Some Additional Thoughts on Dealing with a Difficult Partner.
When our partner doesn’t treat us well the typical responses are attacking or withdrawing, what is less common and usually more effective is setting boundaries with strength and being mindful of what you say rather than starting a war.
The difficult partner may deny that they are that they are harsh or might try and blame you for making them respond the way they do. Resist the temptation to argue with them. Your response can be something like I understand that you don’t think that you are …. (fill in the blank) but I see it differently”. The idea here is to not fight or give up but to prove, by your response, that two people can see things differently and agree to disagree agreeably.
The good news here is that even though the difficult partner may deny or even answer back they may change their behavior even though they won’t admit that they were offensive in the first place.
It isn’t realistic to think that a difficult partner will ever be an easy person to deal with, but if you choose to stay with that partner because you still love them, or your concerned about the children, or frightened about living on your own, or just not ready to take action; it can be really helpful to have the tools necessary to take care of yourself in a situation that can be very upsetting.