Relationship becoming abusive?
I’ve been with my girlfriend for just over a year. I always knew she has high standards about things, and that she can be quite insecure, but it’s gotten worse recently.
Last year, she was in her final year of a very very stressful degree, and throughout the year she would excuse certain things with how stressed she was, such as not allowing me to choose where we went on our (infrequent) dates. Her degree has fortunately finished now, and she has started a job, which she seems to enjoy quite a lot (and has very reasonable hours).
However, somehow we’ve been having more arguments recently - these used to consist of me making a genuine mistake, her getting very very upset, me apologising, then everything going back to normal. This happened until one day when I said a joke that was arguably crossing a line, which caused her to become upset, but I decided to defend my position. She became incredibly upset and had a panic attack, believing that the fact that I was defending what I said meant that I didn’t love her anymore. I jumped to reassure her and she calmed down, but it’s made me afraid to actually talk back to her.
Since then the frequency of our arguments has increased, and I’m not sure why.
I left one tiny speck of food (~1cm across) on a bowl I ate from, and this prompted her getting angry with me, saying that it would block the sink, which is obviously an easily solved problem, you just scrape it into the bin.
I was having a conversation with her housemate while she was in the room, and she asked us to lower our voices, which I promptly did, but her housemate said we weren’t talking loudly; I defended my girlfriend and said that actually we were, but it was too late, she immaturely left the room and didn’t explain why, spoiling the night for all of us.
Later, while she refused to explain why she left the room (she has an interesting habit of doing laundry instead of talking things out when she’s upset), she insulted my forgetfulness while we were talking about an unrelated topic, even though she knows my memory is something I’m really insecure about. She later explained that she was in a “bad mood”, for no apparent reason.
I’ve never met anyone who gets annoyed with me so easily, but I know it’ll upset her loads if I bring this up, no matter how gently I do it. Can anyone help?