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feeling walked on and angry
December 24, 2000
12:13 pm
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Idealist
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I am a working woman who went to four years of college and have two daughters who are about to leave the nest. I had a unplanned pregnancy when I was in my freshman year of college and got married and then stayed home for the first two years then went to school part time while taking care of the children. My husband was more helpful with the household duties before we got married and then gradually became more and more dependant on me. I did not complain because I was not working and he was the provider. Yet when I went to school full time I requested help from him he would make coments with his friends that I should be the one staying at home and taking care of the house. We had discussed the career issue before marriage and he agreed yet when it came time for me to go to school to get my degree he objected. My family was paying for the college and sitter fees and we would have much more income in the future is the way I presented it to him. I went to school anyway and he began an affair with a younger woman. When I started out in my career I found out about the affair and it ended. I kept the family together and gave him another chance. He did make some effort and we went to counseling after we had made some good progress in communicating in a non judjing and hurtful way. The counseling made us feel uncomfortable and we could handel at the time. The counselor wanted us to tell each other everything that was bothering us about each other. He said to give each other five minutes each day alternating terns to say what was bothering or annoying about the other's behavior. This proved to be too painful. I know we need to be able to communicate theese things but we do have trouble doing it. My husband and I stopped going to counseling and became busy with other things. I become very hurt when he puts me down whenever he feels like it. He takes things out on me and I used to just let it pass but I refuse to do that anymore. I threatened to leave if he continued and he knows that I mean it. Sometimes he still takes some things out on me and blames me for things and I know that I do not deserve it all but there is still some truth in what he is expressing. How can we communicate with out hurting one another.

December 26, 2000
10:29 am
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janes
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Go back to the list of what it takes to be a codependent.

Putting others down is verbal abuse. Perhaps the methods used by your counselor used made you both uncomfortable...but why?

Yes your hubby supported you through school...so?...

Sounds like he gave lip service to your wnats and needs and yet when you followed your dream to reality..different story. Hate to say it but "Wife should be in the kitchen, barefoot and pregnant"..etc etc etc That's a little chauvinistic.... that's a lot chauvinistic.

You have grown and matured...sounds like maybe you left him behind. He can catch up if he wants...but it's his choice.

What do YOU want from the rest of your life? You have opportunities now that the kids are almost gone and you have your degree.

So what that there is truth in what he says...he doesn't have to say it in a hurtful manner...constructive criticis

December 26, 2000
10:32 am
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janes
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Go back to the list of what it takes to be a codependent.

Putting others down is verbal abuse. Perhaps the methods used by your counselor used made you both uncomfortable...but why?

Yes your hubby supported you through school...so?...

Sounds like he gave lip service to your wnats and needs and yet when you followed your dream to reality..different story. Hate to say it but "Wife should be in the kitchen, barefoot and pregnant"..etc etc etc That's a little chauvinistic.... that's a lot chauvinistic.

You have grown and matured...sounds like maybe you left him behind. He can catch up if he wants...but it's his choice.

What do YOU want from the rest of your life? You have opportunities now that the kids are almost gone and you have your degree.

So what that there is truth in what he says...he doesn't have to say it in a hurtful manner...constructive criticis

December 26, 2000
10:38 am
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janes
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OOPS--computer burp.

as I was saying constructive criticism can be postivie and helpful...from both directions. But there is a fine line to verbal abuse.

There are some really good books if you have time to read them...Melodie Beattie - Codependent no more...
Also a great Verbal abuse website is
Dr Irene's Verbal Abuse site...just reading her responses to folks being abused - emotionally-verbally-physically- etc is VERY educational. and she is a clinical psychologist. I have learned a lot there.

Communication is a two way street. Good communication can be learned. Sounds to me like you want to communicate but he just wants to hurt you...But I don't know for sure.

How is his self esteem?

Let us know how you are?
j-

December 28, 2000
12:13 am
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Idealist
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Dear janes,
Thanks for the support and the great web site Dr. Irene's Verbal Abuse web site. I will be surfing there for a while before I make any further coments. There is much information that may be useful in my situatuon.

January 1, 2001
9:00 pm
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I have been getting on Dr. Irene's site and it has taken time away from my husbnad. He has not made any verbal comments but is withholding his feelings and went into work on his day off because he "needed to catch up on things". I know that i should not feel guilty but I know that he is hurting that I am not giving him my undivided attention. Never mind the fact that he ignores me when I do spend time with him. He had always wanted my attention and disliked it when I wnated to read a book. He would tell me that he was more important and that I was being rude or there were more importnat things that I could be doing. I do not know haw to approach my husband about my need for self responsibility and not to have to be his caretaker. I am affraid that he will react negatively and my life will be miserable for a while. I am aware that he will also try to show me that he is trying to change and will work on the marriage and then my hopes will be up again. The honeymoon phase is just an illusion and I wnat real progress but have hopes for real progress in the past and it did not happen so I become moore skeptical. I wish there was an easy way to see if there is any hope for my situation and I am planning on reading the book Too Good To Leave, Too Bad To Stay: by Mira Krishembaum. Any sucess stories please let me know. Most of the ones on Dr Irene's website the relationship does not work out.

