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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hello, I'm new. I was looking for a place for a bit of advice, I've looked around a little and this forum looks like a great conversation starter for those pesky conversations that always seem to go over and over in your head.

I'll keep it short. I seem to have one main problem. I've been married 5 years to my high school sweetheart. We're great friends, we laugh together, we have a beautiful daughter and we are very lucky for what we have. But, for me, the same problem is occurring over and over and I'm beginning to wonder if it will ever change.

My husband rarely, if ever apologizes. He gets angry and will say anything he can to hurt me just so I'll leave him alone. I hate confrontation, I want to sit down, talk it out and solve it so we don't waste time fighting. He would rather fight and not talk for days and days. But, he never comes to me to fix things when he's finally done being mad. So for me, things never fully get resolved because he doesn't apologize. I'm usually quick to apologize, I'm not perfect but I can usually realize when I've said something stupid.

I'm really just at a loss of how to deal with someone who one, won't talk things out when there's a problem, and then two, doesn't apologize for the hurtful things that come out of his mouth when he gets angry. I feel like I don't matter and when he's angry it's like I don't exist in his world anymore.

I hope some folks have some advice.
 

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Well the first problem is his he doesn't know how to communicate well. SImple enough everyone can see it. I can go into the idea that mans brains are physically wired different extra. But it is a lost cause.

The second thing I would like to point out the lack of being able to communicate well lead to more problems, break ups and divorces. I would give it a try and let him know that without him changing you do not see your relationship down the road. If he refuses to listen ask for counciling maybe a therapist can get it through his head.

I wish you the best but the bad news is unless he is willing to listen to you, or see a councilor he will forever be like this. Is everything else about him good enough that you can live like this for the rest of your life?

draconis
 

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Have you looked into marital counseling at all? That might be a good thing to check into, because it seems like communication is the main issue. Fortunately, that is something that can be helped.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
That would be my ideal answer, but for some reason he won't agree to it. We've been before for this same reason a few years ago, but he stopped agreeing to go. Honestly, his childhood wasn't great and I really don't think he wants to deal with all the family stuff that will come up.
 

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I believe that it is so much harder for a guy to apologize. They do but it takes much longer for them to come around. It can get very frustrating. As women we seem to be able to apologize more easily then men.
 

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Women can communicate better then men because they have more white matter in there brain and can also do more things at once. Men can focus on one thing better then women. It is all how things are dealt with. Some men are great at communicating and often people break "types" set for the norm.

draconis
 

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I have the same problem with my husband. It's a hard thing to resolve. My husband also had a horrific childhood - one I wouldn't wish on anyone.

When we would argue, he would flip out, escalate straight into anger, and say hurtful things just to get the conversation to stop. In turn, I would shut down and typically go to sleep. We wouldn't speak for days until one of us made the other laugh and then, we would pretend like nothing happened. We sought marriage counseling and it helped. My husband also didn't want to go so I threatened to leave him if he didn't and he went along with it. The one thing I really liked about our counselor was that she made us take a look at ourselves before trying to look at the marriage. If his poor communication skills and hostility are stemming from demons left over from his childhood, he needs to address and resolve those demons before he can learn to control his temper and communicate more effectively in a relationship. And you likely avoid confrontation for a reason...Look into why that is. I think you both should work on yourselves before working on the marital system. Unfortunately, my husband quit counseling too and we are separating but the counseling at least gave me the courage (to an extent - I am still working on it...) to stand up for myself and to realize I deserved better...good luck to you...
 

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Well the first problem is his he doesn't know how to communicate well. SImple enough everyone can see it. I can go into the idea that mans brains are physically wired different extra. But it is a lost cause.
I have to disagree here. He knows how to communicate, and is doing a good job of it. He sounds like the sort who either has to think everything is his own idea or that he can hold the advantage by making sure his wife never develops the illusion that she is an equal partner in the relationship.

It's time to decide if this is worth living with. If so, then figure out ways to simply make your decisions and live on your own terms and disregard his feelings until he can address them without being abusive. There is no point in trying to negotiate with someone who refuses.
 

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I really feel for you. It's hurtful to hear your spouse say hateful things and have to go back to normal after things settle down. Out side of an argument when things are calm, have you tried to tell him how it really bothers you that he doesn't apologize for saying these really mean things and told him it makes you feel? My husband is the one who is quick to apologize but he doesn't understand the impact of what he has already said. After many attempts of telling him how the things he says hurt, he now will state why he's sorry which is a little bit of consolation that he isn't just saying sorry in vain. Maybe it'll sink in eventually...
 

