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Mind games. Tying me in knots!

(218 Posts)
woosey35 Mon 21-May-18 12:24:55

Dh can be the most charming man. He can show me love, affection etc. But more so he can show me disapproval. I don’t feel he respects anything I do. He’s got to be better than me. He never seems proud of anything I do.
If he’s tired he becomes aggressive. He’s verbally threatening. I’ve tried standing up for myself but he then turns it round on me saying I’ve made him behave like that because I just ‘go on at him’. I really don’t though. I try and smooth things over all the time. Try and make our lives calm etc. Yesterday he became tired and flipped again. Out of the blue swearing at me and throwing things in temper onto the ground. I didn’t react this time. Just stood and watched him in disbelief. He stopped, looked at me and then told me to take my ‘f-ing angelic face off’, and my ‘f-ing soft voice somewhere else’. I walked away. He then later asked if I’d calmed down enough for him to be able to speak normally!!!!!! He ties me in knots..I want to know what to say to him for him to know I’m not a walk over. For him to be clear I don’t intend to argue or give his moods power!!
This morning, we were chatting normally over breakfast. Inside I was still hurt but I acted as normally as possible, and engaged fully in conversation. As he got up, he told me I was ‘sulking and my face wasn’t filled with fun!’
I seriously love him and love his nice side. But I feel I almost have to earn it and be grateful to see that side. And if I don’t meet the grade, I see his punishment. Believe me....if I knew how to 100% meet the grade, I’d do it!! I try but it’s so volatile

woosey35 Mon 21-May-18 12:28:59

A friend said to take the ball out of play. He is abusive as enjoys the reaction and then can say he was fuelled. To take the ball out, means he has nothing to bounce off and grow. I try this but then he says I patronise or am ‘too f-ing nicey nicey!’ I cant win!!
It came to a head a couple of weeks ago where I plucked up bravery and told him he was making me hate him and how sad I was at this. He looked hurt. Then tried. Trouble is he seems to have a default button sad

NoMorePills Mon 21-May-18 12:31:36

OP "Believe me....if I knew how to 100% meet the grade, I’d do it!"

that's terrible. you don't just have a problem because of him.

you need to work on yourself because no one should be jumping through hoops, changing their normal polite civilised behaviour, in order to earn the love of someone else. And by the way, it's not love. It's just his "good treatment" till he either finds another excuse to be mean to you, or finds someone else.

you need to really stop and think about what you are doing and why you are doing it.

hellsbellsmelons Mon 21-May-18 12:32:06

I try and smooth things over all the time
Yep, he has you well trained.
He is abusive. That's the crux of it.
And until you learn to accept that and understand that NO amount of abuse in a relationship is OK, you will find the strength to walk away.
It's what you need to do.
And from the sounds of it, you need to do it quickly.

Have a chat with Womens Aid 0808 2000 247
They will be able to help you see this for what it is.

Also read the Lundy Bancroft book 'Why does he do that'?
It's all to keep you in your place.

Please want better for yourself.
Please don't accept this.
I would imagine the good really outweighed the bad to start with but it's getting worse and worse now and he's very rarely the 'good guy'

Abusers use the Jekyll & Hyde thing.
Push and push and push until you push back and it looks like they are losing their grip, then wham, good guy to reel you back in.
Don't fall for it for another second.

Find your self-esteem and run - don't walk, away from this nasty abusive bully.

Do you have kids?
How long have you been married?

NoMorePills Mon 21-May-18 12:32:47

I mean, you are effectively saying "If I knew how to be a 100% constantly perfectly performing circus animal".

that might sound offensive, but if one person looks at that statement and leaves the abusive wanker who made it echo with them, then something good has happened from me saying that so bluntly.

Eolian Mon 21-May-18 12:33:33

He is an abusive arsehole and you need to ltb. You should not be even thinking about 'trying to make the grade' - who the hell does he think he is?! He has no right to punish you. I would not tolerate anyone speaking to me like that, least of all someone who is supposed to love and respect me!

Joysmum Mon 21-May-18 12:34:39

As you said, you can’t win.

He is responsible for his behaviour, you can’t manage that. This leaves you with 3 options:

1) Continue hope you can manage him and remain in a disfunctional relationship.

2) recognise this can’t be managed but still continue in s disfunctionsl relationship for whatever reason.

3) recognise this can’t be managed and exit the relationship.

