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Author Topic: Emotionally Controlling Behavior - Man-alive  (Read 3879 times)
CharlyB
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« on: January 18, 2008, 07:04:22 PM »

I found this artricle from Patricia Evans surfing the net.  Thought it might hit home for some folks here. Turn it around if you are a guy having this happen from a female.
 
"Male role control works by physically, verbally, or emotionally destroying your partner's physical and emotional integrity so that she will be afraid to be herself, will control herself, and therefore be available to be controlled by YOU."  Emotionally controlling behavior is implemented through verbal abuse, body language, and deprivation (withholding). These behaviors are "the way the abuser treats his partner"
 
Abuse is always about CONTROL.  Whether it is verbal abuse, emotional abuse, or physical abuse, IT IS ABOUT CONTROLLING YOUR PARTNER, subtly or openly. Check yourself out with these controlling behaviors or words:
 
CONTROLLING HER TIME:  The abuser controls his partner's time by making her wait. He will say he is ready to talk, but will continue doing something else while his partner waits. He will tell her he is ready to go to bed, then make her wait. If she complains of having to wait, he will blame her for "not having enough patience", "I have to wait on you too", or ":)o you expect me just to drop everything!"-- thereby blaming her for HIS making her wait. This also commonly occurs when the abuser is called to a meal, family activity, or that everyone else is ready to leave.  If the partner does something while waiting, the abuser will then angrily proclaim that "HE has been waiting on HER". A subtle way of controlling a partner's time is to leave most, if not all, of the work for her to do-then complaining about anything she does for herself, or what she does not get done. Other examples are procrastinating promised work (especially what she is counting on), "watching just one more program" or "playing one more game" (that goes on and on and on), refusing to give a simple and direct answer to concrete and direct questions (Are you going to do this or that. "We'll have to wait and see, I suppose, maybe, what do You think, I didn't know I was supposed to... .why don't you figure it out!" The abuser may also control his partner's time by grandstanding. If she tells him she is unhappy about an incident, he will deny it happened, discount her feelings, or accuse her of trying to start a fight. He might also proclaim that "you're causing the problem by bringing it up," "no one else notices," "everyone else does, so why can't I,"  :)iverting, countering, blocking, "forgetting," forcing her to explain, making her repeat because the abuser was not listening or paying attention, and "prove it" are also common ways to control the partner's time and energy. It is rare that an abuser will be willing to discuss or negotiate HIS plan-to do so would be giving up control. This type of control is two-fold: Control her time in some way, any way, then blame HER for it.
 
CONTROLLING HER MATERIAL RESOURCES: The verbal abuser may control one or all of his partner's material resources by WITHHOLDING information as well as by withholding work which he has promised to do, often by "forgetting",  "I don't know how", or "I didn't know I had to". Another common practice of the abuser is to withhold needed money, then compound the abuse by forcing her to act on her own, beg, plead, or do without. He then begins blaming his withholding on her acting on her own, begging, pleading, or "trying to be a martyr."  In more severe cases, the controlling abuser will keep money from his wife that is necessary for her survival and that of their family (whether it is the promised food budget money or his entire salary).  He gives no thought to "spending his own money," or what his control and selfishness is doing to his wife and family who are either deprived of necessities or working desperately to support themselves while HE feels in control and free!
 
CONTROLLING WITH BODY LANGUAGE AND GESTURES:  The verbal abuser uses body language to control his partner, just as he uses words. The words and gestures often go together.  This can be seen as using HIMSELF to control his partner.  Following are some hurtful and intimidating ways of controlling that are forms of withholding and abusive anger:
 
Sulking
Stomping out
Refusing to talk
Walking away
Refusing to give her something
Hitting or kicking something
Refusing to make eye contact
Driving recklessly
Boredom-crossed arms, eyes closed, head down, deep sighs
Withdrawing or withholding affection
Showing disgust-rolled eyes, deep sighs, inappropriate sounds
Strutting and posturing
 
CONTROLLING BY DEFINING HER REALITY:  This form of control is very oppressive.   When he tells his partner what reality is, he is playing God, he is discounting the partner's experience by defining "THE TRUTH"-which in fact is a LIE.  Some examples: That's not what you said or That's not what I said or That's not what you did or That's not what I did or That's not what happened. That's not what you saw. That's not what you felt. That's not why you did it. I know you better than you know yourself!
 
CONTROLLING BY MAKING HER RESPONSIBLE: By telling his  partner she is responsible for his behavior, this verbal abuser attempts to avoid all responsibility for his own behavior.  In other words, he avoids accountability by BLAMING.  Examples include:
 
I did it because you... .
You didn't remind me.
You just don't see what I do.
Just show me how
Set a good example
 
CONTROLLING BY ASSIGNING STATUS: Putting her down, especially on what she does best.
 
Putting her up, praising or thanking her for trivial things rather than the big things she does, which demeans her talents, time, and energy, while implying she is best suited to do trivial or demeaning tasks.  This category also includes statements such as: That right! You're a woman! (said with disgust) What makes you think you can do that? I'm the leader, the boss. You're not THAT stupid.  Just THINK about it.  ITS THAT'S SIMPLE.
 
