Boyfriend's PTSD is ruining our relationship?

This is gonna be long, I'm sorry. But I need to vent.

I'm 22, my boyfriend is 29. We've been together for almost a year. He's a combat veteran and served for 5 years in the Army. He got blown up by an ied so long story short, he was pretty messed up for a while and was in a rehab center. He also suffered (& continues to suffer from) severe PTSD and had years of therapy. He was/is prone to violent outbursts and that's what the therapy helped with.

Let me start by saying that I am completely in love with this guy. I would do anything for him. He has such a good heart and is truly an amazing person. I know he loves me, he's told me countless times that Im his everything and he doesn't ever want to be without me, etc. (Typical corny stuff lol) We have plans for our future, etc and can both see this going long term.

Only issue is... it's turned somewhat toxic. His PTSD causes him to have very severe and negative reactions to ANY kind of stress. He expects me to be extremely submissive to him (which is fine to a point because I tend to be on the sub side of things anyway, at least sexually.) But I'm not "allowed" to question him on anything or "talk back to him" as he calls it because it stresses him out and when he gets stressed, he's reeeally nasty. He'll threaten to break up with me, say hurtful things, say he doesn't care about me, etc. He's called me a c*nt, b*tch, wh*re, etc. He blames me for anything that goes wrong in his life even though all I try to do is help. I'm not perfect, I've screwed up plenty of times but he never lets shit go. He holds things over my head from months ago even after he says we're past it. He acts so suspicious of me, like I'm always plotting against him or something. (He also put his hands on me once, during a really bad fight when we were both drunk. Grabbed me by the neck/hair/etc.) I'd do anything to fix this but it's like he's fighting me on it.

Is this even worth saving at this point? How can I even deal with this anymore?

Updates:
We stayed together & are working out our issues. I sat him down, showed him this question & explained how seriously all this was hurting me. It really shocked him. He has been much better and has made a huge effort to control his temper more and even got on some different meds. He deeply regrets ever saying/doing the hurtful things that have taken place & says the last thing he ever wants is to lose me so he was determined to get help. Thank you all for your advice :)

0|0
49

Most Helpful Guy

  • Oh wow, I have a form of PTSD, TBI and it was trauma but four concussions in D1 and International Rugby I played for seven years. There is something you need to know, and something people can't understand because it's not a psychological injury, it's not an injury you can see that people can recognize like a limb, it is invisible to others and its a physical injury with many symptoms. Whether you know it or not, he is injured and he biology has been reconfigured and all his circuitry which controls emotions, social behaviors, particularly on the frontal lobe, right above your eye balls get a whole new protein called a Mau Protein that they are finding in soldiers and athletes which gives you emotional immaturity, inability to handle stress, feelings of doom; headaches and even paranoia. The VA has very good programs and it is good that he connects with his old buddies and does not get secluded or play video games. You don't want someone in his condition to be in a rut. They need constant stimulating and changing routines and schedules that make him feel things are on the up and up. Moreover he is used to a heorarchy and structure and frameworks to operate in, where everything had orders, tasks and completion of duty and accomplishments and validations. It is not like that I the civilian life and it feels chaotic , particularly with PTSD, and that is why he need to find his own structure with help and keep mentally occupied and in positions of accompaniments, even fixing a deck. Anything but siting around, doing vices, letting him think and not mature his emotional response to stress. He will get better but it has to do with him and his environment and structure and less to do with you, he feels alone as in many cases he is alone

    2|0
    0|0

Most Helpful Girl

  • I can definitely relate. My boyfriend is a 10 year vet and he was also hit by an IED. It is hard to deal with at times. The only thing is it has never gotten physical. He is hard to communicate with at times. I'm like yourself. I tend to shut down when he starts the yelling. Sometimes I want to give up. Other times I realize that he really needs someone to help him. He does receive professional help as well. The only thing I know to tell you is love him and be patient with him. He has to be willing to listen though. There's an age gap between me and my boyfriend also. I'm 23 and he's 31. Sometimes, I feel like older men use that to their advantage. Not to say that we are naive, but we sometimes allow things out of love. If it gets to the point where it affects the woman that you are and bothers your self-esteem then maybe it's time to back away. He has to be willing to change also. It won't happen overnight, but he has to meet you halfway. Just like you take his situation and feelings into consideration, he has to be willing to do the same. It's not fair to you if it's just a one way street. Only you know if it's worth it or not. I can definitely say that it will be challenging!! Not sure if you are religious, but if you are, talk to the one who really can make things better! I hope this helps!! Thank you for your post!! This really helped me also!!

