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#418408 - 12/07/12 01:50 AM lacking empathy
HD001 Offline


Registered: 07/30/12
Posts: 262
Loc: us
I'm probably not the first to wonder about this but I feel like my H has no empathy. I feel like he can't see anything besides his own hurts and disapointments. He can't see how his coldness and anger are so hurtful to me. It leaves me feeling a lot like maybe he just isn't that into me. He wear headphones most of the time and is always on his laptop phone or watching tv. I feel like he constantly sends the message that he wants to not be bothered. But then when we go to therepy he will complain that he feels like we are just roomates and protest the distance between us. And naturally its all my fault because I'm the one who won't communicate. This makes me insane all I do is try to communicate tell him how much I want his attention try to think of things he might want to talk about. I just get pushed away he acts annoyed that I'm trying to talk to him and then goes back to therapy again complaining that we aren't even a couple and we don't communicate and that he doesn't understand why I feel so hurt and lonley. I feel like he cannot see anything past his own nose. He can't step into another shoes and try to understand them. This makes me crazy and leaves me seething. I feel like he screams for closeness one moment but when it is offered he rejects it. Is this type of behavior common? Any advice? I try to bring it up and ask why he does this but all I ever get in reply is an "I don't know" so frustrating.
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#418415 - 12/07/12 03:20 AM Re: lacking empathy [Re: HD001]
whome Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 05/07/11
Posts: 1734
Loc: Johannesburg South Africa
HI HD

Sorry for the stress, its a tough time living with a survivor.
I know that I do the same, but I have Boundaries. I am not allowed to use the Computer at home. But then I spend the rest of the day in front of the TV. YOU Never win.
I use the TV to avoid sharing, caring, feeling and confrontation, If we don't talk we cant argue and that is great for me. I am also afraid of talking and sharing because it might scratch out something from my past.
We are both hurt and broken, and she wants me to understand what I did to her in the past, but in order to do that she keeps dragging up the past, I am in turn ashamed of what I did to her in the past and don't want to be reminded of the evil that I did.

So all in all it is a vicious circle and all get hurt and all continue to suffer.

The only thing I can offer you is that you MUST NOT TAKE IT PERSONALLY. Its not your fault and his suffering and pain does not make you less of a person. You sound very very Co-Dependent, and you have a very low self esteem, (This is what I pick up from your post, I may be wrong) Key here is to not have your happiness dependent on him. Your happiness is yours to take, its the one thing that you can control, Carpe Diem, (Seize the day)

Heal well
Martin
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#418463 - 12/07/12 09:11 PM Re: lacking empathy [Re: HD001]
RunningOnEmpty Offline


Registered: 10/07/12
Posts: 91
Loc: georgia
-


Edited by RunningOnEmpty (01/01/13 07:57 PM)

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#419041 - 12/13/12 05:21 PM Re: lacking empathy [Re: HD001]
Hailwic Offline


Registered: 10/15/12
Posts: 19
I'm so sorry HD, but I'm up the same creek as you are. My husband volunteers for after-hours duty all of the time, and when he's home he's either glued to the computer or playing his latest video game.

Also, when I try and talk with him, his favorite answer is "I don't know". I stopped trying to show interest in what he's doing or things that interest him because he literally laughs me off, like it's funny that I'm trying to talk about his video game or show interest in one of his TV shows.

What's even more frustrating is that therapy doesn't seem to be helping anything because he's not honest. He's not honest and his perception of every situation we discuss is polar opposite of reality.

I'm so sorry frown

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#419548 - 12/19/12 01:16 PM Re: lacking empathy [Re: HD001]
HD001 Offline


Registered: 07/30/12
Posts: 262
Loc: us
Haliwic. Yup sounds a lot like my situation. H seems to be softening a little. One of his friends told me he was talking more. H has started talking to me in detail about a buddy of his. The guy is a iraq vet with ptsd. He is really struggling with his issues and H tells me all about it at length. However this is the only subject on which he have meaniful converstion. Its strange to me because he talks about how messed up his buddy is and how much he pushes him to get help. How hard it is on the buddys girlfriend to see him self destruct. I have to bite my tongue and just listen. He has so much compassion for this friend and that's great but I feel like when it comes to me there is no compassion or understanding.
And yes the whole therapy situation. I also can relate. sometimes its so hard not to run out of the room screaming. He minimizes all of his acting out and has this crazy version of the truth that makes no sense to me. He constantly tries to shift the conversation away from himself and only wants to talk about everything that I do wrong. Its pretty frustrated. The things he says he resents me for are all silly like that I wanted a vegetable garden. I've asked him to take a session on his own but he refuses. Apparently I must be in the room to hear how horrible I am.
Okay I. Should stop ranting now. Hopefully your H will come around and so will mine
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Everything comes from within

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#419557 - 12/19/12 02:07 PM Re: lacking empathy [Re: HD001]
Hailwic Offline


Registered: 10/15/12
Posts: 19
[He constantly tries to shift the conversation away from himself and only wants to talk about everything that I do wrong.]


Yes! I know exactly what your'e talking about! For every issue I try to calmly, rationally address (at least I feel like I try to calmly, rationally adress them...), my husband seems to come up with three crazy, off-the-wall things about me - like something I did that made him mad, or something I said that I shouldn't have said. Example: I didn't notice that he brushed his teeth before going to bed two nights in a row. (He's a smoker and I'm not - I constantly complain about his breath)

I get frustrated with the therapist because if feels like she lets the topic go astray and we don't really address the issue we were talking about in the first place before my husband pointed out *MY* inadequacies. Instead we then proceed to talk in length about why he felt it was so important that I should have noticed he brushed his teeth two nights in a row, and how we can send better non-verbal cues to eachother, and how ultimately, even if I feel the issue is unimportant, I need to acknowledge the importance he sees in it.

It's like, "Wait, weren't we supposed to be talking about limiting your time on the computer every night?!" (The therapist proposed that we set nightly limits on computer time...)

I feel exactly like you do! Like sometimes it's necessary that I be present to hear what a terrible person I am!

PS - I'm not trying to minimize or make fun of my husband's feelings, so PLEASE nobody take offense. I'm just venting here... crazy

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#419559 - 12/19/12 02:11 PM Re: lacking empathy [Re: RunningOnEmpty]
Hailwic Offline


Registered: 10/15/12
Posts: 19
Originally Posted By: RunningOnEmpty
He got in a verbal "altercation" with some woman last week at a garage sale- I was MORTIFIED- he behaved like a child. I felt like he needed a good lecture from a "mommy" on how ridiculous he was behaving.



...Sorry... blush

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