Relationship At the end of my rope

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Thank you for allowing me to join the group. I am sorry if I sound like I am dumping on everyone, but I can’t take this anymore!

My husband is a veteran who was diagnosed with PTSD, but he also has issues related to his abusive childhood. It was a weird mix of being treated like he could do no wrong because he was the only boy to being hit by his dad when he felt he deserved it with a huge amount of guilt tripping by his mom.

He was in the military for about 15 years,and did a short deployment to KAF in afghanistan. When he came back, he was a very different person. He rages every day, yelling at me, yelling at our kids. They are adults now, and uni. students living at home. He’s always angry, smashes things and feels like everyone is out to get him. He’s so loud the neighbours can hear, and don’t want anything to do with us now. Everything that goes wrong is somehow my fault, no matter what. He takes everything out on me, and then “forgets” he did it.

A while back, I was able to convince him to get some therapy, but that needed due to covid. He won;t go back,and this is , quite literally, making me sick. I have an autoimmune disease that can be fatal,and stress is one of the worst things for it. It breaks my heart to think I mean so little to him. It got to a point where I got sick to my stomach out int he ar and he was yelling at me because , five minutes later, I would’t go into a store for him- and he was going to “starve to death” ( his words)

He thinks that because I am a calm person, none of this really bothers me, and when I try and tell him, he won’t listen. He shifts the conversation back to be about him and how hard everything is for him!. Then he starts swearing and cursing and it's all how terrible everyone else is-how they are supid, fat, lazy and in his way. It's gotten to a point where our autistic son is afraid of him because he’s so loud. Our other two kids are in therapy, one diagnosed with an anxiety disorder and the other with major depression. I have to keep everyone going, and there’s nothing left over anymore.My emotional energy is gone.

I don’t know what to do to help my husband heal, and maybe I can;t. I’m tired of being yelled at, tired of being blamed for everything and tired of getting no support from him at all. I know he’s ill, but so am I. I don’t treat him like this! He comes home screams at us al, then goes to bed for 12 hours.
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Hi @prettybird welcome to the forum. That sounds very tough on you and your children. My dad was very abusive and was constantly shouting and swearing at us and it caused us all mental illness.


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I don’t know what to do to help my husband heal, and maybe I can;t. I’m tired of being yelled at, tired of being blamed for everything and tired of getting no support from him at all.
Its understandable that you feel worn out and emotionally drained. My mom and dad had a similar relationship and she felt responsible for his emotional well being. As well as being the glue that keeps the family in tact. That is too much to ask of any human being. It's an impossible task.

My dad was severely abused by my grandma and developed PTSD as a result. But he projected this abuse onto my mother, brother and I. And we were terrified of him. PTSD or not, if someone exhibits abusive behavior they need to feel the consequences of their actions. You cannot save him. You are not his savior. He has to want healing and take responsibility for himself. And if he doesn't or is not capable, you cannot help him.

I am so sorry you are going through this nightmare. My heart is there with you


Hi @prettybird. Welcome to the forum. My Veteran has the same background. Abusive childhood, multiple deployments and he also suffered MST very early in his military career.

Reaching out for help was the hardest thing for him to do. He's often said "war was easier". It wasn't until he lost everything and everyone and was suicidal before he went to the VA and decided to work hard in therapy. And honestly, I wouldn't be with him if he hadn't sought help. As a matter of fact it is one of my "boundaries". He must be active in his therapy. I am not a therapist. I don't even like to call myself a caregiver or supporter. He needed/needs to work things out with a qualified trauma therapist or I couldn't stay with him.

We're 9 years in and some days, weeks and even months can be a total sh#t show. BUT he works very hard in therapy and we work hard at this together. We also communicate a lot.

What helped me was learning about the disorder. It made everything make sense and explained why J (my Veteran) does the things he does.

This forum is also a huge help to me. I learn things here I would never learn from a book.

Your first priority should be your kids and yourself. You need a support network yourself and this is a great place to start.

Sorry things are so painful right now.

Welcome to the forum!

P.S. And everything @Bluleaf said.


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Hi @prettybird, I'll second what @LuckiLee said. I'm a veteran, and I had a very short fuse for years after I got out. 7 years later, I had my first panic attack, and I fell head-first into an anxiety disorder. I ended up on the anti-depressant Lexapro. About 7 years after that, as good or bad luck would have it, I developed a heart problem and ended up taking a beta-blocker called Metoprolol.
When I started the Metoprolol, it did amazing things for my mood. It's like it gave me patience; it lengthened my fuse, and gave me the time I needed to reflect on what I was about to do or say before I acted. That insight was the keystone to rebuilding myself as a person. It's mellowed me out a lot, and I'm deeply grateful for it.
Please don't misinterpret me, I'm not telling you there's a wonder drug out there. What I am saying is that it sounds like your vet has a hair trigger, and goes off at the slightest provocation. Somehow, some way, he needs to step out of character and realize how he's treating the people around him if he ever wants to change. Best of luck.


Somehow, some way, he needs to step out of character and realize how he's treating the people around him if he ever wants to change. Best of luck.
yep - I'm a vet too and hubby has had to set some jard boundaries for me along the way -- mostly about not taking off. That's a deal breaker for him. And I can either respect those boundaries or not... my choice. But if I choose not to then I have to live with the results.

Oddly I had NO idea how my behavior affected my loved ones until I came here and started learning from the supporters. It was quite the eye opener.

You are right when you say you can't help him. No one can until he is ready to help himself. And like @LuckiLee's J - I had to hit rock bottom before I made that call for help so your guy may need to do that too.

Just because we have ptsd doesn't mean we get a pass on being abusive.
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