CONTROLLING BY DIMINISHING YOUR PARTNER:
 
Belittling
Laughing at or smirking
Offensive jokes
Mimicking your partner
Patronizing
Scornful, disdainful, contemptuous tone of voice
Ignoring, "I'm not listening to you"
Avoiding eye contact, turning away
Expecting partner to talk to you while you're watching TV, reading, game playing
Words like "Soo" or "So what!" or "That means NOTHING to me" or "Whatever"
Bafflegabbing - talking in ways intended to mislead or baffle your partner
Insulting your partner
Making inappropriate sounds
Making inappropriate facial expressions-rolled eyes, grimaces, deep sighs
Starting a sentence then stating, "Forget it... "
Accusing her of being "controlling", "having to have the last word"
 
CONTROLLING behaviors such as those above are used by verbal abusers to gain feelings of power and control whenever the suppressed fear and pain in his own life start to "seep out" - terrified of not being in control, terrified of "feeling," terrified of her leaving. Do you have the courage to see yourself as others see you - as your wife and children see you? Do you have the courage to be honest with yourself? If you have seen or heard yourself in the paragraphs above RUN, don't walk to get help. Suggested are the following steps:
 
~Read everything you can about verbal abuse-several times over.
 
~Listen to your partner with an open, accepting mind and feel your pain without shutting down in anger or withdrawal.
 
~Make a list of everything you've ever done that was abusive-ask your partner to review the list.
 
~Ask your partner to remind you every time you say or do something abusive.
 
~Become aware of the effects of verbal abuse on the partner-read about women's experiences, pain, torment, doubt, fear, loss of spirit and self, etc.
 
~Get into a men's group (a domestic violence men's group) to help root out the controlling behaviors and anger and pain.
 
~STOP controlling.
 
~Start feeling your pain.
 
You must want to change more than you want to control. No one can make you change. But wouldn't you like to know what a REAL relationship is with your partner and your children?  :)on't you want to be free of the pain of your life?  IT IS WORTH IT!


The article published here comes from a respected organization called Men Allied Nationally Against Living in Violent Environments (Manalive).  The group works with male abusers, and the article, therefore, is written from the point of view of men who abuse women.  A portion of it was quoted by Patricia Evans, but she did not write it.  
 
This article is based on the Deluth Model as Skip mentions later in this thread.  The list posted here was written for convicted batterers (men) and is used in prison educational programs to help them understand the nature of their abuse.  There is also a similar list for convicted women batterers.
 
Though it specifically refers to men as batterers, it is very valuable in its descriptions of various types of abuse and the damage that they do.  Women do most of the same things as men.
 
The context is very important.  To an alcoholic "one drink is a violation of sobriety".  However the inverse is not true "one drink does not make an alcoholic ".  The same context is true for many of the statements made in this article.
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« Reply #1 on: January 18, 2008, 09:50:16 PM »

Wow. This was all pretty refreshing but the thing that really got me that I had not seen before was the Controlling Time. I've definately encountered all of these but all the stuff about Controlling Time my ex did in spades. ALL the time, like nothing could ever happen when it was supposed to. That was one of the weirdest things about that relationship and very well described here. I really was a puppet on a string.
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« Reply #2 on: January 19, 2008, 08:36:17 AM »

Patricia Evans wrote "Verbal Abuse Survivors Speak Out: On Relationship and Recovery" for anyone that is interested.
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« Reply #3 on: March 13, 2008, 03:50:58 PM »

Many of those actions are so true for my BPD husband.  This is the first time I've read the concept of making someone wait as a trait of a controlling abuser.  My husband does it all the time!  Just recently he said he'd be down in 5 minutes to play a board game.  30 minutes later he comes down (this is consistent).  When he came downstairs, I was in the kitchen taking vitamins and he said "I thought you were ready!" with an angry look in his eye.  I was taking advantage of the time while waiting for him, to get my stuff done.  But he was really perterbed that I was not sitting down waiting for him.  It's unbelievable. Same with when we go somewhere.  He tells me and kids to get in the car, he'll be out in a few minutes.  So we're out there, waiting and waiting for over 10 minutes before he strolls out.  I think it is extremely rude to make others wait on you, but apparently that never crosses his mind.  I just don't understand these people!
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« Reply #4 on: March 14, 2008, 04:23:38 PM »

Our T gave us a handout that is almost exactly this article. She told my hubby to go over it with me but he did not but he has started to stop himself and watch what he is saying and doing so there is at least that. I asked her why she thinks that he didn't go over it with me- she said probably to save face, that he doesn't really want to tell me "look how horrible I have been to you" I think she is right about that. It is good to know what this abuse entails- It is deeply entrenched in our recent and far past so there is a lot of work to do here. There are many things like the controling time that I didn't realize were abusive- also the forgeting things and making me responsible for it... .that rings true also. One thing I just realized is that I have had some controlling behaviors also. I know that if I say a certain thing or act a certain way

Sulking

Stomping out

Refusing to talk

Walking away

Refusing to give her something

Hitting or kicking something

Refusing to make eye contact

Driving recklessly

Boredom-crossed arms, eyes closed, head down, deep sighs

Withdrawing or withholding affection

Showing disgust-rolled eyes, deep sighs, inappropriate sounds

Oops I have done some of these things to my hubby... .I am more aware now and I have already stoped. it seemed to work when other things didn't but now I know that its wrong for me as well
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« Reply #5 on: May 26, 2008, 01:35:54 PM »

Finally, I'd say, "Are we going?" and he'd say, "I'm just waiting for you." But he wouldn't even have his friggin SHOES on!

