in public. Just lets it happen, then explains it away with "He just loves to argue." Will not do anything fun that is not alcohol-related, even when I request doing "something different." Panicked when he realized that I had pre-nuptial bills because it would "reflect" on him, but has done nothing to help me pay them off. Will not support my efforts to get work or go to school. Will not help me renew my driver's license. He took me once to the Physical Therapist when I couldn't move my neck and drove to the license bureau (!) and then again, when my eyes were dilated... Now will not help me. Feeds his cat, but not my two. Gives me $5 ALMOST daily, for allowance. ALWAYS eats the very last of anything, without bothering to ask if I want any. Buys himself treats on our trips, but nothing for me. Cries about the utility bill, but leaves EVERY radio on on his way out the door to go to work. Does no housework whatsoever, and virtually nothing outside. Talks about how "we" need to get something done, when it is always left up to me.

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Friday, October 25, 2002

Oh I have quite another spin than what is written above. My x is/was covert, in such a sly way it took years of jounaling to become aware of what he was doing. Not a daily abuse, early on he did something only once every fews months, made it more confusing. Married 24 years, the covert behavior, best I can tell, intently began around year 15. We had a trust, I thought, but I was wrong. My top "uglies" list: On a typical, 10 degree winter day he would come in the house and turn the furnance off. He would leave and go into his warm shop. I would look up hours later with 3 layers of clothes on and wonder why I was still cold. I'd find the heater off, turn it on. Later he'd come in as though nothing happened. The first few times I said nothing because I assumed he didn't really mean to turn it off, just down a bit. (duh-uh) If I asked him to fix part of the dinner, like a salad, he'd put the refuse quality in mine. Brown lettice, tomatoe and carrot stem ends etc. When dinner was ready I often would break to the ladies room to wash up. Telling him to go ahead while it's hot. I would come out and he would have taken all the food. Each time I questioned it, he would gripe and shove something on my plate as though I didn't deserve the scratch dinner, I had just prepared. I worked "for his company" at the time I thought it was our company. No pay for me. Once I asked for enough $ for a few pairs of underwear, as mine were falling apart. He said no, and proceeded to purchase a $1500 Violin and a $600 bow. A week later out of the blue he THREW a $20 at me and told me to by my frickin' undies. The turning point, the new path that led me out: I was so depressed after years of carring the emotional weight alone. I actually began to react physically. My female functions went into a frenzy. Went to the Doc's. Had a physical and blood test. All came back above excellent. Doc said "It must be stress, whatever it is change it, you have to be happy" As I hung up the phone I realized I had been thinking of taking my life in the back of my mind. Not planning per se, but it was like a fleeting or floating thought. It was real now, in my head, how messed up I was becoming. I sat my x down and explained the Doc's words and my feelings. That evening he listened, was supportive, said it all would be better. He never ever mentioned the discussion again. That was it, knowing he didn't care enough to ask if I was still feeling suicidal, meant he didn't care if I lived or died. Turn on all the flood lamps, this is wrong! I began to pursue what I do best, fine art. Painting. One day I am out on our property, 5 acre ranch, painting. He arrives home, said hello, goes into his shop, 25 feet away. He refinishes furniture in there. Within minutes he fills his spray booth, turns on his huge exhaust fan and blasts me full on with airbourne furniture laquer. That stuff has xylol, benzene, naptha and who knows what else in it. Acts as though nothing's happened when I complain. He never, not once commented on my art. It did not exist. I was in newspapers, magazines and on TV for my work. But it didn't exist. Had no value. Often would not attend my art openings. If he did he would be angry if male artists said anything nice to me even if about my works. One time he threw such a fit in front of a gallery, he was banned from the entire block by all the local shops there. The classic stuff, He wouldn't allow me to go to the dentist for 4 years. Denied me access to funds, and our books and bills. Was prone to the angry, silent treatment when he wanted to be "serviced". If I didn't comply the "mood" lasted until I did. Weeks at a time. All unspoken. Would say yes to plans to go to town and vivst with friends. Then at the last minute would cancel. I stayed with him at first. Later I went alone. That went on for years, some folks in The art field didn't even know I was married, even if thet had known me for years. Lied, lied, lied. He always said he loved me each night. yah right-o... wanker. Okay that's enough. I am out now. Did it solo. At the time no one listened to me. 2 years, 7 months. I still have confidence issues. But I am not afraid anymore. He did go overt the final year and scared the bejeebers out of me. Had a round with PTSD but it's better too. My Doc was of no help, no one was. This is hard enough to cope with but to do it isolated is 2x's as hard. But it was more than worth it. I am still a working artist. Dr Irene, thanks for begining this page. How odd is it I have not visited here for over a year and a half and here's your covert beginners group. There was very little on the net about covert emotional abuse 2 1/2 years ago. We need to get it out there, help others out of the fog.

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Monday, October 28, 2002

Ignores you when you return home, but expects fanfare each time he comes through the front door. Expects you to go to sleep and get up the same time he does. Blames you for money problems, when he created the problem himself, and then refuses to ever take any responsibility with money.

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Monday, October 28, 2002

I was never allowed to be sick. I got a kidney infection one thanksgiving. I was very ill. He told me I was not going to ruin his thanksgiving. I cooked dinner with 103 temp. put it on the table and could not eat it myself. Since I could not eat he said it ruined it FOR HIM! So no one ate thanksgiving dinner. I ended up in the hospital and he brought my 4 year old up to play with me when he got off work, because he was bored at home. I arranged babysitters ect. because he did not want to miss work. He had 60 days paid vacation, he is military, but refused to take a day off to care for his son or me. He laughed at me while I got admitted into hospital and thought i was a lunatic for taking a wheelchair upstairs. I was never allowed to be sick. He was a jerk. I left him after 12 years and two kids. I have never been happier. Hey, I found out I am funny, intelligent and beautiful. go figure!

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Sunday, November 17, 2002

Thankful that I don't have to deal with this stuff from her anymore...: *Talked to other men on her cell phone when we were out on dates, even in a restaurant. If I asked who it was, I get accused of being jealous. *Offered to do favors for the men she worked with, but never for me. *Had framed pictures of ex-boyfriends and male friends all over her apartment, but not one of me. *Wouldn't invite me to go to social functions with her co-workers, who all brought their mates. *Always pointed out which men on TV, on the street or wherever were cute or attractive, yet I couldn't recall the last time I got a compliment. *Told me the "jokes" her friends were making about me and says she doesn't care. *Dropping her off, I reach over and kiss her hand. She says "you're corny" and slams the door. *Digging through a stack of pictures, she found one of me and said I looked like a cancer patient. I tell her that was rude, and she kept saying it over and over... Of course, the list goes on and on, but those are a few small examples. Interpsersed with "I love you's", the effect it had on me had me telling myself things like "Well, she does say she loves you, so she either doesn't mean it, or you're letting these things bother you too much." Eeek! I have also noticed a pattern of other posters mentioning the abuser mocking the victim's voice, when the victim makes an emotional appeal, or repeating back what they said in a childish voice. Folks, most people give that up by the 3rd grade, so there's no reason to take it from an adult. Thank God I don't have to take it anymore...

