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I Must Be A Psycho

by Kayla
(Spokane, WA, USA)

As long as I can remember I've had anger outbursts. Then I got married. I feel like this was the biggest mistake of my life. While my husband is a very sweet kind man, I feel he does the stupidest things, or says the stupidest things, or uses my stuff, or eats too much, or wastes too much, literally, the list could go on.

I hate having him in my space so much that I have thrown things, screamed, yelled, belittled, hit, threatened, and so on. I feel completely out of control. I have fantasies (while short) that he would die, or leave, or disappear in some way, I feel so desperate and stuck and miserable.

This poor man has tried to change all the things that make me crazy, but no person can do that. And to top it off, he is an addict trying desperately to recover, so he has lied and stolen money, which as you can imagine only adds fuel to my already raging fire and gives me a "reason" to treat him like the worst dirt ever.

It is the most disgusting cycle. While I don't condone his addictive behaviors, I have to give him credit that he tries hard to change, and of course fails sometimes, but I feel like I try to change but nothing happens. I will see something out of place and fly off the handle.

But when I see something out of place and actually keep my mouth shut about it, and this could be as simple as him putting a dish away in the wrong spot, and then he comes at me about this or that...oh, watch out Sally. I go ballistic, feeling he has no right to tell me anything or request anything from me.

Ugh...I go to counseling once or twice a month, I had a crappy childhood, not as bad as some and worse than others, I have started going to church because having a spiritual connection seems to calm me...but only in that moment.

I am very happy being alone, and dread when I have to be around my husband because he is always wanting something from me, sex, affection, time, real listening, but he just gets on my every last nerve.

I don't even know what my question is...Help me?

Response from Dr. DeFoore

Hello Kayla, and thanks for telling your story here. I can tell you’re having a very hard time, and that you really want things to be better for you and your husband. I will try to help.

Oh, and by the way, you're not psycho. If you were, you would not be getting counseling and reaching out for help here. You're a good person, and that's why your anger outbursts bother you so much...they don't reflect who you really are and how you want to be.

First, let’s look at your marriage. You say that your husband is a sweet man, and an addict struggling with his recovery, and that his behavior is very hard for you to tolerate. And you make it clear that you have some pretty extreme anger issues.

I think you will benefit from using these tools for healing and managing your anger, in conjunction with your counseling...which I strongly encourage you to continue. You can definitely improve your anger management, regardless of your husband’s behavior.

It’s very hard to be married to a practicing addict, even while they’re trying to get better. And when you’re not compatible regarding keeping up with the house, etc., that makes it even harder. What I’m saying is that you probably have good reasons for your anger in your current situation, and healing your anger while in a dysfunctional relationship is very challenging. I’m saying this so that you will have empathy for yourself in your situation.

From what you’ve written here, Kayla, the question comes to mind as to whether you really want to be married to this man, or anyone for that matter. I’m sure there’s much more to the story, but your comments about your irritation towards your husband and how much you enjoy being alone certainly bring this question to mind. These feelings could also be a result of being in counseling and dealing with childhood issues. Please discuss this with your counselor, if that feels right to you.

If you decide you do want to be married to your husband, then start focusing daily on his positive aspects. List them in your journal each morning, and try to keep them in the front of your mind at all times. This will help, but only you can judge what is right in your future choices.

The exercises I recommended will help you to heal emotionally, along with your counseling. The tools only work, however, if you use them. And the more you use them the better they will work for you.

Believe in yourself Kayla, and make up your mind to create a good, healthy life for yourself.

My very best to you,

Dr. DeFoore

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