Chili - this was my experience FAR too many times - bare feet and all!  Another favorite was when he's banging on the door, loudly and repeatedly, I'd drop whatever I was doing (skinning chicken breasts, whatever, thinking there was an emergency), and there he is saying "God, what took you so long?"  And I'd say "I was cutting up a chicken, hon - did you lose your key?"  Him: "No!" in a tone of complete disgust, brushing past me with no thanks.

Is this all purely conscious?  Like he'll say to himself "I wanna make her open the door when she doesn't have to, then treat her with contempt just to prove I'm the man?"  These are games they choose on any given day?
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« Reply #6 on: May 26, 2008, 01:46:30 PM »

Unfortunately, I do stuff on this list, too.  For me it's passive/aggressive behavior.  One constant in our situation is her always being late... .and then taking no responsibility.  When I am late, I make some mention of it by apology or explanation - going so far as admitting I chose to be late (which happens sometimes).  When she does it, it is always somebody else's fault.  I think that is the thing which drives me crazy, the un-accountability.
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« Reply #7 on: December 09, 2008, 12:23:21 AM »

I read this book a few weeks ago. I would recommend it to anyone who have or has had a relationship with a verbally abusive person. This book has helped me heal a little bit, opening my eyes to the truth- that we are not responsible for their unacceptable behavior.
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« Reply #8 on: December 09, 2008, 01:07:06 AM »

I find this article extremely offensive because it clearly assumes, and even states at the outset, that the abuser is male.

I see no reason to make such an assumption;  I might speculate that verbal abuse is practiced by women more than men, but that would be based only on my very limited experience.  In fact, the article does not give any data to support its labeling of this behavior as "Male role control" - it just slaps that label on this behavior and never justifies it.

Then it goes on to suggest that the abuser "Get into a men's group".  This sounds like what many men here, victims of false domestic violence accusations, have been told:  You must be the aggressor because you are male, so you need to confess your sins and get to a group for re-programming.  What vile BS!

I would suggest we not include such articles on this site.  An article like this, while it may contain some good information, mostly serves to reinforce a vicious stereotype, which does way more harm than good.

Matt
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« Reply #9 on: December 09, 2008, 09:00:50 AM »

The context of this article is misstated, as often happens in Internet quotations. I see several sites have done this  - so its easy to understand the hosts mistake.  This is the reason why it is good to post links or library references for articles and a paragraph about author. Smiling (click to insert in post)
 
The list published here comes from a respected organization called Men Allied Nationally Against Living in Violent Environments. (Manalive).
 
Pat Evans only quoted the following in her book:
 
Male role control works by physically, verbally, or emotionally destroying your partner’s physical and emotional integrity so that she will be afraid to be herself, will control herself and therefore be available to be controlled by you. ~ Manalive
 
The detailed list posted here was written for convicted batterers (men) - and used in prison educational programs to help them understand the nature of their abuse.  There is also a similar list for convicted women batterers. 
 
The context is very important.  To an alcoholic "one drink is a violation of sobriety".  However the inverse is not true "one drink does not make an alcoholic ".  The same context is true for many of the statements made in this article.
 
Hope this helps.
 
Skippy
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« Reply #10 on: December 09, 2008, 09:51:03 AM »

Thanks for clearing this up, Skip.

I guess I still do not see the value of the article that started this thread.  In context - presented to a group of convicted abusers who are all men - it would be less offensive, though what value there is in the one-sided language - implying that all abusers are men - is beyond me.

Presented here, out of that context, it only makes sense when you explain it.  It still makes me mad, because it reinforces a vicious stereotype.  It's like publishing an article containing a cruel racial stereotype, and then explaining that it makes sense if it's only presented to those who fit it.  Why use such stereotypes at all?

Matt
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« Reply #11 on: December 09, 2008, 10:08:05 AM »

I guess I still do not see the value of the article that started this thread.

 

Here is one possible use:

Our T gave us a handout that is almost exactly this article. She told my hubby to go over it with me but he did not but he has started to stop himself and watch what he is saying and doing so there is at least that. I asked her why she thinks that he didn't go over it with me- she said probably to save face, that he doesn't really want to tell me "look how horrible I have been to you" I think she is right about that.

Here is another:

Unfortunately, I do stuff on this list, too.  For me it's passive/aggressive behavior. 

It would be good if we can find the female list, which I understand is different, and publish it here for the same reasons.

This discussion, in itself, may be good. Let's see what others say.   Smiling (click to insert in post) 

Skippy
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« Reply #12 on: December 09, 2008, 10:37:58 AM »

Skip, I appreciate your comments.

But would we accept an ethnic stereotype in any context, even alongside some potentially useful information?  The article labels abusive behavior as "male" behavior.  Would we accept that if instead of "male" it used an ethnic group?