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Thursday, November 21, 2002

If the children are sick they should toughen up, their fine, they just want to stay home from school,they need to stop whining, they're "playing" you, etc. If he's sick it's completely valid and deserves all your attention.

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Thursday, November 21, 2002

You make a mistake, and it's mentioned again and again as though you do it often. Example - you looked for something, it was right in front of your face, but you didn't "see" it. "You're so blind . . ." "It's a wonder you can find your head." "Anyone who can't see what's right in front of their face . . ."

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Saturday, November 30, 2002

Switching the channel on you when you are watching something on television that you obviously found interesting. When you protest the VA will say, "oh you couldn't have been interested in THAT could you, that show was for people with an 8th grade mentality."

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Wednesday, December 04, 2002

Asks me the balance on the mortgage and when I don't know the answer off the top of my head, (even though I could look it up within minutes) tells me "you should know this stuff". Drives away and leaves me standing in the grocery store parking lot because I slammed the car door too hard.. and doesn't come back. Calls me a "stupid idiot" because I parked the car in the driveway instead of the car-port... Never apologizes EVER for anything. If I cry and get upset because I've been hurt by his comments, he turns his back and walks away...or better yet tells me to 'shut up' because he's trying to sleep. When I call to the family that supper is ready, he walks into the kitchen and says "don't call me til its on the table" then leaves the room. Tells me I can do as I like with my time as long as the cooking and cleaning is done first. Tells me to "go out and get a real job" because I don't make enough money, even though we are more than comfortable financially. Never tells me more than "you look alright"(after me having to ask how I look) even though I would have spent ages trying to make myself look good for him. Tells me that if I get fat and ugly he's "out of here" ..and yet when I finally had taken enough of his crap and told him I was leaving, he said "I wish you had gotten fat and ugly then you wouldn't be leaving me" .. now everything that was done or said over the last 16 years was "just talk" and "I didn't mean it" and I even got "you're as much to blame as me because you never lashed out at me". The best one was "you can't leave because you MADE me have a vasectomy and now no-one else will want me" : talk about a guilt-trip attempt. Whatever. I'm not going back. I'm happier alone.

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Sunday, December 15, 2002

Cannot remember details of plans that you have - yet remembers the most minute details in conversations with others, then gets angry and accuses you of not telling him/her your plans.

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Sunday, December 15, 2002

He wanted me to go to concerts with him, music I didn't like, and when we got there, he would leave me. Often, I would have to go find him, and he was usually flirting with another woman. He would then tell me that I was boring, so he had to go find interesting people to be with.

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Friday, December 20, 2002

Covert abuse-He agrees with me that we need more quality time together. He hears me when I ask him to ask me out on a date (we are married). Yet he never does. He forgets to, or says he would love to but feels too tired because of work, or at weekends. He falls asleep with his son while putting him to bed, and then wakes up and plays on the computer from 11 pm to 3pm.

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Monday, December 23, 2002

Don't ever make them go somewhere they don't want to go; i.e. family reunion, because after you gripe with them for two hours about it, they finally relent, and then when they get there, they make your life and everyone else's a living Hell until you get so fed up, you leave just to prevent being embarrassed any further by their snide, crude and inappropriate comments in front of your eighty-year-old great aunt.

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Friday, December 27, 2002

Getting dressed and ready for a dinner out with my husband and our daughters. I recently had lost wieght. I felt and looked fabulous. We all go out. He walks ten steps ahead of me. He holds the door for the girls, not for me. He laughs with the girls and converses with them and maintains eye contact with them. I ask a question, I get a one word response from him. He responds to me without looking into my eyes. He never looks at me and never initiates conversation with me. I feel invisible, insignificant, and not even there. My anger takes over and I ask to be taken home.....he is angry that I ruined our good time out together. I express my feelings...he responds with "sounds like a personal problem". "You are just imagining things".

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Friday, December 27, 2002

I have been married for 8 years and have a 7 year old daughter with my husband, and it has taken me until this Christmas (2 days ago) to realize that I've been living with an abusive man. He is in the military, so this is only the second Christmas that we've spent together since we got married. I'd been really looking forward to it. We didn't have plans because our families live far away. All I asked for was that he spend some quality time with my daughter and me, not in front of the computer and not playing his bass (which is where he spends most of his free time). Of course, he spent all of Christmas day playing his bass or on the computer. My daughter was in bed waiting for him to say goodnight to her. He said he'd be right in, then proceeded to do about 20 other things (including take out the garbage, which he never does) before he decided he was ready to do what she had asked. She began to fuss, so I told her "you know you'll have to wait a few minutes because daddy always does this". I know I shouldn't have said that. He told me that he hated me and wanted me to drop dead - among other things which I can't remember. That is when I realized that something wasn't right. His behavior matches up with many of the other stories that I have been reading. I just thought that we had a bad relationship. Another example. I was pregnant when we got married. We were broke and he couldn't afford to buy me an engagement ring. We have since improved our finances and there have been many times that he would have been able to make that purchase. He's always known it was important to me. His grandmother even gave him a gift of $5000 (no ring I would choose would come close to that amount), which he chose to spend on musical equipment and clothing - FOR HIMSELF. This Christmas he finally bought it for me. I picked it out, so I knew that I was getting it. On Christmas eve, he told me that he was sorry that he bought it for me, I didn't deserve it, and that he only got it for me to "shut my ugly ass up". I guess the abuse is more covert than overt. Sorry - I'm still figuring this out. The reason he was angry at me that night was because I asked him not to have a second margarita, because I was uncomfortable driving his car home. According to my husband: The house is never clean enough, I'm lazy and sit on my butt all day (I have 2 jobs, work 7 days a week and have the entire responsibility of caring for my daughter - by the way), I'm white trash - because I don't do things the way he does, I have no taste, and no sense of fashion. In addition, his family is more important than my daughter and me so he tends to covertly mistreat us when they are around. Another Christmas example - His family brought him some presents and he made a huge fuss about them, but when my daughter gave him her gift, he said thank you but didn't get nearly as excited. My daughter was crushed. I don't think my husband is a "bad guy". I enjoy his company much of the time (about 1/2), but he's got some problems. Thank you for your site because it really opened my eyes and showed me that there is help. I am going to respond differently to him and see if it works.

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Thursday, January 02, 2003

tells her friends that you are just friends, and that she doesn't really like you....asks them if they want to date yo because you aren't really "the one " for her, but you are sweet so she hasn't broke the news just yet.

