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My boyfriend says hurtful things and then acts like nothing has happened.
Married Life / 3:20 PM - Sunday October 21, 2012

My boyfriend says hurtful things and then acts like nothing has happened.

My boyfriend of four years (long-distance, and intercultural Asian-Western relationship) always says hurtful things to me and gets really angry to the point where no conversation is possible. I usually get upset and don't talk to him. Or if I tell him that it hurt me he says its because I do have that fault he is pointing out. Sometimes I practice patience, be sort of like a doormat, and sometimes I don't talk to him. Then he doesn't call me back forever and when he calls again he acts like nothing has happened. But I'm still upset and this makes him angry again because I can't let go of it, and that is why we are having these difficulties, because of my negative character. Then when I tell him why he just tells me to stop arguing. And accuses me again the worst stuff. I really do love him and want to be with him and he also loves me, he calls me many times a day to see what I'm doing, almost a little controlling, and really cares for my live and work and helps me with anything. But this constant anger and arguing thing is really draining. Sometimes I just want to be the 'adult' and let him talk (doormat?) but sometimes I feel that its not ok to allow him to treat me like that. What to do?

- Asked by Female, 29-35

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Could you do a follow up with how you define love? Because as far as I can tell by your post, you think it involves verbal abuse or no communication in exchange for helping you with anything but your feelings.

No one can give you the secret recipe to changing your boyfriend's behavior. You either need to learn to accept it as something that's never going to change, or upgrade the company you choose to keep. I vote for the latter.

- Response by ddegon, Female, 29-35, Washington, DC

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Nothing you are trying seems to work. What you need to ask yourself - if you marry this guy and have children with him, are you OK with him teaching your children that it's OK for him to treat you this way, and perhaps your little boys will grow up to treat their wives this way and your little girls will grow up being treated this way?

When you talk about being in love, you have to ask yourself what that really means. If it just means sleeping with the guy and going out to dinner, then if you are willing to be abused, no one else is being hurt by it. but if you are thinking of long term, then you have to realize that eventually your kids could get hurt.

What would _I_ do if I were you? I would break up with him. But if for some reason you are not able to do that, go to therapy for yourself. Or talk to your pastor or priest or other religious adviser. But start working on yourself so you can learn to love and respect yourself.

BTW, my husband sometimes makes sarcastic or joking comments with me and I don't always appreciate it, but he grew up with 4 brothers and I think this is the type of things guys do. However, when he is serious, he does not say this stuff. I think so you do need to differentiate between what people say when they are being serious and what they say when they are joking around. To some degree women do need to have a thicker skin. However, the test is - if my husband makes a sarcastic comment while joking around and I zing him right back, he just laughs. So, if your guy makes a hurtful comment but is trying to be funny, instead of getting hurt, zing him back. If he laughs - he was playing with you. If he gets angry, he was not.

- Response by curvysmartgirl, Female, 46-55, Dallas, Artist / Musician / Writer

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Never be a doormat. Ever. A woman with self-respect and healthy self-esteem will always stand up for herself.

If he's consistently saying hurtful things to you, and then blaming you for feeling hurt, then he's not respecting you. So you really need to ask yourself if this relationship is meeting your needs. I'd recommend couples counseling, but if this is a long-distance relationship, that's pretty impossible.

It's not his job to "point out your faults". And the fact that you keep trying to be a doormat in order to keep the peace is an indication that your self-esteem isn't particularly healthy.

If this continues, you'll only feel worse. So since couples counseling is out of the question, I suggest you seek individual counseling so that you can develop a healthier attitude about yourself, and develop netter communication skills. Maybe then you will be in a better position to decide if this relationship should continue.


- Response by piscesrising, Female, Who Cares?, Boston, Internet / New Media

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I think you need to get rid of anyone in your life who verbally abuses you, and this guy is no exception.

- Response by pinkskittles722, Female, 18-21, Fitness

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