When disruptive and hurtful personalty traits are repeated against a partner they suffer unseen hurt. The problem eventually becomes: how long do you continue a relationship, even if there are children involved, while being an abused.
Here enters a problem: I am no expert but just a good witness, but I am very cautious to blame.
- Regular belittlement, or putting their partner down in subtle ways by slight of tongue
- Blaming their partner for the abuse or arguments
- Often not acknowledging that abuse is happening
- Playing abuse down as though it was just banter
- Will not accept or unwilling to recognise the needs and feelings of others
Not witnessed – told by one side or the other
- Reacts with rage or contempt
- Tries to belittle the other person to make themselves appear superior
- Willing to mislead people in by not stating the whole truth
This is not what a healthy relationship looks like or is based around – the opposite really.
These traits did not take long to be noticed in the relationship, the thought process was simple; there is a nice person in there, a nice person that I love, and early in the relationship they were passed over as being how that person was when in certain circumstances.
Time passed, and when we met as a family the verbal abuse was more noticeable and less easy to pass off. Why are you abusing this person? What have they really done? Why are you continuing to dig at that person long after the event? The cause did not warrant that level of response. Often it was in full view of other family members, and those that had not witnessed it before did not see it for what it was – abuse.
Street angel, house devil, comes to my mind. Behind closed doors reasonable adult judgement was not shown. In public sweetness and light was the beacon to watch. Arguments would start small and escalate out of control, often introducing spurious concerns unconnected and a goading process would unravel until stalemate existed and emotions were left very high. Going to work etc. was the solution, but for only one person.
Emotionally, on both sides, there was no place to go, no unsaying something could be done to reset the status
Counselling has been tried but that has to be done as equals who both must want to explore the possibilities of recovery. This can only be fruitful if both people accept that they bear a part of the cause. One party does not feel there is anything wrong with their behaviour, actions or demands and will always want to win at any cost.
The response was to try and not get sucked into arguments so as to calm the situation, but this would cause the situation to get worse as claims of being unreasonable or objectionable would be made.
We are unsure of exactly how the ‘other’ family see the situation, but we do know there has been unfair pressure placed on one person to leave the family home. So in effect a three woman attack (the aggressor, her mother and grand mother) has been made on one person. A lesser person would have walked away months, if not longer, ago if were not for the children!
We have, and will always supported them both as we want their relationship to continue in a healthy way and fully understand this will be apart but the children must be protected and grow up with loving parents and a support network around them.