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Is it time to call it quits?


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How do you know for sure that it is really over? I know it is different for everyone, but ](*,) how long should I continue to try to work things out.

 

My husband has been verbally and emotionally abusive to me and our kids since the marriage took place (over 7 years now). I finally reached my limit and told him it was over, any love I had for him had been destroyed. But we have been trying to work things out...I think.

 

I dread having to talk to my husband, he is pushy and manipulative. He tells me the other day that he signed up for eHarmony but didn't activate his account and asks if I am mad. I told him no- because I wasn't mad, it made no difference. Then later he asks me to forgive him- I wasn't mad so what is there to forgive?

 

He tells me to leave- I say fine, I'll be out by the weekend. He says no, you don't have any place to go.

 

He tells me that he is putting a time limit on when to give up and call it quits because he can't take it much longer (we haven't had sex for over 3 months). I agree that a time limit is needed, but then later he asks "where are we?" I tell him that "You set a limit and I agreed." Then he starts backing off saying let's keep trying.

 

Is he playing a game with me? Is he trying to manipulate me into letting him have his way-what ever that is? I am tired. Mentally, physically, emotionally. I can not continue to fall for these stupid games/tests-what ever they are- of his. I am so tired.

 

Any advice would be greatly appreciated.

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He sounds ambivilant and insecure. These are problems that he will have to deal with, no re-assurance from you will aleviate that for him. Basically, the best thing you can do is honour your feelings and if your feelings say "leave him", then that is what you've got to do. As i said before, these insecurities are his and his alone to deal with. You can't have a healthy functional relationship with that still going on in the background.

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You are way too good for him. The fact that you have put up with emotional and verbal abuse for so long makes you a saint in my eyes. But, think about this. What is this doing to your children? They have to go through the abuse too. And what do you think it's teaching them? Do you want your kids to think that this is an ok way to treat your lover? You have to show them a better way. YOU deserve better. Give yourself the love that he won't. Empower yourself to no longer be in need of him. You and your children are important and if he can't see that, find someone who will.

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He was going to counseling to help with his anger issues, which he has been able to control. I have been going to counseling just to make sure that I am not holding back anything and that I am not crazy for wanting him to fix his issues. I am still going, he stopped going. It's like once he thought he could control his anger he "fixed" himself.

 

We tried one session of marriage counseling and then we went to our "own" counseling. Maybe it is time to try the marriage counseling again. He just gets so defensive when people start asking him too many questions or if he feels that they are putting too much blame on him.

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He was going to counseling to help with his anger issues, which he has been able to control. I have been going to counseling just to make sure that I am not holding back anything and that I am not crazy for wanting him to fix his issues. I am still going, he stopped going. It's like once he thought he could control his anger he "fixed" himself.

 

We tried one session of marriage counseling and then we went to our "own" counseling. Maybe it is time to try the marriage counseling again. He just gets so defensive when people start asking him too many questions or if he feels that they are putting too much blame on him.

 

Excellent observations. Probably smart to frame things in ways that don't come off as blame, but rather as confiding in him, instead. There will be hits and, of course, misses, because you can't control another's perceptions--but you can at least do your best to say things in ways you'd appreciate hearing them yourself.

 

Sometimes couples can build walls that position them as adversaries rather than partners. If you adjust your private approach to viewing him as wanting to be on your side instead of against you, your success in communicating from that position will likely help him to feel liberated and supported rather than cornered.

 

Every small miss doesn't need to blow you apart all over again. Honest mistakes will likely prompt old habitual responses. That's just a given. If you're willing to see those for what they are and adjust your own reactions accordingly, you can probably pull off a temporary role as the one who puts down your weapons and adopts enough sanity for the both of you.

 

In your corner.

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He sounds insecure, emotional, and manipulative. You also had children with him and love his good traits (everyone has some!). Be kind to him and yourself. Don't say things you might regret later. Information should be shared on a "need to know" basis only. BE SMART- most women who are physically abused at the hand of their partner experience it WHEN THEY TELL HIM THEY ARE LEAVING or WHEN THEY TELL HIM THEY ARE PREGNANT. These are facts. IF you do decide to leave, even for a separation, make a plan first, set some money aside, LEAVE and THEN TELL HIM. Don't set yourself or your children up for more abuse if being more thoughtful can get around it. Make sure you have a safe place to go, use whatever resources you can find (shelters, churches, friends or relatives not too close to him, etc.). Counseling can be very helpful, but the big changer in a relationship is when YOU decide to change, then the balance is shifted and he has to change to accommodate/compensate. Hopefully, it will make for a healthier relationship. No one is perfect, but we all need to accept that and not just blame others for everything. Try to find a christian counselor, they tend to try harder to help couples and families stay together rather than just saying "its hopeless, just divorce already".