TERFragetteCity Mon 21-May-18 12:35:07

How about 'fuck off you manipulative arsehole'?

notacooldad Mon 21-May-18 12:36:22

He is one mean bastard!

woosey35 Mon 21-May-18 12:39:10

We’ve had some really upsetting times recently with dd. He takes it in his stride. I’ve been really struggling. It’s been devastating. I asked him for a hug as I was crying. He replied ‘why would I want to hug you when you’re behaving like this?! When you start acting nicely, then I will!’

SleepFreeZone Mon 21-May-18 12:42:10

OP he is abusive.

Sparkletastic Mon 21-May-18 12:42:45

It sounds like he despises you. He hated it when you didn't pander to his tantrum. He wants you constantly on the back foot and trying to please him to keep you under control. Don't set your daughter this example of a supposedly loving relationship.

Grumpyoldblonde Mon 21-May-18 12:43:28

You're married to an abusive arsehole, that's the beginning and end of it.

I used to be too. You will stop loving him before much longer as this behaviour will kill it.

Adora10 Mon 21-May-18 12:47:01

He's a nasty abusive bully; why on earth would you want that in your life; he's got you on the back foot because you probably can't believe the shit he is making you deal with, sorry but the only answer to this is to leave him.

melodybirds Mon 21-May-18 12:49:10

Honestly there is one option for you and your dd. Leave him and go nc.

LeChatDeNuit Mon 21-May-18 12:52:38

My ex was like this and said similar things. I waited years for him to change because I was so in love with his nice side. He didn’t change.

I agree with the others that leaving him would be the best option.

MassivePottedGeranium Mon 21-May-18 12:54:44

Oh woosey I've been here. Please please get out. Now. I promise you it will be so much better on the other side. It took me 10 years of reading mn advice and stories from other women before I plucked up courage- and i still struggle with wondering if it was all my fault after we split 2 years ago. But it really isn't you, and he won't change. I've since fallen in love properly for the first time and it's an utter revelation to me how a normal relationship works- it's actually made me really really sad for the woman I used to be because I've missed out on so much. I don't think current dp and I will stay together either, but for entirely different reasons- but please don't put up with this. You deserve so much more.

woosey35 Mon 21-May-18 13:02:56

But is there any way to, smile sweetly, take the ball out of play and be empowered?? Without being ‘patronising or nicey nicey’. I want to learn to be strong and in control without being aggressive or offensive. I want to KNOW I’m the better person and that I haven’t made him angry by doing something wrong

TheBogWitchIsBack Mon 21-May-18 13:03:41

You're in an abusive relationship. There's no happy ending here, it won't get better and he won't stop because it's not in his interest.
He's got all the power, he won't relinquish it.
The best and safest option is to leave.

LighthouseSouth Mon 21-May-18 13:04:27

OP "But is there any way to, smile sweetly, take the ball out of play and be empowered??"

yes. divorce papers.

LeChatDeNuit Mon 21-May-18 13:04:32

In my experience, it doesn’t matter what you say or how you say it, it will always be wrong.

TheBogWitchIsBack Mon 21-May-18 13:05:17

No there is no way to get round it or be empowered here because he will simply change the goal posts or escalate his abuse of you.
Empower yourself by getting the fuck out.

LighthouseSouth Mon 21-May-18 13:06:17

just read you are having problems with DD

very sorry to hear that, it must be incredibly stressful

if you are saying he refuses to comfort you because you are crying, I'd like to...um...punch him.

also are you sure he's taking it in his stride? It might be that he doesn't care like you do.

HandbagCrazy Mon 21-May-18 13:08:19

What would you say to me if I decided to shout at you? If I told you that I'll be nice when you deserve it? You wouldn't take this off a stranger. Don't take it off the person who's supposed to love you.

The issue here is that you are trying to solve this issue on your own. It's his issue. The most you can do here is draw your line, make him aware of it and be prepared to leave if he crosses it (which he will OP). I would likely tell him in a calm moment that his aggression has pushed you to the end of your tether, you deserve better, him being unable to control his temper is not your fault and you aren't prepared to take it anymore.
It would be interesting to know if he shows this side of himself to anyone else, or does he save this nastiness just for you?

He is a bully, and he's trying to train you in the way people train pets - reward the good behaviour and punish the bad. That's awful.
And if you have a dd, do you want her to think this is normal? Or wait for the day he over reacts to her and tells her she needs to behave and earn his affection? that's a dangerous example to set for your her OP

woosey35 Mon 21-May-18 13:12:25

He has behaved like this to people at work. He’s in a high management/executive role. He treats people like this in business. He wins. People respect him in business because he’s actually very good. But he admits proudly that he’s a complete bastard in a board room!! I guess he’s trying to treat me in the same approach.

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