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Obviously I'm not a very good judge of women, because I have been married three time and to what almost appears to be the same woman. With the exception that this one becomes a little violent at times. If I complain or challenge her she calls me a P*ssy. One time she even dialed 911 and told the officer I abused her. He stated to her he didn't see any marks and told me outside to give her some time.
My son (13) who is from a previous marriage
stays with us half the time. If something is dirty or out of place it is his fault and even though she doesn't say anything to him she reams me out for my son, sarcastically calling him the Prince or your highness. She also has a son that is 13 that lives with us and even though a lot of the problems are generated by him I never mention it because then she would say I was picking on poor S**n who's father never sees him. Everything will be going along fine until something sets her off like a fingerprint on the refrigerator, which looks like food to her (she knows its not her son because she's told him about that). I usually take the blame for things like that just so my son is not always accused of these things.
I have two serious health conditions, Cancer and ITP, and there are days I just don't feel good or am exhausted. This upsets her and usually she will say I'm sick because I'm not a clean person, just like my apartment before we were married. Or she will state she's tired but sarcastically say I guess you need a nap worse than me. She will always throw the attention on health issues she claims to be having and what she needs to do to get them corrected. So its come to the point I try to hide the pain I'm in from her or the fatique I experience almost daily in order not to upset her or P*ss her off.
She was a sweet and understanding person and its like she has progressed into this unhappy monster. I would really like to work at saving this marriage but I really don't know where to start.
 

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I don't have time to write more now but the short answer:
Stop being afraid of making her angry. When she is verbally abusive call her out on it and refuse to engage further until she stops. Stand up for yourself with dignity and don't back down.
 

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With the medical conditions I would definitely take this to hospital social worker. You will not get well in this type of home situation. In fact, if you want to protect your son I would get a divorce and make sure he is on your insurance, not her, with a plan in case of demise or disability or inability to make decisions (talk to your son's mother about this). Imagine if you were to take a turn for the worse and your W being next of kin gets to make decisions about your care. You are OKAY with that? Just because you were when you got married doesn't mean you need to be now. Mr., you need to talk to the hospital legal and social worker about your situation. This could get worse. A person who is like that doesn't magically become better by anything you could do or say.
 

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I guess I made it sound like I was an invalid, which I am not. I can certainly take care of myself. My health issues are terminal so there is no real getting better. I try and keep a positive attitude about them which seems to help. And for my son I am extra worried. His mother was Baker Acted a couple of years ago and he came to live with us for a full year but the courts say she is better now so she has equal rights. She is certainly not someone I trust or would confide in. My son actually loves my wife and I have never seen her treat him with anything but respect and love. I think she lashes out at me for some unknown reason. I would love to find out what the issues are and if there is anyway, together we can overcome the conflict we seem to have. I would like to give counseling a try first without just quitting and not giving it a chance. I can't keep failing at marriages....
 

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TooSad, welcome to the TAM forum. I'm so sorry to hear about your serious health problems. As to your W, the behaviors you describe -- temper tantrums triggered in seconds by minor events, constant blaming, false allegations to the police, lack of impulse control, verbal abuse, "a little violence," and controling behavior -- are some of the classic traits of BPD (Borderline Personality Disorder), which my exW has. Significantly, every adult on the planet occasionally exhibits all nine of the BPD traits, albeit at a low level if they are emotionally healthy. These traits become a problem only when they are so strong and persistent that they are undermining your marriage -- which they can do even when they fall well short of the diagnostic threshold.

I therefore suggest that you read about the BPD traits to see if most of them sound very familiar. If they do, your W may have them at a moderate or strong level. If you want a good book, I note that the best selling BPD book (targeted to the partners) is Stop Walking on Eggshells. Alternatively, an easy place to start reading here on this forum is my description of BPD traits in Maybe's thread at http://talkaboutmarriage.com/general-relationship-discussion/33734-my-list-hell.html#post473522. If that discussion rings a bell, I would be glad to discuss the parts of it that you find relevant to your situation.
 

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My son actually loves my wife and I have never seen her treat him with anything but respect and love.
If she respected him she wouldn't do this:

If something is dirty or out of place it is his fault and even though she doesn't say anything to him she reams me out for my son, sarcastically calling him the Prince or your highness.
What she's doing is trying to divide you and him. It's classic controlling behaviour, she's playing alpha b1tch to maintain her dominance and you are at the bottom of the hierarchy.
 

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Sorry to hear of your cancer and ITP. I wish you lots of health and recovery.

Re: your wife-- why do you stay? You said you have married the same woman 3x now (she is your third wife) but have you noticed YOU are the common denominator in all of your marriages? Why do you attract these women? Why are you attracted to them? Do you ignore all the red flags?

