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August 20, 2022

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AnnMay 10, 2019

Some facts verses fiction: When your husband says that they are his kids and “he won’t choose between me and them,” he is choosing absolutely choosing them. Parents “owe” adult children nothing. Any individual who will not stand up to the poor behavior towards another person is part of the problem. They share the guilt of poor behavior. When your step-son says that “this isn’t my home because I’m just married to his dad,” he needs to go back to law school. A spouse has much more claim against her husband than any adult child has against their father. And no spouse should choose adult children over their spouse… When you say this man “has been the love of your life since you were teenagers,” you are living an adolescent fantasy. This is not mature thinking. It is the fallacy of high school proms and first kisses. You need to take a very careful look at your husband’s lack of protection and seriously ask yourself if anyone is the love of this man’s life. Please get more counseling than available in this column. You need to be preparing your exit strategy and get yourself where you can be physically, mentally, emotionally and spiritually safe.

MikeApril 2, 2019

This is solid advice and I hope you realize deep inside of you that you need to follow it. I have but one thing to add. If a dog is beaten and abused enough, it won't dare run out of the kennel and escape even if the gate is left wide open all day long. This is because the dog does not believe that anyone will treat it any better. Even if there are several other people living nearby who would love to have a dog and treat it right. Better in the dog's mind to just hunker down and hope for the best. I have been like that dog in the kennel when I was too afraid to leave an abusive situation. But you have to know that once you start the ball rolling, people will rally around you more than you expect.Your self-esteem will rebound and it will be like the sun shines brighter than it does now. Your ability and strength to deal with your serious problems will increase. Take that first simple step.

MicheleMarch 29, 2019

I hope the writer reads this over and over, and the comments, also! Domestic violence is progressive in type severity and lethality. I am a DV survivor and have worked in the field as well. Just contact the women's organization first, they will have a crisis line you can call and get information. Take it step by step if you need to. You'll feel so different when someone supports you. You deserve this.

SusanMarch 29, 2019

I wish I would have acted years and years earlier. My (ex) husband was verbally and emotionally abusive, and his father would verbally and emotionally abuse me as well. My husband never stood up for me. He was afraid his father would write him out of his will and he wouldn't get his inheritance. I had so many auto-immune diseases from this emotional abuse our last marriage counselor told me to leave him because I was killing myself from the inside out. When I left him--and his family, all of my autoimmune diseases left my body. I moved out west from the east, and I felt better--healed--as I drove cross country. When I arrived at my destination, I was a new person. I never realized just how much my body was failing--fibromyalgia, lupus, pericarditis, hypoglycemia, and others. All gone in a few short weeks. I'm not saying this woman has to get a divorce. She just needs to leave him to send a message, and get better and stronger--and find courage to stand up for herself. She is worth it. She has asked. He has replied. Nothing will change. She can't change him or his son. The only person she can change is herself. You can do hard things.

MaryannMarch 29, 2019

Thank you so much, Geoff, for your clear, compassionate and wise advice. It is true that this woman is being abused not only by her step-son, but by her husband as well. I hope she will follow your advice to get support and remove herself from this dangerous situation quickly. I also hope that other women (and men) who find themselves in similar abusive situations will see themselves in this account and take steps to protect themselves. It is so important to recognize the real danger which often escalates in these situations.

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