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Friday, January 03, 2003

denying he says abusive things - I make it up buying expensive items like a new car and an airplane without informing or asking me first - says it's "his money" taking our child flying in a "kit" airplane when I have expressed how it literally makes me sick with fear and anxiety saying my political views are "unAmerican" if I happen to oppose a position saying words like "always" and "never" making appointments for service people to come to the house on my day off (without asking me) and taking off so I'm stuck talking on the cell phone the entire time whenever my son or I ride with him in the car interupts me if I'm on the phone but has a fit if I should happen to interupt him throws clothes, towels on floor for me or the housekeeper to pick up invites me and our son to movie and then literally pushes us out of the theater when it's over because he's in a hurry because of the "time" that we took up says things like "spit it out" when I'm talking if I should pause for a second to think tells me it's simply inevitable that I will get Alzheimer's like my mother but that he will be big enough not to leave me just his presence brings about so much anxiety and tension at dinner that our son and I lose our appetites thanks! That felt good!

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Thursday, January 09, 2003

Dear Dr. Irene, The holidays have come and gone. But here's an example of covert abuse, at least to me. My husband spent over $300. on Christmas presents for his best friend, Greg and Greg's immediate family, spouse, sister, brother-in-law, and Greg's parents). He spent $0 on me, his wife, and 18 month old. Can you believe it?

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Saturday, January 18, 2003

Withholds affection. Avoids hugging me. No time for intimacy or he doesn't "feel like being lovey-dovey", but on the other hand he would make time to f*** in a New York minute. Exaggerates my needs. Makes me feel ashamed for wanting to be held - or makes me feel like he's doing me a favor. Often has excuses for not wanting to hold me. The problem is always me; it's never his fault.

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Wednesday, January 22, 2003

Tells friends and relatives (always) that he must clear plans with you...sounds nice, but never does what you ask him to do. NEVER.

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Friday, January 24, 2003

I never, never, express admiration or attachment to any physical thing, eg plants,ornaments,clothes,books,CD's - as they alway's meet with an unfortunate "accident", and are cracked, chipped,ruined or simply dissopear,the latter, never to be seen again, and all knowledge of such, totally denied by my partner.

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Tuesday, January 28, 2003

Here's one I wrote down. When I try to bring up an issue in my marriage, ny husband's response often has been, "That shouldn't be an issue". I always thought it was so bizarre! S.

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Monday, February 03, 2003

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Tuesday, February 11, 2003

Protests when you want to spend small amounts of money on yourself, but has no problem indiscriminately spending large amounts of money on himself and his indulgences

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Wednesday, February 12, 2003

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Wednesday, February 12, 2003

I was married for 23 years to the proverbial tall, dark, rich, handsome, publically charming professional. We had the public image of the attractive, successful, "power couple". In reality our marriage was marred by his addictions, abuse, lies and "love" relationship with one of my best friends (they both denied sexual involvement). As this site is about covert abuse, here are some examples of my experience with covert (and some overt)abuse: -In Restaurants he could be seething with hate, cold and angry toward me only to have the waitress come to the table and be all "sweetie pie" with her to the point she would tell me how "lucky" I was to be with such a great guy. -Gushed all over other women, charming them to the core, only to criticise and berate me. (These women were never his social or educational equals) Women were always telling me how lucky I was to be married to him. -Would tell other people how proud he was of my accomplishments (I am a successful business owner) but would never compliment me. -Would spend BIG money (six figures)without consulting me. Would refuse to divulge to me what he spent on large items. Stated it was none of my business although I was a substantial monetary contributor and married 23years. -Enjoyed lavishly spending the money I helped earn, but would become very annoyed and angry if I turned to him seeking emotional support for my personal stress from running the business. In his words I was always negative and bitching about work. -Would tell me that if it weren't for him we wouldn't have anything. In reality, although he is a successful Doctor, my income equaled and in some years surpassed his. -Would make social plans for concerts, theatre, dinner with friends etc. without consulting me and just expect me to go. Of course, if I got upset with not being consulted, I was the one with the problem. He was only doing this for "us". -Would never or rarely do things I wanted to do. For years said he "hated" movies...which of course, I love. Who do I see at the movies now with his new girlfriend??? -In general, would make a point to not do something I wanted or asked him to do. -When I would ask him about his day or a meeting he had attended would accuse me of interrogating him. -Would try and make me do his dirty work; handle "our" legal issues alone because he had patients to see and forgot to schedule out. When I called him on his game would of course be very angry with me. -Once asked me to lie for him about a $2000 piece of equipment he "put in the garage to protect" for the contractor working at our house. Wanted me to tell the contractor we didn't have it. Was very angry with me when I refused to lie for him. -Forged my name to withdraw money from our joint stock accounts. I found this on his desk and left it there to see just what he would do with it. I alerted the stockbroker to watch for it and stop it if and when he sent the forgery in, which he did. When confronted with this he angrily said, "If you had known I was going to do this, why didn't you stop me!" -Would be all sweet and sincere when trying to again get me to finish up on projects he had started, only to turn hostile toward me when I refused. -Wouldn't wear his wedding ring for years, although I asked numerous times. Wouldn't even wear it when asked to on a weekend away together. Only started wearing it after I quit wearing mine and told him how men were hitting on me. -Professed God, vows and children as a reason to not divorce. Oldest son was the first to tell me to get out. His father was stunned to hear this. -Would conveniently "forget". -Told our oldest son he didn't like me because I had a "fat butt".(A very hurtful memory for my son). -Would tell me, "just so you look good in clothes". By all accounts I have been quite slender our whole marriage. My weight now, post-divorce, is what it was then and men are very attentive, including men 10-15 years younger!! -Ditto to the Doctor....Would never pay me a compliment, even when my sons would say (in his presence) how great I looked before going out on the town. -Witheld sex, hatefully stating, "You think you want it all the time....let me tell you if you did (get it)....you'd be sorry!!" Welllllll...I am getting it every chance I can with my special guy of 16 months.....and loving every minute of it!! My guy tells me he thought the Penthouse forum letters just had to be fakes...until he met me. We could be contributing authors. Should I tell my ex about this?:) -Would not give me my Christmas present (worth $300) until two weeks after Christmas when I reluctantly agreed he could buy a third airplane ($300,000). My gift showed up the next day. -Once when he was mistreating me, and I asked why because I had done nothing, his response to me was "I know if I had given you the chance...you would have...(Done whatever he deemed was "wrong" on my part that he could be angry with me about)". -Did not take me to the ER when I had a medical emergency (anaphylactic reaction to a food--I carry an epinephrine injection at all times) stating he could have called them if my heart and breathing had stopped. I was incapable of calling or taking myself. To think I sat down at my computer tonight feeling sad that my marriage has ended. I try not to digress, but sometimes remembering him for his abuse and not "idealizing" him post-divorce is just what the Doctor ordered. He does appear to be working hard to change...or can he?? Any comment from the Doctor on that probability?? One of the hardest things I have to deal with post-divorce is how publically charming he is. Even my own family and closest friends did not at first believe he was abusive to me because of his public image. When I've told people how verbally and emotionally abusive he was they only want to know if he was ever physically abusive. Yes, only once. Only then they believe me. It is my goal to make people aware of how destructive verbal and emotional abuse are. Thanks for providing the forum to vent and share. Life post-abuse, sans the abuser,is good again!! Kathryn

