Boyfriend and his dog
My boyfriend wants me to hike with him, but when I do, he always brings his dog. The rule of the trail is dogs must be leashed in the parking lot and can be off leash on the trail if they don't touch people or jump on them. His dog is not trained at all, and that is the way he likes his dog to be. He lets his dog touch people and jump on them, which embarrasses me very much.
Yesterday on the trail, his dog was running toward some people, and I turned to watch to make sure the dog wasn't getting too close to them, and so I wasn't watching where I was going and I tripped on a rock and fell very hard to the ground. I landed on my cheek and my hand and arm and knee, skinned my knee and forearm, and tore a hole in my pants, and was covered with mud. My knee and hand really hurt today.
When we got back to the parking lot, my boyfriend wouldn't leash his dog and a woman had to stop her car several times to make sure not to hit the dog - this embarrassed me very much. When we got home, I very calmly tried to talk to my boyfriend about this. I said, "Sometimes in relationships people have to talk about things and come up with a solution together. I feel embarrassed when the dog rules aren't followed on the trail."
He just blew up when I said this, and started yelling at me really bad. He said he'll do whatever he wants with his dog and he told me what a horrible person I am and that he likes dogs way more than people, and that at least he takes his dogs for walks, unlike the other three dog owners on his street, and that he would have no problem killing their dogs. He also yelled at me for not petting his dog whenever she comes over to me and starts poking her nose against me. I don't enjoy petting her - I'm not a touchy-feely person - but I do give her treats, and I've taught her to sit and shake hands, and I always tell her what a good girl she is, and I call her honey and sweetheart.
It really scared me when my boyfriend started screaming at me. What did I do wrong? What should I do now?
Yea that would scare me too. Especially considering the fact that you approached him kindly on it. However I feel like this isn't a reason to break up. The calling you a horrible person and the killing dogs part is concerning though.
Anyway i suggest stop going with him when he walks the dog and if he is bothered by the fact that you won't come along simply say "we discussed this" you simply feel uncomfortable and will not be apart of it unless he follows the rules. Sadly this has become a world where dogs are treated better than people.
I also feel like you should ask yourself if you are a dog person and maybe your not. Seems like this may be a deal breaker in the relationship.
If none of this helps and you truly want to stick it out with your bf. I say take it upon yourself to better train the dog. You got her to sit and shake hands maybe in a few weeks with consistent training can get her to come to you quickly when called. There are tons of dog toys bells and whistles. Your bf may take a liking to your ability to invest time in training the dog to be obedient and well behaved in public.
Hi, hmm good dog owners train their dogs, have control and not let them their dog to jump up at people, who could have a fear or just not like them (you never know!) and just follow the rules when out in public. It’s not hard (I have a dog in my family, I do speak from experience). He’s really not doing his dog or himself any favours. It’s not right he walks around oblivious to what his dog is doing.
I was about to put one day there will be an accident, but there has already been one, you got injured and he didn’t apologise?!
There wasn’t anything wrong with you pointing this out to him, other people wouldn’t of reacted not so calmly. especially since you got hurt looking out for his own dog. People get very defensive about their pets. Deep down he know he’s in the wrong, which is why he got so defensive and angry, he just can’t admit it.
Also, nope, you don’t have to pet her every time the dog comes up to you, it’s nice that you talk affectionately to her and that should be enough for him.
You could train the dog (it is quite fun!), like suggested above, so she’s at least learning something’s from you, sounds like she want to learn. but really your bf needs to join you so your both on the same page. Maybe he will once he sees the benefits, if you chose to do this.
I can see how this is embarrassing for you, if it was me I wouldn’t go on anymore walks until bf takes responsibility. But it sound like he’s not listening and will carry on. So is this a deal breaker for you ? This does say a lot about him as a person. Does he choose not to take responsibility in other areas of his life?
Sure, he probably loves his dog but he should love her enough to train her and keep her safe.
Personally, I'd walk away. The extreme reaction from him is seriously uncalled for, and sounds like he could become violent on more serious issues.
Even assuming he isn't the violent type, he is not willing to have an open dialog with you about your concerns. Which shows that he does not view you as his equal, and it's "his way or no way". That is not a healthy relationship to be in.
