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Anger or abuse?


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My partner is in therapy currently for anger management issues after we had a violent break up a few months ago. We've been trying to work it out but I find he can be dictatorial and condescending and refuses to accept it when I don't do things his way. I shut down and ask him to take me home as calmly as I can when arguments erupt and he starts to get abusive - our relationship therapist has told us this is a good strategy to stop things escalating.

Sometimes he refuses to take me home and makes me stay there to talk things through and 'self reflect' as he says he will not be ordered around. His view is that I must accept his help on things when he knows better. After being in anger management therapy he has started to tell me I need it as I have anger issues. I admit I have got angry in relation to him and the abusive things he calls me which I won't repeat here.

I have never had anger or violence issues in any other relationships or situations but I did kick his door down to get my stuff out of his flat. This was after he physically grabbed me by the neck and threw me out with no phone, money, coat or bag after discovering I had emailed an ex. I admit kicking his door in was an inappropropriate way of interacting. I usually try to remain calm (I'm a yoga teacher after all!) and explain how I'm feeling to him but sometimes he won't listen and just continues to rant. It's at that stage I get my stuff together to leave as I feel I may as well not be there anyway as he doesn't listen.

Some of the stuff in his anger management material points to passive aggressive behaviour which he attributes to me. What I need to find out is whether his estimation of me is correct and I do need help or whether it's just another attempt by him to justify his actions and undermine me? In my heart I don't really believe I need anger management and others have told me my reactions are normal. He, however, would say I'm in denial.

Any advice?

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I'll add a third vote of "don't be with this guy". relationships are difficult enough when you are with someone who you feel good about fundamentally. They are only harder when you're with someone with whom you are incompatible. In this instance, he is controlling and you don't like that. The fact that there has been violence in this relationship and not in previous ones should also be a tip-off that this relationship is not a good one.

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I agree with everyone here - this man sounds manipulative and abusive and you need to get away from him. His behaviour reminds me of my father - who was equally as abusive and childish. People like this do not change without a lot of help/time and things are unlikely to get any better and certainly not in the short term.

To say your partner is emotionally immature would be the understatement of the year. I do hope things work out for you and that you are able to find the courage to move on. You do not need this man, and you certainly do not need the absue he is doling out.

With my best wishes


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