I am married to a person like this. It's our 2nd marriages and we are both over 60. He has changed some gradually over the 8 yrs. we have been married, but the cost has been very high for me. I'll try hard not to tell you what to do, but I will tell you what some of the costs are for you and your children such as loss of self-esteem, loss of voice - literally and figuratively, cumulative effect of stress causes serious illness (multiple cancers and other issues for me), spirit driven from your home, lack of intimacy, and your needs (temporal, spiritual, emotional, etc) may never be important to him. For example, if you need something important, unless it's important to him, you may never get it. Try really hard not to isolate yourself because you may eventually just want to hide from the world - including church. If you decide you need to make changes, do it before you lose the ability. I cannot support myself now because of my health issues. I know that the Lord knows every detail of my life and he sustains and provides me with small victories, but I still pray that I'll find my way out of this situation. The price of living with a narcissist is very high and yes, they can change, but the longer it has been in them, the harder it is to change. That won't even happen unless he sees it.
As someone who was raised by a mother with narcissistic personality disorder, I see that disorder written all over this man. It is healthiest for all concerned to leave. However, expect him to badmouth you and call you the villain forever after, or even to take you to court and accuse you of being at fault.
He should be the one to move out. She would be wise to stay in their home with the children. Consult an attorney and your Bishop BEFORE anyone moves.
Excellent advice! Yes, it is possible for a husband like him to change, but it has to be up to him. In the meantime, safety for the wife and children should happen first.
My heart goes out to you because I have been where you are now. I have the benefit of being where you are now but looking back on my life and how my decisions influenced my children. In my situation, it ended up being the case where my husband had been severely abused and had not received the help he needed. He needed therapy and was not seeking help. He was lashing out at his family. There were many times when I could have called the police and didn't. It got that bad. I had a total of 5 bishops involved over the course of many years. I liked the advise given in this article. Please make the safety of your sons your main priority. I also have to ask.... Why do you have to leave? If you are unsafe and your children are unsafe, maybe a restraining order is in order and he should leave. But, I have been where you are and know that your choices may be limited. Another thing you must consider is this. How do you want your sons to treat their future wives and children? The things your sons are learning in your home now will be the ways they handle stresses in the future. This is the sad reality. There is no shame in putting your sons first in this situation.
Oh, and another thing - If it is something from his past, he could be emotionally stunted at the age he was affected which would explain why he doesn't take responsibility and the way he "gets defensive and twist, turns, manipulates, and dominates the conversation." Keep in mind that diet affects our moods as does color and surroundings so I suggest making changes there as well.
It takes two to tangle. (Yes, I wrote "tangle")
This is a great article, Geoff!
My thoughts while reading this:
1 - It doesn't sound like he has the Spirit with him which could be because of unresolved sin. He may be feeling guilty about something and is taking it out on the family. If this is the case, he needs to talk to the bishop not a therapist.
2 - There may be something from his past that is bubbling up and he doesn't know how to deal with it so again, he's taking it out on the family. For instance, when someone is abused as a child, they had no control over the situation then so they may become over-controlling as they get older to compensate.
3 - Talk therapy is good for some things (ie validation, perspective) but I really suggest the EmotionCode to *resolve* the underlying issues. It sounds like the heart wall is where to start.
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