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To think I am abusive

(27 Posts)
OrAGin Sun 24-Feb-19 15:35:05

I already know my behaviour could be better, I'm worried though that I'm verging on being abusive and I'm terrified I'm affecting my DH's mental health/self worth.

DH & I together 10 years. He's a very kind, considerate and generous person. Always supportive.

So I don't drip feed, I have complex PTSD due to a number of traumatic events in my childhood. I've largely just 'got on with it' as best I could, but after 20 years of burying things I'm finally in CBT with the NHS and trying my best to change how I think.

The trouble is, sometimes I'm just mean to my DH. Examples - he buys a cake to cheer me up but I complain it's a flavour I don't like and he feels bad. I know it sounds totally ungrateful.

He was poorly with a cold and I spent three days looking after him, but by the forth day of his (understandable) grumpiness (and coming down with it myself) I snapped at him and caused an argument. I knew he had an awful headache but I couldn't shake myself out of feeling frustrated and negative.

I over-react at criticism or confrontation (like, mammothly) and sometimes a perceived slight criticism can have me really upset and suddenly I threaten either divorce or suicide. At the time it genuinely feels that bad. My emotions feel so out of control. I make it about me, all the time. Am I a narcissist?

I feel like nothing is good enough, and I'm worried that I'm repeating some of the patterns of behaviour with how I was treated as a young child by bringing him down when I'm struggling. I don't call him names or swear and there's no violence but I worry how I am will affect his self esteem, I know he feels drained after any of my PTSD triggered episodes.

Should I leave and spare him the trauma? No need to be kind, I know AIBU here. He deserves so much better.

disneyspendingmoney Sun 24-Feb-19 18:20:37

Tomtontom maybe my position of ignorance comes from being on the receiving end of what was described by the OP particularly the threats of divorce and suicide. The latter was particularly difficult for the children as well.

My own experience if three lots of CBT to cope with what I was undergoing focused on being self aware and understanding how I was feeling and my reactions to it. My suggestion is that if the OP is aware that they are using threats of suicide to manipulate and coerce their partner, then that must stop. I would suggest as well that the OP seeks out a professional to help with their issues abusive and otherwise.

I am sorry you felt that way about what I said and I admit it was a kneejerk reaction based on my own personal experiences.

whatsnewchoochoo Sun 24-Feb-19 17:59:30

See if you can make contact with the clinical psychologist and ask again about your diagnosis. Complex PTSD is quite new and often has massive overlaps with borderline PD. Borderline has some (unfair) stigma - it's a result of CPTSD but it means sometimes people don't get the BPD diagnosis when they might need it. Ask what treatment you get after CBT.

Supergrassyknoll Sun 24-Feb-19 17:33:00

I think you're being extremely hard on yourself and so are most of these replies. I know a little about mental health issues and how difficult relationships can be...I'm tied up with my toddlers supper time right now but will post back later. X

gottastopeatingchocolate Sun 24-Feb-19 16:55:43

I hope that you get lots of supportive advice on here.
Just wondered if you are still on the waiting list for the group trauma work? If not, perhaps you could request this while continuing with your CBT. If you are honest with the person who referrred you and say that CBT is helping with some issues but not the most affecting ones, they would hopefully be able to help.

Grumpbum123 Sun 24-Feb-19 16:38:11

NHS it’s a year long 2 hourly group therapy then one to one for the trauma work

Punstow61 Sun 24-Feb-19 16:27:40

I think the fact you recognise your behaviour is wonderful and the fact you want to do something about it is brave and honest. I deal with anxiety and that can make me not a nice person. However, I do not have experience of the trauma you’ve had so I can’t offer any real advice. Other than to say, speak to your GP, therapist, and get the right help. Be completely and utterly honest with your husband too. I really hope you get there.

Armadillostoes Sun 24-Feb-19 16:26:31

OP-I am sorry that you are going through this. Please remind that AIBU is cruel and random and some posters are just bullies. What you describe sounds bad, but I wonder if you are not as terrible as you think you are? Do you exaggerate the degree and convince yourself and others that you are worse than you really are when reflecting on it?

But even if not, talk to your DH and see what other help you can access. It sounds like he loves you and sees past the illness and behaviours it causes. He knows you better than randoms online.

OrAGin Sun 24-Feb-19 16:20:53

Can I ask who diagnosed you with C-PTSD?

Sure, it was an NHS clinical psychologist. She initially referred me for a group course but then as I'd have had to have waited 6+ months for it, she instead put me on the waiting list for CBT, which I started within a month. Maybe that's all they can offer?

PinaColada1 Sun 24-Feb-19 16:18:25

Yes. Get yourself professional help, and let your DH know. He might need counseling too as it’s likely you’ve ended up in a toxic dynamic where he doesn’t fully realise this is not on.