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It sounds so much like my husband, he never realised what he did was wrong. He never apologised to me at all. Sometimes, when i wanted to talk our problem out, he will quickly said, OK IS MY FAULT, ALL MY FAULT. YOU ARE RIGHT, CASE CLOSED... Then he walked away.

I am wondering, why am I ended up this way, such fate ? Do I deserved to get such punishment from him?
 

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It sounds so much like my husband, he never realised what he did was wrong. He never apologised to me at all. Sometimes, when i wanted to talk our problem out, he will quickly said, OK IS MY FAULT, ALL MY FAULT. YOU ARE RIGHT, CASE CLOSED... Then he walked away.

I am wondering, why am I ended up this way, such fate ? Do I deserved to get such punishment from him?
In the case of many people they know or think they are fighting a losing fight were no matter what they do or say they feel they are going to continue to be blamed. To them they cut to the chase to end the argument.

draconis
 

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Let him know how you feel and that you know it's not all in your head that you feel this way. Maybe the two of you can try counseling. If that doesn't work and he still doesn't appreciate you, divorce him, and that means he's not the right one who is compatible for you. Somebody else will love you and value you.
 

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I know this post is super old, but I'm DESPERATELY hoping someone can help me. My situation is the EXACT same as the original poster (include the high school sweet hearts, and 5 year marriage). However my husband takes things just a couple steps farther.

Now this has been a debilitating issue for two months now (its always been present but are last 2 years were rough, and i stayed distant enough not to be harmed by it. 3 months ago he confronted my issue and i change..and this is were the problem starts) and there have been exactly three times where was ballsy enough and the argument bad enough for me not to back down. Of course he still defended his own honor like crazy..eventually I'd say eff it do what you want and go to another room and try to keep from sobbing anymore...and then he'd come and put his arms around me and tell me that he knows he has an anger problem and he promises to change.

Out of the 3 times. He said sorry once. (as for the smaller arguments sorry is nonexistent, cuz he claims no fault)

The real issue come in here: He'd act meek for a day or two but as soon as I try to talk to him, he flips. Says nothing he does is enough. (keep in mind i'm not bringing up anything serious to him).. I try to tell him "baby Im your wife, i just want to talk, never to hurt you" It does no good. Apparently he thinks "my explanations and excuses are just so I never have to be wrong" Claims I'm attacking even though I'm the one in tears.

And in a futile attempt to try keep him from going overboard, I mention he's doing negative behaviors we're working to change. AND THIS MAN SHIFTS THE BLAME ON ME! everything he apologized for, every argument we're I thought we had a mutual agreement or understanding was all BULL because I only wanna be right and he didn't want to argue.

I really can't take anymore. When things are calm I ty to bring up how hurt I am and he acts like I'm trying to nag. Or even worse holds on to the belief that he was right! this morning he said, "well i thought you had an attitude, even tho you said you were cool. So yeah I got mad" (and mad is puttin it lightly. it was an all day affair. accusation, belittling our marriage, muttering about how i can't shut up, etc)

I don't know what to do or if its worth it He told me a week ago he'd be willing to see a marriage counselor or therapist, but when I brought it up today, he refused. He went to a army based "5 love languages" today. for an hour. Apparently he has four of them this month... I felt we needed more and it wasn't to much to ask..and like CLOCKWORK he accused me of not appreciating anything he does.

I can't take much more I'm running out of Zen. lol (trying to muster a chuckle anyway). I don't want to divorce him but I can't be happy in this kind of relationship.
 

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Egyptian, the behavioral traits you are describing -- verbal abuse, temper tantrums, inappropriate anger, lack of impulse control, constant blaming, always being "the victim," black-white thinking, and a cycle of push-you-away and pull-you-back -- are classic traits of BPD (Borderline Personality Disorder), which my exW suffers from. Only a professional can determine whether those traits are so severe as to satisfy all of the diagnostic criteria for having full blown BPD.

I caution that every adult occasionally exhibits all nine of the BPD traits (at low levels if they are emotionally healthy). At issue, then, is not whether your H has such traits. Of course he does. We all do. At issue, then, is whether he has most of them at a moderate to strong level -- i.e., to a degree that is making your life miserable even though his traits may fall well short of the diagnostic threshold for having full blown BPD. To address that question, I suggest you consult with a clinical psychologist on your own -- without your H present -- to obtain a professional opinion on what you are dealing with.

Significantly, strong BPD traits are easy to identify if they've been occurring in a man you've lived with for five years. There is nothing subtle or nuanced about behavior such as verbal abuse, temper tantrums, and constant blaming. Indeed, you've already spotted such traits. I therefore also suggest that your read about the nine BPD traits to see if most of them sound familiar. Toward that end, I suggest you take a look at my overview of the traits in Blacksmith's thread. My three posts there start at http://talkaboutmarriage.com/genera...-complicated-marriage-dynamic.html#post358403.

