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Does my DH need therapy or is there no help for a evil man?(11 Posts)
DH and I have been together for 16 years, since we were teenagers. Over the past year or so, we've been arguing more and more. Our arguments end up being quite confrontational, patronising and sarcastic.... just nasty. When It reaches breaking point, I start to cry or my voice will break and he'll say something like, "oh, here we go" (--whilst I pulled at my hair and threatened to harm myself in frustration--), or "why are you crying"?, In an aggressive tone. .. Or he'll let out a little giggle, and say, "oh my god", when I've lost control. I find it really hurtful and it makes the argument go onto another level I either end up kicking him out the house, swear or name-call. Should I be bothered by this goading when I give out as good as I get? Most arguments are centred around him not pulling his weight in the house our 5 month old DC.
He's 35 and I haven't seen him cry since he was a teenager. He says he doesn't feel sadness like other people. I used to think it was just strange but now, it seems to be having an affect on our relationship, like not showing sympathy. He doesn't know how to. I try to open up with him about personal feelings and he just sits there, looking awkward, or he'll change the subject very quickly. I've actually given up and keep alot of feelings to myself. Is it normal to have a DH that you just don't discuss personal feelings with?
It seems to me you both need therapy. Have you tried talking to him about how you feel when he is calm? Why do you say you want to hurt yourself? Is it to get a reaction?
Sounds like he has issues! Possible narcissistic tendencies showing by complete lack of empathy and getting enjoyment about pushing you far enough to get those reactions. Does he start arguments by saying something then say that you started it when you respond? Does he turn things that he has done around and say that you are doing them? Have a clear think about what triggers the arguments. If at all possible try and see a counsellor (either pay for one if you can afford it or ask the doctor to refer you or contact relate - they counsel you on your own as well as I'm couples). His behaviour seems cruel and cold and manipulative, yours sounds like you are being pushed beyond what you can stand.
My ex husband was like this and used to make me want to kill him. I do think then when relationships have deteriorated to this level of disrespect and lack of giving a shit from one half of the couple there really isn't much to work on.
So you have a row and during it you threaten to self harm? Did you mean that or was it to be manipulative? How often, if you give as good as you get, do you start to cry? Do you only cry when you feel you're not winning the argument?
To be honest, using the word evil is a bit over the top unless he sprouts horns and pulls out a voodoo doll of you!
Possibly you both need to go to relationship counselling. It seems as though you're as bad as each other.
You have a five month old baby and are more than likely very tired, very emotional and very stressed out with managing your world and quite possibly feeling totally undermined by a husband who appears to enjoy goading you into meltdown mode.
I agree with a previous poster who said that his behaviour reeks of narcissism. He's using your emotional fragility as a stick to beat you with, deriving pleasure from watching you fall apart.
It gives him the power and control that he craves.
So, what to do? If it was me, I'd set out to reverse my behaviour and try hard to become a strong, calm, confident 'Don't mess with me', type of person and I think I'd also make plans to build a future for myself and my child away from someone so bloody nasty.
You shouldn't have to live like this. It isn't healthy. Also, I've noticed that some of my friends and family who met and married very young have, years later, largely outgrown their partners and are desperate for change or to move on.
Just maybe, you married too young.
Having children does make us grow up very quickly and sometimes, we leave our spouses behind in the maturity stakes.
I think your reaction isn't normal, and neither is his.
Pulling at your hair and threatening self harm isn't okay. Neither is his laughing at you, or non reaction.
How do you want him to React? Beg you to stop crying, promise he will change?
If you change your behaviour, maybe he will to.
"I feel used, and taken for granted when you don't wash up/do laundry/ help at all. And that makes me feel really sad, and want to leave. Do you understand that?" Is a bit calmer than...
"Why do you never help me?! Why do you never do anything? You hate me, I may s well be dead, you bastard!" (Cries)
It sounds like:
- He may be distant, lack empathy and/or be passive aggressive. If he's passive aggressive, then you're actions will please him, because they make you look bad, which makes him feel that he's better than you. And that he manipulated you into expressing his own bottled up anger, without getting angry himself, so, again, he's better than you.
- You are trying to provoke an emotional response from him (and failing) so keep escalating to try and get him to show he cares for you. This has crossed into attention seeking/dramatic gestures/mental health issues.
Threatening to self harm is manipulative, and deeply insulting to those who have this as a compulsion. The correct response to anyone who threatens to harm themselves for attention, is to walk away and/or call 999 or 101 letting them know that you are a risk to yourself.
I think you need to hear this:
He is showing you what he thinks by his actions. You are trying to make him care for you, but you cannot force someone to care.
All you are doing is making yourself mentally unwell.
Thank you for all your responses. Reading your replies, I guess I was being manipulative by hair-pulling. I just had a burst of anger from his goading, and I didn't know what to do. It has never happened before. I just wish he would stop goading when he sees me cry, but it seems to spur him on.
When we are calm, he recognises it is cruel to mock me when I cry. But I wish I could handle his goading, sulking and patronising a bit better. Wowbutter, I definitely speaking calmly would help, but I do this already, in the beginning. Then it will lead onto a comment from him like, "oh come on.. (sarcastic giggle)", or "I've done it now so what are you going on for?"
We love each other but he has changed alot. Cocky, arrogant and emotionless. We need to find a way of handling anger better.
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