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Argued with boyfriend, What should I do?

(32 Posts)
shoobydoo Sun 18-Nov-12 15:22:56

Nothing too major, just wanted some advice as I find this relationship stuff confusing.
Last night I watched a film with my boyfriend about domestic violence. It bought up some old feelings for me from my past and I mentioned something that had happened to me while I was with my ex.
My boyfriend responded to this by asking me if I wanted a cup of tea.
I felt really hurt as what I had said was quite a difficult thing to talk about and is obviously a bit of an issue for me. Later on we talked about his reaction a bit and he apologised half heartedly, but this morning he huffed off home as I was still grumpy.
The thing that bothers me is that he avoids things that are difficult to talk about either by pretending that everything is ok or by going home. Now I feel guilty and feel like I should ring him to make the peace but as my ex messed with my head I find it hard to tell which of us is being unreasonable. What should I do? Please tell me if I am being a twat!

SoleSource Sun 18-Nov-12 15:29:03

Perhaps your experiences make him angry. He isnt your trained therapist. You might expect too much.

Cartoonjane Sun 18-Nov-12 15:36:24

I would feel as you do but I think in fact a lot of men would react as your bf did because they just don't know what to say. I always think if you can hold out after an argument it's a good thing. If you can wait for him to call you I would, but be receptive when he does.

Schlock Sun 18-Nov-12 15:39:36

Assuming that DV is out of your boyfriend's experience he probably doesn't now how to respond. What response did you want?

I had a violent ex, my dh was sympathetic but really didn't know what to do, I wouldn't expect him to have a measured response. We've been together almost 20yrs now, he still doesn't know what to do if it comes up in conversation, not that it does often!

CogitoErgoSometimes Sun 18-Nov-12 15:46:26

I agree with the others that you made your boyfriend feel uncomfortable talking about your past. You say he finds other difficult person matters awkward, domestic violence is a very tricky subject & he may not have known how to respond in a way that wouldn't cause offence. He could even have thought you were making an indirect comment about his own behaviour... who knows.

Have you been seeing each other long?

shoobydoo Sun 18-Nov-12 15:48:29

I think hearing about my past does make him angry but why can't he not tell me that? Getting blanked by him when I have told him something important is not nice.
I don't expect him to say the "right thing" saying anything would be better than saying nothing.
It made me feel like he didn't care about me at all! I have even told him that not responding to me makes me feel like this so he knows it is important to me.

SoleSource Sun 18-Nov-12 15:50:50

You need to feel OK about you. He cannot do this Maybe you keep going on and he has said all he can say.

DioneTheDiabolist Sun 18-Nov-12 15:50:53

I don't think you're being a twat OP, but I think as others have said that your BF may find the topic of DV difficult too.

Neither of you are being unreasonable, but you may be incompatible.

Cartoonjane Sun 18-Nov-12 15:53:00

I have a partner who often doesn't respond or will rspond minimally to something that's very important to me. I find it very frustrating but he is so fabulous in other ways I have decided to live with it. Part of finding the right partner is finding one whose faults you can live with I think. You can't change him and trying could destroy your relationship. All you can decide is if you want to be with him or not.

CogitoErgoSometimes Sun 18-Nov-12 16:07:48

You said he made you a cup of tea, not that he got angry. A cup of tea is a fairly standard reaction to an upset person IME. Breaks the tension and gives everyone a bit of time to absorb the information. He only got annoyed when you complained about his reaction 'later on'. So when you say that you don't expect him to say the right thing, that's not strictly true is it? You weren't happy with his cup of tea reaction. You expected more and you didn't let it drop.

If you do this again, tell him what reaction you want before embarking on some painful episode from your past. Say up front that you just want him to listen and understand or whatever it is that you expect. Don't leave the poor man twisting in the wind....

AThingInYourLife Sun 18-Nov-12 16:13:21

"Perhaps your experiences make him angry. He isnt your trained therapist. You might expect too much."


That is incredibly shit advice.

You told him something that was upsetting to you and he ignored it.

He wasn't kind.

Kindness is the single most important quality in a partner.

"he avoids things that are difficult to talk about either by pretending that everything is ok or by going home."

There are other men in the world.

CogitoErgoSometimes Sun 18-Nov-12 16:16:45

The offer of a cup of tea is kind...

ashesgirl Sun 18-Nov-12 16:21:59

Is it too much to expect another human being, albeit a male, to be able to empathise and not just change the subject immediately

You feel upset and he just ignored it and now he's huffy with you?

Never ceases to amaze me what men are excused for. Could he not have said 'oh god, that's awful'.

Your experiences made him 'angry'? Good lord, I don't even know where to begin with this kind of response.

SoleSource Sun 18-Nov-12 16:22:01

I have suffered DV. Shit off!

AThingInYourLife Sun 18-Nov-12 16:22:02

Offering someone tea so you can avoid talking to them is not kind.

AThingInYourLife Sun 18-Nov-12 16:22:47

Just because you've suffered DV doesn't mean your advice is not shit.

SoleSource Sun 18-Nov-12 16:23:38

AThong InYourLife maybe he is fed up of her talking about the padt. Accept responsibility for your own past and get thetapy as zi did. Tough but kind in the long run

ashesgirl Sun 18-Nov-12 16:25:11

So the OP should just get on with it and stop bothering others with her inconvenient feelings?

CogitoErgoSometimes Sun 18-Nov-12 16:25:32

He didn't get angry. The OP is the angry one.... 'grumpy' she described herself as. All he did was make a cup of tea and an apology that is described as 'half-hearted'... but that from someone who was clearly expecting a lot more.

ashesgirl Sun 18-Nov-12 16:27:33

Cogito, someone said earlier maybe her talking about it made him angry. This is what I'm referring to, as in ... she should excuse his lack of empathy because her talking about this might have made HIM angry.

shoobydoo Sun 18-Nov-12 16:28:32

It wasn't a cup of tea to comfort me it was a subject changing cup of tea.
Do I really have to explain to him that he needs to reply when I speak or at least acknowledge I have said something?
And I did expect more and I didn't let it drop why would I do that? He isn't a poor man, he was being rude.

DonkeysDontRideBicycles Sun 18-Nov-12 16:29:32

If he had no prior inkling you had ever experienced DV perhaps he was wrong footed by you bringing it up and rather than flail for an appropriate response he froze. He didn't make light of it or disbelieve you, or come up with something trite. I reckon it's worse if someone says any old rubbish if they can't articulate something appropriate. He didn't bolt out the door, he made some sort of apology and stayed until morning.
I realise you had bad memories triggered but if he's been a good partner so far, I
might ease up on him for last night. He's not your ex but you were understandably upset and are punishing your present bf.

ashesgirl Sun 18-Nov-12 16:31:33

As a one-off, perhaps he froze and tried to change the subject.

But if it's a regular thing of him lacking empathy and trying to avoid difficult discussions, then I can see how that would be hurtful to the OP.

AThingInYourLife Sun 18-Nov-12 16:31:41

This is the first time she ever mentioned this aspect of her past.

How could he be sick of it?

Why should the OP bend herself out of shape to accommodate a boyfriend who doesn't want to talk about things that are important to her?


It's a good idea to break up with someone who regularly makes you unhappy.

ashes - I know, it's crazy the utter shite women are advised to put up with here sometimes from other women who clearly get a buzz from being "tough" on the confused and vulnerable.

shoobydoo Sun 18-Nov-12 16:35:46

And I don't go on about it and don't need therapy.

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