If this discussion rings a bell and you have any questions, I would be glad to try to answer them or point you to good articles that can. I also agree with Jellybeans that you will get better participation from other members if you copy and paste your post into a new thread. If you decide to do that, please let me know here in this thread and I will be glad to copy and paste my response into your new thread. Take care, Egyptian.
 

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Egyptian,

My stbxh was the exact same way. The constant blaming me for his blow-ups eventually made me feel like I was going crazy. Someone on this site actually told me that's a classic tactic of abusers called "gaslighting". You should look it up.

For me, I spent much of my relationship feeling marginalized, trivialized, and afraid to say/do much of anything for fear that he'd blow up again and then refuse to ever acknowledge how hurtful this had been for me. One day, there was just one more incident like that, and that was it. I packed my stuff in a couple of days, got a divorce attorney, filed a restaining order (my situation was really bad), and moved into a motel. That was in April, my divorce will be finalized in a matter of weeks, and I haven't spoken to my stbxh since the beginning of May. Having a few months of complete separation behind me, I can say with clarity that leaving my husband was the best decision I ever made. Even if you don't have a black eye, that is abuse, and once you've been living in it for awhile you lose the ability to see it for what it really is. Just my two cents...

Good luck. jpc
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I have to disagree here. He knows how to communicate, and is doing a good job of it. He sounds like the sort who either has to think everything is his own idea or that he can hold the advantage by making sure his wife never develops the illusion that she is an equal partner in the relationship.

It's time to decide if this is worth living with. If so, then figure out ways to simply make your decisions and live on your own terms and disregard his feelings until he can address them without being abusive. There is no point in trying to negotiate with someone who refuses.
I like your post here, "He sounds like the sort who either has to think everything is his own idea or that he can hold the advantage by making sure his wife never develops the illusion that she is an equal partner in the relationship."

This sounds like an identical problem of mine with my husband, and for the most part it's a sign of selfishness to me. He wants to always make it a point to make sure I feel unequal to what he provides in the household, what he sacrifices, what he doesn't get, or wants to get and can't because we have financial responsibilities; I tend to keep my mouth shut when he gets on one of his "*****-mode rants".

On the "think everything is his own idea, this is too familiar to me. For example, we decide to go out to eat one night, he asks, "what do you want to eat?", I say, "it doesn't matter, whatever you want". This can go back and forth until finally I say where we should go.......(a mexican restaraunt that we both like, and dinner for two is usually about $35 witha tip). Days later when an argument breaks out; I have to pick the expensive places while he's trying to save money........and then the next night or two, HE PICKS THE MEXICAN PLACE to go eat, and his thoughts about money goes in the trash. Because it was his idea, it was okay, being my idea, it was the wrong place to go eat. Cant win for losing there.
 

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I am new to this site and realize the first entry was some time ago. However I have been dealing with a husband who is a "right fighter" and never apologizes. He says hurtful things that never get resolved through an apology. I am the one that gives in most often in spite of who is right or wrong because the days of not speaking or communicating is so draining. I am always so fearful that leaving the house angry and not speaking could end very painfully. Life is too short!

We have pursued counseling in the past however that did not work for the long haul. I am at the end of my rope. I love my husband but this is really starting to effect my self-esteem in a very negative way. I have tried to explain how his words hurt me when things are calm but his response is always,, "well what did you say to me?" Never any responsibility. Sometimes I try to ignore but sometimes he pushes my buttons and I must defend myself.

I am open to any advice. I am at the end of my rope but I cannot save this marriage OR this feeling of low self esteem alone...
 

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I am new and I realize the original post was old however, I am experiencing the same situation with my husband. He never apologizes for anything. He is a "right fighter" and feels he is always right. The hurtful comments are devastating for me particularly when there is no apology. I usually give in because not speaking for days on end is just not my style and I realize this probably gets him off the hook. When we are good things are great but when its bad it is over the top. The punishment never fits the crime.

He is from Morocco and English is his third language. I think this may have been confusing early on when he came to the US but after 8 years I believe he gets it. He twists my words and frankly overreacts to the most insignificant issues.

I am trying to hang in here but I am getting weary of it all. I love my husband but I cannot do it alone. We have pursued counseling but the fix was very temporary. Help! I need to find answers.

I've read the situations here and can really relate. If the answer if to give it up I guess I need to start thinking along those lines. Any advice would be greatly appreciated.
 
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