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My Boyfriend And His Son

by Tanya
(Syracuse NY)

My boyfriend is a very angry person. He holds on to every thing any one has ever done to him. He is very angry towards his son. His son is 14 years old and although he doesn't hit him I don't think he treats him very well and have asked him (my boyfriend) why if he can keep his temper with me how come he can't with his son.

He just says it's not the same. He yells at his son, never answers his son's questions and then gets mad when his son repeats himself. Tells his son to stop all the time, no explanation or anything, and the son will just be playing with the dogs or trying to have a conversation. If my boyfriend is really mad at his son he will say things like don't make me hit you, stop acting like a 2 year old, or calling him a 2 year old. He says stuff like, stop being stupid, when I call you, you come etc... And he will yell at his son for an hour if his son has done something wrong.

Now his son does have a temper and is prone to tantrums but he just needs someone to listen to him. I have 3 children. The 18 year old is out on her own, the 16 year old living at home and 14 year old living with his father. I have never talked to my kids this way no matter how mad I was. But I am a fairly passive person. I takes a lot to make me mad, but lately I find myself getting frustrated very easily.

When my boyfriend is mad at me he tries to punish me by doing things like getting snacks and drinks for him and the boys and will forget me. I don't say anything because I know what he is doing. I lived with an abusive husband. Am I headed into that kind of trap again? Can you help?

Response from Dr. DeFoore

Hello Tanya, and thanks for telling your story here. Yes, that's where you're headed. As a matter of fact, I'd say you're already there. A lot of this web site is designed to help people just like you, so I'm going to refer you to a page written specifically to help people in your situation: battered wife syndrome.

Read this page, and do the exercises recommended there. The solution is within you, and it's called self love.

You can do this. You will make the right decision. You need to let go of your boyfriend and his relationship with his son. You need to focus on your own well being, then if you think the relationship with your boyfriend is healthy enough (it does not sound like it is), then you can get back with him--but only with counseling for both of you.

Believe in yourself and your own inner wisdom, Tanya. You will do the right thing.

My very best to you,

Dr. DeFoore

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