How would you like to hear other peoples’ experiences? Perhaps I can invite you to peep over the shoulder, as this wife tells her own experience with a passive aggressive husband?
“Once upon a time, I was a very patient, loving, confident, creative, happy, cheerful, accomplished woman and now I am angry, frustrated, unhappy, confused. I always believed that my cheerful optimism would bring my husband up - he says it's what attracted him, what he wanted to have and be...all he has done is to kill my spirit with passive resistance, punishing me and doing constant covert abuse (verbal, and emotional).
He tries to control me (he has preferences about everything from my clothes to the brand of toilet paper I buy, expresses disapproval whenever I am happy doing my own thing - discouraged my career, my garden, my writing until I lost pleasure and passion and quit so he would stop making me feel bad like I am all about "fluff"...things that don't matter.
My self-esteem is so low I just want to jump off the nearest bridge.”
As you're sitting there in front of your computer reading this very personal letter, I can imagine you matching this frustrating marital experience to yours…and finding lots of points in common.
Perhaps you are focusing on this special point:
“He is always irritated and shows his strongest disapproval whenever I am happy doing my own thing.”
As you become aware of this aspect, perhaps the feelings well up in you: disappointment, loneliness, frustration at his lack of support. It’s not only that he doesn’t share your loves, the problem is that he can attack your projects immediately just because you love them!
Of course, you have gone through some advice on how to deal with passive aggressive husbands, and you know that you must not allow him to dictate everything that you should or not should do.
Before getting to that, perhaps you have the deep courage to look at the loneliness where his contempt leaves you. If you married with the normal hope of having a partner to do life affirming activities together, and to have fun together, his present sardonic resistance is leaving you alone, and frustrated and somehow angry at the deception. You need a companion that has fun at the same things you have fun at, so both can enjoy them.
If there is a need for him not to do things with you, because work commitments or other problems, perhaps you can accept that, and your trust is maintained.
What really is disconcerting and sad is his ability to destroy the things you love, so you are left without his company and without the activities you love to do and have fun at.
As you recognize now the impact that his attitude is having in reducing your world by destroying your capacity to enjoy doing some activities, think of the future. Who would you be in the next future if this behavior continues? A wife having such a “low self esteem that you would be ready to jump off the nearest bridge?”
Before you get to this point, you probably think that there is something you can do to protect your love of life….there are many things you can do to recover your self. At this time, what is possible here is to tell you that you are right in your feelings of being abandoned by your husband not sharing now the same things that made him fell in love with you…and restricting or destroying your enjoyment of funny things to do.
It’s a difficult task, but while looking at the situation as it is, and not denying this impact on you, you are taking your first step to recovery.