We put them on bottles…..We put them on boxes…..We put them on files…..We put them on lots of things…..Even people…..They can be flattering, or hurtful, or insulting or a compliment. In relation to people, a label is a word/s that describes someones behavior or actions. (chely’s definition)

Labels. Many times they are used to group individuals into a specific category (positive or negative) and describe them in that same manner. Sometimes the label is accurate, sometimes not. Either way, I still don’t really like using them for people, why? I’ve been labeled before and it has not been pleasant, not positive at all, actually hurtful, down right cruel. So is it fair for me to label my husband? I’ve labeled him several different ways since the conception of this blog. I thought I was getting it right.

However, my unending passion for reading has given me conflicting information as to the meaning of said labels. I have no doubt that he is not without issues. Who doesn’t? But it’s become confusing which term is appropriate. And I’m worried at the same time because I can see some of my own behavior fit into some of those descriptions as well. Not the same behaviors as his but still in the disordered arena (think more like co-dependency). I know how it feels to be labeled unfairly. Don’t like it at all. So I must ask myself, “what makes me qualified to label him….. unless, actually 20+ years of living it, can make one an expert. In that case, qualifications met.

It’s not the label itself but the differing descriptions of these behaviors, under the same label They are many personality disordered Labels. There’s different classes(A,B,C) and then categories as well; (PD=personality disorder) Anti-social PD, passive-agressive PD, bi-polar PD, narcissistic PD, sociopath, psychopath, avoident PD, borderline PD, histronic PD, co-dependancy (and many sub and crossover categories too). It’s mind boggling and become a bit blurred as to which label is appropriate.. While there are many different types of disorder and behaviors, there is one “trick up their sleeve” that is used by all types (various ways) to implement their control and that is mind games.


The DSM-IV defines mind games as: conscious one-upmanship – “In intimate relationships, mind games can be used to under mine one partners belief in the validity of their own perceptions. Personal experience may be denied and driven from memory and such abusive mind games extend to the denial of the victim’s reality, social undermining and the trivialization of what is felt to be important. Both sexes have equal opportunities for verbal coercion, which may be carried out unconsciously as a result of the need to maintain one’s own self deception”.

Whew! I get shaky just typing the description. When you read it, like that, OMG it really hits home. Conscious one-upmanship- it’s unbelievable that he can be that self-centered and really not realize what is going on. Why should he? This is normal to him, he grew up in it, lived it his whole life. When his parents look happy and like they have it all, why wouldn’t he want to repeat that success? Listen for the key phrase, “look happy”. I do acknowledge that it has not all been bad, there has been much good and love all along. That is what adds to the hurt in some ways because it can be so good, it doesn’t HAVE to be this way. It is was it is and I know I can’t change the past, that would be foolish. This legacy has most likely been handed down for a long time.. How do I know ? I’ve seen the look on his Mother’s face before; the one I recognized instantly;

you stop, suck in your breath, and hold it, then twist it closed and swallow it whole and then the look on her face.

Most would not even see it unless you have lived it yourself. This life of covert emotional abuse. Think of it like a child’s see-saw (or teeter-totter) at the park. The highs and the lows as it moves up and down. It won’t stop, you don’t want to ride anymore, you feel sick to your stomach but can’t get off because it won’t STOP! So you hold on for dear life.

I am not un-guilty of crimes against my marriage. I have done things myself that were not in the best interest of us (not infidelity). I can be unkind with the best of them. So while I’m still here, in this marriage I’ll be doing my everything in my power, not to change him but to make him understand . I don’t want to label him, I don’t want our old marriage back -no, no, no! I just won’t tolerate the crap anymore! I’ve been trying to change what I can, how I react. I think I’ve gotten better (not perfect just better) at controlling my emotions, less outbursts and defensiveness. I don’t have to accept his opinion as my own and I let him know it respectfully. I want us to find a NEW marriage, one that is healthier for us both.

I do remember the strong, caring, loving women inside me and he may as well. She got buried, but is digging her way out. So difficult to know what to do? If HE is even in the painting of my future. Heart tells me one thing, head another. Never sure what tomorrow will bring. What I do know is, I shouldn’t be putting labels on him so freely, I know how much it hurts. Maybe we DO belong together. Two disordered people just getting by the best way our twisted youth will allow. I don’t know. I just think, that I better think before I label. We all should. Do you agree?