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    • #119212

      Hi everyone. I’m new here. I’ve been wanting to leave my emotionally abusive marriage for a few years now but something is holding me back. I don’t even love my husband any more so I’m sure it sounds really strange that I haven’t managed to leave. One thing that holds me back is health anxiety for my kids. I’ll get anxious about something and worry that if I leave my husband won’t manage the risk while he has the kids, but I know that’s most likely my mind distracting me from the real issue, which is keeping them emotionally safe.
      I was wondering how other people found the courage to leave? I’ve felt like leaving so many times. Often when I’m out and need to go home I really don’t want to go back. I think I’m constantly in the freeze part of fight/flight/freeze. People have said I’ll leave when I’m ready and I’m sure that’s true but the abuse (especially in lockdown as we’re stuck together) is taking its toll on me and the kids. My ability to parent well is getting worse…. it’s a negative spiral!
      Thanks for reading x*x

    • #119213

      Hello and welcome. Abuse causes anxiety as well as depression so I know how you’re feeling. Abusers trap us in a fog. Fear Obligation and Guilt. You’re afraid of leaving because you’ve been programmed and brainwashed by him to feel that way. No doubt the treats over the years, the belittling and erosion of your self confidence. Have you considered trying to have him removed from the home? Talk to your local women’s aid or ring the national domestic abuse helpline. Start by keeping a secret journal of his behaviour and how it makes you feel. Go back to the beginning and write down every abusive episode you remember. Talk to your GP. Google trauma bonding. Cognitive Dissonance. Gaslighting. Take a look at the book Living with the Dominator by Pat Craven x

    • #119214

      Also google the power and control wheel x

    • #119237

      Thanks KIP, I’ll look into those things. I’m reluctant to make him move out as I’m sure there would be hell in between me starting the process and it happening. I have the option to move to my parents (although probably not before they’re vaccinated for covid as they’re culnerable). I would rather be able to leave as soon as I’m ready as I’m sure he would see me leaving as a massive rejection and would lash out. I may even say it’s a temporary move to allow me to still have access to my stuff in the house while he’s at work. Has anyone else done that and found it not to be such a good idea?

      • #119263

        Hi there, I don’t have any experience of that type of gradual leaving process I’m afraid, I had to go one morning with just the clothes on my back and sort out getting my things at a later date which he made difficult. My concern about doing it the way you are suggesting is that they really do like to make everything as difficult for you as possible once you leave. I doubt he will buy a ‘temporary’ move.

        The best thing is to leave first and make yourself safe and then tell him it’s over and you’ve left. If you need to arrange to have your things removed from the property before you go, you can pre-plan these arrangements and go ahead with them whilst he is at work. In order to keep ourselves safe, it is always a good idea to be clandestine about it all.

    • #119265

      I had a lot of anxiety when I was living with my ex. True, I’m an anxious person but once I was out a lot of my anxiety reduced because I wasn’t living in a hyper vigilant state. I worried about coping with work, with the longer commute etc but a lot of these issues either didn’t materialise or just weren’t an issue. I just knew deep down that things weren’t good and the trajectory for my son and I wasn’t good. It’s no way to live.
      I didn’t tell my ex of my plans. I had been thinking through different options for a long time and made sure I had important documents out and/or in a box that was I could pick up and take. I made sure things that were once in various places around the house were in one place and I streamlined abs decluttered telling my ex I was taking stuff to the charity shop. I sorted out my son’s toys etc so I knew what was really important to him and what we could leave.
      I didn’t leave at the ‘perfect time’. I just woke up one morning after being stonewalled and called names and thought I can’t do this for another day. I knew where I’d be moving to with my child. As it happens, my ex didn’t put up a fight, but I was so determined I’d have called the police in an instant. I left with my car filled to the brim and went back with a family member for another load. I managed to negotiate a few more items when I left and arranged a delivery van, but mostly I left expensive furniture etc because it wasn’t worth the fight. It’s been a while since I left and now I’ll be starting the process of joint bank account and house but I just needed out and to have some peace before I could gain the strength for much more.
      People have helped me where they can. It’s been an emotional rollercoaster but at least I’m away from the abuse. Everything now is on my journey to healing which makes it easier to tolerate. You’re not alone on this path. This forum has been my saviour with so many supportive and inspirational women xx

    • #119352
      [email protected]

      Hi there,
      I suppose going through the process of leaving and then staying away is about the same as staying. So why not take the plunge when your parents have been vaccinated. I had to end things quite abruptly and I had police involvement. These men get worse when they 1 realise we want to leave and 2 when we make the break. It’s a dangerously time. You need to leave when he’s not there so be organised. Get Womens aid on board and let the police know your plans so they can back you up. This is doable but you need proper officials to be there on stand by xx it is better for the kids too not to see him abusing you I can’t tell you how detrimental this is – through experience it leaves an indelible imprint xx as far as everything else such as contact there are ways forward to do this in a safe way xx we’re here to guide you. First foot forward and you will see light at the end of this tunnel. Love diymum

    • #119431

      Thank you for all your comments and support. I think I want some magic solution that will get me out of this situation! I guess I have to accept that it won’t be easy but it will be worth it.

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