Dear Grace: Sad in the city

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Dear Grace,

I am with a wonderful woman who can sometimes be very unpredictable. While I enjoy the positive sides of this unpredictability, the negative sides can be very difficult to deal with and affect both our lives in the extreme. How do I find a way to keep the positives like spontenaeity and minimize the negatives such as vicious attacks on others?

Signed,

Sad in the City

 

Dear Sad in the City,

Unpredictability can certainly keep things from going stagnant, in fact, relationships have been known to die when things become too routine.

If I look at your words “vicious attacks on others,” it tells me she has a temper or a violent streak. I would try to find out why she feels the need for violence. Sometimes there is an underlying issue or stress factor. Talk to her, perhaps get her to sign up for some psychiatric help. Sometimes people get so overwhelmed with stuff that others can’t know about that they act out.

Has she got a support network around her to talk things through with? What stress is she under? How are things at her work, or home or anything else?¬†What are the situations when she attacks? Is it out of malice, protection, self-preservation, or simply because she hasn’t got a handle on her temper?

I have no way to answer this with such vague information. So my advice is talk to her. Find out. Don’t give her a chance to dodge the conversation. Use words like “I feel like” not “you are” to diffuse the violent streak. If you can’t talk, write to her, put in a letter or email what exactly you feel, how her behavior makes you feel.

Perhaps, if talking doesn’t work, find a way to re-channel the streak that causes her to attack others. Some women tend to shut up if you kiss them. There are ways to refocus a temper before it comes to blows. Walk her away from the thing that makes her angry and then refocus the anger by talking through why she feels that need.

Now Sad, I need to ask this, is she violent towards you? Does any of her behavior scare you?

Your feelings matter too. You need to voice them to her too. She can’t change what she doesn’t know about. If she doesn’t know she’s hurting you, or upsetting you, or scaring you, how can she change? If after your talk with her, she doesn’t change, then you might have a deeper-seated issue.

Worst case, show her this and make sure she understands something. The fact that you wrote into me means you haven’t written her off. You want to help, her and you, and your relationship together. If she loves you in any way she will listen.

Good luck Sad in the City,

Grace.

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