Breaking golf clubs, spiking the football, throwing a baseball bat violently at the floor, throwing a basketball against a fence, kicking stuff---> These are all things i have done. However I did all these things in the contex of playing sports. Intimidation is sometimes part of the game. I've never broken any thing inside of a house in bit of rage. I've never punched a wall, thrown a vase, thrown a table over or anything like that in front of anybody.
I kind of understand where a baseball player coming from when he goes up to a gaterade jug and starts swinging at it with a baseball bat (especially after giving up a home run or something) It's kind of a heat of the moment thing. But when a kid calmly walks out of the camp, goes out into the woods with a bat, looks for a tree, and then starts hitting it, it sound like a psyco for some reason.
I think the point is that while none of these things are always present in an abuser, they are signs of a potential abuser. That abusers tend to display behavior like that listed by Brooke. Her point is not that every guy who acts out his frustration and anger on a punching bag is going to eventually smack his wife around. There is always the exception to the rule. It is just a heads up. There is just as much chance of a guy not displaying these behaviors and beating the crap out of you one day. The point is not to ignore potential signs.
I would avoid getting involved with anyone who has anger management issues.
Getting angry, grabbing a bat, and beating a tree or destroying a chair are SCARY things. People who act destructively are allowing their anger to spiral out of control. There exist constructive ways of dealing with anger and none of those involve beating the life out of something (or someone).
All emotions serve a purpose. Anger, for one, has a bad reputation but it is not necessarily a bad emotion. Anger can be used constructively as a motivating emotion. However, anger needs to be managed so that it can be used constructively rather than destructively. If someone displays a pattern of inappropriate anger management, he/she is someone whom I would avoid.
The ways in which an individual deals with anger indicate a lot about that person's level of maturity and growth as a human being. Immature and stunted people seem to have problems in every facet of their lives. All their emotions seem to overwhelm them and they deal with those emotions in ways that tend to have a negative impact on themselves and others.
I'm with Brooke, almach and Debra on this one.
Mr. B is very competitive. He golfs and he and his buddies have all been known to throw tantrums on the golf course.
But if he came home and continued his tantrum I think my reaction would be "get me the hell out of here".
Luckily, oc's fella (who seems to have prompted this thread, and its particular highlighting) didn't bring it home. He may be angry, but he seems to be leaving the anger in the woods (based solely on her reports of course).
Thanks for making the point, boomer.
The fellow in the woods would really worry me if he were, say, 30 instead of 18. At 18, well, everything's a mess anyway.
Thank you, Brooke, for posting these signs.
Given what I read in newspapers, there are thousands of women in denial about their husbands' behavior. I think you've probably saved many women by your post, and I really doubt if there are a LOT of women accusing men of being "abusers" when they're really not. Just my opinion, as usual!
I'm glad you posted this, Brooke. Now it will be here permanently, so we can resurrect it whenever the need arises.
One thought, though....I hope you're not being hard on yourself for not recognizing/being educated about these signs in your abuser. We all tend to excuse weird behavior when we're in love. That's just normal. And there are plenty of people who exhibit some of the signs on your list who never descend to abusing their partners. So even if you had been educated, it stands to reason that you still might not have suspected it would ever end up the way it did. Right? You're a sensitive, good-hearted person, Brooke, (and those are GOOD things to be!) so you gave him the benefit of the doubt. Unfortunately, he betrayed that. So don't take any of the responsibility for what he did on yourself. Okay?
I agree with Debra on this. I wouldn't even consider dating a guy that has problems controlling his temper.
I also consider guys that are quick to anger immature and weak of character. Might not always be the case, yet it is not a trait that a person with a level temperament would nourish.
All I can say is WOW. I'm an intellectual woman, but he had me doubting my feelings and perception on our marriage. But, reading this confirms my gut. Thank you. Now I have to figure what to do next...