To answer your original question: How do you stop the verbal abuse?

You don't. The abuser does. In this case, you say it's your wife. So it's totally up to her whether she will stop or not. You cannot make her (or you other ex-wives) do anything. What you can do is not tolerate the behavior. Call her out on it and tell her what you will or will not accept. If she continues doing it thereafter, then follow through with a consequence (leave the relationship). You already have enough on your plate with your health to be dealing with unnecessary BS and mistreatment.



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If your condition is terminal, it could be your wife is very afraid and scared of losing you if she use to be nice. I would try and talk to her about it.

If she turns into a B***h while trying to talk, end the conversation and know it will not get better. Then you have to decide whether or not to stay or leave.

As a pick me up, listen to the songs in my signature line. The links even have the words to the songs. They are priceless in making you feel better.
 

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When your wife starts going off on you, just tell her 'stop' and walk away. Go to a quiet room in the house or for a walk so you can cool off. THis also gives her a time to cool off.

Tell her, when she's not yelling, that you will no longer put up with her yelling and nasty attitude. That when she start it you will tell her "stop" and walk away. Tell her that it's her responsibility to calm herself down. The two of you can discuss real problems when she is calm.
 

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When your wife starts going off on you, just tell her 'stop' and walk away. Go to a quiet room in the house or for a walk so you can cool off. THis also gives her a time to cool off.

Tell her, when she's not yelling, that you will no longer put up with her yelling and nasty attitude. That when she start it you will tell her "stop" and walk away. Tell her that it's her responsibility to calm herself down. The two of you can discuss real problems when she is calm.
This advice is spot on for healthy relationships but unfortunately for the OP abusers are often triggered even further into rage buy walking away. They want the conflict to continue so they will "hunt" you down and defeat you verbally and/or physically.

When I finally started standing up for myself and stopped taking her crap it would just reinvigorate her and escalate it. I remember one time I went to Hooters with my brother for his birthday and came home to her interrogating me. After 20 minutes of her harrassming me I told her straight faced "I went to Hooters for a beer with my brother ok." She exploded and looked like the devil. I turned my back to her and she literally jumped on my back pounding me with her fists.

OP, do yourself and favor and get some counseling and find out why you have poor self esteem and keep picking these losers. YOU are a unique human, irreplacable human being deserving of love and respect. Once you realize this you will not accept abuse from nobody ever again.

PS: Not all women are crazy btw. Took me sometime to figure this out after spending 6 years with a nutball. Abusers will make you believe you are worthless and change your perception about what is a healthy relantionship. Good luck buddy!
 

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This advice is spot on for healthy relationships but unfortunately for the OP abusers are often triggered even further into rage buy walking away. They want the conflict to continue so they will "hunt" you down and defeat you verbally and/or physically.

OP, do yourself and favor and get some counseling and find out why you have poor self esteem and keep picking these losers. YOU are a unique human, irreplacable human being deserving of love and respect. Once you realize this you will not accept abuse from nobody ever again.

Abusers will make you believe you are worthless and change your perception about what is a healthy relantionship. Good luck buddy!
:iagree::iagree::iagree:



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This advice is spot on for healthy relationships but unfortunately for the OP abusers are often triggered even further into rage buy walking away. They want the conflict to continue so they will "hunt" you down and defeat you verbally and/or physically.
There is a very good book that talks about techniques to handle verbal abuse… “The Dance of Anger”. One of the techniques it gives is the what I’m calling the “STOP” technique. Yes an tantrum needs an audience. So the abuser will try to escalate at first. But if you are clear that you will not engage and remove yourself it works.

I used this technique with my ex who was verbally abusive and escalating to physical abuse. Part of the technique is to let them know that you will no longer put up with the abuse and you will remove yourself from their presence start speaking in an abusive manner. Also the abuser has to be told to find a way to calm themselves down.. like to for a walk, or whatever works for them.

The abused should practice the technique until it’s their automatic response to any abuse. I practiced in front of a mirror, imagining my husband yelling at me, over and over till it was automatic. Years later it is still my automatic response to any out-of-hand attack from anyone.

If the abuser keeps coming at you. Just stand your ground and keep repeating “STOP”, calmly. The book suggests putting your hand up in the stop signal as well, thus putting a physical sign up as well. It works.

If the abuser keeps coming at you, even when you have used the ‘stop’ signal/word, even after you remove yourself.. it’s time to call the police and it’s time to leave the relationship. If the abuser does not stop.. It’s escalated to the point that nothing is going to help stop the abuse.

Perhaps the OP would benefit from reading the book “The Dance of Anger”. It’s basically about what his wife is doing and how to deal with it.
 

