Dear Aunt Becky,
I hesitated to ask this question, because deep down, I think I know the answer, I just don’t want to believe it.
My husband of 6+ years has developed a noticeably heavier drinking habit lately than he has had in the 9+ years that I have known him. We have a 4.5 year old son together. I love my husband, but the Dr.Jekyll/Mr. Hyde syndrome is wearing down my nerves, my energy, and my self-esteem.
He has begun to curse at me in front of our son, tell me that I am not allowed to eat dinner and then throw it away. He has threatened to forcibly have sex with me. He’s told me that he will have me committed. I suffer from anxiety and depression for the last 3.5 years but am stable and compliant on my meds, seeing my counselor regularly. He tells me that I am fat, stupid, lazy, a lousy housekeeper, a bad mother…
I work 6 nights a week every week, do almost all of the housekeeping, the laundry and ironing, most of the child care when our son is not in daycare, and pay all the bills.
I am also trying to go to college. I love my husband, and here and there I dream of happily-ever-after – which he says is fairy-tale bullshit. “This is what marriage is” he says. I don’t want my little boy to grow up without his dad, but I don’t want him to grow up LIKE him even more. I am thinking that I should leave. Take my son and move out.
Part of me wants to have more class about it than his last wife did (surprised?), part of me wants to take everything but the house and let him have back a piece at a time until he gives me what I want: full custody. I think he loves our son, but he has a cruel streak and refers to him as a “son of a bitch” or a “motherfucker” within his hearing. I do not think that he is good for our son in the state he’s in now with the drinking and the verbal abuse and bullying. I am scared: scared of him, scared that I can’t do it, scared I’ll cave if he gets sober and then he’ll go right back to it.
I did leave him once before, but didn’t make it a week, and things weren’t nearly this bad then. My parents and sister will support me emotionally if I leave, and have offered to help financially where they can, but I do not feel right asking them for money. I don’t know what to do. I don’t know how this happened to me.
Please help me, Aunt Becky.
Abuse refers to harmful or injurious behavior to another human being
Verbal Abuse: constant name-calling, labeling, ridicule, making fun of, mocking, spoken threats, and regular bullying. Verbal abuse can occur at schools, in homes or at the workplace. It can be very hard to prove verbal abuse as it’s often hard to obtain evidence, even though it’s incredibly damaging. The victim can be told that it’s “all in their head” or that it’s “a joke” and made to feel that the constant attacks are really their own fault or their own problem. This can lead to long-term psychiatric damage to their self-esteem and self-image.
(information taken from Abuse Resource Page of Band Back Together)
Prankster, I’m so sorry that you’re in this position. Nobody, and I mean NOBODY deserves to be abused, and your husband is abusing you. You do not deserve this. If any ONE of my Pranksters reading this is in the same position as the writer, know that I am addressing you, as well:
YOU DO NOT DESERVE THIS.
The subject line was “is this what marriage is supposed to be?” and my answer is, of course, FUCK NO. Marriage is about love and more importantly, about partnership. Marriage isn’t always good or always easy, but it is never, ever supposed to be like this. Ever.
Prankster, please get out of there. Please go. You mentioned that you have family that will support you and that’s full of the awesome. Here is a list of state-by-state resources available to victims of domestic abuse. At the bottom of this post, I’ve listed other abuse hotlines.
I was in an abusive relationship, too. There are a lot of us out there who have been there before and have gotten out. We’re on the other side and we want you to join us. We’re here for you here, and more importantly, I think that Band Back Together has an awesome network of support, too. You’re not alone. We’ve all got your back and you can do this.
Pranksters, help me out here. Help me help this Prankster.
Much love to you, Prankster. Please be safe.
The National Domestic Violence Hotline:
National Child Abuse Hotline
National Sexual Assault Hotline
Elder Abuse (state hotlines vary):