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Sunday, February 16, 2003

Telling me there is nothing wrong with going to lap dancing bars - it's just a bit of fun and he's not interested in the woman. But if I went to a night club (on a night that he was out - I didn't even want to) then I was a whore because men who went there were only after one thing! Flirting with every woman in the place (he is "only interested in me") but if I talk to a man I am a slut Would tell me there is no harm at "looking at the menu" with women but if he thought I was looking at someone (which I didn't) he would retaliate by grabbing the nearest woman

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Monday, February 17, 2003

Doesn't offer to take photos of you on your holiday together. Flirts with the waitress who tries to ignore him because she's embarrassed for you. Willing to have sex with you but doesn't want to kiss you. Gives you a look and says "there's hope for you yet" when a fat woman passes by. Never has much money to spend on a date with you but splurges when out with his buddies. Moves out of the bedroom when you bring your baby home from the hospital. Goes to his ex-girlfriend's house to pick up his cat and stays away all day. When he returns from the ex-girlfriend's house with the cat he starts singing "I've still got you all over me". When he goes out with you he's tired and wants to go home at 10.00pm but when out on business or with friends he's home at 3.00am or later. Says he'll mind the kids while you have a night out and "forgets" to come home because he ran into an old friend.

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Saturday, February 22, 2003

Asks what he can do to help - then doesn't do it. Asks what you need and proceeds to do the opposite. Acts like he has been mortally wounded and that you are telling him that he is a failure if you express discomfort with anything no matter how kindly, respectfully and with full ownership of the discomfort you communicate the discomfort to him. Uses substances, acts badly towards you, when you confront him the next day he always claims that he doesn't remember - yet on other occasions he can repeat parts of the conversation verbatim. Tells you that he feels put upon and that he wishes you weren't so demanding if you so much as ask him if he would so much as nod his head when you are talking to him. Refuses to respond to emails even when you have poured your heart out and ask for a reply - says that he has typing problems - yet can send long letters to friends and relatives. Continually tells you that he is depressed and that it is your feelings that make him depressed. Gets upset and sulks if you do not let him help (or take over) something you are trying to work on. Tells you that he is upset and being mistreated by you because you will not *allow* him to get off the telephone, leave the room, play games, watch tv, whatever - when you have stated no opinion whatsoever on the thing he is wanting to do. When you share your feelings with him (of any type), tells you that he can see how much you hate him.

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Wednesday, February 26, 2003

using "opened mindedness"to escape commitment. cheating. Time management (involves anything with the couple) ignored under the honorable title of "the world is too big, wide to be tied down" or "too young to know what we want" cheating gets explained "its body but not mind" (this was a long distance relationship). everything is reduced down to rational leaving no apparent room for debate. control partner's action by continual comments to reduce their esteem as being slutty, sexsual-using sex gender issue as easier to get men thus makeing the woman feel very permiscuios/whore. his painfull alternative to admitting jealousy. ice cold wall when emotions are displayed making other party stupid, paranoid, insecure...and the more from her the better his position. gentle charm more often than not silence-asking questions rather joined discussion to get "sense" of other while seclusive of self. accuse the other party to hide-even when everything is spilled but recieves the stigma of accepting stone cold wall from this explosive "spilling". the female partner-ignores all internal feelings by insisting on an active, socail life. numb to "fedility" did not cheat but be friended many men who were close but never physical. digest the abuse and rather be resiliant than defend. rather die than defeated thus creating issue of not "listening" to the bf. this being her only method to have some form of "control" female being rich in emotions abuse through creative tales, stories which plays tones of male's emotion. this exceeds to maximum since she does not know things unless displayed obviously and he is incapable to display and reactions. niether party can exit withough subliminal/mental war/games. everything is vague and entire relationship is built on charm and sub concious abuse rather any real form of real communication. 7 years later contacted (whole thing long distance) and continued on right where they left off. the girl read this web page and screamed out condependent is her!!! but has a mother who lived terrible life like that and resolved to NEVER become so. the relationship still mental-but shes not sure wether she ever wants "closeness"-fighting becomes assocaited with identity. right or wrong? only knows never to be beneath anyone....so whos more fucked up?

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Saturday, March 08, 2003

My boyfriend would go out of his way to help me put up foil christmas garland around the inside door of my hair salon... with his cordless drill and 4 inch screws. Mind you they would have stayed with scotch tape but who am I to complain; he's doing me a favor right?! Oh and I am being ungratefull to say anything about the white paint drips around my entire living room on the brown wood panneled walls because after all, he is doing me a favor by painting my ceiling. I had heard this song on the radio several times and mentioned a couple of times how much I liked it and wanted the C.D. Guess who comes over and wants me to hear the new C.D. they got for themselves and then asks me if I've ever heard of them. These are just a few. H. Williams

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Friday, March 21, 2003

I just woke up to sexual abuse. On the 4th date he showed up at the door naked. Since my boundaries are poor from my poat history of sexual abuse, I figured he was being sexy. I guess I thought that for a long time as he once pulled his pants down standing in his garage. He had me perform oral sex on him several times where we might be seen. He used to grab my breast in public places where, again, someone might see us. The final straws were when he begged me to let his bst friend watch us and when he videotaped me in a scary way. They escalate, dont' they? Well, it's over. I was just an object to him for his hatred. His mother holds him hostage emotionally, but that isn't my problem is it? He was VERY effusive in his praise (manipulation) of me; it woeked for 3 years. I was addicted to the highs, and I'm STILL not convinced I have the strength to stay away from him. He's helping me out by not contacting me and every day I feel stronger. It's hard to accept the reality of his abuse. I wanted SO much to think he LOVED me SO much. I was desperate and needy!! I hope I'm overcoming that.

