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Jayla3999

I don't know if it's in my head

18 posts in this topic

I've been dating my boyfriend since May of last year. I love him and I know he loves me and we have a lot of great times together. I'm a single mom and he's helpedme out financially so much as well. I would say 75% of the time we are happy. Whenever we have a serious discussion I feel like he flips it around on me and I don't even realize he's doing it at the time. There have been about 3 really bad fights where he's screamed at me. Monday was the worst so far. I confessed to him that there are some bills I'm behind on that I haven't told him about because I was ashamed. He SCREAMED at me on the phone. To the point that it sounded painful and didn't even sound like his voice anymore. I was sobbing and trying to get a word in and he kept saying NO stop arguing with me. Anytime I try to hang up he flips out and says it brings up abandonement issues from past relationships and that hanging up is a deal breaker for him. After he screamed he apologized but yesterday his roommate asked him if he was ok. He told me about it and said he's not blaming me but I need to find a better way to communicate things to him so that he doesn't get so angry. He said that there are always surprise with my financial situation and that it got to the point that he snapped and blew up at me and that he reacted how he reacted and that's that. He told me not to make him choose between him and his mental health and that me making him get to the point of screaming could potentially affect his living situation. I wasn't trying to ask him for

money I was just venting. I'm not innocent in all this at all I mess up I know I do. But he makes a feel crazy. He says he's not blaming me for things but then he says something contradicting that. I don't know what to do. I love him so much and we really are happy most of the time. He's a professional writer and I feel like

he just talks me in circles and manipulates fights. What do I do?

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Jayla - welcome to Our Place, sorry you had to find us.

This sounds exactly like verbal abuse. He is manipulative and controlling, and angry, and disrespectful, and blaming. It's allllllll part of the abuse package. (Anger doesn't have to be part of it, but in this case it is.)

No, it's NOT your responsibility to "find a better way to communicate things to him so that he doesn't get so angry." You are not responsible for being his emotional control valve. Nope.

Blaming you for his reaction - turning things around onto you - twisting conversations until you can't tell and don't notice until later - are all hallmarks of verbal abuse.

And this? This is just outrageous:

me making him get to the point of screaming could potentially affect his living situation.

That is SO not "on you." That's completely 100% his own responsibility. I want to say, how dare he turn that around and blame you.

Your money is your money, anyway. It's not his right to get angry at you about it! Even if you mess up! No no no no no!  He doesn't have the right. That's not how healthy, caring relationships work.

Unfortunately, no one can "fix" abuse. The issues are inside the abuser's head in such a way they're hardwired in. They color everything about the way they navigate the world. 

Please read "Why Does He Do That?" by Lundy Bancroft - but keep it private, to yourself. Whatever you do, do not share information about abuse with your bf. It might seem like you could tell him what's going on and it might be a stepstone to "fixing it" - but in reality, what happens is that they use it against you. It just makes matters worse. So learn about abuse, but keep what you learn entirely to yourself. That's the only way to keep yourself safe.

A relationship is supposed to be a healthy partnership. This isn't what a relationship is supposed to "look like." Even if it seems good some or even most of the time. Most abusive relationships are "good" some of the time, or even most of the time - or else nobody would stay in them, trying to make things better, twisting themselves into knots and losing themselves in the process.

You deserve better.

As you learn, you'll find that the "good" parts are really basically a mask of what's truly inside him. The angry/controlling parts you see are what's really underneath. That's his true self. It's not like he's truly a great, kind person who occasionally flips out. The behaviors you see (which, btw, are very damaging to you - the longer you stay in the relationship, the more damaging they'll be)... those are who he truly is. That's when his true self is revealed.

 

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When I brought up the screaming yesterday he said its not my fault and he's not blaming me but then turned around and said this "I know there are ways to communicate the same information with me that won't get me so angry and upset"

how is that not blaming me? I'm not saying he had no reason to be angry or frustrated but I don't want to be screamed at like that

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Whenever I try to have a serious discussion (sometimes it's over little things or things I might be overreacting about) he says that I'm always mad at him and he says that he's helped me so much financially and that he doesn't deserve this. 

