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Is my boyfriend manipulating me or trying to help me???

I'm not sure what's going on with my boyfriend. I know he loves me very much but he has also on occassion admitted to me that he's with me because he thinks I am the only one willing to change. I feel like he wants me to be this idealized woman and I'm probably the closest he's come BUT he still feels the need to perfect me. he always helps me out with anything I'm doing and sometimes even does it for me. What makes it worse, is that we work right beside each other AND we live together. He says he's doing it so that I will look smarter and people will respect me more. I do agree. It does seem to have had that effect but at the same time I also feel that I now also look like a roller coaster to people. Sometimes I'm better able to produce (when he helps me/does it for me) and other times I'm not (when he doesn't help out/do it for me). This has also destroyed my self-confidence in myself and I feel like I'm incapable of doing anything myself.

And to make matters worse, he always reminds me of how stupid and retarded I am and says that I have to admit that I'm this way and this is the only way I'll improve. I know I'm not as smart as him but to be constantly put down by your significant other really hurts. And right now I'm so confused I dont' know what's the truth anymore. I'm also afraid to say things to him because I never know when what I say will be considered a stupid thing to say and then all hell breaks lose. He prides himself on being perfect and even claims to be so. He does go above and beyond to help people and I have to admit, he's really something you would fall in love with from a book but it's difficult to live with him.

Also, he always reminds me of how dumb and retarded my family is and asks me if i want to be like them and if I want my kids to be like them... and it really feels like he doesn't want me hanging around my family and thinks they're trying to steal me away from him. He thinks we should spend time with his family because they are better people and I have to always admit it and put down my family. If I don't then he gets upset. Also, after enduring this for so long, i'm now starting to think my family isnt' that great! And I'm so angry at myself for letting it get to this point. He always tells me though that you should be objective and not lie...just because this is what people really are, doesn't mean you treat them differently, you just need to see them for what they are. But unfortunately, I guess I'm not adult enough to do that...if I think someone is bad or not good it shows on my face...I can't be two-faced like that. I know he used to get upset at me because I thought everyone had something good in them and ebcause of this many people would take advantage of me. He always said he wouldn't let this happen but now it feels like he's trying to protect me so much that he's destroyed me.

Also, he has a HUGE temper problem...he used to scream and yell and now breaks things around him. It's never been physical, but I always wonder if it could one day get to that point if I just piss him off enough. I seem to have a knack for pissing him off, just by my mere existence.

he also contradicts himself. For instance, he says he loves me because he thinks i'll be a good mother but at the same time he says if it's left up to me my kids will be retarded and he needs to teach me how to be a good mother. Is he doing this to help me or is he just trying to mould me into his idealized woman?

I think I've also lost my identity...It's also come to the point where I'm not sure if I love him. Sometimes he's so overbearing that I find it very difficult to get close to him since he always beats me down as I am nto smart enough, or don't go the extra mile. My personality doesn't exist anymore. Everything I do has to be in line with what/how he would do it...I feel like I'm a terrible person compared to him and his family and he calls me and my family the scum of the earth!! I'm so lost...and confused...
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First Helper rose123456789
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replied November 19th, 2009
Extremely eHealthy
Honey, please, read this post as if it were written by a close friend of yours or your sister or someone else you care about. What would you tell her to do? Does she sound happy? Does she sound like she feels loved? Does this sound like the way she should live her life? Or does she deserve better? Does she deserve to be put down, belittled, an infantalized?

The only reason someone puts someone down like this is because they are insecure in themselves. He doesn't think he's actually good enough for you, so he puts you down so you'll think you can't do any better and you'll stay with him. He's not molding you in to a perfect woman. He's trying to make you think that so he can control you, even if he doesn't realize that is why he's doing it. He may be justifying his behavior to himself, but that doesn't excuse it. Even if he was the smartest, most perfect person in the world (which he's not!), that doesn't give him the right to treat you this way. This is not love. This is not how love acts.

There is something inside you that knows this is wrong or you wouldn't be writing this. You fear that he may become physically violent, but what he's already doing is bad enough to be a deal-breaker. He's doing all the things that an abuser does: belittling you, controlling you, making you forget who you are, starting to separate you from your family (you know that's what's going to happen eventually, right? He won't want you to see them anymore.).

And what if you did have children with him? He would treat them the same way. Put them down, make them feel stupid, control them, make them afraid of him. Is that what you want for your children?

Aren't you tired of this? Aren't you tired of feeling stupid just because he tells you that you are? You know that you're not. Aren't you tired of him putting you down and putting your family down? Aren't you tired of being lost? Don't you want to find yourself again and be your own person? Don't you miss who you used to be?

You deserve someone who will look at you like you are the greatest person in the world, someone who makes you feel wonderful, special, safe, loved. Someone who will defend you, even if you are the one putting yourself down.

