How Can I Get My Husband To Stop Calling Me Bad Names And Putting Me Down?
One of the most important things in any healthy relationship is mutual respect.
This respect may be different from relationship to relationship, of course. Some couples may poke more fun at one another than others. Some may call each other silly names, but in good humour.
But the fun stops when the good humour stops. My wife and I have been a couple for almost thirty years. We argue. We have our bad days like everyone else. Our relationship isn’t all rainbows and pink unicorns farting lavender… We have our rough times like everyone else. I can be particularly infuriating sometimes. And I tend to have a short temper, especially when I’m stressed. My wife also has her weak points, and we are sometimes angry at one another. Sometimes very much so. I particularly hate it when my wife talks high German to me, as it makes me feel that she’s treating me as if I were unable to understand Swiss German (which we usually speak – when we’re not speaking English).
But, angry as we have been, we have never forgotten that the person we are angry at is our partner. Is the person we have chosen to be with. We have never once deliberately insulted the other. We have never called the other hurtful names. And we have never once raised our hand against the other. We have shouted at each other, but never deliberately tried to hurt one another.
This is how it should be in a healthy relationship. We are humans beings, and expecting to never argue, to never be angry… that’s just not realistic. But even then, remember who you are talking to.
In your case, question asker: It really depends. As a first step, I would recommend that you actually tell your husband that you don’t like it if he calls you those names. Maybe he doesn’t realise. Maybe he’s not thinking. Maybe if you point it out he’ll think a little more about what he calls you. But perhaps that won’t change anything. But it’s worth a try in any case.
If the name-calling is “somehow okay” for you, then shrug your shoulders and ignore it. But if it is hurtful, if your husband uses these terms to deliberately hurt you… then this isn’t the basis for an equal, healthy relationship. Not long-term. If I were you, I’d ask myself if this is the relationship I really want to be in. I’m not suggesting that you walk out right away, but I am suggesting that you might want to discuss this with your husband and perhaps (as a couple) have a few sessions of anger management / couples therapy to learn and to practice some forms of non-aggressive communication. Of course if that doesn’t work and if you fear for your safety, then you really need to get to safety first, and think about next steps second.
Nobody should stay in a relationship that is making them miserable, married or not. You can always get “unmarried” again. Rather that than being unhappy.
Question: How can I get my husband to stop calling me bad names and putting me down?
This answer originally appeared on this Quora question on Marriage Advice.
Bon Jovi – You Give Love A Bad Name – Lyrics