It's interesting to read your post...some of what you say are surprising VERY similar to my own position (though that of the boyfriend). I'm not physically abusive though--at least as far as I know--and he is a few years older than me. Anyway, it's tough because my wounds are very fresh and to a certain degree, I'm still dealing with it. One thing I did learn is that my relationship with my girlfriend (and only confidante about this abuse), is that it really freed me to a good degree. I have not opened up to my family or anything, so you're boyfriend is actually ahead of me in that process. I know that perhaps we may be in two completely different boats, so please take what I say with a lot of salt (since you know him well--and certainly, it would not help him to put you in danger). One thing I realized though was that my girlfriend's constant but subtle and gentle insistence was very helpful in my healing (to this day, she is one of my closest friends--though we are not "together" anymore). Even when I did not do what she said, I was acutally slowly leaning towards doing it...I hear that sometimes, someone needs to hear about 7 times until they start slowly listening! Especially if he knows he needs help and all, that gentle nudge (empasis on GENTLE) can help. Actually, if you want you can refer him to this site, but take all your posts out perhaps before doing that. This site has been very helpful for me, and perhaps it could be the same for him. Hope that helps.