Argument almost becomes violent - Talk About Marriage
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post #1 of 27 (permalink) Old 09-21-2015, 09:25 PM Thread Starter
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Argument almost becomes violent

Hello all, I want to start by giving a short background.
My wife and I have been together for 3 years, married less than a year. We have a 5 year old girl (my stepdaughter) and a son who is 19 months old.
I honsestly love my wife, I feel that she loves me as well.
We bought a beautiful home together and she was able to leave her job to be a stay at home mom, I love that she is able to, she is an amazing mother.
We have a good relationship for the most part.
We had an incident this past weekend, we had friends over and their 2 children, we camped out in the backyard, fire, outdoor movies, great time, we actually didnt go to bed till 5am, it was at that point that it went downhill..
I went to get our son (19mo old) so he can sleep with us in the tent, changed his diaper, made his bottle while my wife headed to bed, our friends were sharing our tent and the 5 year olds shared another.
My son was wide awake at this point and we were all exausted, he proceeded to cause mayhem in the tent, running around, screaming just tearing it up like he does so well lol.
Anyway, after 10 minutes of this behavior I realized that he wasnt going to fall asleep, he wasnt in his comfortable surroundings, I realized that our friends were getting impatient and since my wife was doing nothing about the situation I took my son to
His room and put him in bed, he immediatley rolled over and went to sleep.
I went to our bedroom and hit the sheets and started to drift off.... Thats when my wife woke me, told me I was rude to come sleep inside, she agreed that our boy shouldnt be in the house alone and "offered" to sleep inside our wonderfully air conditined room while I went back outside to sleep in the hot tent with our friends wife (her hubby felt more comfortable sleeping right outside the girls tent posting as guard)
Anyway, I refused, I didnt feel comfortable sleeping in the tent with her alone, especially since she is more my wifes friend than mine, not that anything wouldve happened, just a comfort level.
We got into an argument, I was half asleep and dead tired, I didnt want to fight so I went into our spare bedroom to get away from her and locked the door. She barged in to argue, I asked her to stop, "can we do this tomorrow please?"
Not a chance, she had to fight right then and there because "camping is your thing, your idea"
I lost my temper and tried to shove her out of the room, I pushed her a couple of times but she wouldnt budge, thats when I left...
I got in my car and left before I got more physical.
I realize that theres no excuse for my actions, I need to control myself better.
I honestly saw red and Im afraid that it couldve been worse.
Im a big guy, my wife is petite and I have trained and competed in martial arts for years and I dont want to hurt anyone, least of all my beautiful wife.

She knows my buttons, this isnt the first similar situation, she doesnt know when to just leave me alone, she just keeps going, antagonizing me till I lose it.

I feel that she does it on purpose because she knows what the outcome will be and if shes lucky enough I WILL hit her and shes will have everything.
On the other hand, maybe she is like me and just cant control herself enough to back off.

Please help with any experiences and insight, I dont want this to happen again.

Thank you
RG

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post #2 of 27 (permalink) Old 09-21-2015, 09:40 PM
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Re: Argument almost becomes violent

Did your friends hear and see all this?

You both need to get in counseling and anger management.

It does not matter how much she antagonizes you, you need to have enough control to not 'see red'.

And she needs to not carry on an argument until it gets to that point.

the way to handle this kind of situation is for both of you to learn that you BOTH separate as soon as things start to escalate.

If she will not go to counseling and anger management classes with you, you go alone.

You say that you locked the door. So she had to finagle with lock to get into the room. She is at fault for doing that.

By the way, I agree that you should not sleep in a tent alone while some other guy's wife is in the tent alone with you. You could have gone out and taken up guard on the kid's tent like the other guy.

They were your friends, right?
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post #3 of 27 (permalink) Old 09-21-2015, 09:51 PM Thread Starter
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Re: Argument almost becomes violent

Hello Elegirl,
Thank you so much for taking the time to rsspond.

Our friends did not see the argument, although it was a quiet and quick one because our son was sleeping a room away.

