Abuse

Ask Dr. Schwartz
Ask Dr. Schwartz
Psychotherapy and Mental Health questions

Need Advice

I am 51 year old woman , divorced twice and last married 23 years ago. I have 3 grown children and 2 grandsons. I am in a relationship with a man who lost his wife of 30 years ago to cancer. I moved 900 miles to live with him.

He now treats me like a slave. I have no resources and no vehicle. He convinced me to sell mine and he purchased a car, in his name, for me to drive. I also sold or gave most of my belongings away, such as my furniture etc. My money has run out from paying my bills. Now I have to ask money for everything I need.

He is mean, at times, to the point that he tells me to either do what he says or get out. He knows that I have nowhere to go. Then, when he calms down, he blame for all of the problems because I push his buttons on purpose. He tells me that I need to forgive him because I have no better options. He then accuses me of being abusive when I verbally defend myself. He also says his friends accept him as he is and don't have a problem with him.

I know that he is abusive but I am trapped. I also have some recent health problems and working would be difficult. My choices are few, other than moving to a shelter.

At present, I am visiting my family out of state and will be returning. However, I am returning to him with the understandings that: 1) I am not his free labor or intimate partner, 2) We will have separate rooms and I will no longer be the maid, worker, or slave. I have given him the option to give me the car and cash to leave but he refuses.

I know he will not hit me but it won't be easy either. He also seems to have a problem with his grief of his late wife. He worships her to this day and expects me to be like her, cook, dress, etc. He constantly makes comparisons and puts me down because, according to him, I am not as good as her in any way.

What is normal for grieving for a late wife? What are normal expectations in a new relationship?

He also does not talk abusive to me in front of others, nor does he talk abusive to others, nor did he talk to his late wife that way.

Can you give me your professional opinion of what is wrong with him?

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