Over the last few years though his temper has become worse and worse. It seems like he can just flip and he gets very angry and has smashed several things in the house. He is never physically violent to me but does say some really hurtful things to me. He says it's only me that makes him so angry as I can wind him up and don't let things go. My mum and dad have been worried but they did say they think I should let things go so am partly to blame. He does at times though shout at me when I have done nothing wrong. He has also been angry with Thera at work a few times so I know it's not just me. I just basically really don't know what to do. He's either the nicest man ever or being horrible and angry! Has anyone got any advice? I know nobody is perfect but it really upsets me when he is like that and with my ill health I'm not sure I can cope with much more.
It's called uber-passionate, very extreme personality, and, like any silver lining, comes with a cloud, i.e. equal amount of passion on the negative side PLUS his not being well-educated EMOTIONALLY, including how to stay calm and rational 'under fire'.
Think coin: angel one side and, if coin gets flipped, beelzebub on the other. Nothing in between. That you've stayed with him must mean the light-to-dark/angel-to-beelzebub ratio must be at least 70:30, possibly higher, possibly even 95:05. But during Honeymoon when all you see is 'trees of green, red roses too, la-la-la-la, for me and you', the coin doesn't tend to flip over.
(He came to love with me. Cute Freudian slip, LOL.)
He came to live with you. IN YOUR HOUSE, YOUR TERRITORY. Doesn't matter if you married, it was still your territory. Automatically he's in the underdog position, meaning he has to make up for that somehow. You'd been living alone for how long?.. used to no longer sharing the TV remote, used to everything having its place, etc. 'Can you put it back where you got it from, not leave it there, please, thank-you' [this was/is MY house so I say how things in it go]. So he has no territory of his own where he feels he can at least half of the time operate however he pleases, i.e. have any control. Except for you/the relationship ...and himself whenever he feels you've both run to your separate corners of the boxing ring, meaning he's now an individual, no longer under anyone else's say so.
He unavoidably feels emasculated as his starting point, having to swallow that daily. You swallow too much of something and - HEEEEUGH! - out it regurgitates at the first punch (or prod) to the guts. Simultaneously, enter him turning up and up the "I am not your puppy dog!" reaction dial in order to assert what little "authoritah" he can (over himself and what he can choose to do/not do when pleasing and considering you is temporarily off the menu).
ALL women 'don't let things go'. Certainly over here. See, Want, Grab. And in under 5 minutes. Including resolving fights.
Does this fit the pattern? : Once negative discussions over whatever topic can't be immediately agreed on hit a critical heat, he, aided by his need (independent of whatever topic) to dig in his heels just so's 'not to be your puppydog', see him then trying to Time Out. This to you feels like the Silent Treatment/being sent to Coventry, meaning you simply cannot stand the atmosphere of hostility with its meanwhile non-resolved issue to persist when, to you, continuing on with the discussion would bring you two far more speedily out the other side and back to harmony? Does this then have you trying 'too soon' and repeatedly to approach him to check if he's cooled down and is ready to cuddle yet (and you two still basically okay)? Does this then just make him madder, now over the seeming fact that you are AGAIN demonstrating you 'have all the power' as to him means he can't even have control merely over how long he chooses to take to calm down and process (ready for the next round of talks)?
If so, then his anger WOULD flare up even worse than before, meaning, his nasty words and "chucking his little Hotwheels cars at the walls" are (because he's emotionally un-educated and immature) his now-desperate attempt to repel you from 'his space' by shocking/scaring you, enough to you off trying to return into his space UNTIL *HE* - THE BOSS OF HIMSELF - EMERGES IN *HIS OWN* GOOD TIME.
(I'm thinking, not a lot scares you, though.)
There are some p*ss-easy solutions I can offer, but first, before I go on any further - was any of that basically how it goes every time?
He doesn't really sulk and when he came here I was living back at my parents house as had left my old house with my ex. We then a few weeks later moved into a rented place of our own then bought our own house a few years ago so the homes have always been joint. He works long hours so I only hae one day and 2 nights a week with him. This is when the problems can start however as he is like you say either lovely it horrible there is no inbetween. When the anger starts he is usually already stessed with work or tired but there are no excuses. I have tried to talk to him this week about it and he promises to change but I would love some tips on how to deal with it. Thanks v much.
This is the thing: you can't peer into and over the side of the box and try to work out from there how everything's going to be and whether you're mutually perfect. You've got to get INTO the box and linger, to know for sure the whethers and what ifs.
You're lucky if he doesn't sulk, though. You'd be surprised at how many hotheads do, particularly if their hotheadedness doesn't work initially in making you shut up the minute they start emotionally flooding.
Okay, so it's not your house, it's joint territory. In that case, what he's doing is simply being a cat-kicker... with you the cat.
Here's the thing with promising to change: is he making actual strides, as in, changing anything about the circumstances or situations that lead him to stress overload then taking it out on you..and is he CAPABLE of changing? Time will tell but, if he can't, and neither can you tolerate these blow-ups, you're going to either have to change your own attitude whereby you don't let his paddies (or Mantrums, as I call them) upset you - which desensitisation will naturally do over time anyway, even if you don't try to concertedly speed it up - OR go for counselling. You don't have to have major problems in your relationship to warrant counselling. It can be simply to get to have a capable third party witness how you two fight and make better suggestions/remedies, either preventative, curative or bit of both. Good housekeeping, in other words.
How you meantime control yourself and your reactions is to write yourself a note that you can run to and read whenever he blows. Something like this:
I am NOT going to get upset because this isn't actually about Us or me, it's about his incapabilities when it comes to coping with and discharging stress combined with the perversely flattering fact he trusts me TOO much [think toddler who acts out for mum but never for nursery-school teachers]. I am NOT going to give him the perverse satisfaction of seeing his mantrums upset me in terms of misery loving company because that will just reinforce his behaviour and make things worse in future. Instead I'm going to calmly tell him, 'When you're prepared to discuss whatever it is you want to discuss/that we need to discuss, in a normal, calm, adult fashion, I'll be in the [whatever]-room'. I'm then going to go off and amuse myself with things that I especially love doing (watch a film read a good book), merilly carrying on as usual whilst addressing him whenever necessary in a normal voice, yet avoiding *questions*, instead sticking to statements (e.g. 'Let me know if you still want us to go supermarket shopping because we've only got an hour's window', rather than, 'So does this mean we're not going shopping any more?'). I'm also going to remember that POW! is just Ow! with P-for-pretension placed in front to disguise vulnerability like fear and weakness.
Try that next time he tries to take his moodies out on you and report back afterwards.
Discussion closed - why not create your own thread?