I agree, there is no excuse for my actions, this isnt the first time she has pushed me to this point, we have talked about it after previous arguments and agreed to both walk away, I tried to do so, I actually had to get in my car and drive away to prevent futher escalation.
I take responsibility for my part, I admit that I may have been abrasive and nasty but I really did want to walk away and prevent escalation.

You are right, I should have just jumped in a sleeping bag next to the girls tent, I wish I would be able to stop and think in these situations.

They are more her friends, actually the Woman is her friend, her hubby and I are friends by association.

RG
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post #4 of 27 (permalink) Old 09-21-2015, 10:25 PM Thread Starter
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Re: Argument almost becomes violent

I may have posted this in the wrong forum
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post #5 of 27 (permalink) Old 09-21-2015, 10:31 PM
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Re: Argument almost becomes violent

I was married to a guy who would escalate to the point of yelling, pushing, shoving, twist my arm, slam me into walls. One time he pushed me down so hard I hurt my tail bone when I hit the floor. He picked me up by my throat one time. He never out and out punched or hit me so, according to him he was not abusive. I would lock myself in a room to get away from him as much as possible.

It was of course not a daily thing, abuse seldom is.

After reading some books on the topic of anger, I learned something that worked. I think it got this out of the book "The Dance of Anger".

Define a "safe word". I used the word "STOP"... it was not just a word. I would say "STOP" and hold my hand up in the stop sign.

The idea is that as soon as you can tell that a discussion is GOING TO get out of hand, before it actually gets out of hand, that's when you use the "STOP" word/sign. Say "STOP", put your hand up in the stop sign. And say something like "I'm going to leave so that we can both calm down." Then you go to another room, on a walk, for a ride... do what you need to get away. It's up to each of you to calm yourself down. Do not talk again for at least an hour. And do not discuss the topic again until you both have gathered your thought. Sometimes it's better to write each other notes/letters.

I sat my husband down and told him that I was not going to live like that any more. And I told him what I was going to do. I told him that it was up to him to calm himself down and gather his thoughts.

I practed the "STOP" thing in front of a mirror until the action became automatic. I would stand there looking in the mirror and imagine some discuss/argument that had happened. I'd replay it in my mind and at the moment that I could tell it was getting out of hand, I'd say out out "STOP", put my hand up, say something like "I'm out of here." and walk away.

I know it sounds hokey to do that in front of a mirror, but it worked. The "STOP" routine became automatic. It was 1993 when I did this. To this day, that's my automatic reaction if anyone starts to get out of hand. I simply will not stick around to engage and get caught up in the anger and drama.

Look at the incident you described in your OP. You actually walked ways and locked yourself in a room. That is the right thing to do. But she pursued you, picked the lock and entered the room to continue. She knew darn well how you would react. She was baiting you. She is part of the problem.

You need to add to your plan here that if either of you follows the other, bangs on the door, picks the lock or otherwise harasses the other ... the harassed person calls the police. I am not kidding. This is nothing to play around with. One or both of you could get hurt with what's going on.

So add that to your talk to her. If she follows you again when you separate to calm down, bangs in the door, continues yelling, picks the lock you will call 911.

Since after all my practice I was able to use the "STOP" routine BEFORE things escalated it worked very well. My husband go to the point where he would realize that he was about to hit the wall. He'd pick up his helmet and go for an hour or so bike ride. When he came back he was no longer angry and calm.

It took a couple of months to train him After that we never had an incident of yelling and physical violence.

Sadly we did divorce as 2 years later I found out that he'd been cheating our entire marriage. But, at least I know that the "STOP" think can work very well.
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post #6 of 27 (permalink) Old 09-21-2015, 10:32 PM
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Re: Argument almost becomes violent

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I may have posted this in the wrong forum
Since I'm a moderator, I'll move it to General Relationship Discussion. Your thread will get more exposure there.

Last edited by EleGirl; 09-21-2015 at 11:47 PM.
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post #7 of 27 (permalink) Old 09-22-2015, 12:55 AM Thread Starter
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Hello again,, we actually just had a 3 hour long conversation that didnt end well, not physical since we both had time to calm down. We just didnt come to any solution.

