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Help with my behaviour(57 Posts)
Me and my partner have been together for just over 7 and half years and have two daughters, ever since first daughter came along I've been the worst person to live with.
I'm controlling, abusive and uptight with everything or anyone in the house. I hate the affect it's having on everyone in the household. I've been reading this book to try and help "stop hurting the women you love" and I've enquired about a relationship course and will be going down to speak to them on Tuesday.
I spoke to my partner about this and she said she wants me to start listening to her, start respecting her and engaging in family life.
I am willing to do anything to turn this around, any ideas on where to start?
Acknowledging he is abusive is only the first step. It won't make him stop being abusive, and as such, of course he should leave the family home while he works on his behaviour. It's not a punishment, it's for protection of his wife and children. Isn't it obvious? If the wife were posting we would advise her to live separately from him. Why would he get different advice?
start listening to her, start respecting her and engaging in family life.
Sounds like a good plan.
You may not want to leave, but she may want you out at any time because of your behaviour.
I bet you are not the same with others, particularly those not dependent on you. In which case, act as if she could kick you out right now, tomorrow, at any time. Make sure you think of her as someone in control of her life.
She may love you too much to kick you out at the moment, or you may be making it difficult for her. But you will lose her sooner or later if you continue with your behaviour.
If you really can't stop, then the best thing you can do for your family is to leave and to let them be happy.
Stop thinking about your own interests and think of them instead.
Leave the family home might be a good idea but doesn't mean he can't be rehabilitated and make a go of things in the future.
No-one said that bedtime. I specifically said he might be able to change for future relationships but there's not likely to be any going back with a woman you have already abused.
I also think that, whilst it's commendable that you want to change your behaviour, you should step out of your family while you do it. Abusive behaviour cannot be tolerated, they are suffering by having you in their environment behaving the way you do and changing entrenched behavioural habits can be a very long process. Not a course and a book. They deserve to live in a relaxed, happy, calm home... not be on eggshells around you, wondering if the therapy is working or fearful of a relapse. And there will be relapses.
I also think that, if you live apart, you will be more motivated to change behaviour and will have to put in more effort to engage in family life.
Offered - I disagree. It could be possible. There is a chance . It depends on his wife. If therapy works then who knows. We don't know his background, she might forgive.
It isn't about whether the wife may forgive but about whether she should. How is he going to manage not to fall into old patterns of abuse in their relationship even if he works on himself? How will she manage to not be afraid he will? There will be too much pressure on it for him to actually successfully break free from his past and his patterns of behaviour. It's like a drug addict trying to hang out with their druggy friends whilst trying to give up drugs. He has to break free of the current relationship properly if he has any chance. She needs to heal from his abuse of her and he needs to be by himself while he sees if he can change.
People think they can love addicts and abusers better very often and they are wrong. The addict/abuser has to do all the work on their own. A loving supportive relationship where the past exists still in the present, by way of a connection to and feelings about the behaviour, is not conducive to change.
Is that what therapies for to help with abusive patterns and the past affecting the present and future? It might not work but there must be some people out there who have had positive results.
Your intentions for posting here, in her space, are obvious - and it's not for advice.
"there must be some people out there who have had positive results."
Of course there are. But it is grossly unfair on others to have to carry on suffering whilst others are in the process of achieving those positive results. The OP frightens his family. He has said he'll reform, go on a course and read a book. Do you honestly think his family have now heaved a sigh of relief at this news, are nicely relaxed and no longer fearful because I don't? They will be tiptoeing around him like he's an unexploded bomb, still suffering from anxiety, waiting for the next outburst.
So whilst being positive he can change if adequately motivated and treated, I think his family deserve to stop living in fear short-term.
Realistically though it isn't going to be the short term though cog. The kind of therapy and change required could take a very very long time. People work for decades on the effects of their childhood sometimes. Not fair to anyone to suggest really that if he just moves out for the short term it might be fine. It is likely to be a long term process and I doubt he could ever go back to his wife because he'd risk falling back into the old dynamic.
For his family to stop living in fear short term the OP has to remove himself. His family can then start to heal. If he can never go back to his wife because his rehabilitation is too slow or too ineffectual, surely that would be a good thing?
Yeah, that'd be a good thing but I'd worry from your post he or his wife might get the idea that staying with his mum for a month or moving into a bedsit short term would solve the whole problem!
Thanks for the replies, I'm in work now but reading though them and will reply when got more time
You could try these perpetrator programs but I have heard others be sceptical about their effectiveness and question whether they just teach abusers to be better at covering up their abuse.
At least you are finally acknowledging these problems and that is good. You say you are abusive and most people have jumped on this to mean physical abuse but I am assuming that you mean you are being verbally abusive which is just as damaging but can be dealt with slightly differently as your family are not in any immediate danger. You could be depressed as you do seem to be displaying symptoms of this. You could also be totally overwhelmed with being a partner and father of 2 young children as there are so many stresses and strains. I think you should sit down with your partner and explain how you are feeling, say sorry, say you want to change. Perhaps she can take some of the pressure of you for a little while so you can step back and try to find a new way forward in your life. You need to take baby steps towards a new future. You should speak to your doctor, ask him to get you some counselling, inquire about medication for depression if he feels that is an option. Make sure you have some relaxing time to yourself. Exercise can be a great stress buster too. I wish you well and truly hope that you can find some answers to your difficulties so that you can lead a happier family life ...for all your sakes.
"staying with his mum for a month "
I don't think anything I wrote made leaving look like a temporary fix.
"Perhaps she can take some of the pressure of you for a little ..."
The OP is 100% of the problem, not 'pressure' from his partner. The OP's partner did not cause this and cannot fix this. The OP has to take responsibility for their own behaviour and, if he is abusive, he cannot just 'say sorry' and it'll be OK. Verbal abuse can be more damaging than physical abuse because it's invisible to others.
Perhaps she can take some of the pressure of you for a little while
Are you kidding? Surely he has been heaping pressure on her for
years a while and needs to stop doing that.
Wouldbemedic, I find it rather amusing that you angrily insult me and infer things about my own experiences and feelings, yet say I have turned this thread into some sort of fight.
If you could show me one single scrap of evidence that children WON'T be damaged by growing up with an abusive father (his words, dearie, not something I've magicked up), I'd love to see it. Saying children will be adversely affected by an abusive parent isn't wild supposition coming from some personal issues of my own, it's just what's bleeding obvious, and which every study, etc., done on the topic proves.
OP can you give some examples of what behaviours you are talking about?
Also, what research have you done to date on finding out the negatives impacts you are having on your wife and on your children.
Lastly, what has caused you to want to behave differently?
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