You've seen celebrity clinical psychologist Dr. Sherry Blake, author of The Single Married Woman: True Stories of Why Women Feel All Alone in Their Marriages, keep the Braxton sisters calm on the hit show Braxton Family Values now it's your turn to sit in her chair...
Dear Dr. Sherry,
I have been married to my husband for eight years and together we have two handsome boys. I feel like my husband treats me like a kid and often keeps me away from my family. He gets mad without saying so when I talk to my family but it's okay if I talk to his family. I don't have any friends, either. The week of New Year's, we got into a huge argument. He yelled at one of the kids for doing something and I intervened. I told my son not to let people get him down because he has ADHD and I want him to know not to give up when people say rude things to or about him. After our children went to bed, he said if I keep bitching he would leave me to take care of our children on my own. To make matters worse, we HAVE to have sex nightly or he gets mad. Please help what do I do?
I am not sure if you understand but your relationship is very unhealthy. It has red flags that are like bright neon tell tale signs of an abusive relationship or one in the making. It is just a matter of time before it gets worse. You don't have to be physically abused to be abused. The fact that he keeps you away from your family and gets mad when you talk with them, is a major red flag. The next red flag is the fact that you have no friends. Isolating you from your family and friends wipes out your support system and places him in control. Think about it, where do you turn for support or to just talk about issues? This also prevents others from seeing how he treats you. Another red flag is the fact that you "HAVE" to have sex nightly or he gets mad. Really??? His comments to you and your child fall in the category of "put downs " and is another red flag of any abusive relationship. His threats of leaving you are another form of abuse and control. It sounds as if you feel that you have no choice and no voice in the marriage. You do have choices and you must find your voice. I recommend that you seek individual therapy to process your feelings and decide what you want to do. It is very important in an abusive relationship that a safety plan is developed for you and your children if you decide to leave or make major changes. If you want something different in a relationship, you must do something differently. --Dr Sherry
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