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Emotional abuse

(10 Posts)
sadmummy1 Mon 10-Mar-14 10:09:26

I've been reading past threads on this and some of the recommended books and am trying to understand more about it

Why does someone go from being so charming to emotionally abusive?

I've read bits about being the perpetrator being insecure, wanting power and control - but what I don't understand is why seek out someone to do that to, only to make an innocent person's life miserable and bring DC into a set up that is miserable?
Why would someone do that?

tallwivglasses Mon 10-Mar-14 10:22:26

I'm no expert but I think it's because they feel that having control over someone is their god-given right. Putting someone else down makes them feel better.

If you're trying to understand why someone has treated you like this, my advice would be to move on. Really, how will understanding why someone's being an arsehole help you? it certainly won't stop them being an arsehole. Surely any activity (plant some bulbs, read a book, make a cake) will be more productive than giving this person any more of your valuable time.

foolonthehill Mon 10-Mar-14 10:22:55

In my opinion I think you could see the "charming" period as part of the emotional abuse, the need to win you over and ensnare you...also believing that you will live up to their ideal image of "wife" or "woman" or whatever without actually dealing with the real person in front of them...extreme rose tinted glasses and an expectation that their needs will be met. The mask slips when their expectations are challenged.

foolonthehill Mon 10-Mar-14 10:27:50

I also agree with tall I have spent more time than is healthy trying to understand "why" and "why me" but it is not time well spent. we will never be able to give a reason for the abuse...and doubting ourselves and trying to fix it makes no sense.

On a psychiatric ward many years ago a professor once said to me...don't try to climb inside the patient's minds, you will drive yourself mad and be no use to them or yourself. Observe the behaviour and trust your logical self, don't be drawn in to the drama.

i think it works well in this scenario as well.

Why would they do that to an innocent person?...because only they are "real" and only they "count" in their own minds...we are just bit part players in the drama of their life.

sadmummy1 Mon 10-Mar-14 10:35:07

Thanks for posts
I'm trying to work out if this is what is going on in my marriage - or if it is just a (series of) bad patch(es)
Some things fit
Some don't
But it's true actions speak louder the truth more than analysing the reasons behind the behaviour so perhaps it's wiser to go by that
I will carry on thinking about things

tallwivglasses Mon 10-Mar-14 10:41:49

"Some things fit
Some don't"

They don't have to tick every box to be abusive. In what way do you feel he's being abusive, sadmummy?

CogitoErgoSometimes Mon 10-Mar-14 10:57:18

There is a concept called 'Predatory Self Esteem' which, in short, means someone who can only feel good about themselves by making others feel bad. Bullying, basically. Deriving a sick pleasure at someone else's discomfort. If you're not wired that way yourself, you're not going to understand it in a million years.

sadmummy1 Mon 10-Mar-14 10:57:20

Long running theme of teasing verging on bullying that has eroded my confidence
Stonewalling refusing to discuss an issue
Telling him how unhappy I am and him not even seeming to hear
Coincided with marriage and then birth of DC

Whatever it is, it's not a healthy relationship
We did have some counselling last year
Things got better
Now awful again

sadmummy1 Mon 10-Mar-14 10:58:34

Ahh cogito just seen your post am off to read about it

PoppyField Mon 10-Mar-14 12:39:52

Hi OP,

Sorry you are going through this. He does sound abusive. It sounds like he wants you on a string, and this kind of behaviour both gives you the responsibility of keeping him happy (not your job!) and setting you up for failure all the time. It is relentless and draining.

It felt like that in my relationship. It was my fault if anything went wrong - including things that were beyond my control like the DCs getting infections or colds. It was an endless one-way-street of blame. Then he would stonewall all my attempts to say how unhappy I was, and refused to sit down and talk constructively about how we could make things better. He never offered solutions, just got more and more critical and snarly.

I agree with foolonthehill - it can take years of your life trying to work out why he does this... without ever coming to a satisfactory conclusion. Far better to spend your energies thinking 'How do I stop this happening to me?'. You may find that that only way to make it stop is to stop being with him - however you arrange it. It is such a relief when you stop living with a bully. I never worked out specifically why my STBXH preferred to bully me rather than make things better. However finally, as for so many people on here, I realised the only way to stop the abuse was to end the relationship. And predictably he managed to act wholly outraged about that! He won't stop blaming you for everything, but at least he won't be in your home and in your face.

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