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My Husband Has Communication And Anger Problems

by Katie
(Pennsylvania United states)

I wouldn't say my relationship is abusive. Maybe it is, but if so it's on both ends. I came from an abusive relationship. It's been over three years since it ended, and it's something I still think of daily. I think of it to make sure it never happens again.

Which brings me to my husband. He is not physically abusive. I can say with a clear mind that my son and I would never be harmed in any way, however my husband definitely has his anger issues.

I find it childish, and it's what angers me. He is someone who really needs to communicate better. Funny enough, he's the only person I've never been able to read, figure out, and that's what attracted me.

He has a hard time communicating verbally about anything to anyone. My reaction to this is to ask questions. When there is a problem, I see it as my job to fix it. That means I have to get to the bottom of the issue. He can't always tell me what the issue is, so I ask questions, eventually this annoys him, because he doesn't know how to answer. Sometimes he calls it nagging.

He's very prone to overreacting. I have my crazy moments too. Episodes where I lose myself. But I see them, and I'm active in sorting them out. Especially for my son’s sake. That's why I'm here. We have a hard time keeping our fights away from our son. We have gotten much better about it, keeping it low key but it still needs work.

Tonight we were play fighting, flinging water at each other. He got me pretty good and when I went to retaliate he said no I'm done. I laughed and did it anyway, thinking it was just a game. He was instantly outraged. He ripped a picture off the wall that was important to me, and went stomping upstairs.

My question is, what can I do in these situations? How should I react in order to keep things calm yet not enable? How do I constructively defuse situations like this?

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Oct 17, 2016
Here Are Some Suggestions For You
by: Dr. DeFoore

Hi Katie - It sounds like you are in a caretaking pattern with your husband. You said you were initially attracted to him because you were not able to read him or figure him out. You also said that you see it as your job to fix problems when they arise.

Trust your husband to learn to communicate in his own way, and see if you can stop helping him by asking multiple questions, and trying to "fix things." It will help you to read Codependent No More: How To Stop Controlling Others and Start Caring For Yourself by Melody Beattie.

Meanwhile, focus on yourself and your own anger issues. When he wants to stop play fighting, stop. It's very important that you keep your attention on yourself, to better manage your actions and reactions.

I hope this helps.

My best to you,

Dr. DeFoore

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