SRS My boyfriend doesn't understand how to help me.

Discussion in 'On Topic' started by Fallout Girl, Mar 28, 2006.

  1. Fallout Girl

    Fallout Girl New Member

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    I'm having a big problem right now. I was abused by my father when I was 14. After it went on for a few months I put a stop to it. Long story short, nothing was really done to help me and it was just kind of brushed under the rug.
    I have been with my current boyfriend for nine months now and I'm incredibly in love with him. I disclosed all of this to him when we had been together for four months.
    He took it pretty hard but is doing everything he can to understand how I feel about the situation so he can support me accordingly.
    But things have changed a little bit.
    My parents have come to town to help my grandmother who just had surgery. My boyfreind is currently on a diployment to Iraq (he's in the Airforce) And he has never met them before, he doesn't want to meet them. He has told me that he doesn't know what he would say to either of them if and when he were to meet them because of how they treated me after everything happened. Well, my parents have been in town now for three days and he has only called once. He usually calls once a day, if not twice.
    I had sent him an email early yesterday telling him that we were doing a lot of running around fixing things at my grandma's house. (sinks, pipes, yard stuff)
    When he did call me the one time since they have been there he said that he didn't even want to talk to me while they were there and he didn't want me to give him a "play by play" of what we were doing.
    He thinks it's wrong that I still talk to them at all. For me, the fact of the matter is they are still my parents. And when it comes to family stuff like helping out my grandmother I'm not going to hide in my apartment until they leave town, I want to contribute. And I do still love my parents on some level, I even like them sometimes.
    I'm just having a hard time deciding how important it is for me to "hate" my parents.
    I did boulster enough courage to tell my mom when we were alone that I wanted to go to counceling, and I would put it through my insurance but any left over expenses I wanted for her to pay and she agreed. I will say I'm pretty proud of myself for doing that. So now I have to find a therapist that will be good for me.
    One thing that did bother me though is that she said "You need to be careful who you go to. Some of them are more about stiring things up than resolving the issue and putting it behind you."
    Which led me to believe that she wants me to do this, but only if it doesn't stir anything up for anyone else to have to deal with. Like it's my problem and I need to handle it descretely on my own but she will foot the bill. That was a bit frustrating. But getting back to my point, I don't know what to think about my boyfriend and what he said.
    How do I make it clear that this is my issue, and I understand that it comes back on him because he is in a relationship with me, but I have to handle it in my own way, at my own pace, and that doesn't mean cutting them completely out of my life, especially if they are willing to help.
    I'm trying to make him understand that I just need his support, a shoulder to lean on and cry if I need to. He's very head strong and wants to have issues resolved right away, and it really gets under his skin that this has been left as is for the last nine years and I waited until now to do something about it. He has stated how he thinks I should handle it from here on out and what he would say, but I don't want him to fix it for me.
    He is trying to handle the problems that we are having at the same time and I'm feeling overwhelmed. I told him that I need to take a few days to myself to handle my business and I don't want him to worry about me. I know that is a little bit selfish but I feel that's what I need to do for myself to get through these next few days while my parents are here and try to get what I need said and possibly get some answers.
    Any thoughts?
     
  2. verveintuition

    verveintuition New Member

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    You taking space from him while your parents are here may be just what you need. You need to take care of yourself.

    Part of this is lack of communication between you two, so why not let him read what you just posted. All of it, uncut, no editing.
    He probably doesn't quite know how to handle it - or even understand it.
    At least reading this would let him know exactly how you feel in full detail.

    Even then, he's not really qualified to give you the counseling support that you need from a professional, but at least you two will have a better understanding of one another on the issue.
     
  3. teo

    teo . => ? => !

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    Eh?
    If I found irrefutable evidence that an SO of mine had abused any child, his ass would be on the curb so fast his head wouldn't know he'd left the house. Your mother sounds like she's in denial - her lack of emotional support for you is appalling. If it were me, I'd stir shit up just to shame the both of them publicly (him for doing it and her for tacitly condoning it, which in my opinion is only slightly less vile), but that's just me. I don't recommend you do that unless you're ready for the war to follow.