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There's no way to get through to or present a rational conversation about such things with someone who has an abusive mindset. :(  It's like beating your head against a brick wall....then they take your head and mangle it and tell you that it's your own fault.

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That's coercion and blackmail................telling you that due to his financial help you aren't allowed to do anything that will  "hurt" him............horse doo-doo.............

And the crazy-making??  So very typical of an abuser..............you are not crazy and you need to sit down with yourself and think this through.  This is who he is.........he is not going to change.  If you feel crazy now, what will you feel like in 5 years.............15 years............or longer.  Some of us lived through this for decades before we could finally get free.  You don't need to wait that long.............

 

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Please educate yourself 

Its overwhelming I know and you don't want to believe it .

It took me 30 years to figure it out . 

Be strong 

sending a hug if you need one .

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5 hours ago, Jayla3999 said:

When I brought up the screaming yesterday he said its not my fault and he's not blaming me but then turned around and said this "I know there are ways to communicate the same information with me that won't get me so angry and upset"

how is that not blaming me?

Like already stated above, there is no good way. None. I was once asked to communicate what was bothering me by touch, because communicating using any words was still too upsetting for him. It was insane. You're not responsible for his behavior. His telling you he wasn't blaming you and then blaming you sounds really manipulative.

I found that writing down the incidents helped me sort things out a lot. I used a password protected journal that he had no way of accessing. Make absolutely sure he can't read it if you do write it down. When I was feeling confused I would go and read my past entries. It made the flat out lies easier to spot and brought some clarity to the entirety of the situation. 

Mine said I was always mad too. He was lying. It seems like he's the angry one, screaming and all.

You deserve so much better. The book that Quaddie mentioned above is really eye opening. 

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It's  not in your head.

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On 3/22/2017 at 11:50 AM, Jayla3999 said:

When I brought up the screaming yesterday he said its not my fault and he's not blaming me but then turned around and said this [words and actions don't match; typical abuser tactic] "I know there are ways [for YOU] to communicate the same information with me that won't get ME so angry and upset [he's blaming you for his poor choices]"

 

 

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On 3/22/2017 at 0:03 PM, Jayla3999 said:

Whenever I try to have a serious discussion (sometimes it's over little things or things I might be overreacting about) he says that I'm always mad at him and he says that he's helped me so much financially and that he doesn't deserve this

Because he "helped you" he feels entitled to tell you what to do with your money now. I know it must be tough for you financially but if possible, you might want to refuse future financial help and then not share your financial details with him. He's not your husband so don't let him convince you that you need to share those details with him. Letting him help you out is making him feel a little power over you and now he is showing you what he does with this dose of power so you need to shut that down. (My opinion) Feeling entitled [I don't deserve this] is more classic abusive behavior and more blaming. 

Your short story has red flags all over it. He does not sound like a healthy man to stay in a relationship with. Being a short relationship (under a year) his "mask" is probably just now slipping and he is starting to show you the REAL him. The 75% of good times were the wooing stage but now he feels he has you so he can drop his guard and be the real him and he is starting to show you now. The fact that you have children to protect makes this situation even more urgent. Being single is better than being in a toxic relationship. 

If he is screaming at you, you have the right to hang up on him. You don't have to stick around for the verbal abuse. If he ends it with you over that (he won't, it's an idle threat) then he deserves it because that is not LOVE! LOVE does not scream at their loved one. 

A relative send me this from FB and it's perfect: 

Relationship with a Narcissist in a Nutshell

You will go from being the perfect love of their life
to nothing you do is ever good enough.

You will give everything and they will take it all
and give you less and less in return.

You will end up depleted emotionally, mentally, spiritually
and probably financially

And then get blamed for it.

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Were fighting right now and I wish I could show someone screen shots because I don't even know how to put it into words. Yesterday I told him that something he posted on Facebook annoyed me and he flipped and told me that I ruined his Sunday and he told me every single thing about me that has ever annoyed him. He keeps saying I don't care about his feelings and needs and that I never do anything for him. 

