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Psychotherapy and Mental Health questions

Controlling Husband Who Cheated Several Times

Thu, May 27th 2010

Hi Dr. Schwartz,

I am 40 years old and married with 3 young children, aged 8 to 2. I am in a different race marriage. He is from Africa whilst I am from Asia. We have been together for 12 years now. Both of us are living in Europe. He is very controlling and used to violence. I have tried to leave him many times but I end up going back to him as I dont have any family or friends here. He has been having a series of affairs with older women. Whenever he is caught he tells me that he is only using these women to get money.  I believe they do give him money and lavish him with gifts.

He always says that he loves me and the kids and he will kill me if he ever finds out I have an affair or leave him. He also believes in corporal punishment on the kids. My first and second daughters are scared of him all the time. I know deep down in me that I cannot live with him anymore but I am too scared to leave him.

We have separate bedrooms but I would say that our sex life is never an issue. He said that his late father did not share a room with his mom as well so he is used to it. I felt so stupid as I was typing this letter to you because I already know what is the answer. I shouldn't let this man walk all over me. I am very depressed and I feel so bad towards the kids for not being able to protect them from him.

Am I the problem here or him? I am so confused now. Please help. I can't talk to my family back home because I am ashamed.

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