I asked her again to please respect my boundries, to stop, especially when I repeatedly ask her to. She wont do it, she feels that she can say anything she wants and I should never resort to violence, I agree but I also feel that she shouldnt keep pushing me.

I asked that I have time to calm down and if we fight in the morning that we talk that evening, fight at night to talk in the morning.... Etc, she wont, she says that she cant do it and that I should just
"wash your face if your tired and take care of it at that moment because I cant let it boil inside me until YOU ARE GOOD AND READY to talk hours or days later"

We both agreed that if it happens again that we will probably both react the same way...
Not a good situation.

I also apologized for my actions, several times. I do feel really bad about it.

I asked her to take responsibility for her part but she wont, she feels like I didnt do anything wrong and brought up previous arguments, something she does often to divert.
Right now we are sleeping in different rooms.

I said some hurtful things that im not proud of, they were honest feelings that Ive had for sometime but didnt want to verbalize, I dont want to hurt her feelings but I did.

She mentioned divorce, a topic that gets mentioned every now and again by both of us which usually brings us to the realization of the direction we are headed if we dont try and work on our problems.
I said, before storming off
"if it wasnt for money I would file for divorce, if I won the powerball the first thing I would do is give you have and file, it would be worth it to me"

That ended our conversation.
Im being honest, Im very sad that I hurt hrr but Im in a way glad I said how I really feel.

I find myself daydreaming of being single, Im 41, not old but also not wanting the single life for dating and hanging out etc...
I just want peace and quiet, Im so tired of arguing.
Honestly the kids are what keep me here, if it wasnt for them I would have left, I think she feels the same way..

Im sorry to hear about your Ex husband cheating. I went through that with my Ex as well, she totally devasted me, I had no idea. We were together for 6 years, owned a home together. Luckily we didnt have kids together.
We tried to work it out for a few months but I couldnt get past the lies, thats what really hurt more than anything, lying to my face....

RG
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post #8 of 27 (permalink) Old 09-22-2015, 01:10 AM
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Re: Argument almost becomes violent

There is a balance that has to be achieved.

It's true that it's important that you both be able to talk about things that need to be talked about.

She is right that no matter what she says, you should get to the point where you see red and go after her physically. You have to learn how to not do that. It's completely possible for your to learn that.

But it's also true that each of you have the right to your own space and the right to step out of a discussion/argument when you feel it's getting out of hand.

Do you think you could get her to go to marriage counseling with you?

If she will not go to counseling with you, I suggest that you get into individual counseling. You need help in learning to not blow up. There are also good books on the topic.

What other times in your life do you see red at attack people? Do you to it with your parents and siblings? How about at work? When you go shopping in stores? How about with friends? How often have you seen red and attacked anyone besides your wife?

I'll bet that you the only person you have done this with is your wife. Which of course proves that you have 100% control over your anger, seeing red and physically going after her.

Think on that some.
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post #9 of 27 (permalink) Old 09-22-2015, 01:16 AM Thread Starter
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She is angry that I left, especially since we had guests, she thinks I should apologize to them, maybe I should.

I didnt see any other option. She says that I should be able to control my anger and not explode. I agree, then I posed her the same question "why cant you control yourself when I ask you repeatedly to leave me alone, I went to the guest room and locked the door" she cant, thats not how she ticks.

I tried to get around her but she was blocking the doorway, I pushed her aside to get past her, I didnt push her just to push her.. Im not making excuses or trying to justify it. Thats what happend.

She NEVER apologizes or takes responsibility, its always 100% my fault.

While I admit shes right most of the time generally but not always.

She expected me, at that moment to stop anf think,
"we have guests, maybe I should wash my face at 5am and talk about this and hear her out, if I leave now it will be awkard tomorrow morning (I came back home at 10am)"
She claims thats how she would think...

I said that shes a ticking time bomb and cant wait an hour, few hours to talk and I am like a stick of idynamite with a fast fuse.
She agreed.

We both agree that we need therapy but we dont have the time or money for it.

I feel like my only choice is to do things her way or leave and not see my babies grow up.

Btw our "friends" that stayed over have their own similar issues.

