What to do? What to do?

Discussion in 'Parent Emeritus' started by Shan, Feb 27, 2015.

  1. Shan

    Shan Member

    I am just at about the end if my rope all though my boys have been doing much better with me, I'm at a stand still . I started therapy and since I have been going I have been doing cbt. Last week she said that my 2 precious boys(sarcasm)need to do their own everything . I tried my hardest , I didn't not blink first but on Saturday I was degraded by my husband every single reaction I told her II woukd get. I don't work (we own our own business but no I do not work there unless needed) . It is at the point when I finally speak calmly I'm degraded to the point where I can't even stand to be in same room. When the boys talk to me the way he does I bite my tongue , I spend more time in my room then not . I sleep in guest bedroom. Todsy is our anniversary and I get text this am happy anniversary love you! Seriously ????? I have nothing to say back. It's like he tries his hardest to point out to our kids that I am crazy and now again every step I have made with the boys we are right back to where we started. I wonder how to get my power bsck when it is power struggle with my husband . I guess my therapist is not getting just how bad it is. To her I can just stop going things which I have but once their dad speaks try go right bsck to being Difficult Child I just don't know what to do '
  2. Childofmine

    Childofmine trying to do this thing one day at a time Staff Member

    Hi Shan, and I'm glad you're here.

    I am so sorry for what you are going through.

    I know at one point I had to change therapists, and depending on what is going on in your household (diagnoses with the other people), I had to find a therapist that specialized. For years, my ex-husband and I, and then myself alone, went to a therapist, who---at the end of it all---said, well, I really don't know much about addiction. I was crushed.

    So that is one thing you can consider. Also, when you are living in a place where everybody points at you as the "crazy one", it is crazy-making after a while.

    Can you get away for a few days? I don't know how old your boys are or what is going on with them. I do remember reading some of your posts, but can you please, when you get a chance, write a signature and post it to your account? There is a thread at the top of the PE forum that tells you how to do it.

    Another thought is to call the national domestic violence hotline and get their input. Their number is: 1-800-799-SAFE (7233).
    Verbal abuse is abuse. Being degraded is abuse. Please call them and see what they recommend.

    If you have an alcoholic or drug addict in your life, a great place for finding peace and sanity is Al-Anon. There are free meetings in every town and city. See what is available where you life, and go as soon as you can. Keep going, because you will find friends, support and a way forward through this program if you stay with it.

    Shan, we are here for you. Please keep posting, and give us more background when you can. Warm, gentle hugs for you today.
  3. 2much2recover

    2much2recover Well-Known Member

    Actually withdrawing yourself from the situation is the best thing for you to do. How can they pull you into their crap if you are not available? Years ago, when my husband (used to) have immature temper tantrums, I would stand there and argue with him over things that were really no big deal. After doing CBT I decided to withdraw myself from the situation because I truly was trying to make sense out of nonsense. So when ever he was in a foul mood (no abuse but just ugly and spoiled brat type behavior) I would just go to our room and watch a favorite TV program or pamper myself in the bathroom - anything that made ME feel better - rather than get sucked into drama. You know what? It worked. husband rarely has a temper tantrum anymore, usually grumpy when tired (I also learned diabetes will do this to him) but when he does - yippee - it's ME time.
    Withdrawing also gives you the space to think about what it is you want to do.

    I think you get your power back not by arguing with any of them anymore but seriously making plans for what you want from your life in the future. I had a therapist tell me once, in dysfunctional relationships, when one person tries to make change for the good all the others will make that persons life a living he!! because they want things to go back the way they were, everybody continue playing the same tired roles. Maybe you going for CBT has made them uncomfortable - as you are changing - you are backing away and leaving them to their own craziness and they can't like that at all - makes it a mystery to what you may do next.

    As far as what you can do if you really want out - I agree if you are being abused in anyway (verbally, mentally, financially count too!) call you local domestic violence center. As far as maybe getting a divorce down the line, if you have been a stay at home mom or a non-paid business partner (filling in when needed) depending on how long you have been married - you may be entitled to alimony until you can get back on your feet again.
  4. SomewhereOutThere

    SomewhereOutThere Well-Known Member

    Hi, Shari.

