I’m Having a Hard Time Dealing with My Husband’s Verbal Abuse

The Japan News

Dear Troubleshooter:

I’m a part-time worker in my 40s. I’m having a hard time because of my husband’s verbal abuse.

He always says things like, “You’re nuts,” and “You haven’t matured.” He yells in anger so loudly that I’m constantly looking at him to figure out his mood, and I don’t even feel like smiling in front of him.

If I become hysterical, he tells our children, “This is just how your mother is.”

My husband has good and bad moods. After he yells at me, he’s in a good mood for a while.

Shortly after I gave birth to my daughter seven years ago, my husband cheated on me. However, my in-laws told me that the affair was my fault. I’ve stayed with him because of our children, as well as for financial reasons.

Since I gave birth to my son three years ago, his verbal abuse has gotten worse.

When I found the courage to get advice on divorce from the local government’s domestic violence counseling office, I was told to flatter my husband and make him feel good about himself so that I can control his mood. What should I do moving forward?

B, Osaka Prefecture

Dear Ms. B:

Your husband’s words and actions are clearly abusive. It is a matter of course that a married couple will have quarrels. Although some arguments may go overboard, they can only be tolerated if a mental equal footing is guaranteed.

Any kind of abuse makes the victim feel like who they are is being rejected and makes them lose the will to live.

What you need to do now is to accurately recognize that you are a victim of abuse. Temporary kindness after verbal abuse and violence is a typical example of domestic violence.

If children witness their mother being severely verbally abused by their father, it is essentially child abuse. Do not be misled by those around you into believing that a wife subjected to abuse is also at fault or that she just needs to get better at avoiding it.

You need to become financially independent in order to escape from this. In order to take the first step, you need to listen carefully to your inner voice.

You must be mentally screaming that you have reached your limit. Physical scars are visible, but it is difficult for people to understand the emotional wounds of others.

It is disappointing that there are still places like that domestic violence counseling office, which only gave you pointless advice.

Please take the cries of your heart to a psychosomatic medicine specialist or psychiatrist. I think they should be able to refer you to an appropriate support service.

Masami Ohinata, university president