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Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Naming the problem

Brad worked at home the whole time we were together. A little before Cassie was born, Brad’s contract job was over and he started doing independent consulting.  Brad's irrational and jealous behaviors continued, and to make matters worse, because of the economy, his work was dwindling.

He essentially stopped working about 2 ½ years into our marriage when Cassie was about six months old.  So he hads lots of time to worry about what I might be doing with my imagined men friends, or my ex-boyfriend Michael.  He was constantly calling me at work to argue with me.  I felt like I was going crazy.

In my search of the Internet to find answers I decided he might be a borderline personality and got a copy of  Stop Walking on Eggshells at the used book store. I kept the book in my desk at work. I thought he seemed similar, but not exactly as they described. I was really convinced he was mentally ill, because no rational person would think the way he did or say the things he did to me, especially if he loved me like he said he did, and wanted to keep me. I started seeing a therapist when Cassie was about seven months old, with the thought that I would be able to understand him and eventually be able to convince him to go to counseling and get help. At some level, I did not want to be in the relationship, but I also thought I had to give him a chance to change. I could not just leave an ill person. With the help of the counselor and continued Internet searches, I began to realize that no matter the cause – he was verbally abusive.

This was when I read Patricia Evans The Verbally Abusive Relationship.   The passages showing how these types of men communicate were like transcripts of my conversations and arguments with Brad. I could picture Brad saying the exact same things as in the book. It was eerie. The attitudes, behaviors and patterns were identical to him. I knew at this point that I was in an abusive relationship.

I started keeping a journal about a month after starting to see the therapist. I kept the journalin my desk at work and would come in every work day and fast and furiously write down what I remembered of the arguments the days before or even that morning. We had a lot of arguments before I even left for work. The first few months of the journal will be the topic for my next post.