Houston: We have a problem…

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Image by Hugh McLoud, http://gapingvoid.com/2008/06/13/now-what/

In my therapy session this afternoon we discussed the disconnect that is Greg’s lack of recognition that he has abused me verbally and emotionally and has allowed abuse by proxy from his family [read “full on screaming, name calling, swearing, humiliation, sometimes in my own house abuse”]. So I asked her how on earth I could possibly point this out to him? He’s like got shades of NP and BPD and serious zero-to-sixty anger issues. I asked her what she thought I could expect and she answered “emotional abuse”. [oh goody.] We were talking fast and furious and we got to this topic at the end, with no resolution.

Awesome.

Greg feels there’s no reason to separate because “there’s no abuse”. There has been abuse which is the primary reason I need to be away from him to repair my psyche and work on me so we can work on us. That’s why I need to separate. I don’t feel safe emotionally. When I say I don’t feel safe, that’s where he gets angry. Really angry. Like threatening me with never speaking to me ever again angry.

So here’s the question to crowd source: How do I convey to Greg that there has, indeed, been a lot of years of emotional and verbal abuse, especially when he is refusing to see it?

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21 thoughts on “Houston: We have a problem…

  1. Wow, Dharma, no one should have to deal with abuse of any kind. The fact that he can’t or won’t acknowledge it must make it even harder for you. I hate to say it but he may need to hit bottom (you separating from him) for his heart to break open his protective shell enough for him to be able to get what he has been doing and deal with it. ((Hugs))

    • Thanks Kali. It’s terribly confusing which, I guess, is part of the M.O. of the distorted patterns of thinking he’s developed. I think you’re right and your comments are in line with what so many others have told me. I just wonder what it’s going to take for me to accept things as they are instead of the ideal of what I want them to be. My therapist seems to think it will take “another crisis” which scares the hell out of me.

      There is no place for logic in this situation and I am having trouble accepting that as well.

  2. I don’t in all honesty know that you can, at least not with words. Maybe the only way to convey it to him is to physically show him, to give him the opportunity to realise for himself that this has happened. He seems eyebrow-deep in denial, in which case no amount of words will get through to him, sadly 😦

    • I believe you are correct and unfortunately your comments mirror those of my therapist. I keep looking at him as the logical person he appears to be in others situations outside of relationship matters. The problem is that logic does *not* intervene when his patterns of thinking take over. Ergo, I am not dealing with the same rational person in that situation as I might be in other (non-relationship) scenarios.

      • You’re dead right. When relationships come in through the door, logic walks out of the window. If he has BPD and hasn’t yet begun to get to grips with his mood swings and emotional variance, there’s little chance of him being able to effectively police his own moods as they happen… which, as you know all too well, leads to explosive outbursts often followed by either deep regret or (I’m sensing here) outright denial that it even happened.

      • Yes, outright denial. I haven’t confronted him with the word “abusive” because when I even get close to addressing his anger, guess what? He becomes angry! So of *course* it never happened. He was just getting mad and expressing his anger. After all, he’s “allowed” to express anger right? Right. As long as it’s not abusive, and we know there are many shades of abuse, control, and manipulation and they don’t all have to be shouted to be effective.

        [I laugh at myself here because I keep expecting a different outcome. derp.]

      • I forget who it was, but someone once said that insanity is doing the same thing over and over and expecting a different outcome. Hey, we’ve all done it. I had to cut a toxic friend out recently as she kept hurting me time and time again. Its human nature that we do this.

        Herp.

      • I think it was Einstein and he called it the definition of insanity. I usually try to look those things up from a primary source to be sure the attribution is correct as so many things Einstein supposedly said, were made up by someone else. [“But it must be true if I found it on the Internet!” = common statement by my students who have not yet embraced the religion of research lol!

        To your point, yes, toxic is toxic and being human definitely confounds matters. I wouldn’t trade being human for anything though. Through all of the shitty experiences, there is a lot of gratification of learning and progress. At least that’s the line I’m telling myself today ha!

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