January 17, 2001
1:22 pm
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pg lova
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Idealist,

Take it from someone who has had 7 relationships to fail, it's not your fault and don't feel that way. Whenever he takes things out on you, you must be assertive, tell him that you do not appreciate it, and wwalk away. If he keeps on doing it start shutting the door in his face. Eventually, he'll get the message, and if he doesn't, there is really no need for you to be there.

God Bless U and be strong.

January 17, 2001
8:38 pm
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Molly
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Men don't hear well, and after years they I do believe intentionally tune us out because it is the same ole same old that they think they are ignoring. Action is what creates change. Don't talk don't nag, don't react, they feed the monster. Trust me, ignoring him, weight loss, positive attitude, and indifference works. Sad but true, so focus on you, create the life and things you want with in the relm of your house hold, he will get with the program or get out.

January 20, 2001
11:29 pm
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Hello. Thanks for the input. Your comments have spured me to keep hanging in there and to seek information to help me see that I am not at fault for my husband's behavior. I feel isolated. I really have been in a bad situation for a long time with no one to talk to. My family lives far away and they do not know what problems that I have faced in my marriage. Neither did I have a clear picture of what was gong on. I never thought of my husband as being the one with the problem and he was always the one to critisize me and I beleived him. I read Patricia Evans book called The Verbally Abusive Relationship and it explained exactly what I have been going through for the past 20 years. I scheduled for me to go to counseling and I do not know if my husband is going or not but I did invite him. If he does not go I will go for myself and then leave him because I cannot continue with the way things have been. He said he is willing to change and he is making some changes but is not making the changes needed so far. He is still withholding, critisizing and condescending. He says he will have to change his standards and by that he means to put me down in a covert way in my opinion though he denies it. I am calling the abuse for what it is and he may not like it and he may want out of the relationship. Either way I will not stand for being abused any longer. He walked in on me when I was sneding this message and made the comment you are telling everyone on the internet our business. I told him that it is confidential because an assumed name is used. He said the next thing will be that I tell all the neighbors and everyone we know. I have been finding many of the friends that I know have been in similar relationships and it helps to talk inorder to recieve validation which is something that I do not get in this relationship at this point.

January 21, 2001
9:45 am
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janes
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There are success stories but for them to occur the abusing party has to want to change...and it is not a quick fix.

Abusers..as you have proble learned bro Dr Ireme are caught in a complex situation. Admitting to be an abuser thakes a lot of insight from a male or female. (females are abusers too)

Learn to see through those excuses...I'll have to change my standards..."etc. Standards that hurt others aren't in my opinion worth it.

If he doesn't want anyone to know he is an abuser...then why doesn't he attempt to truly change. It must be scary to think about changing how you have always been as a person but if he "loves you" he'll change.

January 31, 2001
11:14 pm
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I have been th therapy for two visits. I found a counselor that is familliar with the verbal abuse issues yet she says she has not heard of Patricia Evans book "The Verbally Abusive Relationship". She is very fammiliar with the things Patricia covers in her book and that is why I chose her. There were many counselors in our area that had no idea what I was talking about. Most did not. I am feeling much more empowered and the stresses of everyday sife are not getting me down as they used to. I am working on improving myself and looking at options that will be healthy for myself and the children. My spouse and I are learning this different relationship. I donpt think he is feeling good about the change in me and may feel threatened but is accomodating. He is not going to counseling and I have no control over that but I am not letting it worry me. For now I am staying in the relationship because the children want me to stay for financial reasons so that they can do what it is that they have set as goals for themselves. I feel comfortable with that and as long as I am comfortable I will continue. There is only one more year before my youngest is ready for college and then I will have three (including my niece) in college. I still love the good times that I am able to have with my mate and if it turns out that we are able to find a way to have mutual respect in this relationship then we may have a rich life together. If not then I will still have self respect that I can find a life on my own. I know that life has no garentees now and I remind myself of that often. My therapist said that someone that has come this far is not likely to through away the progress so far. The colliseum lights have turned on.

February 1, 2001
7:47 am
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janes
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Sounds good to me...but my kids are the same way...

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