Ask a Psychiatrist and Get Answers to Mental Health Questions ASAP
Hello, I am Rafael. Thanks for asking your question - I'm here to support you. (Information posted here is not private or confidential but public).
I am very sorry to know about this painfully overwhelming reality you have been undergoing for this long.
What you described here clearly shows a very abusive, manipulative and dysfunctional husband, with serious mental health, personality problems and addictions, and the only mistake I can see you have had all this time is what we call codependency, which is an addiction affecting man people, leading you to expose yourself to be used, abused, neglected and manipulated by people, like your husband, to the point of even truly believing you could have been the cause and responsible for his choices and actions.
Please be sure that your fear is common in people in your shoes, victimized by people abusive and violent like your husband, and that there is no way you could be responsible for his choices and actions. Nobody deserves to be disrespected, even less to be abused, and he is clearly a very dysfunctional person with a very distorted personality. Then please be sure that what you have been told by our counselor and at the Shelter is absolutely clear and right. Your fears and doubts show how much you need to work on improving your sense of self-worthiness, self-confidence and assertiveness and to eradicate any form of codependency. Please continue to work in a committed way on yourself with individual and group counseling support in order to heal and grow from these overwhelming experiences. I am glad you got the courage to get necessary support. Now it must be about you taking good care of yourself away from anybody incapable or unwilling to respect you as a human being.
I am not telling you that this is easy at all, but it is necessary and absolutely worthy. You need and deserve a healthy and fulfilling life around people who could share with you and support you, away from any form of abuse, neglect or violence. Does it make sense?
Thank you. This was very helpful. I found a Codependents Anonymous site here where I live. Do you think this would be a good resource for group counseling? The Domestic Violence shelter also has group classes. My therapist has been very good about working with me on my self-esteem; it's just a long, long process.