Even if it was presented to a group of convicted abusers, all of whom were of that ethnic group, would that be acceptable?  Then it would reinforce for them that such behavior is part of who they are as members of that race.  That would be intolerable!  But we're used to seeing men treated that way, as natural-born abusers, when the facts are to the contrary - women are just as likely to be abusive as men.

By the way, my comments here are not aimed at CharlyB or any other member - I'm not upset with anyone here.  My anger is at the article and the ugly stereotype it depicts.

I do agree that this discussion is useful.

Regards,

Matt
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« Reply #13 on: December 09, 2008, 12:25:27 PM »

Here is a place to start, Matt

www.evliving.com/2008/05/20/281/debunking-myths-women-cant-be-abusers/

Myth:  When we hear words like, “domestic violence,” “physical abuse,” “abusive relationship,” or “perpetrator,” we tend to think of men as the aggressor and of women as the victims simply because of how big and strong men are, compared to women.  It seems almost impossible that a woman could bully a man or force herself upon him in an intimate nature.  We tend to think that if a man is crying “abuse,” he must have started it, deserved it, or that he must be flat-out lying.  Is it true that women can’t be abusers?

Fact:  Women can be, and are, abusive.  Although our typical view of abuse is of a large man physically assaulting a small woman, that is not always the case.  Sometimes a woman is physically larger than, or stronger than, her male (or female) partner.  Women are most frequently in charge of small children and, unfortunately, much abuse is suffered by children at the hands of women.

Additionally, men have been trained, in our society, that it is not appropriate to hit a girl.  Women have not necessarily been given that same training about the inappropriateness of hitting boys.  Therefore, in an extreme conflict, a woman may be even more inclined to slap, push, or throw something at a man, than the man would be to do the same to her.  Further, women know that men are most likely to be suspected of abuse if police are involved and may be bolder about their physical attacks on their partners than a male who may be more afraid of being arrested and charged with assault.  Additionally, society looks down upon a man who beats up on women.  When women are charged with assault on men, society often jumps to the conclusion that he must have been doing something to deserve the beating.  Thus, men may be more hesitant to engage in physical altercations than their female counterparts when tempers are flaring.

Finally, much abuse is emotional and leaves no scars or physical evidence and frankly, women are experts in this arena.  Women are capable of doing some of the most hideous psychological abuse and often get away with it because it’s not even illegal.  In fact, a woman can psychologically abuse a man for years, get away with it, and still have him arrested when he finally loses his mind and hits her.  Of course, we are not condoning those actions, he should have left the abusive relationship long ago, but abusive relationships can be incredibly hard to leave.

Certainly, not all women are monsters, and not all men accused of abuse can blame a woman, but it is very true that women can be just as abusive as men, and possibly even more so.

Marlo Archer, Ph.D.

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1250 E. Baseline Rd., Suite 102

Tempe, AZ 85283

(480) 705-5007

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« Reply #14 on: December 09, 2008, 12:43:11 PM »

Here is the opposite side, women abusing men

_____________________________________________

Men and Physical Abuse by Women.

Joy Stevens

Male Abuse.

Males abused by women? Why not? We accept the "hen-pecked man." This passive man, abused by his wife, has been the brunt of jokes and cartoons forever.

Our society still sees women as nonviolent peacemakers, the victims of men, perhaps, but not as aggressors against men. The fact that women are more likely to be severely injured in domestic violence adds to the problem of recognizing male abuse.

Health care professionals often do not even think of abuse as a potential explanation. When they see an injury, they accept even a fairly lame explanation. For example, on seeing a  bruised man, they are quick to accept a work-related accident or "a week-end game of football with the guys."

Men find it harder to discuss pain then women and even harder to admit to being a victim. In addition, men often have more hazardous occupations than women and certainly show more physical aggression to each other than women show to other women. All of this makes it easy for the health care professional to accept an injury explanation other than domestic violence.

Even a mugging might be more acceptable than a female beating. Unless the report is of a woman wielding an iron skillet or throwing a flower pot, of course. The so-called humorous side of abuse is more acceptable to a male ego.

When a man does report domestic violence, he often encounters law enforcement professionals who are quick to believe his female aggressor rather than him.

If it seems pretty unbelievable that a single female would stay in an abusive relationship, why would a single male?

Abused men are as likely as their female counterparts to have low self-esteem. In addition, a male victim also has to deal with the examination of  his masculinity.

   

Men and women often come to believe that it is their fault that they are abused; they are somehow responsible for what happened.

Men are also in denial! This should not happen to man, therefore it is not happening.

And men, as well as women, hope things will get better. The woman he "loves" will quit when they are better adjusted, or her job is not so frustrating, or the children get more responsible. Pretty much the same excuses women make for remaining with men. who batter them.

here is the link

www.cyberparent.com/abuse/male-abuse.htm

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« Reply #15 on: December 09, 2008, 04:43:47 PM »

I had read the book before, but reading the behaviors of verbal abuse now, with what else I know, helped to reaffirm how bad things were... .even the insidious little things... .I had pushed some out of my mind.  This will help to keep me strong in the face of any future questions about why I left him.  It's not so much the individual things... .they could be said to be inconsiderate, which is hurtful but not necessarily reason to leave.  It is the sum of the parts.  In my case, EVERY SINGLE EXAMPLE/CATEGORY FIT!  Very, very scary!