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I don't know if this is allowed but I would really appreciate if someone could PM me so I could show the specifics. I feel like I'm crazy. He's making me feel like I'm a horrible selfish person and I'm starting to believe him.

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If he can't act like an adult then don't treat him like one...............we have each experienced to some degree what you are going through.  

You come first.............your sanity and health comes first.  

No matter what he is posting, don't go there.................don't believe it............don't own it!!

Stop the conversation...........save the info if you must.............ignore, stop interacting with him and start blocking him.  

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We all get tickets and cars break down. He is giving you guilt and blaming you for his anger. He is even holding you responsible for his mental state. Not cool at all! Your roommate said that because he unloaded on him too! He is trying to problem solve it by responding to how he received information. Your abuse blames you for his mental state so he asks you to keep it cool. This is a clue to how he talks behind your back? 

Do not participate in his madness. He will try to blow it out of proportion so he can rant and blame you more. Hold yourself and your ground. 

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Hi Jayla,

It is quite typical of an abuser to say, "I wouldn't have ___________ (screamed/raged/lost it) if you had just ______________ (said the right words/kept quiet/done what you were supposed to)." It's a standard equation he set up for a few reasons:

1) To turn the blame right back onto you. In this equation, he is always guiltless, a victim of your error. It wouldn't matter if you would have brought up the bill in the kindest way, using your words with extreme caution. He still would have set up this equation the same way, moving the goal posts so you can never win.

2) To disorient you. Notice that instead of focusing on his screaming rage (which was the real culprit here), he starts explaining how his living situation might be affected, his mental disorder, all because of you. It's not just blaming, he's trying to use good ol' smoke and mirrors to shift the attention from the REAL blunder (his abuse) onto these other, irrelevant things. All in an effort to confuse you so that you won't focus on his abuse. This sneaky trick is designed to stun you, and is a common tactic abusers use.

3) To justify his abuse to himself. While he's trying to convince you that his rage is all your fault, he's also convincing himself. Sad thing is, they can easy persuade themselves that they are guiltless by using the same tactics on themselves. :(

 

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They really are text book.

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Hello, welcome to the forum. What you describe is so familiar to me, and to many of us I am sure, because like Fluffyflea says:  abusers are eerily "text book" in their tactics of intimidation and control. The screaming, the turning blame around and making you responsible for their reactions, the confusing conversations that go in circles and leave you puzzled for hours or days about what happened, and not allowing you to leave abusive conversations without getting guilt-tripped for it.  It is NOT all in your head. 

Of course you are not perfect. Nobody is. But that does not mean you are responsible for his choices, his feelings, his reactions, his behaviour, how he deals with his "issues". You do not MAKE HIM do anything. Especially since the things you are supposedly "doing" that are pushing him to the brink of mental breakdown? ....are totally normal life things. Oh dear, your bills are late. Oh, you hung up on him. Oh, you want to talk about your thoughts and feelings. Apparently these are grounds for a complete meltdown and all-out attack, but they are ordinary things that happen sometimes, and if his mental health was stable, he could easily deal with it and find "better ways to communicate". Like, seriously. It blows my mind how they all do this  - project their own issues and actions onto the other person! 

Quaddie is right in that abuser's minds are wired a different way. They have a different reality because of their own issues and undeveloped emotional skills. My ex thought he was the reasonable, long-suffering victim in our relationship as well - I pushed him, provoked him, made him angry, made him do the things he did. Their logic is majorly screwed up. They think screaming, destroying things, hitting, blaming, threatening self harm, etc are logical reactions to dealing with their feelings, talking through issues, and protecting their "mental health". They seem unable to take personal responsibility for their own actions. 

Everyone here has wonderful advice and wisdom and they are all totally supportive. Keep posting and sharing, to help you make sense of things and get some perspective. It helped me so much and I hope it will help you too. 

 

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