    Your boyfriend refuses to associate with them because of the roles they've played and I can certainly understand why. Good for him for not putting up with the status quo - he sounds like a stand-up kind of guy. For you, yes, they are your parents, and as such they are responsible for shielding you from harm as best they can while you're growing up. Neither have done so. Neither have taken action to keep it from happening again. YOU did all the work, and YOU supported you. Do you see what's wrong with this picture? If footing the bill means they're "helping" you, I'd beg to differ and suggest that it's hush money.

    You're going to be faced with a choice at some point. Any SO worth his salt will object to you associating with those responsible for your abuse, especially since there was no acknowledgement on the part of your tormentors (yes, your mother is also responsible) and rehabilitation on their part. They basically ignored it. Put aside the fact that they are your parents and look at them as ordinary people. What kind of person abuses their kid and then ignores it and pretends that it never happened? Would you want to associate with your friends if you knew they were abusing children?
     
  4. johan

    johan Active Member

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    A few thoughts...

    1) Your boyfriend is right to not want any contact with them.
    At least, at this present time. In the distant future, after things are sorted out, it may be possible to form a new relationship.

    Simply throwing people together right now will cause lots of hurt and pain and resentment on both sides. Anger will beget anger, nasty words will be exchanged. Healing will be much delayed.

    2) Stop burdening your boyfriend with this for the present time.
    If he's really on deployment in Iraq, then his mind needs to be focused and present on his job. We here back in CONUS have the luxury of dealing with interpersonal issues. We're not in a war zone.

    This is not saying your issues aren't important, but your SO is in an unusual situation right now. And this journey is mostly YOUR journey. The difficult work is yours, and yours alone.

    3) As for stirring up stuff, remember your mother has her own agenda (even if only unconsciously).

    She has her own feelings about this. Her comment makes sense, I'm sure she would rather everyone just "forget" about it. Problem is, that's not something YOU can do. You will need to sort it out. And that means DIGGING into the past, which is very uncomfortable for others.

    Therapy is not a joyful sunny walk in the park. Its removing the festering bandage covering an oozing wound. It hurts to look. It hurts to examine. Other people wish you would just put it away, stop talking about it. But this is something you need to do for YOU. Aren't you tired of carrying this baggage around? Free yourself.

    4) If you have trouble selecting a good therapist, ask your family doctor to recommend someone.
    They need to have the letters MA (or sometimes MSc, MEd) or Ph.D after their name, and also RCC (this may differ in your state, but it is a professional designation, in addition to their scholarly designation).


    Come back here if you need more help. Good luck.

    This is a long journey but I urge you not to put it off. You're opening the door to a freer, fuller life.
     
  5. Toasty

    Toasty Naked people have little or no influence on societ

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    What your dad did to you was inexcusable....but I don't think you should purposely flame the seeds of hate just because other people say it's what he deserves.

    You can LEARN from that experience...perhaps never letting another person do that to you ever again, and learning how to stand up for yourself. But you also must learn to FORGIVE people and let go of the hate because it's a non-productive emotion.

    Hating someone does nothing to the object of the hatred. They still go about their daily lives like it's just another day. It's an emotion that harms you instead and prevents you from moving on to better things.
     
  6. johan

    johan Active Member

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    Remember, simply hating your parents accomplishes nothing. You remain with the scars of the past, and add to it the burden of hate.

    Please go to a therapist.

    One more thing: your issues are deep and serious. If your boyfriend doesn't understand how to help you...he's not supposed to. Most people are not equipped to deal with situations like this.

    Even if he were super-supportive, you might think that's all you need but it isn't. You need a REAL therapist.

    If you were in a car accident when you were 14 and your leg was shattered in three places, you need a SURGEON. A super-supportive boyfriend, although nice, isn't going to repair your leg. This is exactly the same situation. Except it's harder to fix.
     
  7. Fallout Girl

    Fallout Girl New Member

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    I was just able to have a more in depth conversation with him and a few things are alittle more understood, on both sides.
    He explained to me that he would give up our relationship and what we have in a heartbeat if thats what it would take for me to get the answers and the help that I need to have a full complete life and better myself.
    So I am going to find a therapist. I guess that's the hard part, I've looked around in the phone book and on line for therapists in my area. I don't have a family doctor that I go to on a regular basis, however I do have a gynecolegist that I see for my regular check ups. Do you think I would be able to call her and get some recomendations? What questions do I need to ask before I decide who to go with?
     
