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Trying to Move On(9 Posts)
Things are SO much better in my marriage but I am finding it hard sometimes as I find myself almost waiting for DH to start behaving like he used to ( emotionally & sometimes verbally abusive). I know that quite a few times when I have picked him up on something, he isn't being even remotely abusive but my reaction can still be how it used to be. Does that make sense? It's hard to describe how different my day to day life is now & how differently ( and much more healthily) we communicate. But I can get panicky & see problems where there aren't any. DH is making massive changes, talking to me more openly than he ever has & being vulnerable with me which means such a lot. I guess it just takes time to trust again. We are having separate counselling ( his has only just started whilst I have my last session next week). I have changed a lot too & am glad we didn't split up. Any advice how I can relax a bit & not expect old patterns to re emerge?
I think like you say it'll take time to trust again, you'll just have wait it out. How long has the change been so far?
We reached crisis point in January when DH was going to leave but didn't, even temporarily, and it's gradually got better since then. Looking back, he probably really began to open up in early April so it's been 3 months. I think he's probably always going to have a tendency to be a bit moody but it's how you handle stuff & being aware of how your behaviour impacts on others.
One of my problems was spending too long on support group forums. There can be some truly heartbreaking stories & it's easy to get into an "all men are bastards" mentality & have other members tell you that everything is abuse.
It's hard to know because you haven't put the back story. I know people can change but most will slip back into the old habits. I hope the counselling will help. Once you've both finished the individual counselling are you both going together?
I don't think I could breath a sigh of relief until at least a year of trouble free had gone by.
I know in a good relationship you need to feel safe, secure and loved, also to be free to be yourself.
Over the years you grew to know what his response to things/triggers was and you have learned behaviours to deal with that. It takes a long time to change your behaviour and often even though you are aware that things are different your response can remain the same.
This is true of him too. He is doing really well if he is changing his behaviour and there may be times where he 'forgets' because both of your previous behaviours will be ingrained.
For now, just accept this is how it is until your responses catch up with the changes that have happened.
I have posted on here about how DH could be - basically he has cripplingly low self esteem & was always thinking that he wasn't good enough. A lot of his insecurity/guilt/rage etc was unfortunately projected onto me. I often had to second guess how he would be & " arguments " would be picked over absolutely nothing. He could be controlling & again this was linked to his terror of not being good enough. He would take an awful lot as criticism & didn't deal well with actual criticism whilst being very good at dishing it out. The main thing for me was that I found it almost impossible to discuss anything or tell him about my feelings - everything was good as long as it all went his way. I ended up an emotional wreck at times as I just couldn't get him to see where I was coming from or to get my feelings validated. Along with control was manipulation. Very unhealthy relationship all round really. I wouldn't say he scared me but it could be like living with 2 different men.
Anyway, in January, he at last began to realise just how bad things were & he was going to leave (temporarily) as he thought it was the best thing to do for our family. In the past, he would mess with my head by threatening to leave but as he later confessed, it wasn't meant to do that but it was because he felt it would be better if he wasn't there. He once described himself as the cowardly boy in the playground who shouts a name then runs away & refuses to face up to what he's done. He was an expert blame shifter for years! And his apologies were very rarely sincere but just made for a quiet life.
Since January, things have kept on improving & the whole atmosphere in the house is completely different. This has had a big effect on DD & it gladdens my heart to see how much more loving DH is with her & loads more patient. She has had to rebuild trust too & that's a work in progress & another thread. I have changed a great deal too & DH knows my boundaries more now. He certainly didn't treat me with much respect before but it's great now & he realises just what he has & how close he came to losing it
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