How can I help my partner who has anger issues?
I have been with my partner for 4 years and we have a 2.5 year old daughter. He brought us a house in December 2019 from an insurance pay out he received from a work related car accident where he broke his back and was financially compensated.
He has become a very angry man since COVID has hit. We live in rural QLD and his family are in NSW and it has been difficult for him as we have been unable to see them due to the recurring border restrictions. Prior to these restrictions, we were travelling the 7 hours each way to visit his family once a month.
Now the borders are open, his parents have said they will be coming to visit us in the next week as they’ve not seen the home he purchased. My partner is dreading this and I believe it is because he has punched holes in most of the walls of our home due to his anger issues.
He is a smoker of marijuana, and has a number of “sessions” daily. I am unsure of the price of his addiction, but I know he “gets on” every day, or every second day depending on his supplier.
He is not a very hands in father, returning home from work at 3pm, going straight to his stash to have a session, barely acknowledging myself or our daughter - who is very excited to see him.
I am a stay at home mother through the day, and I am a very hands on parent keeping our daughter active with swimming lessons, dance classes, park play dates with other children her age and daily activities such as library visits, painting and various sensory activities. I then go to my night job at 4pm and return home at about 8:30pm
I am unsure what exactly takes place while I am at work, but I know his temper is very short and I have noticed of late our daughter appears to be scared of him, particularly when he raises his voice. She gets a terrified look on her face, runs to me crying and will not calm down for several minutes.
I have never witnessed him physically harm her and she has no evidence of physical abuse, but I have witnessed her go out to him with books or toys while he is “unwinding” or “having a session” and he yells at her to leave him alone etc.
I have booked him a number of GP appointments to have a mental health care plan done and as he is indigenous he has an annual health check, but he has stormed out of the GP clinic on more than one occasion as they are not on time and he refuses to wait. He said his time is important and it is rude to keep people waiting, especially those who are experiencing mental health issues.
2 years is still quite recent after a serious injury and it sounds like he is not one to seek medical assistance (preferring to self medicate on MJ) for the underlying cause of his mental conundrum; and, while I don't condone the use of drugs, using them to cover existing issues only exacerbates the problem which can perpetuate the cycle.
Having parents visit (holes and all) is probably the best thing to highlight his own struggles - also consider having other services and acquaintances come over to reinforce the message to objectify the concerns for the safety of your daughter and yourself.
This definitely needs to be addressed but you may not have the power of coercion in the relationship, so input from others may have the desired effect before seeking further intervention to ensure things don't take a turn for the worse for those at risk.
Thank you for sharing this here. It sounds pretty difficult to be dealing with all of that. We can imagine how worried you might be, and it could really take a toll on your own wellbeing. We’re really glad you had the strength and bravery to share this here.
It sounds like you could really use some support from someone outside of the relationship.
Do you think you could have a chat with one of the lovely people at 1800Respect? We think it's a really good idea to discuss how your relationship is going, and to make sure you feel safe and free from abuse within your relationship, they're on 1800 737 732, or you can reach them on online chat, here: https://chat.1800respect.org.au/#/welcome
It sounds like you're an amazing mother and partner, and you deserve to feel safe and supported. Please reach out to ourselves on 1300 22 4636 to plan some support, or to 1800Respect on the number above.
Thanks again for sharing Scorpio89, this community is non-judgmental and cares for you.