The husband does whatever she says with a smile, he is a yes man, does everything he can to avoid a fight and to keep the sex going.
I cant do that, I actually tried it but I cant just shut up and do what Im told.
But where does that leave me??

RG
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post #10 of 27 (permalink) Old 09-22-2015, 01:20 AM
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Argument almost becomes violent

Threatening divorce should never be taken lightly...from either of you. Sounds like she threatened first, so I'd give her what she wants. File the divorce papers. You can stop the process at any point but I'd say with two personalities that butt heads so profoundly, and with the toxic resentment you both have for each other, you'd be doing each other and your kids a favor.

I respect that you were trying to de-escallate the situation by removing yourself. I have to do the same to avoid getting angry or saying something I'd regret later. Think about how she doesn't respect you enough to want to avoid that which you were attempting to prevent. She wants you angry, like she feeds on the drama... Even when you try to starve it, she pushes, goads you. That is NOT how a sane person acts.

It's a sad situation for your kids... Seeing parents fight and make up is one thing.... Seeing them fight and resent and fight will teach lessons I believe you'd rather they not learn.

I'd also disagree about your comment about her being a good mother. A good mother would not do what she does in front of her kids. My guess is that SAHM life isn't for her. It's great for some women, ill suited for others. If you're not divorcing, I'd strongly recommend you ask her to start working part time.


"If you deliberately plan on being less than you are capable of being, then I warn you that you'll be unhappy for the rest of your life."

~ Abraham Maslow
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post #11 of 27 (permalink) Old 09-22-2015, 01:28 AM Thread Starter
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You are absolutely right, it only happens with my wife, I have fought in competitions and I was never angry at my opponent, I sas totally respectful and even friendly.

I have come close in driving situations when jerks drive wreckless and put my family in danger , I get overcome with anger, I want to chase them down, rip them out of the car and beat them bloody but I immediately calm myself down, its not worth it and I never come close to doing that.

My first Ex wife used to drive me to the samr point. My current wife reminds me of her in that sense, they have nothing else in common besides knowing what buttons to push and we divorced 10 years ago after a 3 year volitile relationship and yes that one got physical too, our last fight ended up the same way, I was trying to leave the house because she wouldnt get out of my face, blocked the exit, I shoved her to the side to get out.

Wow, I just realized how similar the two relationships are....

I moved out and filed for divorce immediately after that fight, I didnt like the person she pushed me to be, better said I hate the person I turned into and blamed her for it, Like I blame my current wife now.
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post #12 of 27 (permalink) Old 09-22-2015, 01:42 AM Thread Starter
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Thank you Satya for responding.

I admit that I have threatend divorce as well in the past.
We are not in the financial position to divorce or get therapy at the present time.
She does try to bait me, she knoes if she pushes the right buttons that I will react that way. Once when she wanted to "talk" she ripped the remote out of my hand, turned on all the lights (It was late and I was relaxing and had to get up early)
It came to a point that she wouldnt leave me alone, in my face yelling and demanding that I engage in the fight, I took it out on my phone and threw it accross the room, it hit the fireplace and exploded. That was a $600 mistake.
Another time she cornered me in the shower, this time I punched the wall several times because I didnt want to hit her, I fractured my hand...

Im not an angel but she isnt either. I accept responsibility, apologize and I try.

I feel that she pushes me so I react, when I do react its severe and its an automatic win for her.
I feel that its very important for her to win.

RG
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post #13 of 27 (permalink) Old 09-22-2015, 01:44 AM Thread Starter
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In her defense she doesnt fight with me in front of the kids, I know that our 5 year old feels it though, she can feel the tension, she knows something is wrong when dad is sleeping on the couch.
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post #14 of 27 (permalink) Old 09-22-2015, 01:45 AM
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Re: Argument almost becomes violent

Quote:
Originally Posted by Rockygreystone View Post
She is angry that I left, especially since we had guests, she thinks I should apologize to them, maybe I should.
Did they notice?
You say that your friends have their martial problems too. Well you could just tell them that you left to defuse an argument with your wife. You are sorry but felt it was the best thing for everyone. … that’s if they noticed that you were gone.
Quote:
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I didnt see any other option. She says that I should be able to control my anger and not explode. I agree, then I posed her the same question "why cant you control yourself when I ask you repeatedly to leave me alone, I went to the guest room and locked the door" she cant, thats not how she ticks.
Your wife it wrong. She has as much responsibly to control her actions as you do. Her attitude is a problem.

