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Ask Arundhati Your Own Question
Counselor & Psychotherapist
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I see a psychologist reguarly for anxiety and depression.
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I see a psychologist reguarly for
and depression. I believe I have some 'obsessive compulsive' personality disorder traits. I am not sure I have the full blown thing. I work as a lawyer and have a loving family and friends.
Recently I met a lovely man who has OCD (the disorder) and seems to also have 'obsessive compulsive' personality disorder traits. He has been very lovely to me in many ways. We've had a good time together and enjoy similar interests. He is from another country and his family are far. Despite being here for 5 years he seems to have no friends. It seems with each relationship he drops them. I have been trying to accept this.
We have both struggled with wanting to be in control - during our interactions. All my life (I'm 39) I've struggled to express my anger reasonably. I felt this was going well until I met this person (5 months ago). I am independent, have been on my own for 4 years, never married and he has lived with a number of people and been married 2 times.
He's sped our relationship up - which has given me cause to feel anxious and
. I've expressed this clearly but told him I want to be with him. I have said clearly I'm not sure of the details but choose him. He asked me to marry him yesterday and I spontaneously said yes.
Today was a lovely day but we were talking about 'heavy' issues like children and where to live etc. We'd already talked about these things. and today I clearly said I don't want to rush this relationship too much. I got angry with the way he was going on about children. He now said he wants them and as I am the woman, lets face it the mother, he wants me to be happy with that. I interpreted this to mean I'd be the primary caregiver. It annoyed me. It seemed different to what he was suggesting before. He backpeddled and said he only wants children if his partner does.
I got upset. I pushed his arms away physically. Up to now we'd both said we'd think about children in the right relationship but couldn't say emphatically we wanted them. I felt I couldn't be sure I could have them at my age. I also have Graves Disease. I am living day by day with my health and told him that. He's been caring about my illness. He seems best when I'm sick! He asked today if the earliest I could have children is March (1 year from my radioactive treatment). I said well yes, but its when I'm stable and I can't say when that will be. I kept saying I don't want to talk about this now.
He got angry I pushed him away. One hour before he'd emphatically said he wanted to be with me no matter what, no matter if I answered him aggressively or was angry or whatever. We'd had an argument, rationalised why and he was clearly saying he picked me and I him and we'd get through everything.
After I pushed him away he said this is not working. I flew off the handle. I've never felt so abused. I told him that. I called him an asshole and said how dare he play with my life and my emotions. I said I can't believe he would say that 1 hour after saying he loved me no matter what, and one day after proposing to me. I said he was nuts (he said I'm very disturbed) and I said, no you need to sort out what you want and stop playing with me in such a hurtful manner. I broke up with him and left his place.
I now don't know if I was overreacting or if I was right to do what I
. He seems to think the problem is all mine. Is he right? He physically wouldn't let me leave his place or his room. He grabbed me forcefully to stop me. It hurt. He at one point put his hands on my neck. I told him to stop manhandling me. That is enough reason for me to end it with him. But I want to know if I am the unreasonable one in the reaction to him going from proposing to telling me it wasn't working. Is my mental 'illness' getting in the way of my having a successful relationship?
My psychologist usually says I overly blame myself. But I feel mean and nasty now. I am raw but can't cry. I said some mean things when I broke up with him. So did he - like I'm a victim and I feel abused by men. I said no, my last relationship was lovely and it was a case of bad timing. He belitted it. I am so overwhelmed with shock at what he said to me about it not working. He later said he was trying to say this won't work with me pushing him away physically.
I can't seem to cry.
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replied 5 years ago.
Thank you for writing in to Just Answer.
I'm sorry for what you just went through.
If I had to offer you my honest opinion I would say, no, you did not do anything wrong. Your feelings, thoughts are very justified and valid.
In many ways you started feeling pushed by his man, and feeling as though he was starting to impose his wishes, his ideas onto you, and he wasn't treating the relationship like a mutual partnership. You have quite a solid example of this where he seemed to almost pushing you about having children and didn't seem to be considering the fact that even if you are able to have children you may not be ready for it.
A relationship is meant to be a shared partnership where you need to feel heard and decisions especially important and life-changing ones such as having kids etc. need to be mutually decided upon without pressure from the other person.
It is also meant to be a "safe" place where you should be able to disagree freely without aggressiveness on your partner's part or him withdrawing his love/support. The behavior that your partner exhibited shows a very conditional relationship - "I will love you as long as you listen to me or do as I wish" - sort of thing which is not what a healthy, sustainable relationship is meant to be.
Please don't blame yourself. You may have said some words in haste or at the heat of the moment - but at the core your feelings/concern are very valid. It is draining to be in a relationship with a man who withdraws his love the minute you're not in agreement with him and it can be construed as a controlling technique.
I would encourage you to continue to discuss this with your psychologist and process it further. It's ok to not cry over this but it might be helpful to write out or think about the feelings this experience has brought up so that you can process it.
I hope this was helpful.
Please do let me know if you have questions/thoughts to what I wrote above.
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