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Saturday, March 22, 2003

My (soon ex)husband of three years is a high-functioning borderline, who has trouble expressing open anger at all. Instead he uses extremely covert and refined ways when projecting, doing projective identification, punishing, pulling away etc. When I first met him, he seemed so tender and sweet, the perfect, charming gentleman. Madly in love. Showered me with compliments and attention. Of course, there were early warning signs: completely forgetting to buy gifts for an important day, forgetting to phone when away (object constancy). This made me very confused, as he was very “clingy”/idealising when we were together. As time went by… slowly slowly, he started changing (I didn’t know it was bpd then – I just felt I was going crazy). These are some of the behaviors he displayed: - Never stating needs he had, just “manipulating” to get them met - Saying yes, when he wanted to say no - Unable to take criticism = you don’t love me. - Most often not changing the simple things that bothered me (silly things like that his feet were smelly when he came home from work) - Not standing up for me when people (fex his parents) offended me deeply. - Not having opinions and then suddenly having a contrary opinion, just to prove he had opinions. - Interested in childish things; cartoons, comics, Star Wars etc. - Feeling physically nauseous when I got sick. - Not being able to just rest or think, without doing anything specifically. Not being able to stay at home from work when sick, if alone. - Pretending to be competent, in areas he had no clue about. - Punishing me secretly for perceived/real hurts by withholding compliments (from himself & those that others told him), withholding sex and projecting it on me, doing things with colleagues and then not with me etc… The only thing he did not do was communicate honestly and frankly about what hurt him etc. - Never really praising/noticing me for what was ME, but just when I catered to a need or when he wanted me to think he was “nice”. - Feeling entitled to “pay back” secretly for any perceived threat/hurt/negligence etc etc etc - Just giving exactly the amount he was getting at any time. - Resenting the fact that I had a depression during a certain time (he told me this at the end of the relationship!) You see he couldn’t be the focus… - Not really wanting me to see his new workplace and meeting his colleagues (he wanted to have something to himself, he said!). - Not offering to read what I was writing (although I was a writer!!) - Having trouble asking how my day was and having trouble describing what I did to others. - Slowly withdrawing from the relationship – not having my photo in his wallet anymore, not calling me from work, touching meless. The individuation phase in a relationship to him meant that the symbiosis was over = being rejected & not nurtured enough… - Feeling that when I was giving him “negative” feedback and let’s say a colleague gave him good feedback, then I was Bad and she was Good. He never connected his behavior to my feedback… Of course, around others he was always charming and obliging… - Pouting when not getting attention. Wanting admiration no matter what he had done or what problems the other had in THEIR life. - Being very jealous and having double standards. Very upset when I was out with a male friend for supper (once!), while it was quite OK for him to party with his female colleagues all night. - Always assuming that I would meet someone better, and that we should spend all our time together. Still, when intimate, he always wanted to get away (go for a walk alone etc). - Never ever planning for or talking about the future, instead derailing these conversations or postponing things he had promised to do. - Wanting to have a baby with me, as a way of ensuring that I wouldn’t leave. - Never having a sense of every-day things that one has to do as an adult. - A hard time finishing any project. - Wanting to be in control of others, but not of himself. Control = in very covert ways, never openly. - Only doing things which ensured immediate gratification. - Gratifying me sexually as a way of having control. Difficulty seeing into my eyes while making love. If I expressed pleasure – he had control. He couldn’t do the same – that meant I had control over him. So sad L - History of sabotaging himself at the moment he was to achieve something (getting diplomas, driver’s license etc). - Subtly triggering my most painful buttons, thereby angering/saddening me, whereby he could become a victim of “my anger” and also get his own suppressed feelings “acted out”. - Encouraging me to do things on the surface, while secretly resenting that these things took attention and time away from him. - When I was hurt by something he did, he always managed to turn the attention back to him. Most often, it would end with him crying. - Walking away during conflicts, no resolution or agreement on his part. - Feeling upset when I had a feeling that didn’t correspond to his. Making me feel it was the other way around. - Feeling more and more upset & abandoned, the healthier I got (less enmeshed but more loving). - Every weekend, causing some scene. Refusing to make suggestions, pouting, snide remarks. Eventually we would end up sad and angry, staying inside, even if it was a beautiful day outside. He reserved this behavior for me – when he was out with colleagues he seemed happy and carefree. - Projecting the rage onto me – I was always the Angry One. Yet in psychotherapy my totem was a fox and his a GRIZZLY BEAR ;-). - Incapable of a relationship – yet expecting unconditional love and regard. Felt he was entitled to never-ending admiration and positive mirroring… - Not seeing me so much as a complex person in my own right, but more as an answer to his insatiable Needs. - Unable to understand that his actions (Not his True Self) made partners “less happy” as the relationship went along. His last girlfriend found another (he had been pulling away and she started looking elsewhere..). All his relationships had lasted two years = disaster when the “in love” phase was over and his “emptiness” came back… - Taking everything personally. If I had a headache and was not very sunny = he perceived me as a “bad mother”. - Accused me of being “fake” for being able to return to a normal emotional basline faster. - Feeling close to children, but not handling them very competently when they got cranky, sad or sick… - He had trouble remembering what people had discussed during meetings. Sometimes he had derealisation experiences at work (I didn’t understand that then, just thought he was going through a life crisis). - Always asking if I still loved him, after an argument. Once he said afterwards: “I had this thought of hurting myself, to punish you…” - Often silently refusing to open up and sharing his true thoughts and feelings, dreams. Yawning, wanting to go to sleep when important subjects came up. Towards the end, his anger and annoyance was more on the surface ( somewhat verbally abusive, rolling with eyes etc). Then he would feel immense guilt. - Often running on “automatic pilot” + giving superficial answers during deep discussions. - Often making me feel like I was shaming him, when I was just making reasonable demands. - Not accepting my justified anger (fex when somebody else had hurt me). - Trying to make me believe that I felt that he was “less than”. Turning everything into a power struggle or turning everything around so no compromise could be made. - Seeming distant and acting weird when we had been apart for a while. - Always wanting affection to soothe and fill him, never giving of his “overflowing” love. - Buying presents, cards & flowers often when feeling guilty, not as tokens of love. - Always being the victim with a “hanging head”, to avoid accountability. - More or less forcing me into the role of his insane BP mother. Walking on eggshells, as though I was a volcano about to erupt any moment. Pretending I would get insanely mad if he didn’t agree with him. Believing that I was controlling our life, while I was just trying to build a life – without much help… - Saying things about me and others, that applied to himself. “They can never make any decisions at work!!” - Starting to idealize colleagues at work and devaluing me… Talking to perfect strangers about much too intimate stuff… - Truly expecting “my love” to keep his pain away (he actually said this!) - Believing that Love should always feel like Being in Love (he actually said this too!) - Taking out all his resentments toward his mother on me. - Having trouble doing anything spontaneous. - Resenting the fact that I was getting ahead with my career, had friends, was getting less worried. Thinking that if I had things & attention, there would be less to go around for him L - Not wanting to be alone, but not close either… Then… the shit hit the fan…we planned on buying a house and the stress of this, together with a possible promotion at work and the “devaluation slope” getting worse… he came home one day (crying) and asked for divorce. I was so chocked I could hardly talk!!! He said a lot of nonsense (the underlying fact being that I wasn’t taking care of him & loving him as a good “mother” should + he had intense dysphoria ). I managed to get him to a psychologist (he didn’t want couple therapy). The following weeks were nightmarish and I think he was psychotic/delusional; thought I was his original abuser , refused to eat of the same food, walked for hours and hours, had anxiety attacks, was extremely loving and then cold. Like he didn’t know me, then normal. Warped the psychologist’s words for further ammunition (awful, because she was my former therapist and I respect her very much) Went out drinking late one night – then came home early next evening. Made all my positive traits seem horrible (you’re too verbal for me etc) Lied and had a fling with a coworker over a weekend (trying to burn all bridges as he said later.) Telling me I’m wonderful, then ignoring me. Telling me about stuff that happened ages ago, like he had just piled one resentment on top of another, silently never forgiving anything…. Getting closer and saying he was attracted to me. Next time, that he had never loved me at all!! Saying he wanted a divorce, but whenever I’d bring up the topic he’d say he’d have to wait and see. When I put an ultimatum, he said he had to check what to do with his psychologist!!!! Then he left for his parents for Christmas, saying we should divorce (perhaps we could meet anew later on, he stated..). He didn’t return the date he said and that’s when I felt I HAD TO LEAVE. Left him a note and said he could call if he wanted… He called on New Year’s Eve. Then we exchanged some notes, when I came to pick up the mail. He said he was moving but not when. I said that I had found a permanent place and told him when I would pick up my furniture. Quickly as hell he paid a fortune to get an apartment before I moved my stuff. He didn’t tell me he had moved, so I discovered that one night shortly before moving for good. I called him and HE RUSHED OVER to meet me. When I asked him why he hadn’t told me he said “I was afraid you’d be angry” = bp language meaning he was angry at me! Go figure, he probably thought I abandoned him! He also cried and said that he wasn’t sure he had done the right thing…that perhaps he abandoned me before I could abandon him… that I was the only woman he had loved and that had seen his True self L After this I found out that he suffered from bp (through the internet and a new counsellor I was seeing). Surprise – I also realized my father had had the same disorder :-/ After that I e-mailed + wrote a letter about some remaining things (in a very loving way), but now he was punishing me by not responding. He had cut contacts with everyone without a word of explanation (even a 5-year-old-kid who adored him). His father called me and cried, as he wasn’t picking up the phone… So now 3 months have passed since I moved out and not a word from him since we met last time. No divorce papers or nothing… An acquaintance had lunch with him and he said “we’ve moved apart”, which doesn’t seem final to me…. He continues seeing the psychologist, at least, but I don’t know if he’s honest with her… Phew. Feels good. Just getting it out. This doesn’t mean I don’t have my share in the relationship (and I’ve admitted to so many things), but I truly believe that the bp problems make a relationship a no win situation… This also doesn’t mean that he hasn’t got many wonderful qualities. It has been very hard for me to have the right to say that he was abusive, since he didn’t rage openly or abuse me physically/verbally (he wasn’t unfaithful either, before the psychotic episode, when he had “broken up” with me although we lived together). He had learned so very very refined ways of controlling/getting approval, as his mother was an aggressive bp. Once he told me, that he gave his father (classic codependent) the silent treatment FOR THREE MONTHS just because he pinched his toe too hard… The weird thing is I think he never tried this hard in his life, as with this relationship… I TRULY hope he sticks with his therapy. He has so many gifts – very intelligent, creative and very sensitive…. But so am I – and I deserve love and understanding too!!

