Anonymous asked this question on 4/2/2000:
What is going on in my boyfriend's head? On one side, he is very sweet and expressive and tells me he loves me constantly. Then, is explosive, controlling, verbally abusive. For example, spend two days with him and everythings great, then, when he comes to my house to show me answers to my questions on my computer, takes over without letting me show him what I've been doing possibly wrong, so he can explain it the correct way. Suddenly says, "shut the f*** up! Gets angry before I know what's going on, grabs my glasses on my face, bends them and pulls them off my face. He hits me twice, on the chest, but not hard enough to hurt me. He has gotten mad and explodes all the time but always calms down. I tell him he needs medication, and counseling but he rejects that notion. His mother was very controlling he says and his father very gentle. I believe that. There is no excuse the way he behaves. When this happens, I won't see him for a while and he always gets me to come back to him by telling me he over reacted and loves me. I want to tell him I don't won't him to call me again until he has gotten counseling for a year and knows he was abusive and has learned to conrol his temper. Other that this terrible side of him he is a great person. He is 59 years old. I tell him he will grow old alone because he won't change. Is there a good book out there to read that gives a person insight into abusive behavior? I need to move on because I deserve better. I need to know if therapy changes people like this permanently if they choose and what is the success rate?
jinalee33 gave this response on 4/28/2000:
I have read some of the other responses you received, mostly telling you you need to get out now. You seem to be slightly on the right track in that you do not see him after these episodes - however, when you go back because he says he overreacted and he loves you, each time it makes him that much stronger over you, and you that much weaker. You most likely cannot see this, but that is the way this happens. He does not really think he overreacted - otherwise it would have been a one-time occurance. People that constantly "overreact" to the same type of situation do not see it as anything but normal behavior. When you go back to him with a simple I'm sorry, I love you, I didn't mean it - you validate his belief that he did nothing wrong. This will get worse. Counseling can help him - but only if he wants to go because he truly believes he has a problem. He cannot go for you or to 'make you happy' or any other reason - counseling only works if the person truly believes they need help and are willing to do what it takes to get the help they need. If he does choose to go through counseling, good for him. You however must decide how important the relationship is for you. If you are not deeply involved, then I believe you should end this, and move on with your life. And know that ending it means no contact at all. If you do not want to quit or don't feel that you can, you need to know that even if he agrees to counseling - you are in this for the rest of your life. He will never completely change. You will most likely spend the rest of your life walking on eggshells around him trying not to set him off - you need to decide if the relationship is worth you losing your own identity - and you will - and taking on that of a scared, timid, lonely person, on the off chance that he might change and you might be happy. I hope you make the right decision for you and good luck.
jinalee33 gave this follow-up answer on 4/28/2000:
You really should try to go while you still realize you deserve better. As time goes on, you won't think that way at all.
The average rating for this answer is 3.