Archive for September 30th, 2012

September 30, 2012

Kind in public, abusvie in private

by Rod Smith

“My spouse is verbally abusive, short tempered, and critical of me but only in private, and then as sweet as can be to me in public and to strangers. I have put up with it for years. Surely those we are closest with should get the best treatment? What should I say? I am called sensitive, over-reactive, and thin-skinned if I say anything about it at all.” (Edited)

Your spouse has appeared to objectify you and is unhappy with the performance of that object. He or she appears to regard you as a possession, perhaps as a car or an appliance that does not quite meet expectations.

Every time you put up with the abuse you are not “being sensitive, over-reactive, and thin-skinned,” you are agreeing to be a victim. You are agreeing with your spouse’s perception of you as something to be treated as desired.

Until you stand up for yourself, until you do something most unusual, until you rock and roll when your spouse has become accustomed to leading you in a waltz, the dance will remain the same and you will be a victim for the rest of your life.

Be sure I am not blaming you for the abuse, but I am holding you accountable for accommodating it.