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Saturday, March 22, 2003

Discusses intimate conversations between you to his friends and starts to describe you in a very negative light to them.

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Thursday, March 27, 2003

I wrote a poem today. After twenty five years, leaving him once, patching it up, getting a good job, kids almost all grown, he becomes infatuated with a woman at work and threatens to leave if I won't let him have unlimited time with her. Way too long of a story to tell about that and not as fun as the poem I wrote today. Here it is, would love to hear comments about it. Thanks The man I am married to He’s a charmer He’s a dreamer He’s a planner who gets others to do the work He’s entertaining always has a good story to tell Want to know the latest gossip? Ask him; he’ll know He’s been the source of my greatest growth because what he starts I finish and so now I know so much Just watch me I can turn on a dime I can dance on the head of a pin And soon I’ll just dance away And the joke will be on him But not yet because if I don’t dance just right I’ll be caught before I get away And I know there’s always a price to pay with him I used to hope and really believe If I worked hard enough and changed myself Our life together could work But wishing and hoping Can’t get the dishes done Can’t mow the back yard Can’t clean out the garage Can’t run his business efficiently So I have a good job and the kids are gown almost I do the dishes I make the bed I make myself OK And now I know that counting on him is what I must not do I can only count on me when I am with him For my husband is charming He tells good stories Our friends love to listen to him They think (he tells me) I must be a nag I must be a shrew If I get angry with him So I am done with the anger, the sadness the hope That all will be ok with me with him I know I’m OK with the rest of my life The craziness just happens at home or in the car when we are alone driving quickly down the road Where no one can see and no one can hear but me So I am taking the steps, I am doing the dance to be ok around even when he is around For if he thinks I am sad he says he knows he is not being fair to me and then he does it again and again and again and again And if I get angry or cry out in pain He has proof of what a great guy he must be for putting up with me My husband’s a dreamer a charmer He has good stories to tell He let’s you see that I am the one who is wrong and he is the one who is wronged But if you look closely You will see Who drives the kids to school who takes them shopping and buys their clothes Who cleans the house and takes out the trash or gets the kids to help He tells stories and he makes plans he has ideas that sound so great and grand and he always looks so fine But now I am wearying of telling of him And as you can see I am still hooked a bit Yet I know for sure there is hope for me I take care of myself our children our house How I wish I could call it a home But my husband’s a dreamer a charmer He has good stories to tell My life with him has been good and bad and often it’s been pure hell But I am fine as I work and I plan For I can sing and I can dance And I can tell a story or two myself.

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Friday, March 28, 2003

A psychologist once wrote: when you see a reaaaaaaally nice man and a "bitchy" wife, beware! Things are not always what they seem...

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Friday, March 28, 2003

Slamming the bathroom door too hard at night, even though I've already fallen asleep (because he's been in the bathroom forever). Being asked politely not to do it repeatedly and still doing it, even after I've explained that it's hard for me to fall back asleep once I've been awakened...

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Sunday, April 06, 2003

Hacked my rose bushes down to the bround because I loved them. Made sure the battery was dead in the video camera for a family event that was very important to me. Encouraged his ex to call and come to our house uninvited even though the kids were grown and he was divorced over 10 years. Had separate holidays traditions, we had to have two Christmas trees... Hid our joint checking account information every month. Screamed over every meal, I made too much, too little, too hot, too cold, not the correct brand...every meal was a trauma. In the first year, he criticized everything I did, so I would stop doing it... by year end, the only thing I was doing was ironing... probably because he detested it so much... Said he was sorry he married me because I had children. Said he was sorry he married me because he would be retired. Sorry he married me because he retired. Blamed me either way. Hated living in my house. Wouldn't buy another house. When we bought the new house, I forced him to buy it, when he complained continually, I forced him to sell the house he loved.... Go figure....

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Friday, April 11, 2003

- telling your spouse that the only reason why I say you look good is because you are my spouse - "You trust me, don't you?" (Even though the person has said a number of times that they can get whomever they want) - "If you don't like _________, then you can leave." - "You are the reason why this relationship doesn't work. You are still your same old self."

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Sunday, April 20, 2003

does everything possible to make friends and family feel uncomfortable in your house, just shy of being ignorent, so that they will stop coming over. eventually even the stromg ones get the hint.

