When among friends does your husband constantly interrupt you and continue the conversation you were trying to convey? He uses different words, phrases and corrects your pronunciation? Or perhaps he scolds you when words are mispronounced. So you take a back seat and let him take your place in the gathering. Afterall, you are used to his corrections and he is so much smarter than you are. You didn’t finish college, he did. It’s embarrassing but he is your husband and you do love him.
The times you brought up the fact he is always finishing your sentences he says, “Well you are not telling the story right and making a fool out of yourself”. You drop the subject because he raises his voice and gets upset. This is the way it is and you’ve accepted it. There are different kinds of abuse and this is not physical. Your closest friend tells you this behavior is a verbal abuse. You had never thought of it that way. What can you do about it now after 20 plus years of marriage? Do you suggest going to see a marriage counselor or what? You begin to think more about this behavior and are tired of being interrupted. You have much to share with others and hold back because you feel intimidated and inferior to your husband.
You suggest counselling and he says, “For what?” You try to explain in a subtle way his behavior around your friends is bothering you. He storms out the back door, slams the screen door and you are worse off for bringing the subject up. You discuss this problem with another close friend. She says go to counselling yourself and find out how you can stop enabling him to continue this type of abuse. You take her advice and are beginning to see ways in which you can cleverly interrupt him and finish what you were trying to say in the first place. There are times when one can out smart your partner. With the proper know how and skills you are no longer sitting back but interrupting him with, “No, that is not what I was saying and you can give your version of what happened when I finish.” You are learning new techniques and skillfully finishing your sentences. Through counselling you are headed for a happier marriage.
Had Naomi Bryar not lost her temper with Russ perhaps she could have saved their marriage. His behavior of not coming straight home from work and hanging out at 24 hour restaurant, or bar until two or three in the morning was just the beginning of what was to come. Read about what happened to Naomi in “A Marked Woman”.