I’M A MOTHER OF ONE CHILD AND LIVE WITH MY BOYFRIEND. WE’VE BEEN TOGETHER FOR 7 YEARS BUT HE’S VIOLENT. WHEN WE ARGUE. HE GETS SO ANGRY HE’S NOT THE SAME. WE BROKE UP A FEW TIMES BUT WE ALWAYS GET BACK TOGETHER. HE HITS ME, PUNCHES ME AND SAYS LOTS OF HORRIBLE THINGS TO ME. HIS FATHER WAS VIOLENT TOWARDS HIS MOTHER AND THEY DIVORCED. I KNOW HE HAD A BAD CHILDHOOD BUT I DONT WANT MY DAUGHTER TO SEE VIOLENCE ANYMORE. I LOVE HIM AND IT’S HARD FOR ME. I DONT WANT ANY MORE KIDS WITH HIM BECAUSE I DONT WANT MORE CHILDREN BROUGHT UP IN VIOLENCE. HE’S VERY NICE WHEN WE DON’T ARGUE BUT I ALWAYS HAVE TO WATCH OUT NOT TO SAY AND DO SOMETHING TO MAKE HIM ANGRY. WHAT SHOULD I DO?
Your letter made me sad, especially for your daughter. This is not a good way for either you or her to live. I’m sure you know that if your daughter sees you being hit, she will assume it’s normal and could wind up being a battered woman herself. It’s never okay for a man to hit a woman and you need to be strong to do what you know you need to do. You say that you broke up a few times which tells me that it’s safe for you to leave. Otherwise, you must be very careful because it can be dangerous for battered women to leave certain men. If he let you leave peacefully in the past, then you must do it, but do it differently. Let him know very clearly that you will no longer allow yourself or your daughter to live with his violence. Be firm. Be strong. He needs to know you mean it and there will be no more “trying.” Tell him if he loves you, he needs to get anger management counseling, and only then will you even consider seeing him again, and he will still need to prove himself. In other words, he can’t just say he’s fine now and you move back in. If he addresses HIS problem, then you can slowly start dating again. If he refuses, move on. He does not love you. He is a horrible role model for your daughter. And it could get more dangerous for you. This will not get better unless you take a stand. But be careful. If you have any fear that he won’t let you leave without retaliation, then only do it with outside help. Do it for yourself and for your daughter.
Please take care,