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Disorder or jerk?


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Frazzled, my guess would be that the person’s sense of self isn’t solid or secure. That’s what it’s like for me when I feel like putting others down. I try not to, of course, and I’m (overly) horrified at the idea of back stabbing.

That doesn’t excuse the person's effect on you, though.

Want some ideas on how to deal with it? May not work, it’s just me trying to step into the shoes of the other person.

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Thanks DD I would love some ideas. Not just for dealing with the other person but to maybe curb my own (possibly) hurtful sense of humor.

I joke all the time but I say things to peoples faces and these are people who love me so they mostly know I am joking but in light of the man I with having some completely mean and hateful outbursts I think it might be wise if I am going to continue to live with him for me to curb my own remarks.

FYI I never make jokes to or about him because he doesn't play well with others. He doesn't take it as joking.:(

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That type of treatment can wear down your sense of self when you are forced to endure this. I hope you are okay, frazzled.

Why does the person behave this way? Possibly they are insecure about themselves and beating another down gives them a sense of control. They may not know how to interact appropriately. Perhaps they don't have the social skills to. They could be manipulating to get their needs met because they don't know how to ask or it wasn't okay for them to ask in the past. Problems regulating their emotions? Power and control? Abuse in their past? There are many reasons why someone might behave this way. Has your partner ever been to counseling? Have the two of you been to couples' counseling? I'm sorry if I'm forgetting. Maybe this would be a place to start if you want to stay together. Whatever the cause of his behavior is, it is not about you, frazzled.

I'm sorry you are going through this. :(

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Frazzled, I’m going to assume that your partner has some sort of deficits in his sense of self, whether it rises to the level of a disorder or which one isn’t the issue.

Point is, you do have a relatively good sense of self. Maybe it isn’t “perfect” (whatever that may mean), but you can joke with your friends, which allows you to communicate things that you have differences with them about, but without threatening the relationship or the general sense that you all like each other and get along. Have I got that right? My sense of self hasn’t been around that long, but it seems like it might work like that.

So, your partner ain’t got that and anything you say which feels to him as if you are judging him or criticizing him then feels to him like you are putting HIM down (even though you could say the same thing to one of your friends and they would know that you are a good person and where you are coming from). So, he reacts out of that place, putting you down and, if he’s still feeling vengeful, talking to about you to others. Sucks, totally sucks, very immature. But that’s him, at least for right now.

It does not sound to me like it is possible at this time for you to have what you might consider a “normal” relationship with him. But you all have something together.

My suggestion: make rock solid sure, as much as you can, that you are coming from a solid place in yourself when you talk with him. Avoid issues that you know he will be touchy about. And then, if a sore spot IS touched and he reacts by putting you down, think of some phrases in advance that you can use to put yourself back in that solid place but without putting him down.

Such as, “I’m sorry you feel that way about it.” Or “Maybe we should talk about it later.”

That way you don’t get into a hurt place from which you react, too.

It seems clear to me from reading your posts that you like people and like to help people. I wonder if maybe you weren’t drawn to your boyfriend in some sense BECAUSE he doesn’t know how to play well with others and you wanted to help draw him out into the world? And maybe he would like to, too, only he has these ingrained deficits that are going to take more than your love to overcome. At least in the near term.

I hope this helps. Feel free to correct my interpretation of things if you like.

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Very good observations DD and thank you it's nice to have one's sense of self noticed by others even if it is not required. I hope that you will reach that point and it seems like you are headed that way. We generally help ourselves when we recognize our problems in others and it should help you looking at both sides of my problem. You always seem to come from a place of caring if you cannot feel it you should re-read some of your own posts and contributions to this community.

Thank You:)

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