    1|0
    0|0

Have an opinion?

What Guys Said 8

  • I'm sorry. PTSD, is very hard to cope with. And it has a prolonged effect. But what I've found is, people tend use these afflicted conditions to their benefit. PTSD can be overcome by looking at valid career options, therapy sessions. But the key is he needs to accept that its problem and further he must accept help. If he doesn't do any of the two. I'm sorry, but you need to leave him, cases escalating to domestic violence can be very ugly. Be strong.

    4|0
    0|0
  • I have PTSD and yeah my ex hated it also but we didn't break up because of it , she told me she was able to handle it because every time I had a PTSD outbreak she wouldn't see me she saw a veteran , and she can't hate a veteran that gave up his own mind for the country. I told my ex the entire time we was with each other that s part of me will always be a soldier , and she respected and loved me for becoming one she wouldn't leave because of it. We broke up for other things but the respect and love made her strong throughout my outbreaks

    1|1
    0|0
    • Thank you for your service.
      My parents are vets as well. I wanted to enlist but I'm mentally unfit for service

    • This is why I haven't ended it yet. I understand that he's been through a lot and I want him to know that someone is there for him. I could never hate him, he is an amazing person despite these issues. It sucks because when things are going well - they're really great. But when things are bad, they suck.

  • He needs more therapy and help. He's not the man you love when he has an episode, and he needs professional help to deal with those.

    1|0
    0|0
  • He needs help if this is to work

    1|0
    0|0
  • Sounds like PTSD. For starters keep the alcohol away from him and when he blows up give him space so he can calm down. Don't keep questioning and nagging him. Just leave and let him be.

    If he gets drunk stay away and if he keeps getting violent you should just leave him.

    2|0
    1|0
    • @Don't keep questioning and nagging him.

      she never sad she keeps question him and nagging is no where in this. she said she's 'not alkaloid' to ask questions. its called communication. if you can't ask questions in a relationship you're not in a relationship. asking questions is not nagging. he asks questions there's no rule over his head. and how exactly can save keep anything away from him when she's supposed to submit to him.

    • @Azara I think you misunderstood what I said.

  • It's your choice if you want to be emotional vulnerable to this guy. He is going to hurt you time and time again. It sucks.. are you willing to stick it out?

    USMC Vet.

    1|0
    0|0
  • Don't waste your time with him, he'll become worse with time.
    Find a normal boyfriend and forget him.

    0|1
    0|1
  • What sort of things have you done? That you messed up on

    0|0
    0|0

What Girls Said 3

  • Although I emphasize with your boyfriend's condition , it does not give him the right to verbally abuse you.
    You are doing away with your rights as a human being to cope with his mental instability because it normalizes his life.
    When he lashes out at you, and you do not respond. This makes everything ok in his mind.
    This shows that he can do it again.
    I don't think that's okay.
    You both need to have a serious talk and speak about enrolling in therapy together but as a couple.
    Speak calmly , and let him know how this affects you.
    Hold him, yell him you love him but you want the best for the both of you as a couple.
    I know he doesn't want to treat you like this , but he must get more help before he ruins this relationship.
    A person can only take so much before they crack.

    1|0
    0|0
  • I would say he seeks more serious treatment and you two also seek separate counselling together. If he refuses you have to leave because that shit is unacceptable, PTSD or not. It isn't healthy, it isn't fair. If he cannot get his head right then you two have to be separated until he does. He doesn't get the right to emotionally and mentally abuse you based on his own issues. I'm sorry if that seems cold, but it's how I feel.

    1|0
    0|0
  • He might have ptsd but that doesn't give him the right to treat you like an emotional;l punching bag/ seven. do you want get ptsd as a reauklt of his ptsd?

    you have to respect yourself bc he obviously can not or will not. the whole submission thing where you're walking on egg shells and he tells you you are not allowed to communicate.. do you really see this as a relationship?

    he needs more help if he won't get help and doesn't change leave him. at this point you're talking kind of crazy as he is. his behavior is becoming normal to you and you think its ok to be treated this way. you accepting it just makes it worse and it can mess you up.

    i understand he's traumatized and standing by him is one thing but letting him stomp on you is an entirely different thing, and its dangerous. he is unaware of boundaries and that can turn physical.

    1|0
    0|0
Loading... ;