Seeking help? Has he sought help on his own?
Not so far.
Each and every time we’ve gone to counseling, it was when I gave an ultimatum. That makes it sound simple, but it never was. It tears, pleading, threats, cajoling, and desperation.
As far as seeking help, it’s been when things were so bad that I insisted and was ready to throw in the towel. Now I’ve realized that the subject of marriage counseling should be another blog subject soon.
Has he seen how hurtful and wrong his passive aggressive abusive behaviors are? He’s definitely seen The Impact: https://mylifeinpajamas.wordpress.com/the-impact/
Has he changed or reformed? I think he sees when the barely limping almost entirely broken machine of either me or our relationship is about to clonk out kaput, and sees that he needs to try a different behavior. As long as it works for him, why change?
This is why I realized that I needed to change.
He’s reformed his behaviors in areas where I’ve drawn a line and held it. Those lines are something I have to continually expend energy to hold. If I relax vigilance, if I do anything but draw a hard, clear, non-negotiable line, I’m going to once again fall under the steamroller of a passive aggressive.
Reforming behaviors is not the same thing as changing beliefs or a heart change. It’s really a power shift. Once I decided that preserving the relationship was not of greater worth than my being able to love and respect myself, the tide turned so to speak. I’m not bereft or crying and practically begging him to ‘see’ as in years past. It’s not about him ‘seeing’ anymore.
It’s about what he does or doesn’t do.
The disordered thinking is still there, and when the entitlement and resentment is active, it often means he’ll control his behaviors, but instead find a different tactic to get what he wants.
Then I have to weigh whether it does or doesn’t work for me. I have to choose my battles, because I only have so much energy.
It’s not ideal and it can be lonely.
What am I saying? It is lonely.