I do agree, and am very aware that so many men on this board have suffered endlessly and I certainly would not want to endorse anything that does not have a very clear disclaimer concerning assumed sex of the abuser.
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« Reply #16 on: December 10, 2008, 08:05:30 AM »

Think of this list of behaviors as if you are a BPD woman in a relationship with a man looking for data that your SO is the abuser.  Some of these behaviors are going to be normal responses to irrational and abusive behavior.  Heck, my ex is a psychologist and she used these things against me all the time.  Irritating.  For example:

"Refusing to talk"

After hours of nonsense arguments, one might refuse to talk.  It's not abusive.

"Walking away"

Also, an adaptive and healthy response to irrational and nonsense arguments, and raging.


"Refusing to give her something"

Context.  E.g., say you're watching a football game and your wife comes in and demands the remote.  Should you give it to her? 

"Refusing to make eye contact"

After being attacked for hours, I vividly recall my ex grabbing my chin, pulling it towards her, and stating "look at me" in a vicious tone.  Was I being abusive? I can tell you what I was feeling and it wasn't aggression, it was despair. 

"Boredom-crossed arms, eyes closed, head down, deep sighs"

Context, again.  Hours of being yelled out/nagged, or repeated death by 1000 requests situations, might evoke this. 

"Withdrawing or withholding affection"

After a rage?


"CONTROLLING BY DEFINING HER REALITY:  This form of control is very oppressive.   When he tells his partner what reality is, he is playing God, he is discounting the partner's experience by defining "THE TRUTH"-which in fact is a LIE.  Some examples: That's not what you said or That's not what I said or That's not what you did or That's not what I did or That's not what happened. That's not what you saw. That's not what you felt. That's not why you did it. I know you better than you know yourself!"

My ex-wife accused me of this all the time.  Think about the distortion issues when dealing with a borderline.  One of the biggest problems is distortion of reality.  I used to tell my ex that if we couldn't agree on objective reality, subjective reality was going to be an impossibility, and we would never resolve anything.  The assumption on her part in all subjective cases was that she was correct.  I had to have ironclad objective evidence to the contrary, or I was wrong.  That can't work. 

She would scream at me, (And I mean literally scream) "You're not the keeper of the truth."  Was I the abuser?  In my view, yes, I told her what reality was.  I discounted what I perceived to be distortions.  I said, "That's not what you said," "That's not what I said," "That's not what you did," "that's not what I did, "That's not what happened," "That's not what you saw, " "That's not how you said you felt," "That's not why you said you did it," etc. . . on many, many occasions.  Was I the abuser?  I felt at the time that I was just trying to stay grounded in reality, to fight the distortion machine that was my ex-wife.  I think this list, while sometimes accurate, is mis-leading and probably counter-productive in practice.  If a man or woman followed all of these rules, without consideration of context, they would be yielding to another's reality and another's control.  If that person happens to be a borderline, watch out.   So yes, I agree, these are controlling behaviors.  But, anything we do is attempt to control something.  There are positive and negative forms of control.  If I'm in an argument, I have goals.  My goal might be to "win" the argument.  That's control.  My goal might be to end the argument.  I may try to end it by agreeing with everything said or apologizing.  That's control.  I think we need to be more nuanced in what we call abuse.  I think intent is a large percentage of the equation.  Take violence.  I have held my ex-wife down before and caused bruising.  My intention wasn't to emphasize a point or keep her from leaving or hurt her.  My intent was to stop her from doing something.  Yep, that still sounds abusive.  But, what was I stopping her from doing?  She was kicking me, threatening to break my things, ripping my clothing (that I was wearing), and otherwise attacking the hell out of me.  Her intention was to hurt me.  Her intention was to prevent me from leaving the apartment.  Her intention was to damage my things.  Was I abusive?  I know the better option would have been to leave (though that's listed as an abusive behavior here. . . not allowed to walk away), but given her standard tactics included taking my keys, my glasses (prescription is around -8. . .I can't see well enough to navigate my environment successfully outside. . .I'm not going to fall, but I won't know where I'm going either in unfamiliar areas. . . certainly can't drive), breaking stuff I couldn't replace, and blocking doorways to present me from leaving, physical intervention seemed like a viable option. 



Women (or men, but given the article. . .) if you find yourself chasing your man down, constantly requesting he do things, complaining, nagging, berating, requesting long discussions about negative things especially at bed time, etc. . . you may be abusive.  Heck we can make a counter list that's just as ridiculous.  The following behaviors are abusive:

- making requests

- complaining

- telling a man that he is doing something wrong

- interrupting a man's leisure activities with requests to do chores

- saying "We need to talk." 

- crying

- yelling

- throwing things

- restating the same thing a different way umpteen numbers of times because you think your man doesn't get it

- continuing to discuss after all issues and resolutions have been covered

- continuing to discuss after an apology

- sulking

Context, people.  Context.   
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« Reply #17 on: December 10, 2008, 08:53:24 AM »

Unreal,

I think you make a very good point.

