We call this traction…
While reading http://joy2meu.com/Personal_Boundaries.htm I came across the section on boundaries and consequences. The author provided concrete suggestions for the various stages of identifying feelings and constructing boundaries and finally, finally I had something that helped me get to the consequences part.
“If you verbally abuse me by calling me names like stupid or jerk, I will confront you about your behavior and share my feelings. If you continue that behavior I will leave the room/house/ask you to leave. If you keep repeating this behavior I will start considering all of my options, including leaving this relationship.”
The author goes on to say that the third part of the equation may not be appropriate where the relationship is potentially physically abusive. I tend to think that threatened is threatened, regardless of physical contact. My modified statement could look like this:
“If you verbally abuse me, I will confront you about your behavior. If you continue that behavior I will leave. If you keep repeating this behavior I will start considering leaving this relationship.”
The last part would send H into a rage. An absolute freakin’ blind rage. Maybe that statement would come in response to the inevitable texts and calls that would follow after I retreated to safety.