Quote:
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I tried to get around her but she was blocking the doorway, I pushed her aside to get past her, I didnt push her just to push her.. Im not making excuses or trying to justify it. Thats what happend.
There are things that you can do.
You would just sit there and not talk to her expect to repeat. “Please leave this room.” “Please leave me alone right now.” “Stop yelling”
What would she do if you just kept repeating something like that and did not engage in the argument with her?

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Originally Posted by Rockygreystone View Post
She NEVER apologizes or takes responsibility, its always 100% my fault.

While I admit shes right most of the time generally but not always.

She expected me, at that moment to stop anf think,
Why can’t you think at the moment?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Rockygreystone View Post
"we have guests, maybe I should wash my face at 5am and talk about this and hear her out, if I leave now it will be awkard tomorrow morning (I came back home at 10am)"
She has a point that you abandoned her with guests. I’m sure that she was pretty embarrassed. Did you really need 5 hours to cool off? What did you do for 5 hours?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Rockygreystone View Post
She claims thats how she would think...

I said that shes a ticking time bomb and cant wait an hour, few hours to talk and I am like a stick of idynamite with a fast fuse.
She agreed.
You are both ticking bombs in your own way.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Rockygreystone View Post
We both agree that we need therapy but we dont have the time or money for it.
For this type of thing you can probably get free, or extremely low cost counseling. Look for places in your town that have classes in anger management. You might find some free ones.

If not then there are a ton of self help books. Search on sites like Amazon.com. See what they have. You can buy used books even. Or try your library.

Or search the web… there are a lot of sites that give information for self-help. Actually, you can look up marriage help/counselling, etc there is tons of info out there.
Anger Management: Tips and Techniques for Getting Anger Under Control
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I feel like my only choice is to do things her way or leave and not see my babies grow up.
Nonsense.
Look you can start working on yourself. You need to set boundaries (there are books and web sites for this too.). Boundaries are not telling her what to do, they are what you will not allow in your life.
“I will not engage in any conversation where there is yelling, screaming, name calling, put downs, and other ugly word.”
She can carry on like that all she wants. But you will not engage with her.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Rockygreystone View Post
Btw our "friends" that stayed over have their own similar issues.
Well, I guess they will understand. And maybe you can get info and pass it on to them too.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Rockygreystone View Post
The husband does whatever she says with a smile, he is a yes man, does everything he can to avoid a fight and to keep the sex going.
That’s called being a “Nice Guy” … no a “Nice Guy” is not a good guy…. It’s a passive aggressive way to behave and it drives the other person nuts.

A book you need to read is “No More Mr. Nice Guy”. IT will give you techniques to use to stop acting passive aggressive. I think that you can find the book in a free pdf format online.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Rockygreystone View Post
I cant do that, I actually tried it but I cant just shut up and do what Im told.

But where does that leave me??
It leaves you with the task of learning how not to be a “Nice Guy”, with you having to learn how to control your anger, how to firmly but lovingly set healthy boundaries in your life. It’s time for you to take control of your life and yourself.

So here’s the books that I think would help you to start with:

“No More Mr. Nice Guy”… this book is for you. Do not show it to your wife or tell her about it.

After that there are two good books…..

“Love Busters” and “His Needs, Her Needs” Read them in that order. Hopefully your wife will read them with you and do the work that they suggest. They will help you restructure your marriage to be a lot healthier.

To fix this, you have to do the work on yourself. Hopefully your wife will follow your lead.
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post #15 of 27 (permalink) Old 09-22-2015, 01:48 AM Thread Starter
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Satya, please explain your point on SAHM and how that can be a part of the problem/solution please.
That isnt something I ever thought of and is an interesting thought
Thanks
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