Ask Amy

Don't stay with abuser for grandkids

Dear Amy: I have been married for nearly 41 years.

From Day One, my husband decided it was OK to criticize my looks and every move I made.I am so sick and tired of the constant abuse.

At one point, he agreed to go to counseling. I made the appointments, but he conveniently stayed late at work.

I don’t know how much more of this I can stand. He attacks me, and now I respond by screaming.

Our children are grown and gone, but we do have grandchildren who would be affected if we got a divorce.

— Worthless

Dear Worthless: I realize that getting a divorce seems like a painful process, but given what you’re going through and what you say you have been through for the entirety of your marriage, leaving your husband will be the only thing to bring you peace.

You must realize by now that you simply cannot make someone change. You cannot make your husband stop belittling you, and the process of trying to get him to stop has transformed you into a screaming, nasty, unhappy person.

If you can’t afford a place of your own, stay with a friend or family member for now. Get counseling and legal advice.

Do not use your grandchildren as an excuse to stay in this abusive marriage. Scores of letters to this column have shown me that when abusive marriages finally end, other family members (including the kids and grandkids) are relieved.

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