    I would fire the therapist and get another one. His advice that you just take it calmly is degrading to you.

    I agree it would be good if you could leave for a while, if not for a long time. Actually, I think HE should leave, but you know he won't.

    This is abuse and if I recall your husband is encouraging your sons to do it and everyone is beating up on you, so to speak.

    If you want to leave, contact an attorney to make sure you still retain what is rightfully yours, then let them deal with life on their own. Hub is a sadist. What a sick text on your anniversary. He knows what he is doing and has done. I would not text him back.

    Whatever you decide to do, make it about YOUR best interests now. I feel so badly for you. You have put up with this crapola long enough and it's time to be good to yourself and let the dogs lay with one another. Write down a list of conditions on coming back, once hubby calls with tears in his voice saying he will change. Stick to it. You deserve to be treated well. And your therapist should be telling you this. If he isn't, right, he isn't getting it. Or she.
  5. 2much2recover

    2much2recover Well-Known Member

    Better yet ask them for a referral to another therapist who can handle your problems. There is nothing so satisfying as pointing out to a so called professional that their advice to you, for you, is useless to you! It take co-hones but better to try out you new found independence on the therapist than others who may harm you for speaking up.
  6. Shan

    Shan Member

    I'll do the signature thing then explain a bit more
  7. Shan

    Shan Member

    We own business. We have house. 4 kids. 2 that live with us 19 and 21. Two daughters no longer home . I'm entitled to 25 percent of his. 50 percent plus alimony .we need to sell house before we both could afford to move and that will take time. I'm doing cbt therapy but it seems stronger I get he gets meaner . This is going to sound strange yes he drinks but I prefer that bc he is nicer when he does. He is most self centered person I know . I don't want this to sound horrible but it was my families business he came from poor background and wouldn't have had opportunities if he wasn't married to me. Do my kids each need 20000 cars no but he bought them each one. It's like I go without bc of the fact he has the best of best. I did it's not big desk to me. I shop at Walmart And that's okay with me!
  8. 2much2recover

    2much2recover Well-Known Member

    I have posted this for other situation and wonder if it fits yours:
    See if Gaslighting fits the scenario:
    Gaslighting is a form of emotional abuse where the abuser manipulates situations repeatedly to trick the victim into distrusting his or her own memory and perceptions. Gaslighting is an insidious form of abuse. It makes victims question the very instincts that they have counted on their whole lives, making them unsure of anything. Gaslighting makes it very likely that victims will believe whatever their abusers tell them regardless as to their own experience of the situation. Gaslighting often precedes other types of emotional and physical abuse because the victim of gaslighting is more likely to remain in other abusive situations as well.
    The term "gaslighting" comes from the 1938 British play "Gas Light" wherein a husband attempts to drive his wife crazy using a variety of tricks causing her to question her own perceptions and sanity. Gas Light was made into a movie both in 1940 and 1944.'

    Gaslighting Techniques and Examples
    There are numerous gaslighting techniques which can make gaslighting more difficult to identify. Gaslighting techniques are used to hide truths that the abuser doesn't want the victim to realize. Gaslighting abuse can be perpetrated by either women or men.

    "Withholding" is one gaslighting technique where the abuser feigns a lack of understanding, refuses to listen and declines sharing his emotions. Gaslighting examples of this would be:
    "I'm not listening to that crap again tonight."
    • "You're just trying to confuse me."
    Another gaslighting technique is "countering," where an abuser will vehemently call into question a victim's memory in spite of the victim having remembered things correctly.
    • "Think about when you didn't remember things correctly last time."
    • "You thought that last time and you were wrong."
    These techniques throw the victim off the intended subject matter and make them question their own motivations and perceptions rather than the issue at hand.

