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 serious and overwhelmingly painful reality you describe
For how long have you been married and how long ago did these problems start?
The behaviors you describe here, all of them are abusive, then unacceptable, and when a spouse is this way, there is no way the other person could be or feel fine, healthy or happy. You are a human being and that means you have the need and right to experince and express your feelings and emotions, the same way as he does, but that does not mean that anybody could feel entitled to do it by mistreating or abusing other people, that is not normal, acceptable nor healthy at all.
For a relationship to develop and grow as a truly healthy experience, it requires basic "mutual" understanding, affection, passion and support besides of other key requirements, but if there is not even basic respect and caring about your feelings, it is impossible that any other core ingredient and the consistent normal,healthy and fulfilling life develop, once the person is literally creating a relatiosnhip that is the opposite of what a marriage should be.
His behaviors show he may have several mental health disorders, from poor anger control and personality disorders, which are so serious to the point of creating this very abusive and painful reality.
I can see you have been trying to cope and be supportive as much as possible, withotu it leading to any significant change in his behaviors, which he chooses to perpetuate regardless of how deeply they hurt you and your marriage, and this is very sad, and only you know how painful it feels.
The first right, need and responsibility we all have is to take good care of ourselves. If we do this effectively, then we would not expose ourselves nor enable anybody to use, abuse or neglect us at all.
When a relationship involves violence or any form of abuse, such behaviors must be confronted immediately in order to stop, and not to contineu under any excuse, otherwise teh relatiosnhip woudl become a very destructive reality for the victim. When people out of love, personal and religious beliefs and values, concerns about the family integrity, children or other reasons, alloe or enable further abuse, then the situation has no other option but to become everytime more unhealthy and dysfucntional
.. .and this does no good to the victims nor to the abuser, it just creates and promotes more pain, sufefring, abuse and dysfucntion.
You stated you have started to notice how your own behavior has been deteriorating as a consequence of the abuse you suffer, an d thsi si showing you how serious and real this process is, and that unless you start working on respecting prrotecting and supporting yourself, the circle of abuse, violence and manipulation would continue damaging all of you more and more, no matter hwo good intentions there may be, since reality is made by concrete actions, and taht's why each person involved must take full responsibility for their own feelings, choices and actions.
Does it make sense?
So, I will take steps to protect myself. But how to confront this behaviour? He blames me for any arguments, as I am a drama queen, over emotional, etc etc. I am emotional - absolutely true - but I am a cheerful person and very affectionate. I am not unreasonable - well, I am sometimes. But it seems to take so little to have him react.
my other concern, and one which works for him, is that he can seem very cold, and to need me very little. this makes me feel scared, and insecure. unfortunately, it means I have probably been accomodating of some behaviour... perhaps it is too late for me to change this. I feel very much like he is going to hurt me, badly - emotionally.
I believe you need to be very careful, take full responsibility for your emotions and feelings, words and choices, showing him you are doing your best to help, but when it's about ending the relationship, I do not suggest you to be alone with him, since he would react violently and this would help no one involved.
Marriage counseling is always necessary and could be very useful but only as long as both spouses were willing to work on themselves as individuals and as a team
thankyou. i feel quite childish at times - as though i am being bullied, and feeling like striking back, in some way. (I have not.) I am just acknowledgeing that this cycle is creating damaging thoughts and potential behaviours within me, too. I am scared to end the relationship. scared to fail. scared to talk with him. scared.
i agree regarding counselling. he has said to me he would be willing to go to counselling. he saw a counsellor for many years to help him overcome alcohol dependence and anger issues. unfortunately, i seem to be triggering his anger.
Then please start by getting individual counseling to take better care of yourself, of your feelings and more effectively cope, from there you would know better if he is able and willing to do the same or not, then you could be sure that there would be no hope for perpetuating this dysfunctional situation even more.
yes, that is constructive. it is hard to face this. i will take steps to help me take care of myself and develop more awareness... thank you rafael.
You're very welcome. I feel very hopeful about you, because of your initiative, acknowledgement of the role you play in this situation and willingness to work on taking assertive actions to take better care of yourself and more effectively cope with this reality.
Thank you for your trust. Please feel free to contact me as necessary since I am here willing to support you. Take gentle care and consistent action.
thankyou. i am very glad i reached out today. thankyou rafael.