24th July 2020 at 9:00 pm #110961Bingowashisname0Participant
I’m curious to know if anyone has any success stories in terms of their abuser changing their behaviour?
Our relationship has ended and I can’t go back, too much has gone one… but, he wants to have counselling (which I will agreeably attend because I want a positive relationship apart because we have 5 children together).
Although he wants the counselling, I can’t see him accepting there has been any mistreatment. He’s adamant I’m still to blame for his lying and cheating so I’m not convinced he’ll challenge his more subtle and long term hurtful behaviours. I think he believes a counsellor will confirm his ongoing insistence that I’m mad/hysterical/problems were all in my head.
Further to this, I actually think counselling could be helpful in him dealing with his own childhood problems where he witnessed DV on a regular basis.
Do I c***k on with my own therapy to get over all this or support him in his attempt to unpick his own mental health issues?
24th July 2020 at 9:37 pm #110965EggshellsParticipant
I would strongly advise against joint counselling. I was advised against it by Refuge. Abusive men can be incredibly manipulative and mine manipulated my counsellor and used her against me.
His desire for joint counselling is likely to be about convincing you that he’s not abusive and at the same time hoovering you back in. It will mess with your head big time.
If he’s serious about mending his behaviour, then he needs to try and do that by himself. If he doesn’t see his behaviour as wrong then he will have no desire to put it right. Even if he does have the desire, it will be a lifelong struggle for him.
I’ve never heard of an abuser changing. If it’s possible, I should imagine that it’s very rare.
24th July 2020 at 9:40 pm #110966TurtledoveParticipant
Hi Bingowashisname0, if I were you I would carry on with your own therapy. When and if he’s ready to get some help then he will!!! It sounds like maybe he doesn’t think there’s a problem in his behaviour and really until he admits that then maybe he can’t be helped. X
24th July 2020 at 10:22 pm #110975Wants To HelpParticipant
I agree with the others. Joint counselling a big no, but there’s nothing to stop him from getting his own counselling. I bet he won’t though! He’s not that serious about changing himself, he only wants to go to counselling with you so he can blame you. Call his bluff, tell him it’s great he wants to have counselling and to c***k on with it 🙂
25th July 2020 at 9:44 pm #111012iliketeaParticipant
Agree with everyone else. Joint counselling big no no. Mine just wanted a referee to tell him he was right. Of course she didn’t, they never take sides, or pass opinion/judgement. Needless to say it didn’t last very long because he thought I was very wrong for discussing “personal” issues…..
26th July 2020 at 6:10 pm #111049YellowBirdParticipant
Yes, I also agree. We had couples counselling several times over several years, and every single counsellor was taken in by his apparently genuine and earnest conversations and pleas for help. He didn’t change his behaviour one bit, and still managed to convince the counsellors that he couldn’t and it wasn’t his fault.
I’m gobsmacked at how many professional therapists are unaware of the sophisticated level of emotional manipulation these abusers can get away with.
26th July 2020 at 9:25 pm #111058BalloonsParticipant
Just wanted to add another voice here.. i also had a failed attempt at couples therapy. I knew that it was advised against in abusive relationships but I was desperate and clinging on to hope that something might work. Needless to say he charmed his way through it and it just left me even more full of doubt than I had to begin with. He used it as a tool to support his own views, even when she wasn’t actually agreeing with him he would twist it anywhichway to suit his purpose. After we split he went back to her on his own, to fuel his story of how he was “on the road to recovery” after all the abuse he had suffered. Like yours, he could really have done with seeing a professional to help him deal with some traumatic childhood experiences, but from what I could tell it never got that far. He spent a good few months diagnosing me through her after we split! Whether or not they were things she actually said I dont know, I wouldn’t put it past him to make it up. Long story short, people were right when they told me not to do it. The only real benefit that came from it is I then knew that nothing would change it, and the longer it all goes on even post separation the more i feel like they never change. I’ve always been one to believe that anyone has the capacity to change, but that doesn’t seem to be the case any more. I would stick to your own therapy if I were you xx
27th July 2020 at 12:27 am #111062Bingowashisname0Participant
Thank you everyone for taking the time to comment and feedback. It seems pretty conclusive. Like a lot of the people I’ve read through on here, it seems I just want to cling to that good side of him and help him become the man I thought he was. But I guess I’m kidding myself. Ultimately, our children are who are most important right now. I think I keep holding onto possible positive outcomes for them… but selfishly I also think for myself. I really must move one, get some help for me, and let him go and hope he’ll continue to be a great dad in whatever capacity he can.
Thank you all again x*x
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