    It is then that the abuser will start to question the experiences, thoughts and opinions more globally through statements said in anger like:
    • "You see everything in the most negative way."
    • "Well you obviously never believed in me then."
    • "You have an overactive imagination."
    "Blocking" and "diverting" are gas-lighting techniques whereby the abuser again changes the conversation from the subject matter to questioning the victim's thoughts and controlling the conversation. Gas-lighting examples of this include:
    • "I'm not going through that again."
    • "Where did you get a crazy idea like that?"
    • "Quit "W"itching
    • "You're hurting me on purpose."
    "Trivializing" is another way of gas-lighting. It involves making the victim believe his or her thoughts or needs aren't important, such as:
    • "You're going to let something like that come between us?"
    Abusive "forgetting" and "denial" can also be forms of gaslighting. In this technique, the abuser pretends to forget things that have really occurred; the abuser may also deny things like promises that have been made that are important to the victim. An abuser might say,
    • "What are you talking about?"
    • "I don't have to take this."
    • "You're making that up."
    Some gaslighters will then mock the victim for their "wrongdoings" and "misconceptions."

    Read more: http://www.conductdisorders.com/community/threads/feeling-very-anxious.58736/#ixzz3SxLMPlDA
  9. Shan

    Shan Member

  10. Shan

    Shan Member

    Most def it fits the stronger I become the more he doesn't speak to me ignores me or tells me our marriage will work if I chsnge . Lol I don't wAnt it to work. I have been trying to get away but this weather I can't catch break bc my mom lives in buffalo area. Yes cbt is helping but it is pissing him off. I asked 19 year old why he is different when dad is around and he said he figures if he says something to upset me I will go upstairs and then I don't have to hear his dad say meN things and hurt me. I explained he might say shut up or get the f out if his room but it hurts just as bad . He saud he woukd stop then. I think he thought helping .
  11. 2much2recover

    2much2recover Well-Known Member

    I think a form of gas-lighting can be when the other person wants to fight - and you don't - they ratchet up the meanness just to suck you into fighting with them.
    Do you have access to any of your own money? Can you go to a hotel for a few nights just to think things through? If not, definitely think about calling a domestic violence center. How rich, your family contributed to him having some financial success and he repays you by being mentally and emotionally abusive.
    Do you think your husband may have a personality disorder?
  12. recoveringenabler

    recoveringenabler Well-Known Member Staff Member

    Shan, I'm sorry you are going through this. Your therapist can only do so much, she can guide you and offer advice and give you tools, however, YOU will have to make the changes and you will have to assert yourself. When one person in an unhealthy family dynamic begins to change, the others, in this case, your husband, begin to up the ante. The change is scary to them, their world is shaking, it's easier and in fact, in many cases it's human nature, for him to get worse, to be more abusive, in order to keep the status quo. You are the one who wants change, he doesn't. It's your family business. You hold all the power.

    Why don't you seek legal counsel to figure out what your legal and financial options are? It sounds as if you are not only in an abusive situation with a bully, but you are being held hostage by his control. Knowledge is power, figure out what all of your options are and begin to make small changes moving in the direction you want. Find out what you need to do to extricate yourself from this situation which it sounds to me like you want to leave but you've allowed yourself to be bullied for so long, you don't know which way to turn. Get legal help. Your therapist has given you tools and you are using them and you said they are working. They are not going to work on your husband, they are only going to work on you. The truth is that when we change, those around us usually begin acting a lot worse.......that is part of change. You will need to decide what it is you want to do, figure out a way to do it and then implement the changes you want. If you want to leave the marriage, then find out what your options are, get your ducks in order and leave. Non action is what makes us feel like a victim. Hiding out in your bedroom is not going to change the situation, taking action is.

    Change is hard, but the only way this situation is going to get better is if you follow through with action. It sounds as if you are in an abusive and highly dysfunctional situation. Take whatever steps necessary to remove yourself.
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  13. Scent of Cedar *

    Scent of Cedar * Well-Known Member

    The Verbally Abusive Relationship by Patricia Evans

    Abuse is all about power over. Once we see that dynamic, the abuser loses power. They redouble their efforts with a vengeance. Sometimes we break. But if we don't?

    We are free.

    As we get stronger, we become more centered. We say: "That is what abusers do. They call names, they set us up, they are perfect and we are not etcetera infinitum. It is nothing personal. Nothing to do with me. End of story."


    It is our pain that the abuser uses to control us, or our hope. He (or she) accomplishes this by defining us to ourselves. That is the real abuse.

    The abuse of trust.

    The abuse will have been tailored, with a laser's focus, on our vulnerabilities.

    There will be a honeymoon period after abusive episodes.