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Tuesday, April 22, 2003

Makes offers to "help" that seem sincere, but always have a motive of being brought up later as a bargaining tool for manipulation (may not be said clearly). For example, "I'll pick up the kids for you whenever you need me to." Reasons why the offer was made: 1)to spend more time with the kids in order to appear to the onlookers that he's a wonderful father, 2)to ensure that he, not my new husband, can claim to be "wonderful", 3) to use this "help" as a bargaining tool for getting me to agree to shared custody, so he can control all decisions, 4)to use this offer as proof of his trying to be reasonable and fair, and to prove that if I disagree with him, I'm being unreasonable and unfair. ETC

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Wednesday, April 23, 2003

If I want to go out to a club my boyfriend tells me that most of the guys who go there have AIDS. When I did go he brought it up about 3-4 times. The next day he didn't answer the phone for me. That was my punishment.

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Tuesday, May 06, 2003

He will say sure I'll do something fun this weekend with you. You then comb the Friday & Saturday papers come up with 10 different things to do...AND HE SHOOTS DOWN EVERY SINGLE ONE!!!!

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Thursday, May 08, 2003

Every gift he ever gave he had a gain in it. Set of dishes for christmas, he didn't like my 4oz cups, he made sure this set had 10oz. because he didn't like making trips to pour coffee. The lamp was because he didn't like how dark my apartment was. A 6.00 sweather he was going to buy for me, but he went to pull off his coat to try it on, he wanted to make sure it would fit him also. PMS & bipolar were good ones to blame over reaction, he even would keep track of the calander. I went chasing to both medical and mental doctors for help. ending the relationship both those mellowed out. He would make rules I would be expected to fallow, then he would break the very same rules. He did all this with a smile, with good caring intentions.

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Wednesday, May 21, 2003

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Thursday, May 22, 2003

Yeh here's one..after telling me how much he hates me and what I do to damage the relationship and then adding how he feels so good that he told me how much he hates me...I leave to escape to a friends for dinner because his rage and words scare me. When I return the next day all the pictures are off the walls and his furniture (all the stuff he while I paid for things that could not be taken such as rent) are pushed into the corner,and the stereo is atken apart and ready to leave. His reason...the carpets are going to be cleaned...how about the pictures? They need to be cleaned too...he announces that he is leaving because he cannot take out arguments any more, but does not re-hang the pictures and puts everything except the big pieces in the den...because its temporary....so I live with a house with no pictures and our home is no longer a home...he know that this will bother and weaken me and this is intentional as the next day we are to meet with the therapist. At the office he convinces her that I am an abuser and that he is the victim and he would do anything to help me change my behavior...I have supported him entirely while he has been looking for work, I have not taken his mean words and demeaning phrases seriously..taking them to Gofd instead..and I look like the abuser because I broke down and got angry and frustrated on one afternoon, which gave him license for a 8 day full frontal verbal attack with several phone calls per day and then after I am quivering mass of tears he convinces my therapist(That I have been seeing for 3 years) that I have serious problems..she says...if I will change then hopefully he will follow..I get defensive and ask why doesn't he change and I follow...I have little self-respect left and can barely look in the mirror..I just don't want to feel like this anymore...

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Monday, June 09, 2003

My father always takes credit for ANYTHING and EVERYTHING I ever do that is a positive, constructive, or just plain cool accomplishment. When I applied for college, I did ALL the paperwork/research myself, filled out all applications and student loan stuff, and really only went to him when I needed a guardian signature or information that only he could provide (such as his tax info, etc.). Anytime it comes up in conversation that I did well in college, and anything related to getting there, he says things like, "Well, yeah...you know...I was just determined to do whatever I had to do to get you to that school" when he did NOTHING. He says it so seriously convinced that he really did something that if he were to say that around anyone else, they would absolutely believe that he had really done something significant to get me there. If I corrected him in front of someone (which I KNOW BETTER than to do) he would totally lash out at me and list all the "things" he ever did for me and all the "gifts" he ever got me and tell me I'm ungrateful. These "things" and "gifts" are usually things that any parent is REQUIRED BY LAW to do for their children such as: provide food, shelter, clothing, etc. or else it is another form of abuse: CHILD NEGLECT. All gifts are strategic and with many strings attatched, and are usually given so that at times just like the situation described above, they can be brought up and listed in order to "prove his point". Also, every positive characteristic and trait I may have "I get from him". Even though he does not have the same talents or hobbies I do, I MUST have gotten my ability to paint and draw from HIM! I "should be thankful" even though I do not recall asking to be born, nor do I remember bargaining with him for a specific genetic code. Also, whenever he makes me cry from being so mean, it is only to "make him look like an asshole". He finds a way to blame anything and everything on anyone else but himself. He speaks as though reading a horrible low-budget soap opera script...you can actually HEAR the violins...during any fight where I may actually be able to hold my own and when I KNOW I AM RIGHT and he is being his abusive self, then I "have gone too far...even HE would NEVER say THAT to ME..." because I am "so cold...so very, very cold...perhaps we should just both go our different directions and never speak again". I believe he says this so that, if I were to agree to it, he could then tell all his side of the family his horrible hard luck story of how I "broke up" with him, his own daughter, after "all he's done for me" even though it was his idea (but you know, he would leave that part out-it doesn't sound as good). There are so many more examples but I would run out of hours typing them. Hope this helps!

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Tuesday, June 10, 2003

Says I won't leave you now, we've been through too much together (his drug abuse). As if to say if we hadnt been through his drug abuse problems, well we wouldnt be together now. He only stays with me out of obligation.

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Tuesday, June 10, 2003

Puts down your way of doing things if they don't agree with his idea of how it should be done.

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Sunday, June 22, 2003

Predictable and scheduled time when they come to see you (controlling time, thus, not letting the relationship flow)

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Sunday, June 22, 2003

Tells you that you do not earn sufficient money to satisfy her when she refuses to work at all.

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Sunday, June 22, 2003

Tells you that you do not earn sufficient money to satisfy her when she refuses to work at all.

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Monday, June 23, 2003

He is nice to me and has a respectable career in the community so that he seems so decent. Didn't forget my birthdays, gave me things if I needed them, etc. All around pretty good guy. This person would be so nice to be around, but like clockwork, completely devoid of emotion at all within the next few days. It was push/pull. His "unspoken" signal was I love you/who are you? Not mean, just dead inside and he would come to see me at exactly a precise time every evening and stay for pretty much a precise hour. This has gone on for years. I thought I was going out of my mind. I couldn't pinpoint ANY abuse at all. In fact, it made me seem like the abuser. I was afraid to even talk about it to people because it would look so stupid. I isolated myself and felt secretly insane. I finally did talk about it to someone. This person told me that she thought he DID know what he was doing. She said that she thought he was manipulating my emotions. She said that he probably realized that my "red hot button" was the feeling of being abandoned and confusion. He is not violent. In fact, he walks away from arguments. No satisfying communication or sense of resolution or answers that I felt were really answered. In fact, he would sometimes answer my questions with a question like "why would I do that?" Too many mixed signals. My friend said that she thought he did this to get a rise out of me. If I didn't say anything at all, he would get the satisfaction of withdrawing from me and have power over my needs. If I did complain, it gave him more excuse to withdraw and it left me feeling guilty for complaining, so that I would have to go back and apologize to him later. Either way he wins because he gets to withdraw and do his own thing. And he knows I'm still there waiting for him! I have read almost every post that's here. I'm almost finished reading them and I swear I haven't found what I've experienced yet. You talk about covert abuse. Mine's the KING of covert in the truest sense. He's made it into a work of refined art. I felt like if he even said something like some of the nasty snide remarks I've read on this board I could at least put my finger on it and say "aha! abuser," but no, nothing. All he has to do is ignore me or give me the silent treatment when he IS upset with me and I'm left to dance all over the place while he sits calmly doing his own thing. No, I don't get hysterical, but I do try to argue and tease what's going on out of him. All to no avail. I feel like a dog chasing its tail. Has anyone ever experienced this? I feel like this guy is a rare one. I live in a constant state of stress, worry, and guilt. I feel so lonely most of the time.