I don't care if you do live with him and work with him. Nothing is worth living like this. You have family, friends, someone in your life that can help you while you get back on your feet. Reach out to them and ask for help in getting out of this. If you have to get a restraining order, do it. You can even have the police there while you get your stuff out if that's what you need, if you think you'll feel threatened. That's what they are there for. The longer you wait, the harder it's going to be to leave.

I also think getting counseling would be a great idea to help you find yourself again so you won't ever want to look back. It's not going to be easy, but it will be worth it.

Please write back if you need anything else or just to let us know how you're doing. I really do believe in you, Rose. You need to start believing in yourself again. I wish you all the best.
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replied October 6th, 2011
Same story
I am just recently going throught the same thing, and just started realize he is manipulating me. He puts my family down and I started ignoring them even my mother. He told me things during arguement that your family talks bad about you and you have a problem, and it was always me who needed to change. I confronted them for talking about me and they said he started it and they went along with it not knowing that he was using this against you in arguements. We also only go visit his family. Reading your situation sounds exactly like mine. It's hard to let go but best for our mentally state I guess, and our future.
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replied November 19th, 2009
Extremely eHealthy
Isolation, Domination, Deconstruction. You're in an abusive relationship.
Pack your things, walk out the door
Cut off all contact with this guy and enforce that goodbye with every fiber of your being. If he finds out where you're living move or get a restraining order. If he gets your phone numebr change it, delete his.
Get therapy to assist you as an abuse survivor.
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replied November 20th, 2009
THanks MyrahU and wolf for your advice.
I dont' know what to think...It just seems that we always fight over my family or over the fact that I don't care for him enough. Maybe I don't because I can sense something isn't right for me and he picks up on that and so it becomes a bigger fight. And honestly, he doesn't hide who he is from anyone. everyone around him knows that he is VERY opinionated BUT at the same time he doesn't let anyone down. He will do everything in his power to help you out if you need help. This goes for everyone including me. He's a really good person except for the way he goes about doing things...sometimes it's just insane even if the end result might be better for you. it almost feels like you're being forced to change because you haven't made that decision for yourself just yet. How often do you find a guy who is capable and willing to do everything to take care of his family. Maybe you're right...someone with a stronger personality than mine would be better suited for him. I'm so tired from all the fighting...and I know he is too...i will ponder what you guys said and try to find myself again. thank you very much for your advice.
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replied April 7th, 2010
Dear Rose,

I am going through the exact same thing right now. Everything you have said and what is being done to you, Its ALL happening to me too. I''m half drunk browsing the internet wondering if I should continue. I love my fiancÃƒï¿½Ã¯Â¿Â½ÃƒÂ¯Ã‚Â¿Ã‚Â½Ãƒï¿½Ã¯Â¿Â½Ãƒï ¿½Ã‚© so much and pretty much, when its good with him, its amazing, but when its bad its real bad. He calls me stupid all the time, degrades me, and makes me feel like a piece of dirt. Then turns around telling me its all my fault that I made him mad and eventually I give in and apologize admitting that I am stupid and I made the mistake of hitting him when he was yelling at me. Rose, I know exactly what your going through, but I''m not sure how long I am going to last feeling like this. Right now, hes saying I will forgive YOU darling for all your mistakes, and he never admits to what he does wrong. I am going crazy. I read Myrah''s reply and I really liked it. I''m still stuck on wether I should leave him too. He says he loves me. I love him more than anything. But is all the emontional abuse really worth it??? Sad
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replied April 7th, 2010
Extremely eHealthy
Lets step away from the likelyhood that his temper tantrums will escalate to physical abuse or that when abusers are not stopped they more often than not murder abuse victims.

Are you happy?

Is this the life you want? I''m not asking if you want to date a guy who makes the money your boyfriend makes or be with someone that wants you to be better, or treats you as wonderfully as your boyfriend does when he''s good to you. I''m asking if you want to wake up feeling like you do or go to bed at night having the kinds of days you do. If you knew that this is as good as your relationship will ever be, would it be enough?

If you''re not happy and you''re not legally bound in your relationship and you don''t have dependants, then you are supposed to leave.
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replied January 17th, 2012
Agreed...
I'm having a similar issue.... My boyfriend is trying to control me. He uses guilt and belittlement to wear me down and make me feel bad and apologise but everyone I speak to tells me to "get out while I can". When I try to tell him how I feel about something he turns it around on me to make me the bad person again. He says he's never loved anyone this much and that he wants children with me and that I'm his soulmate but I can't help but feel trapped. His jealousy has forced me to push away any friends I had, and accuses me of trying to cheat on him if I go to a friend for support. He tries to control everything I do - he tells me how I should do my job, when we go to my family's house he dictates what time we leave and then screams at me in the car if I don't leave right away. He literally screams at me if I email or text a guy friend, but then tries to flaunt his friendship with other girls to makeme jealous.

My mum is supportive and has told me that his sudden apologies and affection after a fight are just because he doesn't want me to leave him and are all part of the mind games and manipulation.
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