Married for 32 years to a dominant, self-centered, abusive husbandBy Emily A. Marcelo
Philippine Daily Inquirer
I have been married 32 years to a dominant, self-centered and abusive husband. I always try to please him out of fear. He is not a saint and I won’t be surprised if he’s had one-night stands with other women.
My husband loves the night life. He drinks with his barkada three times a week and comes home way past midnight. I cannot complain because he doesn’t allow me to complain.
My nightmare happened two years ago when I found out he was having an affair with one of his employees, a young gold digger. I got very angry and very hurt. This time, I found the courage to confront him.
Obviously, he denied it. Their affair went on for several months. Every time I’d confront him, he would yell, call me names, curse me. He’d hit me as well! He warned me that if I kept on confronting him or talking about his infidelity, he would hurt me more and more.
Things are worse now. We always fight even over petty matters. He has become more abusive. Respect is gone. He keeps telling me that everything he does is really “none of my business” and to just shut up.
Our only child is already married, and she doesn’t want to get involved in our marital problems. I support myself by working as an office clerk.
What next? How shall I end this nightmare?—Abused Unhappy Wife
If you have no aspirations of being canonized in Rome and made a saint, there are many choices you can make if you’ve had it as an emotionally and physically abused wife.
Why do you allow yourself to be battered? Are you a masochist who enjoys suffering and just won’t do anything about it?
Unless you are disabled and cannot move around freely, why are you acting so helpless and hopeless and seem not to have the survival instinct to bolt to freedom? You have a job, so you’re not exactly dependent on your husband for survival. Even the lowly cockroach runs for its life at the first sign of danger—and you don’t?
Your daughter, through her sheer nonchalance, clearly wants you to decide your fate yourself and is not giving you any help in that department. She can see the handwriting on the wall, and it obviously isn’t good. Had she seen hope, she’d probably move mountains to save her parents’ relationship.
In a short while, your unhappiness may affect your health, and you may find yourself disabled by an illness. What then? Will you lie there alone, silently screaming in your mind over and over about the “should-haves” and “could-haves” you had the chance of pursuing but didn’t?
If there is a sliver of a chance for you to reverse the downward spiral of this marriage, grab it and see how it goes. Change your attitude completely toward him. Stop the nagging and just be nice, despite his horridness. He might notice the new you and be a better man because of it.
Life can change in the wink of an eye. You may not become a saint, but he might.
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