My boyfriend of five years thinks he's the king of the universe. He always parks his car in the first spot in every parking lot because he thinks he's the big boss; he sits at the head of my parents’ dining table because he thinks he heads the family; he takes the seat at the restaurant which faces the crowd and lets me sit facing the wall. He’s late for appointments because it makes him feel great to make a grand entrance. When family or friends treat him to dinner, he orders the most expensive meal.
At my home, he leaves his dirty dishes in the sink and his dirty laundry scattered around for me to wash.
Sometimes I wish he could be more thoughtful and humble. He acts superior, over-confident, always in control, powerful, etc. His strong character scares me and when he senses I’m uncomfortable he acts even more aggressive by swearing, shouting or laughing at me.
Friends tell me to stand up and step on him.
Does he act like this with everyone else or just with me?
Will he ever change?
What should I do?
- Feeling Small
Five years? Surely by now, you can see that the “King” has not made you his Queen! Instead, he treats you and at least everyone you care about as if you’re lesser beings, only there to serve him.
Dethrone this jerk, you’ve given him far too much power in your relationship. If you can still muster love for someone so arrogant and frighteningly aggressive, beef up your own inner strength and self-respect.
Do NOT do his laundry; if he won’t help clean up from a meal, then don’t cook for him, or give him paper plates. And insist that your father sit at the head of his own table.
Your friends are only half right… you must “step up” to save yourself from being pushed around, but stepping ON him is lowering yourself to his obnoxious level.
My longtime friend asked her husband of 20 years for a divorce, on their anniversary, weeks before Christmas.
Within a month, she’d moved out, leaving their three children with their dad. She says she kept telling her husband their marriage needed more intimacy but since he did nothing about it she determined to leave.
There’s no other man, they just grew apart.
I’m so upset with her, I can barely talk to her.
She's upset that relatives on both sides are angry with her, her husband isn’t cooperating and custody issues are occurring.
What did she expect?
I think she went about this all wrong, that she owed it to her husband and children to soften the blow of this life-changing decision and go slower, tried counselling, and to not have left her children. I’ve not told her, but this is really bothering me and I feel like I never really knew her.
Yes, you DO have opinions, but they should be put aside in order to stop being judgmental.
It’s clear that something pushed your friend to flee: She may be experiencing overwhelming hormonal changes; her feeling of being unloved may’ve reached a desperate point.
To continue as a friend, ask questions and be supportive to what’s a far more troubling time for her than you… instead of telling her what she “should’ve” done.
With a friend caring about her, she may relax enough to use this time to re-think her options, and get counselling for herself first, which could help the situation.
I’ve been dating a lady for several months; we’re both middle-aged. She’s said that she loves me.
This summer, her mother and two middle-aged sisters may visit us.
My lady friend wants these assurances, without which she would NOT want me to meet her family: (1) don't sleep with my slutty sister; (2) don’t talk to my mother about sexual escapades; (3) don't insult dogs.
What should I do?
- Taken Aback
Ask her (1) whether it’s you or her sister she doesn’t trust; (2) if she’s ashamed of your sex life together or thinks you talk about sex too much; (3) is the topic of “dogs” an important issue between you two, or between her mother and her.
If the answers to these questions don’t re-assure you that you’re dating someone who’s reasonable, mature, independent and simply nervous about family meetings, then veto the visit and decide if you want to continue the relationship.
Tip of the day:
When a partner seizes power, refuse to be dominated.