Sent: Monday, July 12, 1999 8:57 PM
Subject: 1st time here
Angry Person Support - http://www.drirene.com
Hi. This is my first posting, and as I've yet to receive any
postings from others, I'm wondering if in fact the feelings of being alone
in this situation is reality. I have searched not only online, but also
for Psychotherapist that work with abusers and have not found anyone that
appears to relate. Everywhere I look I find support groups and counseling
for the abused party (and agree that this is is a much needed service),
but find no one that wants to deal with the abuser. 10 weeks ago, my wife
told me to get help, and though we physically occupy the same house we are
"separated". Jack, you are not alone. Angry people are just less likely
to vent than are victim people. They are also poorer communicators in
general than are victim people - so there is less correspondence. You are
right about not being enough resources. More are needed.
We have been
married for almost 27 years, and I have been told that I have been
verbally abusive for the whole marriage. Do you agree with her? I have listened to what she
has to say and agreed to seek counseling. My abuse is not as clearly
defined as the many cases one can gather information on. I do not physically abuse,
and am not the typical in-her-face nasty name-calling, self-esteem
attacking menace so vividly described in the books and web sites on the
subject of verbal abuse. Believe it or not, your abuse may not be the most
pronounced, but it is the most common in my experience. The physical and
menacing abuser are more on the extreme end of the continuum and of course
demand the most attention. I can see where I have, through constant manipulation, and
NEVER being wrong, crippled the person that I love most. What did you do to her? Not to mention the damage
done to our 3 children and their chances of being able to maintain healthy
is good that you see this. It doesn't matter if anyone else sees this,
just that you do. The manipulation, in part, is the concern that others
appreciate that you now know.
I realize I need help, and can't find it! I have been visiting a therapist
for 4 weeks now, Great! and today he arranged for my
wife to visit with him. To say the least it did not go well.
She does not agree with his view point on verbal abuse, and he does not
agree with hers. What are each other's points of view?
Whether or not others see it as abuse, It is abuse. I have harmed this woman terribly, and am
committed to improving myself as a person. Good. What made you wake
up? I've read
Patricia Evans book "Verbally Abusive Relationship", as listed
as a "must read" on Dr. Irene's site, and can understand why my
wife sees this as her salvation. No brownie points for you, but the only reason
you were able to abuse your wife is because she permitted it. For whatever
reason. Now, she got smart...and must be angry as all heck. But where does anyone talk
about repairing the relationship? Not in the Evans book; that is not the focus.
You can find some of that stuff on this site...
How do we handle the guilt, the angry attitude from the persons we've
abused, and the feelings of utter despair? Ask for some Prozac...seriously! You need an MD evaluation,
but you would probably benefit from some kind of chemical assistance. How do I stop the pity
party when I have to exist with the damage I've done to a beautiful
by changing the way you do business. That's the best way. As
you feel better about the way you conduct yourself, your self-respect will
increase. The chemicals can help give you the strength to change the
behaviors you need to revise and help your ability to tolerate
frustration. If you haven't already, you will eventually realize that it
makes lots of sense to behave in ways you don't feel like behaving. Tip:
When in doubt, do nothing. Later, think about it and / or check it out
with your shrink. When you are completely cool, figure out what you need
If I apologize I'm manipulating... Don't. Just recognize when you are doing it. If
you can spot it, you can stop it. Is there help for me out there? Yes.
Few therapists understand the angry person. I don't really know why -
because verbal abuse is so prevalent.
My advice to you is to read all the material on my site for abusers - this
includes my stuff as well as all of the books that are listed. Evans was a
hard one to start with...she is particularly focused on the experience of
the abused person, but it is stuff you need to know. Next read
Codependence: Dance of the Wounded Souls. Great book... Read it slowly.
Keep a log of what's going on with you. Discuss it with your therapist.
(As soon as I get time, I plan to write about the codependency issues of
the angry person. Codependency is typically )
Develop self-discipline skills. For too long its been "your
way," even though it hasn't felt that way to you. If you wife leaves,
so be it. There is nothing you can do. Find yourself. (That is also the
best way to get her back.)
Meet your needs. Learn how to assert yourself and ask for what is
available to you. It's nobody's job to give "it" to you. Learn
to take what is given and to accept that you cannot get all that you want.
Be patient. It takes time.
Be honest, even if you don't like what you see. You will find many, many
things you've done "wrong." Don't go nuts; don't waste your time
kicking yourself or getting depressed. Use that energy instead to
concentrate on learning the skills you need to fix the stuff you do that
Get to know who you are. There is a wonderful person inside. An imperfect
being who messes up and doesn't get defensive. He takes responsibility
(not blame, not fault, just responsibility) for his behavior.
Good luck. -Dr. Irene