It may help - at least this is helpful to me - to think of behaviors which are unacceptable in any context:  insults, accusations, threats, blame.  Even a single instance of these behaviors - we're all human so maybe we all do these sometimes - but these behaviors are never acceptable in my view.

There may be patterns of behavior that are also abusive - may small things that add up.  But it's hard for me to see "walking away" and "deep sighs" as necessarily abusive.  Many of the behaviors listed here I would call "annoying".  Added up, they might be a real problem - that's the context you mention, and that SuddenlySense alludes to as well.

Using "abuse" to describe every annoying behavior makes the word pretty meaningless.  I think it may be better to focus on those behaviors that are just flat-out destructive.
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« Reply #18 on: December 10, 2008, 09:20:20 AM »

There are many ways to look at some of the items on this list. 

Let's take the first:  Making her(him) wait.  Waiting... how long?  Five minutes?  An hour?  Why?  Perhaps the person was dealing with chlildren.  A homework or work assignment that was taking longer than expected? 

Sighing?  My bf tells me that I sigh when I am frustrated about something.  He always assumes that it is something that he did because his exw (a probable BPD) used to sigh like that.  Most of the time I don't even realize I have sighed. 

So... it's good to look at these behaviors (gender aside) and see them for what they are:  Behaviors that may or may not be part of a pattern of abuse depending on the context... .and the whole tone of the relationship.
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« Reply #19 on: December 10, 2008, 10:25:59 AM »

I'll add that I think everyone tries to have some control in life. That includes how you act with others. We all want to shape things to a degree. But when it becomes irrational, or overreaching, and there's no perception of the discomfort it causes that to me is a sign of problems.

I come from a big family, and there are little things that everyone does. But it's never a problem if you bring it up. Most people want to get along and have happiness and so forgive and forget is always the case.

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« Reply #20 on: December 10, 2008, 11:04:29 AM »

Hi Matt,

I think for person who has never been involved with a BPD it could be offensive this article as indeed they talk about the 'Male' abuser.

We who have or had a BPD in our lives, know better and from all the articles on this forum, we know that women can be as abusive as men.  I guess that woman maybe speak more openly between them when a man is or was abusive towards them.  I think that for some men the fact that they are being abused by a woman is something they don't like to talk about as unfortunately in our world there is still this misconception that me ?n have to be strong and not talk about or show too much emotions.

When I started to look for information on BPD I stumbled on several articles who talked about woman abusers so I just read them and put He in the place of She and was amazed about the similarities between what was written on these women and the behaviour of my friend.

I personally think it is a very good article and as most of the people who reacted I was surprised that this 'time' game my friend also plays is a form of abuse.

I guess for us on the forum, we just read an article about abuse and we find ourselves back in so many things written in this article, that it doesn't really matter if in the text they talk about he or she.  After all this is for me the most puzzling part of this disorder that wherever the person lives, male, female, color, language, ... .it doesn't matter they all act the same and use the same tools to get us trapped and abuse us.

My biggest question after having read this article is: Does somebody with BPD use these abusive tools on purpose? 

2 weeks ago I took the elevator to the garage at work together with my friend.  I had a package for him in the car so told him to come with me to take it.  Just when we were about to get out of the elevator he tells me he forgot something on his desk and that he was quickly getting it.  He made me wait for 15 minutes in my car.

So my question after having read this article is.  Does he do this on purpose.  Was he thinking while still in the elevator, I'm going to let her wait for 15 minutes?  The more I learn about BPD the more the border between what they do on purpose and what they are not aware of doing is not so clear anymore.

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« Reply #21 on: December 10, 2008, 11:09:03 AM »

We often talk about the gender "equality" of abuse in relationships - and a lot of us have been on the receiving end of it - but two compelling facts that drive a lot of communities and courts thinking are:

Females accounted for 80% of homicides for violence-related injuries inflicted by intimate partners in 2004 ~ US Federal Bureau of Investigation.  The other 20% are male.

Females accounted for 84% of hospital emergency department visits for violence-related injuries inflicted by intimate partners in 1994 ~ US Department of Justice.  The other 16% are male.

From a public health point of view - this is a concern.  Additionally, homes with domestic violence involve the children +30% of the time.  And violence begets more violence - often children from violent households carry on the "tradition".

Traditionally, public assistance was focused on the victims. The Deluth model (originating in 1981) suggested that helping the abuser was also important - and it became a widely used program on the US and overseas.

The article that originated this thread derives from the Deluth Model - the Deluth model is based on the principle that 'control' is at the root of violence and that DV evolves something like this  controlling ---> verbal abuse ---> physical abuse  

The Deluth model largely pins the root of domestic violence on men seeking to assert power and control over women. Given the statistics, its not hard to understand why the focus in 1981 was on men.

Deluth Model



Power and Control Wheel



The Deluth model was a significant advancement from prior thinking.  Advancements tend to lead to more advancements and now +20 years later - shortcomings of the Deluth model have been identified and improvements sought.

One significant shortcoming, some experts say, is that the Deluth model doesn't consider cycles of "mutual violence".