If on the other hand you are determined to stay with him and make it work, but want to avoid the embarrassing behavior with his dog in public....all I can suggest is that you tactfully find a way to avoid the hikes.
I agree this is an accident waiting to happen. It won't end well for the dogs.
I had a professor who never trained his dogs. Prof was a nice guy and all - but clueless about the situations his dog (the one he brought to work) caused. "Rover" often wandered off and got into garbage cans, sniffing around for extra food. A Labrador can make a mess with a 55 gallon can, not to mention getting sick from rotten food. Both Prof's dogs ended up getting hit by cars, as there was no training to keep them out of the road, or to stop, or stay when commanded to.
I see a couple issues that would trouble me. One is his extreme reaction when you tried to talk about this. The other is that HE and HIS DOG don't have to abide by the rules other people do. I can't read his mind, whether it's entitlement or laziness or what. And having no problem killing other people's dogs? Uhhm, that would worry me. I'd urge you not to look at this as a one-off. He's telling you a lot about what kind of person he is.
I agree with all of the above by all of the above. But I'm going to spell it out - in your face, both barrels. I think the situation calls for it:
1. You did not do ANYTHING wrong, at ANY point. You behaved and reacted like any normal, healthy person would have. And still are.
2. You also sound LOVELY.
He on the other hand? Especially as we have a WHOLE HOST of deeply alarming, worrying beliefs, attitudes and behaviours here - and in rapid succession:
1. Your needs - not to have his dog along on every (er) "date"(?) - don't get a look in, he won't even offer to take turns.
NPD RED FLAGS! "Me, Me, Me - It's All About Me and only what I want matters!". No sense of, and no honouring of equality or fair play.
2. He took no responsibility for your fall and injuries, despite he and his rule-flouting (as triggered your reflex to intervene) was the cause.
AsPD RED FLAG! Lack of - remorse, a sense of responsibility, and accountability.
3. He tramples all over the rules, despite they're writ in Black & White and despite he can SEE others follow them.
AsPD RED FLAG! Lacks respect. Does not follow civil or social rules, believes he's above them, the exceptional exception, and ...just doesn't wanna. Anti-Social in this case means, against society. However, I find their personal manners and habits do also tend to match (Ew City), making them anti-social in both senses/on both scales.
4. He behaved as if he didn't care a jot that you were injured.
AsPD RED FLAG! Total lack of emotional - and quite possibly even cognitive - empathy. Anyone would think he was raised by a family of sharks.
5. When you tried to do the normal thing and approach in the normal way - he INSTANTLY verbally abused you, like a human tsunami, and in myriad ways, accusing YOU of being the horrible party (when I imagine I'm not the only one who read about how horrid ONLY HE was and exclaimed, "UGH!")
NPD RED FLAG! Said verbal abuse; Gaslighting via Projection ('I'm not the problem, YOU are!'); Coercive control - AND VIOLENCE - via the force and hostility and nastiness of reaction, intended either subconsciously or deliberately (can't tell yet), to make you too nervous to confront or discuss a THING in future - "or else . another pasting".
He beat you up, Dollar.
All because he can't take even ONE WHIFF of what is (to others) PURELY WELL-MEANT, CONSTRUCTIVE criticism (despite his own Hypocrisy on that score - another giant symptom 'tears actual strips off you and cannot be construed as constructive whichever way you look at it).
Basically, what he did was give a textbook example of a full-on Narcissistic Rage, triggered as always by an inability to self-regulate combined with a cue to feel even one iota of shame, which all types of Narcissists can't handle (hence are always desperate to avoid or punch away).
He is clearly not fit to be a dog-owner, or a dog-owner out in public, let ALONE anyone's boyfriend. If it were me, based on that incredible range and weight (and particularly protracted length of time) of evidence, I'd dump OR shuffle to outside of his reach and stay there, for fear of ending up an abused girlfriend that, before she knows it, is too embroiled to exit or shuffle away, painlessly.
Go Google the terminology I've given you (I recommend Thought Catalogue by Shahida Arabi) to see his behaviour described all over her shop, even if it's his first ever Rage, and get to take avoidant action earlier than most victims/targets.
Methinks the reason he prefers dogs to people is because they have to accept him as he is, can't criticise, can't complain or insist on better, and certainly can't vote with their feet by leaving him. Which, by his own indication, is what too many others have done. (We wonder why! - coo!, life's such a bleedin' mystery, ain't it?!).
