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I have been with my boyfriend for 6 months. When we met, he pursued me and was such a gentleman. I had never experienced that kind of courtship in my life. In the beginning he expressed he had anger problems but I didn't see it. He included me in every important aspect of his life, introduced me to friends and family and made me feel so special, so I overlooked the occasional miscommunication.
Two months later I experience his anger. We were out and I accidentally knocked over a friend's drink. After going to the restroom and helping her to clean up as well as offering to replace it, he expressed embarrassment of me and talked down to me like I was a child. I stood up for myself. Then a few weeks later, more embarrassing moments for him where he described my actions (like accidentally running into someone at a restaurant) and said his friends were looking at him like his girlfriend is an idiot. He threatened to leave the relationship.
Fast forward to now and there have been countless fights. He mainly yells and I get quiet. I hate fighting. Most of the time, if there aren't arguments, he picks me apart. I embarrass him in public, I'm obnoxious, I'm loud and need to be the center of attention. None of my friends agree that I do these things. If I don't answer the phone he assumes I'm up to things. He is often distrustful when I have given him no reason to be. He nit-picks every action. I cook wrong, I clean wrong, I drive wrong. He drives like a mad man and I tell him to relax and he gets upset. He can be as critical as he wants but he refuses to listen to anyone else critiques or advice.
I just don't know what to do. I adore him when he is not being confrontational, judgmental and angry. There are no relationships I've ever experienced that bring me such joy as the moments we are doing well. But unlike the beginning, the good times are being outweighed by blow ups that are essentially indefensible. I would like to work on things but mainly I want to make sure he gets help because no one should live life this angry.
Response from Dr. DeFoore
Hello, and thanks for telling your story here. It is great that you want to help your boyfriend. I can tell that you really care about him. Unfortunately, the only person that can help him with his anger issues is him. Meaning, he will have to seek help on his own, not because you want him to, but because he wants to get better.
In other words, you have to let go, and focus on what you need to do for yourself.
I suggest that you read the following pages on relationships, which will give you the help and guidance you need: how to deal with abusive relationships and letting go of a relationship.
You are worthy of being loved and cared for, with no abuse whatsoever. No matter how good things are when they're good, there are no excuses for him being abusive to you.
Focus on yourself, and create the life that you want, with the kind of relationships you want.
My very best to you,
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