Another shortcoming is its effectiveness.  It's been demonstrated that "psycho-educational models" are about 50% affective - half the abusers repeat.  :)onald Dutton, a professor of psychology at the University of British Columbia,  believes the use of cognitive behavioral therapy techniques (CBT) would be more affective.  He views psycho-educational models "shaming" programs - affective for some but not others.

Another shortcoming of the original Deluth model is that it doesn't recognize that women can be abusers... .This has lead to the development of parallel female programs.

And a final comment about the use of the list that started this thread.  I believe the intent is not to say that all these actions are abusive.  Rather it is saying that control is at the root of abuse, and there are symptoms of those that are controlling.  

Like any list symptoms, they could be related to the disease or related to something else.   The point for our community would be that if you are doing some or all of these things and doing them over time - it would be smart to investigate the cause. In some cases there might be control issues - in others cases there may be other explanations for the behavior.

I read an interesting quote from one program counselor  "people that do this don't see it in themselves".

Just some thoughts to add to this discussion.

Skippy
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« Reply #22 on: December 10, 2008, 11:38:54 AM »

Many statistics related to abuse come from surveys which are gender-biased - in some cases as much as the article that started this thread, literally assuming that the abuser is male and not considering as abuse any action taken by a woman.

More often, such statistics are from "meta-surveys" which add together results from a number of surveys.  If some of these surveys are gender-biased, and others are not, the totals might look a lot like the numbers you cite, Skip:  not 100% male but so skewed as to make them questionable.

Meta-surveys which weed out all the gender-biased surveys come up with numbers I describe as "about equal" - maybe 60/40 or 40/60 but generally about equal.

I'm not necessarily disputing your numbers, Skip, just stating that there is a lot of information available on physical abuse, and in recent years it is about equal between the sexes.  Men do not call the police as often, and may be less likely to go to the emergency room if they are injured.

Regarding "helping the abuser" - I think that is wise, if the abuser is willing to change.  In my limited experience I haven't seen an abuser who was remotely interested in changing her behavior, but maybe there are some, and I'm glad there are programs to help them.

Regarding "People who do this don't see it in themselves":  I guess that is the value of communication in a relationship.  If someone feels controlled by such small behaviors, maybe he or she needs to say so.  We can ourselves into "victims" of "control", where a little feedback - "Honey, would you please not do that anymore?" - might be what is needed.
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« Reply #23 on: December 10, 2008, 11:58:44 AM »

Excerpt
More often, such statistics are from "meta-surveys" which add together results from a number of surveys.  If some of these surveys are gender-biased, and others are not, the totals might look a lot like the numbers you cite, Skip:  not 100% male but so skewed as to make them questionable.

I think the skew in the injury and death rates make sense.  Males are stronger than females.  Often, in my altercations with my ex-wife, as I said, she was the one that ended up bruised.  But, it wasn't because I was the aggressor.  It wasn't even always because I did anything (even restrained her as I mentioned in my previous post).  Because of the size differential and the complete unleashed/unrestrained fury she would use on me, she would end up out of control and fall (say while attempting to kick me), or she would bruise her arm on my forearm when trying to hit me if I blocked the attack. 

As a male, I was never all that concerned for my physical safety with my ex-wife.  The concerns are different.  The concerns are:

a) can't defend ourselves

b) police will believe woman over you

c) relatedly, legal consequences

d) custodial consequences (not my concern, I have no children).

A man is in great danger of serious long-term quality of life changes when in proximity of a chronically violent/abusive woman.

The risks are loss of freedom, loss of money, loss of children, loss of job, and loss of reputation.  Just being around chronic attack changes you.  I know, for me, it took a lot of effort not to beat the sh!t out of my ex-wife.  I am not a violent person.  I've never been in fights.  I'm not real prone to violent thoughts.  But, I can tell you when my ex-wife was verbally and physically attacking me for hours, I would visualize all sorts of nastiness.  I really just kind of wanted her head to explode.  Those thoughts are very foreign to me now.  But, I can sort of see how someone might lose it when dealing with one of these women.  I felt completely powerless.  I couldn't get her to stop.  I knew I could end any one argument physically, but that would put me into a world of hurt later. . . not to mention how guilty I would feel for doing it.  We often encourage children to stand-up to bullies.  But, I couldn't even do it in my own home.  Utterly deflating.       
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« Reply #24 on: December 12, 2008, 09:38:04 PM »

Matt,  I think the article or any other article on certain behaviors and how to change, recognize them is on the basis if YOU do this this is what you need to do. It helps us recognize it in us and our SO.

I have also done some of these things, I thought it was just survival, maybe it was the fleas, but I still have done them. I will change.  Have had all these done to me by my mom, my BPDH first and second.
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« Reply #25 on: December 12, 2008, 09:58:38 PM »

this is a good discussion.

i think it would be more beneficial if it was in gender neutral language, ie: does your partner/so/spouse... .the behaviors mentioned do not favor either sex in an abusive relationship.

i do understand that the language is biased towards men because of the use in the CA penal system and i would be interested in comparing the women's version to it to see where the differences lie, if any.

off to google i go.  if i find anything i will post.
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« Reply #26 on: December 13, 2008, 04:27:51 PM »

Wow, did that ever hit home!  Particularly the first one:

Excerpt
CONTROLLING HER TIME:  The abuser controls his partner's time by making her wait. He will say he is ready to talk, but will continue doing something else while his partner waits. He will tell her he is ready to go to bed, then make her wait. If she complains of having to wait, he will blame her for "not having enough patience", "I have to wait on you too", or ":)o you expect me just to drop everything!"-- thereby blaming her for HIS making her wait.