HOWEVER, it must just be HIS dog he likes, because we also have THIS terrifying pointer (which could be a Sociopathic Reveal) - which, let's face it, no NORMAL person would ever DARE OR EVEN DREAM of coming out with(!!!) - or even THINKING(!!!):
666. "and that he would have no problem killing their dogs."
I feel that bit should be accompanied by a sinister, dramatic, horror-film style soundtrack - don't you? (!!!)
This may seem like a threat to the neighbourhood dogs, but if you think about it - it's a threat and warning TO YOU.
Definitely have that Google - quick as you can - and report back - quick as you can. Until then, make excuses for staying away from him until you know where you stand and what you should do. He sounds downright dangerous, IMO.
Put it this way: if he ISN'T a dangerous type of Narcissistic Sociopath, then he's certainly doing an incredibly convincing impression of one!
(Sorry, those winking emojis shouldn't be there.)
Any update, Dollar?
Further apology, btw - I made a typo. Should have read Shahida Araabi AND Thought Catalogue. Shahida's site is called Self Care Haven. And Thought Catalogue features many highly experienced / expert / victims-turned-expert article authors, such as Julie L Hall.
But actually, his behavoiur was anti-social (against society and against decency) - and NOT for the first time - out in public, even BEFORE his narcissistic rage in private, behind closed doors. Whereas, narcissists care too much about their public image. So this giant Red Flag aligns more with a Narcissistic Sociopath.
Here's an extract from True Love Scam by a once-victim, made honourary expert by the industry - Jennifer Smith.
Pretty-much bang-on in describing what you said you experienced, note:
Inside the Anger, that rage is our friend…it reveals what they are. Their concern is focused only on maintaining the freedom to keep doing what they do. You need a profound clarity in this in order to attain a complete recovery.
Narcissistic sociopaths rage so that we don’t seethrough them and catch them out.This ironically gives them away.
Narcissistic rage is frightening. And further puzzling and more frightening is that our normal behavior sparks the narcissistic rage. Narcissists aka sociopaths make for very, very bad partners. In the beginning its beyond a perfect dream, but this soon fades away and spirals into…"
Not a WORD to him about this site and thread or ANYTHING you've learned. And delete from your History before you log-out of your device.
As far as HE is concerned, it´s business as usual (but things have come up so you're snowed-under at the mo..."awww"). Ok?
And just in case you can't post yet: How to break-up safely with a Sociopath:
It's nothing like how you would end things with a morally-sane and healthy person. NOTHING like! Do that and you could end up ACTUALLY beaten-up (they're hot-headed, impulsive, violent types of "psychopaths"... like a psychopath's thicker, immature, tantrum-ing spoiled baby, cousin).
So please do read this.
Thank you for the good, helpful information. I have not talked to him since the incident, and I don't plan to talk to him. What happened scared me too much.
"What happened scared me too much."
I'll BET it did! It would scare ANYONE sane and normal! (And does - DAILY-MULTIPLY!)
..."Someone call Matron, quick!".....That about sums it up, doesn't it? (WE WONDER WHY...again - life - such a bleedin' mystery, yawn.)
Well, anyway, DOLLAR, I must express - on behalf of myself and, I'M SURE, everyone here - how proud and impressed I am with your reaction and decision because even though (I sense) it's still a fairly new relationship, the truth is this: NO point along the path with a sociopath features an easy exit. So it shows you're a very strong, healthy and independent-minded woman, with no problem standing-up for herself, nor doing it in a very dignified and ladylike fashion.
Did you know you were classy? Well, you do now. :-)
And did you know how many women fail to have the "inner Sergeant Major" enough, to do that "one-two-three-JUMP!", FORCING themselves to walk away?
Of those that do manage it, most need 7 attempt run-ups.
How does that make you feel? :-)
(PS: I'm also impressed and proud of every single adviser response What a show-thread, this is. Thanks guys. :-))
Back to you, Dollar...
Do keep sharing and reporting - even that there's nothing to report yet. With sociopaths, it's a case of one extreme or the other: either you never hear from them again, or they try to persuade/threaten you back ("Hoovering").
Still all going to be here for you, in other words. This is your Safe Place.