I met a wonderful man and married him three years ago; one year ago, he changed – he became abusive physically and verbally. My face was in pretty bad shape. There was also drinking involved and his addiction to pornography.
I left him for three months, we talked and he said how sorry he was, it’d never happen again. He promised he’d quit drinking and porn, and begged for another chance.
I was back for only a few months, when we argued, he grabbed me by the throat and choked me. The drinking started again, as did the porn.
Our last huge fight was violent and lasted several days. I packed up and left.
I’m 54 and starting over.
He’s contacted me crying and begging me to return. A part of me still cares about him, but I’m afraid that all his promises will mean nothing.
Why do I find it so hard to just end this marriage? I’ll be going to counselling to figure that one out.
Am I doing the right thing by not returning to the marriage?
You’ve made the only sane and self-protective move possible, but you’ve been beaten into believing it’s partly your fault. Abusers like this lout can sense the women who have low self-esteem to start, who’ll feel grateful to have found someone to love them, and believe their lies. Thus, your husband found an easy victim in you.
Now, you MUST stay away from him: This isn’t about your marriage vows, it’s about protecting yourself from being killed, maimed or soul-destroyed.
Get to counselling immediately, focus on building a protective wall of self-esteem, so that you become firm in your resolve that no one will ever treat you that way again.
My son, 25, wants a girlfriend so badly, is continually rejected, and feels he’ll never find the love of his life. He doesn’t like the girls in his crowd, and believes the males who treat the girls badly are the ones who’ve achieved their goals.
I say he doesn’t need to and shouldn’t treat females badly to find love.
I recommend he find some type of volunteer project to elevate his self-esteem, and to meet new friends.
I’ve recommended counselling for his anger, and frustration with himself.
How can I help him see that his group of friends (whose priorities are getting high and drinking) are not the standard, that he needs to be patient and not evaluate a rejection as the final outcome of his future?
- Worried Mom
Your son has a smart mom. Your advice is both practical and loving, but your son is afraid to risk going outside his narrow circle. If he continues to treat women badly, he’ll either keep getting rejected (read above) or end up involved with the police.
Unfortunately, he’s too unhappy and close-minded for such a realistic vision.
Yes, he needs broader experiences and new friends. He should seek any chance he can grasp for real, tangible change, such as a job in another city, a return to school or upgrade courses, or travel for a period of at least three months, somewhere very different, where he can volunteer or work and learn about other people’s culture and ways.
Ease up on the life lessons, since he can’t fully comprehend them. Instead, try to help him find a way out by encouraging him in a different direction, even helping him financially to leave, if you can.
What’s so important about what I bring for lunch? I’ve always gotten comments - whether it’s brought from home, bought in the cafeteria or from a local restaurant.
I’ve even found people going through my lunch bag!
I eat a healthy lunch - fruit and veggies and a small serving of protein - while others chow on fatty fries and a burger and soft drink.
Lately, I answer questions with, “Food,” then walk away.
I find this so stressful, I eat at my desk, not the lunch room.
- Lunch Bag Blues
I hear a lot of attitude, and suspect that’s the message others are getting too.
Your lunch is your business, but similarly, others are entitled to their “fatty fries” without feeling your disapproval.
If you’re content with your choices, and like eating alone, carry on. But if it’s sociability you want, answer “my usual,” with a smile, then change the subject.
Tip of the day:
No marriage vow should bind someone to accept true abuse; safety comes before all other negotiations.