Why did my boyfriend hit himself in the face during an argument?

When I got home, my boyfriend and I got into an argument. He got upset and he started hitting his face. That is the first time he has ever done that, but I would be lying if I said that didn't scare me. I locked myself in the room.

Gayle Weill
Gayle Weill
Specializing in relationships and parenting - additional certifications in Child-parent psychotherapy, Circle of Security-Parenting program, adoption competency, hypnosis, and EMDR

Seeing your boyfriend hitting his face sounds very scary! Sometimes when people are experiencing strong emotions the emotional pain becomes so overwhelming that they try to relieve the emotional pain by causing themselves physical pain. It is a dysfunctional way of calming themselves down. I don’t know your boyfriend or your boyfriend’s history so I can’t know for sure if that was what was happening, but I am certainly glad that he does not do that on a regular basis. When you are both feeling calm, and if you feel comfortable, talk to him about what happened. It is difficult to be in a relationship when you are scared and don’t understand why the other person engaged in a frightening behavior. If you feel safe enough and do not worry about his reaction, I would talk to him about your feelings regarding what happened. If you don’t feel safe enough and are worried about his reaction or that he might hurt you, talk to someone who knows you or a therapist who you could feel comfortable confiding in so that they could guide you on how to move forward.

The information above is intended as general information...  (more)The information above is intended as general information based on minimal information, and does not constitute health care advice. This information does not constitute communication with a counselor/therapist nor does it create a therapist-client relationship nor any of the privileges that relationship may provide. If you are currently feeling suicidal or are in crisis, call 911 or proceed to your local emergency room.

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