TO stellate23: First off (( HUGS )) because I know that it was probably very hard for you to reach out, tell your story and pour out your heart to a bunch of strangers.
I agree very much with what the other Bees have had to say…
Particularly anothersmith: who shared her own pain with all of us.
As a woman who was in an Abusive Marriage for over 20 Years, I can relate to both her and yourself to some extent.
My Ex had a very short fuse… he was always a moody guy (I met him when I was 20)… and pretty angry with the rest of the world, and what was wrong with it. For a good part of his childhood young adulthood this was said to be the “pefectionist” in him as he was so bright academically.
But in the real world, when it came to relationships… it was just a royal PITA for those of us around him who loved him
His issues went from being self centered in his 20s to low self esteem in his 30s, to self-loathing in his 40s. And his drinking increased, to the point he was a raging ANGRY alcoholic.
His outburts were horrible. He swore, threw things, broke things, and on occasion (especially when fired up on alcohol) would get both ABUSIVE and VIOLENT with me.
I LOVED HIM… TOO MUCH
I wanted back the smart but moody guy I fell in love with… had kids with. Built a life with… planned a future with.
I wanted him fixed
Unfortunately, as anothersmith: has so eloquently said, this is a naive (and fairly common belief).
YOU cannot fix someone… only they can fix themselves.
And like your SO, my guy had no intention of getting any serious counselling (sure he’d make the occasional attempt at couples counselling… but he’d always quit, because “the therapist is a quack… he isn’t helping us… etc”) Which was true, therapy was costing a fortune, and never moving along at any rapid rate, but that was because there was a GIANT ELEPHANT in the room… the fact that my guy, wasn’t willing to share a great deal, or admit there was any sort of a problem(s)
I’ve been the woman who wanted the IT’S JUST 5% DEMON to go away… I bent over backwards (losing myself in the process) trying to make that happen. Walking on eggshells, living a lie. And going thru countless situations where I was either the victim or being victimized. All the while protecting my kids from their REAL FATHER. Pretending that what WAS HAPPENING… really wasn’t.
(Like Sekhmet: I too have countless embarrassing inappropriate stories I can tell about my Ex… public humiliation, dangerous driving, etc)
And then one day I woke up and realized, that things had come to a head. I came to realize that IF I DIDN’T GET OUT OF THIS RELATIONSHIP… then like anothersmith: there were going to be Police involved, and one of us was going to end up on the 6 o’clock news or the front page of our local paper… for killing the other (mine of course would have been self-defence)
And NONE of that would be healthy for either of us… or what OUR KIDS DESERVED !!
So I left. Leaving was H3LL.
When they say the worst times with an Abuser are when you leave… they are not kidding. And he took his new found ANGRY CAUSE… ME … on full bore.
Long story short… we went thru a horrific divorce. And at one point I was virtually homeless and on the doorstep of the local Food Bank looking for support. He was a royal prick about it all. He did everything in his power to make sure our family had a permanent split… using money and power to sway our teens to his way of thinking.
I was a wreck, but I vowed I was going to find a way thru this… and spent years in counselling cause of the trauma I suffered. I learned that I was a GOOD PERSON, and that I didn’t DESERVE any of the junk he threw my way. I discovered how to set boundaries for myself and for others I interact with.
I also learned that Abusive People (and to be sure your SO is exhibiting some of these traits), are master manipulators. They see themselves as NEVER accountable to no one, and learn to play the game to their own advantage.
With your UPDATE you say you’ve worked some things out… when infact all I see from where I sit is he is exhibiting what is know as “Honeymoon Behaviour”… he is acting a certain way to make you happy… it will not last… without counselling and a genuine understanding of WHAT he does and WHY… he will return to his old self before long. Then more than likely he will BLAME his failure to continue on the path ON YOU… and very convincingly so I might add.
My best advice…
IT IS A DEAL BREAKER
I wouldn’t wish what I went thru on my worst enemy. I spent aprox 25 Years of my life wasting MY TIME being something to someone who didn’t appreciate that effort, or WHO I WAS GENUINELY to begin with.
It took me a long time to heal… and even longer to TRUST again (anyone… but especially MEN or an Intimate Relationship).
Lucky for me, Mr TTR saw pretty quickly in me that I was a GOOD PERSON (his words) and that far out-shone the visible emotional scars that I did (and sometimes still do) exhibit / struggle with.
Here it is more than 10 Years on, and I am much better, but to be honest I do have to work at it each and every day (and it isn’t easy) My Ex ate away at my self-esteem and WHO I was so badly, that sometimes I feel as though I do not know who I am, or where those lost years of my life went. I wouldn’t say I am angry about that… just very confused. I find it hard to rationalize that I loved some one so much who hurt me so badly emotionally. I like to think now that I’ve come to realize that I am WORTH SO MUCH MORE, but it is difficult to look back and see the shell of a woman who accepted so much less.
Please… heed my warning.
Do not waste your life with this man, when there is someone out there who would LOVE and treat you the way you deserve. I realize that after years it is hard to step aside… but it will only get worse… 5 years, 10 years, a lifetime doesn’t make it any easier.
I am so fortunate at my age (50+) to get another chance at love… and this LOVE is much much healthier than my last. I treasure each and every minute that I have with Mr TTR and he with I (he is over 60). At this point in our lives we are grateful for the time we have together to share.
I realize that if I had never married my Ex, and gone thru what I have, I would never have met Mr TTR… BUT I also know that chances are good that I would have had a much better life because I wouldn’t have been burdened with a situation that I had no control over… and probably would have met and married a very different man and been much happier.
THE GRASS REALLY IS GREENER BEYOND THE FENCE
Good men exist… there is one out here for you as well.
(( HUGS ))