24th August 2020 at 10:22 am #112673
(Detail removed by moderator) I am due to go for a short holiday with husband and my (detail removed by moderator) yr old son. All I feel is anxiety. My husband has a very short fuse and tho recently promising to address it I know from experience he wont. It devastates me, its like living with a vicious unpredictable dog that suddenly goes for you. My son will go back to university soon and I so wanted this little break band i feel frustrated with myself that this man is capable of making me feel so anxious and upset. To the outside world I act like I’m ok, but inside I’m dying. When I visit other households were life is normal where it feels peaceful I just want to break down. I’ve recently been successful in a job application so will soon have a bit of money of my own, my husband earns a very good wage but I feel very vulnerable after many years of marriage that I will struggle financially should I leave. All my strength and spirit has gone. I feel anxious lots of the time. Strange but in any social situations he has very little to say to anyone but behind closed doors he shouts and swears and has plenty of negative things to say. Despite all this I also worry about hurting my son by breaking up the marriage, we are very close and although he has fantastic friends and a lovely girlfriend he is a bit of a worrier and I know he’d worry about me. I’ve spent his whole life trying to make life good for him, despite often feeling terribly lonely. It’s such a mess. Sorry to ramble on. Just feeling so sad
24th August 2020 at 10:45 am #112674LottieblueParticipant
You are far from alone. There will be a lot of people on here who will relate very clearly to what you are going through.
A year ago I think I was probably where you are now and the most important thing that I can advise you to do is to educate yourself – google and read. I, also, have a volatile husband and similar family makeup. He has been volatile for our entire marriage and when the children were younger I just saw it as my mission to protect them. Not physically, it was never physical, but I wanted them never to feel that they were in the firing line, that it was me. I believed it was me. It didn’t enter my head that I could leave and continue to protect the children.
Then last year my husband had a real explosion at me. Not the first but more aggressive and more irrational than ever before and at that point I said to myself that it didn’t matter how worthless I was, that behaviour surely wasn’t right. And it was then I realised that I had lived through a whole marriage of abuse. Phrases came up like “loss of self esteem” and “walking on eggshells”, and I’m pretty sure this is how you go through your life feeling.
Your son… I know. These have been my feelings too. But I have come to realise that it has as much of an impact on them as it does on us. How could it not? At first I felt I needed to wait until the youngest had finished school – I still think that was right as the upheaval would have wrecked his progress. But now all that is over, and my older children are starting not to come home. They are choosing to stay in their university houses even when uni isn’t on. That is my driving force now. I will not lose my children because of this man.
Your son is more likely to worry about you if you stay than if you leave. If you leave it will be in pursuit of happiness. You say you are close. He will know exactly what is going on, and my guess is that he will be hugely relieved once he knows you have faced up to it and if you are able to take action.
Speak to a lawyer. Find out your rights and your financial position. I promise you, knowledge is power. You will feel so much stronger when you have some facts behind you. Be sure to read (or listen to) Lundy Bancroft “Why does he do that?” and Shannon Thomas “Healing from Hidden Abuse”, as well as “The Freedom Programme” by Pat Craven. And then read them again. You will get so much strength from these books, especially the first.
Finally, go through the threads on this forum. They get pushed down the pages quite quickly so keep going. If you have a son that age then perhaps the Women Over 50 board might be relevant to you – a lot of posts on leaving longer marriages and on insidious emotional abuse that has worn women down gradually over time.
Keep coming back!! There are lots of different stories being told here but there will be a good handful of survivors, some who are “out”, some still trapped in their relationships (I’m one of them but getting stronger all the time) who will come on and give you really sound advice.
Take care xx
24th August 2020 at 10:48 am #112675LottieblueParticipant
Also – look at the threads This is my Abuser and This is my Abuser II (The first one got very long!). While you single out your husband’s short temper as being the problem, I think you may find that reading the descriptions of other people’s abusers make you realise that he has many, many more abusive traits. It’s an awakening. Add to it on II if you can. X
24th August 2020 at 11:50 am #112677
Hello Lottieblue thank you so much for reaching out, just being made to feel less alone made me burst into tears, cathartic when you spend your life trying to keep your distress pushed down inside. I will read the books you suggested, and look into getting some good legal advice. I’m glad to read you’re getting stronger..I hope you continue to move forward in a positive direction..One thing that really resonated was your son staying at uni even when term ends..my son does come home but stretches it out as long as he can in the uni house..of course like you I know why.
24th August 2020 at 3:08 pm #112679EggshellsParticipant
Hi Rose1. Lottieblue has written an excellent post and I don’t think that there is really anything that I can add. I just wanted to pop in and let you know I’m rooting for you. I am also older with grown up sons and just starting my new life of complete non-contact. It’s been quite an experience but I feel soooooo good now. Things are really coming together. You have already made an important first step which is landing yourself a job. That’s fantastic and not easy in the current climate. You are clearly an amazing lady! I’m with you every step of the way. xx
25th August 2020 at 12:14 am #112717
Thank you so much Eggshells. Really appreciate your message. So good to read that you’ve started a new life and that’s it’s going well. It gives me hope for the future. I have been fortunate landing a job during such uncertain times, and it also gets me out of the house were like many people husband is currently working. This of course has made my situation worse..more opportunity to shout Aat me. I can hardly face the neighbours because of his shouting. I feel so embarrassed and humiliated. It’s not particularly well paid but it gives me a salary and a step towards independence
25th August 2020 at 6:33 pm #112739[email protected]Participant
I want to give you some benefit from my experience because I’m now nearly recovered. I had (detail removed by moderator) of abuse of all types except sexual. Mostly control and intimidation and he was derogatory towards me most days. Fear held me back wanting to be the perfect make believe family stopped me leaving xx worried how will I survive on my own ? How will I cope financially xx the answer is much better 😘it’s the hardest thing in the world to be in an abusive relationship and keep your head above water xx I wish now I hadn’t listened to my fear so much I deeply regret that. The reason we feel this is down to conditioning XX It’s time to get out trust your gut get support and do it xx I won’t look back x your son will have his strong happy mum back it takes time but the proof is there I never thot I’d feel this whole again but I do xx 😘
10th September 2020 at 11:46 pm #113434
Thank you for your reply [email protected] I recognise the conditioning. My fear has certainly grown, I’m not entirely sure what I fear most..I just know that fear is a familiar feeling. When did I become someone who tolerates this? I’ve recently started a new job and I’ve noticed I really worry about getting things wrong, to the point where I’ve worked without taking a real lunch break..you see I need it to go well, I’m out of the house and tho not a great salary its something. I just need to be able to relax when not at work..feel peaceful not be waiting for the next bullet
11th September 2020 at 8:18 pm #113502CamelParticipant
I just wanted to pop in and say hi. You’ve had great advice already so I have just a couple of things to add.
You might find it helpful to see your anxiety as a physical condition and not a personality flaw. Say to yourself, I’m not an anxious person, I just feel anxious right now. You’ve spent years on high alert. It’s not your fault.
Speak to your GP. CBT can be really effective for anxiety. As are simple things like taking a walk in nature and gentle exercise.
It’s also perfectly normal to feel anxious in a new job. Try not to put extra pressure on yourself to be perfect. Take your breaks or you risk burn-out. Ask your manager how they think you’re doing instead of assuming the worst.
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