OrAGin Sun 24-Feb-19 16:17:18

@Grumpbum123 I'm really sorry to hear that, thanks for replying. Can I ask if the NHS are providing your DBT and trauma therapy or if you're going private? Best of luck.

Grumpbum123 Sun 24-Feb-19 16:14:24

I have CPTSD and about to start DBT and trauma therapy. I recognise a lot of what you have written OP

Tomtontom Sun 24-Feb-19 16:08:57

@disneyspendingmoney's posts show the level of ignorance that still exists around complex mental health issues. OrAGin knows that her behaviours are not appropriate, but resolving that is far more difficult than "controlling it".

Discussing the suitability of your therapy sounds like a positive next step OP. Can I ask who diagnosed you with C-PTSD? They would be best placed to signpost you to the correct service, although it is possible that they've directed you to CBT because there's nothing else available, or if there is the waiting list is years long.

HellsBellsAndBatteredBananas Sun 24-Feb-19 16:08:47

Honestly lovely, everything you have said reminds me of my daughter. She has borderline personality disorder/emotionally unstable PD stemming from childhood trauma. CBT barely made any difference to her and we are currently waiting for yet another appointment to try and get treatment.

I also have PTSD and rapid eye movement desensitisation was suggested but it required vocalising the abuse and what he put me through and I just couldnt do it. but reviews and recovery rates seem pretty good across a few different "typical" ptsd scenarios.

ATBhinchers Sun 24-Feb-19 16:07:36

I think you're focusing too much on putting a label on everything.

Basics of this situation is - you feel you're emotions etc can get out of control and you feel bad for your DH. You need to have help to deal with this. Stop trying to fit everything into a nicely labelled little box.

OrAGin Sun 24-Feb-19 16:05:13

You sound like you have Borderline Personality Disorder.

I did have two (long) assessments with NHS therapists, and was 100% honest about everything. They diagnosed C-PTSD, rather than BPD. Do you think it's worth me asking for another assessment, though? I want the right treatment to get better.

Well done for acknowledging the things you do that are not kind or loving. This will help you change them.

I really hope so, for my DH's sake.

OrAGin Sun 24-Feb-19 15:59:12

I'm taking in all replies, thanks for taking the time.

I feel like the CBT is helping with my anxiety but not touching the deep-rooted sexual and emotional trauma. It still feels very raw. I will ask about trauma therapy and DBT at my next CBT session - I've not come across those terms before.

I have opened up a discussion with DH about separating but he absolutely won't entertain the idea. I just want to do what's right by him, and put him first.

JustLikeTheySaid Sun 24-Feb-19 15:53:50

You sound like you have Borderline Personality Disorder. You need DBT not CBT.

Well done for acknowledging the things you do that are not kind or loving. This will help you change them.

disneyspendingmoney Sun 24-Feb-19 15:52:18

The suicide threats must stop immediately, start with controlling that. If you are in a heightened state, take time out to calm before making such threats.

I say this as they are controlling and coercive and ultimately becomes very damaging to what ever discussions you need to have.

disneyspendingmoney Sun 24-Feb-19 15:49:35

irrespective of therapies, you are displaying done degree if self awareness. If you are self aware you can take steps to confirm yourself and to be rational and reasonable Therapy will help a lot but you must learn to control your poor behaviours, especially if you are able to describe them.

ShabbyAbby Sun 24-Feb-19 15:44:29

CBT is not the right treatment for C-PTSD
I'm not going to say it won't help at all (because it helps most people a little bit) but you need to get into trauma therapy ASAP

ashtrayheart Sun 24-Feb-19 15:43:48

You might want to look into attachment styles and attachment therapy.

Tomtontom Sun 24-Feb-19 15:42:39

Are you able to do DBT rather than CBT?

The overreactions you're describing are common in C-PTSD and BPD. You need more help than CBT.

AnneLovesGilbert Sun 24-Feb-19 15:41:04

I’m afraid he does deserve better and you’ve obviously been behaving badly towards him for a long enough time that he’s willing to put up with it.

It’s good you’re seeking help for your issues but there’s no excuse at all for being so abusive to your husband, what you describe is harrowing and makes my heart break for him.

Leave him before you completely destroy him and don’t get into another relationship till you’re able to deal with your difficulties without hurting someone else.

whatsnewchoochoo Sun 24-Feb-19 15:40:33

I think this is something to discuss with your therapist or whoever gave your diagnosis. It's very common for people with complex PTSD to have problems with managing emotions, with feelings of suicide when triggered by relationship difficulties.

Don't just leave him, talk to your therapist, talk to him. This can get better.

Gronky Sun 24-Feb-19 15:37:26

Should I leave and spare him the trauma? No need to be kind, I know AIBU here. He deserves so much better.

It really sounds like this is something you should discuss with your DH.

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