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Do I have an emotionally abusive parter?
Hi Everyone hope you have all had a good week and staying strong in these uncertain times
My background is I have a girlfriend of 4 years, 2 kids 1 is 5 and the other under a year , full time jobs etc so a busy household on the daily
Just after some advice/information/ a different perspective, have found gradually over the last 2 years I’ve felt more and more put down , belittled, criticised by my partner about most things that make me me or about my hobby of running, family members, friendship circles and each time I speak up I’m accused of either being defensive or too sensitive.
i really feel I am just the 3rd child in the house at times, sex has totally stopped since she was pregnant 18 months ago and hasn’t been there since after being a regular thing for 2.5 years so very much an physical and emotional gap at the moment.
i get accused of having narcissistic personality traits, gas lighting her, emotionally abusing her, so I get quite confused and overwhelmed why I’m being accused of being like this or whether it is true when I’m not the one putting her down and chipping away at her self esteem, only the one trying to encourage her to get back into something after post babies and to see her happy.
My girlfriend is quite a strong opinionated personality, very much a perfectionist at times and is a her way or the highway kind of mentality also.
To own my part in the relationship I certainly haven’t been perfect over the 4 years and have made some bad mistakes along the way, betraying her trust by confiding in others etc, I have done my best to rectify and fix and continue to show up and try each day but I feel also she has never gotten over this so suspecting this has a part to play?
probbaly havnt written this out to make a whole lot of sense but if anyone can decipher or has some advice or an opinion would be much appreciated
Also for a bit more insight some of the things I get called most days are comments like
Comments on being too skinny, saying “no one would ever want to date someone who runs a lot, girls want a real man who can lift them”
“don’t start that job at home you’ll just screw it up”
“your useless and always put your foot in things, can’t trust you with anything”
“why can’t you do anything right?”
“your a useless help with the baby easier to just do it myself”
also some comments about bedroom performance which I didn’t think was too bad until the comments started, nowadays just feel super anxious about it and feel like I’m a 16 year old kid again doing it for the first time!
maybe I am too sensitive I’m not really sure but when it’s most days at some point it really begins to chip away at your self worth
interested to hear other people’s experiences/ opinions
There is two sides to this story as I see it and I'll give you my view from an outsider that has read your honest post a few times.
You feel abused and have given a number words that describe it. What is abuse? I wrote a post on this some time ago that you can Google
Beyondblue topic the definition of abuse
If her allegations are incorrect (gaslighting, emotional abuse etc) and you feel abused, then you are being abused. Other people might not feel abused in your situation but you are not "Other people". For this reason alone, the problem must be fixed or tolerated.
The other side is her feelings built up from past events of mistrust. I can't judge that too much except to suggest that somehow she has to find a way to move on and therefore Relationships Australia is my recommendation. You both have young children so there is more than enough incentive to fix that.
Finally "familiarity breeds contempt". Along with a stressed household. I'm suggesting encouraging her to go window shopping for a few hours and you mind the kids and visa versa. Furthermore brain storm one if you going to part time work.
I have another thread on a plan that has worked for me and my wife use Google
Beyondblue topic relationship strife-the peace pipe
All the best
Sorry, just noticed your second post.
I'm sensitive also. Please read this
Yes your sensitivity must be addressed but it's in ground, don't expect to eliminate it. She can also allow for your sensitivity, again don't expect miracles just effort.
A counselor can work wonders.
I've been in am emotionally abusive relationship for 5 1/2 years and can relate to what you are experiencing. It can get really hard to discern what is real vs what isn't real... or what was imagined vs. what actually happened. Part of this could be confusion caused by you being gas lighted yourself, or the way your girlfriend might be projecting her own insecurities onto you.
What was really helpful to me in trying to understand if an incident was abusive was to strip the event down to the facts of what happened and reverse the roles... would you do this to someone you love? Could you treat someone you care about in that way? If the answer is no, it's probably abuse.