  8. Fallout Girl

    Fallout Girl New Member

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    sometimes I feel like I have more anger towards my mom because she was the one that did most of the "leg work" in order to keep everything boxed up neatly so it didn't get out. And seems to me that she is still at it. But I guess my dad hasn't done anything at all so I've just lost a lot of faith in the both of them.
     
  9. Midgetized

    Midgetized Don't mess with Douche Cat

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    http://therapists.psychologytoday.com/rms/prof_search.php

    That site has a search for therapists in your area and you can find ones that specialize in abuse issues. Just make sure to call or email them first and make sure they accept your insurance. Also, if you are in school they should have a free counseling center there that you can go to.
     
  10. Fallout Girl

    Fallout Girl New Member

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    Thank you midgetized. I went to that site and I think I found one that sounds good for me. I'll give her a call tomorrow and see what I can set up. I'm a little nervous but at the same time relieved that I'm finally going to do it. Can't beleive it too so long.
     
  11. Easygo

    Easygo New Member

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    I'm sorry about that situation.

    You can also call your City or County Mental Health department for some kind of referral. They may have some free assistance programs.

    Also, not all therapists are "good." Whether a free (or sliding-pay-scale) County one or a private one, if you choose one and he or she doesn't seem on the same wavelength with you, try another. This is important work for you - and you are the "client", you are the one in charge, and you want this work done the best way from the start. It wouldn't be outrageous for you to "interview" several therapists to find the best one for you. Please don't automatically think the first one you see is the best for you or even good enough for you, although it is possible.

    I wish you the best on this.
     
  12. Darketernal

    Darketernal Watch: Aria The Origination =)

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    Care,for all is like a bonsai tree
    First off all, you talking negative about your parents has acted as a 'bad' commercial or bad promotion for your parents. Of course he thinks negative about your parents now , because you 'implanted' this negative thought in him.

    Second is. Your boyfriend thinks in black/white terms , im not saying he isn't flexible, but as you said he wants issues resolved immediatly, and this makes him totally unsuitable to fix your problem, because you are mentally fucked up and in for excessive theraphy for many ongoing years as a result of ongoing abuse.

    Two things. Don't blame your boyfriend, and seek support here, as well as with friends, as wel with your counceller. For you its important to keep on talking to the 'right' people , in order to get all the horror out of your system.

    Second, Your boyfriend IS supportive in nature, but you have to accept that he isn't a professional on this 'area' of abuse and the type of long term support you need to deal for this issue. Basically you have initially asked for help into the wrong direction , you naturally grabbed and reached out for your bf, without ever asking yourself the question 'well, is my bf qualified to help me in this area'?

    Abuse is a severe offense , i would advice you to keep loving your parents, but i want you to 'understand' that you bf will NEVER look positive at your parents again, because he thinks in black white terms, and thus , you putting a 'bad' idea about your parents in his head, and 'because' you speak the truth, and he believes you, this negative idea of your parents is 'there' to 'stay' in his head. And therefore you shouldn't be amazed or blamefull if he starts talking negative about your parents, hopefully you can steer it into a more positive direction, but this must be done in a mild manner.
     
  13. Fallout Girl

    Fallout Girl New Member

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    I understand that he has never met them and he hasn't gone through this. He doesn't have anything to base where my feelings are coming from. The thing I'm having a hard time with is that he doesn't see why it isn't as easy as 1-2-3, stop talking to them, get help, go on with your life.
    When he thinks about what happened to me he sees it in one dimension. He thinks about it and he sees red. He gets pissed. Someone hurt the person that he loves and he wants to take action to have them pay for what they did. But there are so many angles to the situation when I look at it.
    They did let me down and wronged me in the worst way. But they are the only family that I have.
    But I also understand that sometimes your family can do more harm than good. So there is my big predicament. Are they more "bad" for me than they are "good".
    I do still love them because they are my parents, but that's it. I don't have the feeling of accountability towards them you would usually have with your parents, I don't do things to make them proud. And them being proud of me doesn't really make me feel validated in any way. So maybe in a sense I have already removed myself, I don't live in the same state. Haven't lived in the same house since two days after I turned 18. So I need to decide if the little bit of contact we do have is ok or if it's going to keep picking at the wound.
    And I guess I resent them a little that they seem to be so happy. But at the same time I don't want to be the one to break up that happiness, I just want to make myself happy on a more regular basis.
     

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