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Question
Posted by: Meohme | 2011/10/21

Husband ''kicks'' me whenever I''m down

Dear CS

My husband and I are having relationship problems, and were seeing a counsillor until recently. One of the problems is that my husband can show no sympathy, and I feel that he is verbally and emosionally abusive. Time and time again, the moment I am having a rough time and feeling down, he simply cannot take a step back and be tolerant of my irritability and or tenseness. We discussed it with the therapist, and my husband agreed and promised to ''be strong'' in those times (I tell him when I am really down and out) and be extra tolerant and supportive. BUT, since the promise he has not changed the way he acts at all! it is a crisis every time, and every time he promises to act better the next time. But when it happens again, like this week, he gets in there and it feels as though he attacks me and verbally beats me up because of the weak state I am in. Why does he do this? The reason we stopped the therapy, is because I refused to go anymore because the therapist would not confront my husband about his abusive behaviour. I am at my whits end.

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Our expert says:
Expert ImageCyberShrink

So, if I understand you, it's not so much about him being directly abusive from his own agenda, but him being insensitive and unsupportive when, in regard to your own life events, you feel the need for sensitivity and support ?
If we shift focus somewhat, from your needs not being met, especially if these events are shared crises, is it possibly a part of the problem, that he himself feels anxious and insecure when faced with such mutual crises, and maybe even when he realizes that you are facing some personal crisis, and feels inadequate and unable to respond helpfully, so he withdraws and is unhelpful ? It may be that what you interpret as "abusive" behaviour is not intended or even perceived that way by him ; and insisting on interpreting it as abuse and nothing else may actually hinder finding a resolution.
Maybe also, there needs in counselling to be more emphasis on helping you to become more competent and confident about handling your own crises, from whatever source, rather than seeing his support as essential to enable you to cope well with them.
Its sad thay tou apparently abandoned therapy because you resented the therapist not "CONFRONTING" your husband about what you consider to be abusive behaviour. Confrontation is massively over-rated and very often destructive and unhelpful, and I think some of the worst abusers around these days are the idiots who keep convincing people that the solution to their problem lies in "confrontation". Negotation is almost always more effective.

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Our users say:
Posted by: Meohme | 2011/10/26

Thanks for everyones input. Well, 3 kids in the picture. I think I''ll give it another year, as we are also having financial strain and sleeping poorly due to the 2 youngest kids. This is my trend...always seeking excuses for his behaviour. I don''t know. Probably be better off alone, than be with someone with whom I''m always in his " bad books"  - seriously. Anyhow, life is a bitch and then you die.

Reply to Meohme
Posted by: IX | 2011/10/24

why don''t you walk away and end the relationship. you don''t deserve this type of treatment. life is bigger and lots to offer than being miserable and emotionally abused. get out while you can and start fresh.

Reply to IX
Posted by: Huh? | 2011/10/22

Is it too much trouble for you guys to open your own posts? This is Meohme''s post, her problem and it''s not fair to hijack it.

Reply to Huh?
Posted by: nneoma | 2011/10/22

hello meohme, pls can i use your space to ask mj for some advice too? i also have the same type of problem only that in my case i also have depressive episodes, feel fat and ugly as i keep gaining weight no matter how hard i try to lose weight , plus i''m having ovulatory problems, am asthmatic and generaly frequently ill. when i try to get help people continually tell me to snap out of it and display gross ignorance (or is it insensititvity) about my plight. sometimes i,m so depressed that i fear i,ll hurt my daughter. pls help

Reply to nneoma
Posted by: Burt | 2011/10/21

lf you dont have kids l would leave him - you do not sound compatible. Divorce is the same price as therapy and always solves relationship problems by dismissing the problem spouse.

Reply to Burt
Posted by: Sad | 2011/10/21

Thank you MJ

Reply to Sad
Posted by: MJ | 2011/10/21

hi there,

i tried to pose the links for some reading for you both, but not allowed to on this site.

you can google - Meditation guide and Emotional strenght.

I find that if i can''t afford the classes - Wlalking helps so much. Walk, walk, walk and walk some more.
i have a young daughter whom i put in her pram and just walk with her, and when its raining, we walk at the mall.

you can also hike - if you are going to go by yourself tho, pls dont wear any jewelry, hike on a trail, go at times when there are a lot of hikers, wear a red sting or ribbon with a whistle on it clearly visible around your next and make sure you dont make yourself an easy target.

and read....read read read and read, go to the library, and find things that makes you feel lighter, that give you insight and that help you to grow emotionally.

we cannot change our partners, but we certainly can change how we respond to them and we can certainly stop allowing them to affect us.

be strong ladies :)

Reply to MJ
Posted by: Sad | 2011/10/21

Meohme sorry to hijack your post, i have a question directed at Mj, i am also with a very stern hard man who i cannot lean on or depend on for emotional support, it literally breaks my heart eveytime we have such a confrontation. I cannot go home after a hard day at work even and get an inch of support from him. Its been years now and the past few mnths i have slowly learnt to hold back my insecurities from him as he just brings me down about them, i try not to even discuss things with him like family because he will always bring it up in an argument. Now my question to you is what can i do besides yoga (as i canot afford classes right now) to make me stronger and happy and calm.

Your advise will be much more appreciated than you''ll ever know.

Reply to Sad
Posted by: Mj | 2011/10/21

HI Meohme,

firstly please make an appointment with another councellor, there are plenty of therapist, and you will sooner or later find someone that will be suitable to accomodate the cituation that you and your husband are facing.

you also have to keep in mind that your councellor is not going to tell you or your husband exactly what to do, they are there to guide you and advise you, but at the end of the day, the decision to change comes from within yourselves ( in this case your husband )

i found that Yoga classes and meditation classes have helped me through a cituation very much like yours/ I am easily affected by others, and strongly require love and support from my partner, and when i dont receive it, i feel even worst than i did before.

i have now learnt however to become more calm, patient and self suffient. i dont need him or anyone else to be strong for me anymore as i can do it on my own.

Which province are you in? Let me know, maybe i can send you link for some classes that you help you become the stronger person.

everyone always says it, and it always seems easier said than done, but no one can make you feel bad unless you allow them to.

Dont allow his emotional immaturity to bring you down. It is his own downfall and it doesnt''t have to become yours.

wishing you the best of luck and strenght.

Reply to Mj
Posted by: cybershrink | 2011/10/21

So, if I understand you, it's not so much about him being directly abusive from his own agenda, but him being insensitive and unsupportive when, in regard to your own life events, you feel the need for sensitivity and support ?
If we shift focus somewhat, from your needs not being met, especially if these events are shared crises, is it possibly a part of the problem, that he himself feels anxious and insecure when faced with such mutual crises, and maybe even when he realizes that you are facing some personal crisis, and feels inadequate and unable to respond helpfully, so he withdraws and is unhelpful ? It may be that what you interpret as "abusive" behaviour is not intended or even perceived that way by him ; and insisting on interpreting it as abuse and nothing else may actually hinder finding a resolution.
Maybe also, there needs in counselling to be more emphasis on helping you to become more competent and confident about handling your own crises, from whatever source, rather than seeing his support as essential to enable you to cope well with them.
Its sad thay tou apparently abandoned therapy because you resented the therapist not "CONFRONTING" your husband about what you consider to be abusive behaviour. Confrontation is massively over-rated and very often destructive and unhelpful, and I think some of the worst abusers around these days are the idiots who keep convincing people that the solution to their problem lies in "confrontation". Negotation is almost always more effective.

Reply to cybershrink

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