My husband and I have been married close to 8 months, weeks prior to our marriage he started to slap me, hold me down, forced me to stay in the house, slap me if I don’t look him in the eyes when he’s talking his anger would last until he felt better. It would be about small things, small fights, things that should be an argument or a conversation and then it’s either better or worse, but he could never control his anger. I remember the day before our paper marriage we fought about something so small I cannot remember it, and I told him I was tired of how he treated me and I didn’t want to marry him. He then slapped me, screamed at me, got on top of me, forced me to stand up if he wanted or sit down if he wanted, forcibly put his hands over my mouth when I cried, and told me to shut up before anyone heard me. This was all in his mother’s home, and his brother and mother did nothing to stop it. Later I found out, his mother had anger problems as well, when she would get mad at her son she would scream, throw wooden boxes at his head and give him a concussion, use any object to hurt him not caring what it was the only thing she didn’t use were knives.

Through the 8 months, I have been slapped for things like… saying I didnt wanted to go to his mother’s house because she was acting crazy and I didn’t want my child to be around that and not only does he hit me, he tortured me by not allowing me to rest, while he screams at me for hours and then he will rest and force me to stay in a position of his choice. He once put a bag on top of a dirty plate in the kitchen and I got annoyed and asked him why he has to do that, and he picked up the bag, pushed it down harder on the plate and screamed and made my life hell for the next day and a half. He even was screaming at me to eat cat food. I just have no desire to clean or be a good wife, he complains so much and compares me to his mother. I am so depressed.

I’m sorry that you are having these difficulties. It seems that you are in a dangerous predicament. It’s not okay for anyone to abuse you. If possible, you might begin exploring how to end this relationship. That may include meeting with an attorney and inquiring about a divorce. You might also consider where else you can live, perhaps with family or friends.

In the meantime, when he’s abusive, contact the police. I don’t know the laws in your country but in the United States, physical abuse is illegal. If the police were called in that situation, they would arrest the perpetrator then charge him with domestic violence and possibly other charges. He would be taken to jail and prosecuted in a court of law.

Another possible temporary solution is a domestic violence shelter. Again, I don’t know if such a service is available in your country but in the United States, many communities have shelters were victims can seek refuge and protection against danger. The shelters are staffed with knowledgeable case workers and therapists who can provide a host of services, including safety planning, counseling, services for children, and much more. Typically, the services are free of charge and can be lifesaving. It would be worth attempting to determine if you have such facilities in your community.

My general advice is to keep yourself safe, leave if you must, contact the authorities if you’re in danger, and begin thinking about how you can leave this relationship, should you decide you wish to do so. Please write again if you have any additional questions. Stay safe and please take care.

Dr. Kristina Randle