"When my girlfriend gets depressed, she generally becomes unpleasant. Everything has to end with her winning and quite often putting me down. She never forces me into anything, but she definitely takes advantage of how willing to help I am when she’s upset. Is this abusive behavior? The hell can I do without ruining shit between us?"
- Question submitted by Anonymous
Liiiisten, just because someone is going through a hard time doesn’t mean they can mistreat you…I’m pretty sure I heard that on 90210.
Seriously though, when I first read this I was like ‘shit son this is really hard’ bc I def get it, you love her, you need her, you want her to be happy, when things are good they’re amazing. HOWEVER, she’s not treating you right and you absolutely have to talk to her about it. Tell her you want to support her, you want to be there for her and you love her, but she can’t keep treating you poorly or eventually it’ll push you away. I mean, you have to just be totally honest and hope that you guys can work together to make things better and easier.
You have GOT to stand up for yourself. You also have to believe in her. Once you find the time to sit down and talk with her, don’t expect things to change over night. It’ll take time, but if she’s legit trying and recognizing where you’re coming from and it’s getting easier and better, then you’re doing all the right things.
And if it doesn’t change, and it gets worse or just stays the same and she makes you feel terrible for wanting to be happy, don’t be afraid to put yourself first. You are so important and you deserve the world.
I am going to be real honest with all of you right now and tell you that, on several occasions, I have occupied the place of your girlfriend…when I feel insecure and sad, my brain tends to lash out and, in the past, it has led to me being very hurtful toward the person that I love the most.
It isn’t right, and you need to work together to build up your boo’s strength and also to get to a place where she is not hurting you. I think Dannielle gave some of the best advice that she has ever given up there, so I want to repeat it:
“You have GOT to stand up for yourself. You also have to believe in her.”
If you believe that your girl truly wants to be good to you and for you, but that it is her insecurities and sadness that cause her to lash out at you, you will be able to reach out to her if she says something hurtful, look into her eyes, and say, “Baby, I know you don’t mean what you are saying, so please stop and let me hold you.”
If she is anything like me, feeling that she has someone who understands her, combined with your support and insistence that she not lash out at you, will allow her to express how she is truly feeling. That understanding will also, hopefully, make her stop throwing daggers at your heart in lieu of proper communication.
Just like Dannielle said, though, if she is not able to stop her hurtful behavior, you do have to put yourself first. Loving someone is a challenge, yes, but it should always be an experience that makes you a better version of yourself…if it is tearing you down, you have to let it go.