I hate living in stress / tension. I am a young woman, I have anxiety and I have never taken medication, because I've managed it myself for the past 12 years, my terapist herself considered me functional a few years ago.
However, I can't take much of being disregarded for a while.
What happens is that my partner has periods where he withdrawls from me and my daughter, where you can see and feel it in the air that something is not right and he wants to be alone. At such times he doesn't really engage in anything, no conversations, doesn't have dinner with us, doesn't play with our daughter, doesn't even look me in the eye, doesn't adress me unless if absolutely necessary. Sometimes I feel like I'm the problem, like if I wasn't there everything would be ok, because I'm the one he doesn't want to be around.
Well, I have little patiente for this. I don't like it that our life seems to suddenly stop with no reason, no explanation. I get very confused because I felt that everything was ok and then suddenly his attittude shifts. Initially I give him space, but eventually I get tired of waiting for him to pick up his mood or initiate a conversation (that never happens...). So, I end up trying to get closer to him in numerous ways. When I'm finally frustrated and tired of the whole thing, I usually initiate the conversation.
I ask him "is everything ok?", "what's going on?", "are you mad at me?". Obviously the answers are always non-answers: everything is always ok, no he's not mad at me (but doesn't tell me what it is either way), and eventually he may say I'm making it up. There's never an explanation to anything. It's always yes or no answers, that he voices with very difficulty. The most common of answers would be "I've nothing to say to you". I feel he goes to great lenghts not to talk to me or give me any information of what's going on inside him, he just shuts me out completely and this hurts and it's very hard, because I'm a "face the problems head on" person. I'd like to identify the problem and solve the problem, together; but not him. He likes the "let's pretend the problem doesn't exist" posture and the I do my thing, you do yours.
And so, I usually lose my patiente and insist. When I insist, all that tension he has building up shows up. I can see it in his eyes, I can see it in his posture, in the way he talks to me. Then he starts bringing up stuff, in the few words out of his mouth, and I get that they are some of the thing he's been brewing inside. Honestly, why not just ######6 talk?!?. All his atittude is already violent enough for me. But it doesn't stop there. He starts getting more and more agressive, from making himself "taller than me" to shuving, pushing, restraining etc. 2 days ago he slapped me in the face for the 1st time. I honestly didn't feel much, the adrenaline was rushing through me.
In these situations I stand my ground. I don't runaway, I don't leave, and I defend myself. Sometimes I push him back so he doesn't hurt me, sometimes I lock my harms together. That day he was grapling me, trying to shove me out of a room and I elbowed him and got off. Unfortunately he took this as justification for his actions. Like if I hit him with the elbow once during the scruffle, then it's ok everything he has done before or does after. I believe if I had done nothing, he would still feel justified. So, I'd rather defend myself minimally.
I know I'm not perfect in dealing with any of it. I'd really like some wisdom on what I should do when he is diregarding me? What should I do when I feel tension building up? What should I do when the physical abuse is ocurring?
I'm a really proud person, in the regard that I don't back down and I refuse to be submissive. Even though it has nothing to do with him (it's who I am) and it's not my intention I think it might agravate him more, I think he takes the fact I don't quit has a defiance. But if I did things any other way I feel like I would not be being true to myself, like I'd be giving up on myself.
Please help with your input. Thank you.