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Monday, June 23, 2003

Ooooh...in regards to the previous post, which was mine, I take it back. I did find something that resembled my relationship. The post was back in 10/24/00 by "DJ." Worse, it was coming from the person doing the distance/close thing. It is eerie to get a glimpse into the mind of someone does these unkind things. It explains why even fun things together usually ended up feeling so gloomy and much, much more. I had suspected it is a case of passive/aggressive narcissism and a fear of losing control. I was told I was too controlling by wanting him to spend our one hour together each night and say "I love you." This is what I was told when he dumped me. It's seems strange to me that anyone can hasten the breakup when it seems to be the breakup they so fear. I think just reading that post made me even more aware of events where I was being abused and I never even realized it. Whoever that guy is, I am grateful he at least told the truth. It would be better though if he could be happier and more fulfilled in his life. His life must be a dark place inside.

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Saturday, June 28, 2003

I think, that sometimes, the hardest type of covert abuse the that which occurs in increments over time. Like, my husband buying me a small gift, ( ironically this gift was to show he was turning over a new leaf) then using the gift all the time himself. Okay he likes what he bought me. Then he found something else of mine he wanted. A candle. So he used that until it was gone. He needed it to meditate. Why should I care, its just a little thing. Then he borrowed a couple of other little things, always without asking. Well they are just little things. Then he needed to borrow my bible. Can't you get your own I asked. Okay, I'm not overly religious, but this has sentimental value and he did just join a new evangelical church. Don't they hand them out there. No, he didn't want to pay for one. ( You have to pay for them?) Well fine you can borrow it. All this is over about a week. In a few days I noticed the Bible permanently installed on his book shelf. We each have our own shelves, for our personal stuff. So I take my bible back and ask him not to use or take my stuff, especially without permission. His response is to roll his eyes, and look at me like I'm crazy. Now comes the lecture about me. Sure if I'm that overly sensitive and so inclined to make big things out of little things. What's my problem anyway. Trying to explain just makes me look crazy in his eyes. There is no point in trying to explain anymore, even through I still sometimes fall into this trap. In order for him to change he would have to deconstruct himself, and he won't do that. He had a preditermined expectation of me and how I should be. Even though that expectation is that I be independant and hold down a good job, everytime I move out of his image of how things should be he sends out somekind of emotional jab. Its never predicable. Once he did an indian arm burn on me. Well after three years of martial arts I just looked at him like he was crazy and walked away. A consellor of mine thinks its interesting that I choose to take up martial arts. Sometimes the jabs are verbal, and sometimes its a situation set up, often to make me look like a less than perfect mother. It's been 15 years and I'm just about done with this. This site is great, its a helpful reminder of why I'm ending this marriage.

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Monday, July 07, 2003

talking badly about me or my kids to other people when I am in the room.

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Wednesday, July 16, 2003

He says that you need to accept him as he is or find another man. He says that you have "character flaws" when you get angry that your boundaries are violated, and infers that you are not acceptable. When you insist on equal treatment, he says you are "acting like a man" by asserting yourself. He tells you that he is the "man of the house" and the ultimate decision maker. Any inference that he will leave you if you do not acquiesce to his desires is covert abuse.

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Saturday, July 19, 2003

In regard to the July 16th post, well, it sounds like it's either his way or the highway. Take the highway if you haven't already. It doesn't ever get better. It just gets worse and eventually you'll lose all the boundaries you have. I was married to a man like this. He did everything he wanted to do and I ended up living like a prisoner in my own home. There were even stretches of days at a time when I didn't even go outside or know what the weather was like. RUN to the NEAREST EXIT when they talk this way. Just do it! Save yourself! Peace be with you.

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Tuesday, August 05, 2003

Mention an old flame from the past and every cuss word ever invented was yelled at me especially with the F word used before each belittling word.(mind you it is safe for him to talk about the tiny woman he had been with sexually)

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Tuesday, August 05, 2003

Mention an old flame from the past and every cuss word ever invented was yelled at me especially with the F word used before each belittling word.(mind you it is safe for him to talk about the tiny woman he had been with sexually)

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Thursday, August 07, 2003

hows this he says lie on top of me when you make love, then lies there with his hads at his sides and closes his eyes. He looks as if he is going to sleep. ( He did have a heart attack 2 years ago. Maybe I killed him).) Then he says this was fun, different and exciting. After all, isnt lone supposed to be selfish, for example, taking the time to please yourself.

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Thursday, August 07, 2003

Their actions don't match their words. If you praise them when they do something you like you can guarantee the behavior won't happen again. If you tell them you don't like something, you can guarantee it will happen again. Uses against you something personal you share in an attempt to create intimacy.

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Sunday, August 17, 2003

Father: "Here, honey, we're at the mall, like I promised, you can get anything you want or need so long as you don't go over $$XXX...anything! Shoes, jeans, shirts, dresses, girly teenage glittery crap, whatever! *grinning like Father of the Year* Me: "Oh, wow! Cool! Thanks...let's see..." Father: "OOOH! Hey, hon, look at that sweatshirt...it is SO you! It's on sale and it's even your favorite color! TOO COOL! Well, OK, do you want to try it on or should I just grab it?" *looks Very Pleased with himself* Me: "Oh! You're right, that IS cool. Hmm, but I think I'm just gonna stick to lightweight and shortsleeves, because it's getting hot out and anyway, I think I have plenty of sweatshirts." Father: "NO? Don't want it? FINE. What the F**k do I know? MAN!! Try to do something nice for my daughter, on my day off and everything, and you don't want any part of it. F**k THIS S**t, I'm outta here! *Walks away WAAAY too fast for me to catch up, and dodges often so I lose him between corners and crowds.* Finally, just as I've about given up, He somehow appears right behind me and violently hisses in my ear, "I'm F**king leaving, I don't know about you, and frankly, I don't even give a S**t." Turns away quickly again, I follow to the car lagging way behind. Me: "I'm SORRY! What did I do??? I can get the sweatshirt if you want! ???" Father: "NO...no. This is NOT about the sweatshirt, it's about YOU BEING SO GODD**N UNGRATEFUL!"