I have a big problem that maybe you can help with. I walk on eggshells with my boyfriend, and he has been grabbing my arm and hurting me lately. I have been with him for four years and we live together. We have always had a somewhat volatile relationship, yelling, some pushing (both ways), however it seems to be getting worse. I tell him to stop touching me but he doesn’t and I also can’t stand the yelling anymore. I’m 38yrs old and he is 36, so I know we should know better. When we aren’t fighting we go to concerts, love riding horses and doing a lot together. Lately I’m finding that I back off and tread carefully, this is usually not like me, and I usually will fight back. How do I get him to stop?
Dear Backing Off,
My thought is that you are backing off because you sense danger. If his violence towards you is escalating, and he is ignoring your plea to stop then I think you need to separate. I hope you or he has a place to go so you can get help and save yourself from harm.
This behavior is most likely deep rooted and will not just be resolved on its own. If there’s one decision you make, please let it be the decision to get out. My advice is to then seek the advice of a professional before leaving or asking him to leave so you can assess the possible danger to you. I hope you have a support system of people who can rally in your defense, because on many levels you will need it. This is not going to be easy, but I don’t see any other way. I say this even if when you talk to him he promises he will stop.
I agree that you should know better, but let’s face it, we have all at one time or another talked ourselves in or out of something we knew to be trouble. Forgive yourself and seek help immediately. My advice is that life is too short to be living in such a state of anxiety, fear and threat. Seek joy and peace and you will never look back!
Readers how does she get out? Should she stay and seek help together instead?
Molly is a writer and business professional with years of experience in finance, business development and management. Her lifelong passion and learning has been focused on the understanding and complexity of relationships as well as effective communication. Originally from Texas she has lived in many cities including St Louis and Portland finally settling in Boston where she raised her family and received her education in Business Administration. She is now living in Texas with her family and is excited to be home. Catch her daily relationship and advice column “Molly Mason- Let’s Talk Love” on www.austin.com  and “Straight Talk” in print. You can contact Molly at firstname.lastname@example.org .