    They will not make sense, anymore than the abuse made sense.

    That is because there is no sense to be made of anything, when you are interacting with an abuser.

    Abusers abuse because they abuse. If it hadn't been you, it would have been someone else.

    There is nothing personal about it.

    Once we understand those truths in our bones, we are freed up, again. The abuser becomes to us what he or she has always been to himself: a cheap imitation of a living, breathing, flourishing person.

    Turns out we are more real than them.


    It helps me to envision the highest, best form of relationship. How would that look, and how would that feel, and who would I be, if I were truly cherished and strengthened, if I could trust the other person with my mysteries and joys and secrets and dreams?

    In doing this, in thinking like this after an abusive episode, we take the emphasis off the stupid, hurtful things our abusers say. We defuse and redefine our situations.


    Unless we accept the situation as our abusers define it, the abuser is out of power. And on the day that happens, we realize it was our power the abuser has twisted and used against us, all along.

    Abusers are invariably bullies.

    They lie, easily and brazenly and not very well.

    As we heal though, we begin to see, not the bad things the abuser said or did, but the wonderful things the abuser did not say or do. We begin to pay attention, not to how uncaring or downright cruel the abuser was, but to how it would have felt to have been cherished, instead.

    And once again, the abuser has lost power over us.

    We are surprised at how strong and clear and kind and focused we become, with the abuser's lessons and rules and weirdnesses out of our heads.

    We can leave them without looking back.

    If you look for it, you will see the same abusive patterns playing out, over and over, in the life of an abuser.

    This is key.

    Victims are interchangeable.

    The abuse was nothing personal.

    Abusers abuse because they are abusers.

    Over time, you have been beaten into the right-shaped vessel to believe the things your abuser tells you. It will take more time still to reinterpret yourself. But you are on a great beginning. You are able to discriminate between the truth and the lies your abuser screams at you. (You must be standing up well, if your abuser has upped the ante like that.) Also, I note that you are able to allow yourself to see the incongruity in a husband who treats his own wife as your husband does, and then texts her that he loves her.

    Gaslighting, just like 2much2recover posted to you.

    Why doesn't matter.

    It is what it is.

    These are your first steps, and they are so important. You are giving yourself permission to question what he says. You are learning to see him for the hurtful bully he is.

    I don't know why some people abuse.

    I only know they do, and they seem never to change.

    Your way out is to strengthen and cherish yourself. This will be a defiant act for you. Your abuser is heavily invested in keeping you broken. Small steps, small things, little changes in how you think and in how you think about yourself will have huge impacts.

    There are many different kinds of abusers out there in the world. The one thing they all have in common is that they hate defiance of any kind in their victims. They will tell you what to think, how to feel, what is important and what is not. This doesn't have anything to do with us, either. The abuser is bolstering his or her own image, to himself, of his infallibility.

    Once again, you are the nameless victim, the interchangeable bit player. Nothing personal.

    The abuser sees only himself.

    Cherish yourself, befriend yourself, learn to trust yourself. You are pretty much in this alone. That is exactly how the abuser in your life wants to keep you.

    Vulnerable, and alone.

    That is why you need to set an intention to cherish yourself. Become your own best mother; your own best father. Go your own way by first going your own way in your thoughts. Question what your abuser tells you. Suspect a trap, a set up, even in the good things.

    Abusers lie.

    That is how they win.

    They lie about the relationship they have with you. They can spot a victim a mile away and, like sharks scenting blood in the water, they circle and move in.

    But once you know better, once you can see through them?

    Piece of cake.


    I am very happy you posted back to us.

    In a way, we are all in this together. Your being stronger makes me stronger, too.

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  14. SeekingStrength

    SeekingStrength Well-Known Member


    I am piggybacking on what a couple folks mentioned earlier. Can you get away?? About fifteen years ago, a dear friend found out her husband was having an affair. She told me about driving about four hours away and getting a room for four nights. She said it totally helped her decide what to do next. She went to a little resort town of about 2000, nothing fancy, but far enough away to think.

    At the time, I thought it was so brave of her. But, really it now seems like such a simple, sane idea. Getting some distance.....so you can sort things out. Deciding what is best for you.