Dear Dr. Irene,
I have been married for almost 5
years and I knew my husband was a controlling person when we married. Since our
marriage, he has gotten worse and his anger gets out of control. He will take things
I say and twist them around telling me what I really meant and get very angry. He
even has a hard time controlling his anger if he has to stop for a red light. Last
night we had a terrible fight when he came home from work and said one of his friends
needed wrapping paper for a gift for his wife. I made a comment about how I would
never ask a friend to supply me with wrapping paper for a gift, I would just go buy
some. He became so angry and told me that my friends and family impose on him all
the time and that I was being a bitch. When I had made my remarks, I didn't think I
was "bitching" I only stated it as matter of fact in a very calm tone. He
wouldn't let up on me and when I went to the refrigerator to get a glass of ice tea I told
him he had a severe anger problem. He then slapped the full glass out of my hand,
sending the liquid all over me and the kitchen. I calmly walked away and changed my
clothes and went into the other room. He then continued to badger me. Later on
he apologized for doing that but I am afraid this will only escalate into something
bigger. We are not fighting right now but I find myself withdrawing from him.
If I act upset, he will get angry again with me for not letting this go. I don't
know what to do. I feel like such a fool for marrying him. I think I still
love him, I think he loves me too. This is my second marriage and I don't want to
fail again, I am 43 years old and I'm afraid. Please advise, thank you.
Be careful. Your
situation appears to be escalating into something physical. Slapping a glass out of your
hand is a step closer to slapping you. Once the physical abuse boundary has been broached,
the relationship has entered a new and more lethal stage.
You are handling this
well; you are not reacting. But, you can't win. Damned if you do and damned if you don't.
Get yourself some professional help - immediately. Call your local battered women's
shelter for a referral.
You need to tip the
balance of power in your marriage. Start by getting the support you will need to do what
you have to do to stop the abuse.
My very best wishes to