This drives me absolutely insane!  I hate waiting!  I'm probably a bit ADHD myself, but waiting makes me feel like I can hear my life ticking away.  And I wait on her for EVERYTHING.  I cook the meal... .and she's not ready to receive the plate.  "Just a minute", every time.  I used to get blamed for bringing the plate without adequite warning, so now I tend to announce as I get closer to being done... ."Almost ready", "Five more minutes", "OK, you ready for dinner?"  Doesn't help.  There's always something to wait on.

Every time we go somewhere, she's never ready.  We have been hours late to events before.  I hate being late to things too, so this is particularly galling.  I sit around, fully dressed, ready to walk out the door, waiting on her.  Best of all, she then accuses me of not being ready, and delaying her if I do anything but sit there and wait.

Excerpt
A subtle way of controlling a partner's time is to leave most, if not all, of the work for her to do-then complaining about anything she does for herself, or what she does not get done.

Her version of this is to start projects that inevitably require my time and assistance.  Then she can blame me because she can't get anything done until I do something.  She cannot or will not work around obstacles; once one appears, she is completely halted until I do the task.  So she loudly complains about the task not being done, and how I keep not doing it... .until I do it.  Then I never hear of it again, and the project that was stalled never goes anywhere.  She finds a new obstacle to blame.

Excerpt
Diverting, countering, blocking, "forgetting," forcing her to explain, making her repeat because the abuser was not listening or paying attention, and "prove it" are also common ways to control the partner's time and energy.

Yup.  If I say something, I will usually have to repeat it because she wasn't paying any attention. 

Another annoying time waster is that she will be doing something on her computer while a tv program plays.  I will make some comment about the program, and she will be completely lost because she wasn't watching it.  So then I have to explain it at length if I want her to get it.  But then she will complain that she's missing the program because I'm talking... .yeah, the same program she was completely oblivious to a minute ago.

Oh!  And this one!  I commented in a thread about volumes the other day.  Well, she loves to interrupt me when I am telling her something, and tell me I'm talking too loud.  Sometimes she'll do this two or three times while I'm trying to say something.  Obviously, this is extremely frustrating to me.  But if I get angry about it, then she accuses me of pouting or being sulky, also loaded terms that she knows I intensely dislike.

Oddly enough, I have little to say to her these days.  We just sit in the same room with the tv on, while she's on her computer, and I'm on mine or reading.

Sorry for the extended blabbing there... .that article just made a bunch of things very clear to me.
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« Reply #27 on: December 14, 2008, 07:59:11 AM »

Oh, zeroday, we need to get my ex and your BP together.  See if they can make it out the door between two of them Smiling (click to insert in post)  I was going to post my experiences, then I realized I already posted them here back in May.

It's crap like this that makes me  very unsympathetic to the mental-illness aspect of this.
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« Reply #28 on: December 14, 2008, 08:14:46 AM »

OK, I suddenly had a flashback to all the times the kids and I spent waiting in a hot car, cold car, whatever... .for stbx to do whatever it was he was doing after he told us all it was time to leave or said he was ready to go... .because, God forbid, HE had to sit in the car and wait on anyone!

Here's a funny... .let's put them ALL in a leaving the house situation and walk away... .they'll NEVER get out and they'll wonder where we have gone! <:-) 
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« Reply #29 on: December 14, 2008, 09:14:53 AM »

The "target" of the abuse and the "source" of the abuse really should see this differently - and often they don't.

The "target" should not get caught up in the  "sources" issues - the boundaries/rules should be behavior based and selective.  It doesn't help to tell the source that they are controlling - that is denying the others feelings and stepping over normal boundaries - better to just say don't hit me - and if it happens, give it a lot of visibility (and let them figure it out).

The "source" however, needs to be very focused on the issues.  The hit is just the last step in a sequence of feelings - the whole sequence needs to be evaluated if it is to be truly resolved.  Violence is an escalation of feelings that weren't properly managed.

What is most difficult is when a cycle starts... .that target is also a source and the source is also a target.  Each will justify their action based on the others... .which is why "target" and the "source" really need see this differently especially if each are target and source.

Where the source aspect needs to trace the pattern, and the target aspect needs to set the boundary - often just the opposite is done.  :P
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« Reply #30 on: December 14, 2008, 09:19:56 AM »

They will claw each other's eyes out, SS.  That will solve a few problems for some of us >:D

But seriously, I remember my mother leaving my dad and us kids in the car for what seemd like HOURS while she wandered the mall.  Why couldn't we get out?  Why didn't Dad do something about it?
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« Reply #31 on: December 14, 2008, 10:51:00 AM »

First,  <:-) <:-) <:-)!

and second... .control, she had it!
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