 

Remember, we live in a fallen world and we are all under siege.

God bless you and your family

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I will be the first to admit I'm not the best at relationship advice. But I can tell you this. My grandmother was a victim of domestic violence, my mother also was, I have strong reason to believe my sister is, and my cousin was almost killed by it and her husband is now in prison for attempted 1st degree murder.

 

I can already tell you are on your way there. GET OUT NOW!!!!!! I'm not going to make it any easier for you. People will come to help you in your time of need.

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He has never laid a hand on me- I would never put up with that. I really can't say why I put up with the verbal and mental abuse for so long. I love him, but I can't seem to get past his past actions. I find it hard to trust his words at times, and I find it hard to trust his motives. He hates change and what if he is push so hard only because he doesn't want to deal with the change of me being gone? He has issues that he will not confront because he doesn't like all the "touchy feely" talks that his counselor was pushing for yet he is always asking what I am thinking and feeling -constatnly.

 

He is very insecure and I cannot and will not and will not stroke his ego for him everyday. When I say soemthing I mean it- I just don't say things to just say them.

 

We are actually going to a couple counseling session this Friday so hopefully something good will come out of it- I just don't know what's going on anymore. I am tired of the rollercoaster ride.

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[...] He hates change and what if he is push so hard only because he doesn't want to deal with the change of me being gone?

 

I understand. Everybody's got a bit of fear of change mixed in with more noble drivers. People rarely have one single-focused motivation for anything. We've all got weaknesses wrapped up with our strengths and self-interest wrapped up with generosity to one degree or another.

 

Might be a good idea to question what's in it for you to be suspect rather than accept any attempts at graciousness at face value. Its actually more strategically sound to 'appear' reasonable even when you're not ready for full buy in. Emotions follow behaviors--not the other way around. Maybe its a skill for each partner to behave their way into cooperation before they actually start feeling it?

 

He has issues that he will not confront because he doesn't like all the "touchy feely" talks that his counselor was pushing for yet he is always asking what I am thinking and feeling -constatnly.

 

There are ways to gently push for quid pro quo on this. There can be payoffs for you built into it. Variations of "I'll tell you mine if you'll tell me yours..." or, "I bet my answer would be better if you'd rub my neck for 5 minutes..." or even, "Would you do me a favor and sit with me, hear my answer, and promise me you won't ask me again for at least 2 days...?" Anything can can be negotiated.

 

He is very insecure and I cannot and will not and will not stroke his ego for him everyday. When I say soemthing I mean it- I just don't say things to just say them.

 

Yeah, that sounds annoying. Unfortunately, annoyance can push an insecure person into annoyingly deeper insecurity. Sometimes humoring them can actually be less skin off your back--and possibly accomplish something. As with everything, it's your call. It just makes no sense to allow exasperation to drive your responses if you're truly committed to trying to make things better. Nobody can pull themselves together in the face of critical doubt, and it sounds as though you both may have tried this while the other resisted. Has there ever been a time in your marriage when you were both equally invested at the same time?

 

We are actually going to a couple counseling session this Friday so hopefully something good will come out of it- I just don't know what's going on anymore. I am tired of the rollercoaster ride.

 

Congrats and fingers crossed for you.

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He has never laid a hand on me- I would never put up with that. I really can't say why I put up with the verbal and mental abuse for so long.

 

He's testing boundaries and so far you are putting up with it. So I'd bet you would put up with physical abuse also.

 

Get out now! Don't say I didn't warn you. Do it for your kids at least.

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I can almost feel your frustration...my nerves get on edge just reading about what a rollercoaster ride your partner puts you on. Your original question was if you should call it quits and as you know, no one can give you the answer; its when you know. If it were me, as long as my husband was willing to countinue counseling, and to continue trying to make the marriage better, I may stay-but that would depend on the level of mental abuse you refer to. Once he no longer tried, and I am speaking from personal experience...once he didn't want to try anymore, no counseling, thinking "I can do it myself" even when you think its important to go, thats when I'd know my time was up. That would indicate to me that he isn't really interested in change. Sometimes, you don't see how much better it can be and will be without an emotionally abusive partner. But once you grieve the loss of the relationship, the fog clears and you will realize that you are much better off. Trust me, really. And good luck.

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