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The STOP technique would work with healthy people. Abusers aren't healthy. Even if you walk away from them and tell them you won't engage, it will just start all over again in the next round. One long vicous cycle is what it is. Sure, you put out one fire (or rather, flamed it down a bit) but there are 20 more little fires that start up soon after.

People don't change unless they want to. He can't do anything to make her change or make her stop doing what she does. It's a part of her.

It's best to leave an abuser/abusive relationship because most abusers do NOT change and get worse over time.

Sad but true.



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If she is angry and critical it is stemming from deep unhappiness and perhaps sorrow. I bet she's not sure how to deal with her feelings about your health and prognosis. She may be trying to detach from you so it won't hurt as badly when you're in another place.

Spending your time with someone like is pretty s****y when she should be making you comfortable and creating good memories for everyone involved.

Have you ever asked her what's *really* bothering her? She may open up and talk. I hope she does, it sounds like you both need it.

As for you, you deserve better then what you're getting. Make the most of your time, especially with your son.

I'm so very sorry for your condition and situation. I hope things turn around for you.
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There is not much advice around for male victims of spousal abuse except to leave and create yet another broken marriage and more kids being raised without their father present. Just blame it on the woman and walk away.

TooSad, my wife always starts out small before she builds up to full scale hostile abuse. Can you see any signs that something is coming? "Forgetting" to say "I love you", minor sarcasm or belittling, closed body language, physical withdrawal, compulsive self assertion, these are some of the little signs I see that lead up to bigger stuff. There are also certain calendar events or interaction with outsiders (like her mom) that trigger her disrespectful outbursts. Are you able to observe anything like this?
 

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There is not much advice around for male victims of spousal abuse except to leave and create yet another broken marriage and more kids being raised without their father present. Just blame it on the woman and walk away.

TooSad, my wife always starts out small before she builds up to full scale hostile abuse. Can you see any signs that something is coming? "Forgetting" to say "I love you", minor sarcasm or belittling, closed body language, physical withdrawal, compulsive self assertion, these are some of the little signs I see that lead up to bigger stuff. There are also certain calendar events or interaction with outsiders (like her mom) that trigger her disrespectful outbursts. Are you able to observe anything like this?
Male or female it does not matter. Abuse is abuse and by staying in an abusive relationship you are accepting the behavior and even worse, you are teaching the kids that its ok to stay in an abusive situation. Forgive me, I don't know your situation but it seems you preach appeasement and tolerance to abusive behavior. Full scale hostile abuse should not be tolerated under any circumstances. I understand nothing in life is that black and white and all of us do have our "crazy moments" but they should be rare.

We can all be abusive to some degree but what matters is the frequency and intensity. If the majority of the time you find yourself censoring your thoughts, words and actions JUST to avoid WW3, buddy thats not a marriage. If this is now considered "normal" then I will die alone as I will never accept abusive behavior again. 6 years was enough for me.

In conclusion, even as adults we are not perfect, but there needs to be clear boundries on whats acceptable. For example, my exw when angry would yell at her mom and would call her the C word that rymes with aunt under her breath. I would hear this and question why she would call her own mother that word. She would then redirect her anger at me. I have NEVER called my mom or any family member such horrific names even though I have had bad disagreements with some of them.

I wish it was legal to tag abusers like cattle so people would steer clear of them. The divorce rate might actually go down.
 

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Male or female it does not matter. Abuse is abuse and by staying in an abusive relationship you are accepting the behavior and even worse, you are teaching the kids that its ok to stay in an abusive situation. Forgive me, I don't know your situation but it seems you preach appeasement and tolerance to abusive behavior. Full scale hostile abuse should not be tolerated under any circumstances. I understand nothing in life is that black and white and all of us do have our "crazy moments" but they should be rare.

We can all be abusive to some degree but what matters is the frequency and intensity. If the majority of the time you find yourself censoring your thoughts, words and actions JUST to avoid WW3, buddy thats not a marriage. If this is now considered "normal" then I will die alone as I will never accept abusive behavior again. 6 years was enough for me.

In conclusion, even as adults we are not perfect, but there needs to be clear boundries on whats acceptable. For example, my exw when angry would yell at her mom and would call her the C word that rymes with aunt under her breath. I would hear this and question why she would call her own mother that word. She would then redirect her anger at me. I have NEVER called my mom or any family member such horrific names even though I have had bad disagreements with some of them.

I wish it was legal to tag abusers like cattle so people would steer clear of them. The divorce rate might actually go down.
I'm sorry for your suffering. I certainly understand how someone could confuse my attitude with appeasement but I assure you nothing could be farther from the truth. My message to my kids is about commitment but I completely understand how other value judgements can be superimposed my actions.

Btw, you can avoid many abusers by staying away from anyone with a history of alcoholism in their family, especially with their father or grandfather.
 
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