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    • #118028
      Pea2020
      Participant

      I’ve only recently started to accept my husband has been abusing me and has started abusing the kids this year too.

      I’ve been with him so long that I think maybe I’ve got used to it and minimising it all.
      I keep going back and forth between thinking he doesn’t mean it, he tries hard and feeling angry at him.

      For now, he is currently trying hard and acting normal with me, even though he knows there’s a chance I’m leaving next month.

      Its so strange and hard and confusing.
      We are all having dinner as a family tonight and we are ordering food like we might always have done. But now, since processing stuff a bit more, instead of thinking “I’m having dinner with my husband”, I’m thinking “I’m having dinner with my rapist”.

      But then at the same time it all feels so familiar and comforting. I feel like no one would understand.

      Its going to be so hard to leave. But now I’m starting to face everything that’s happened, its impossible for me to stay. I do feel like I love him still in some ways. I dont think I’m going to be able to work through everything until I’m away from him.

    • #118030
      KIP.
      Participant

      Yep. I had dinner with my rapist for decades. It’s called survivor mode. It all becomes normal but I can tell you if there was a stranger in your house secretly watching what’s going on they’d be in total shock. If there was a police officer secretly watching, your husband would go to jail for a long time. We minimise as a survival technique and our brain does t want to accept the horrible truth so it pushes the bad stuff to the back. Once you put space between you both your headspace which is filled just now with keeping you all safe, will return. You will have the headspace without the fear of him to work out what’s been going on. I think that’s why women are killed because we minimise and make excuses and cannot face the truth. But when your children are affected, it’s a different game. Abusers stunt our growth so it’s going to be worse for them when they’re growing learning and developing.

      • #118070
        Pea2020
        Participant

        Its awful when the reality hits. I feel like it would make sense to no one else, the fact that I still feel like I love my rapist!!
        It makes me feel totally mad. I really hope we get to leave next month.

        Its hard too, because people like my mum seem to be minimising it at the moment and don’t think he is dangerous. It makes me feel like he isn’t and I’m being paranoid.

        I looked at the power and control wheel last night and it sums up our whole relationship. So many of the behaviours and actions are what I’ve experienced with him.

        I’m going to read the other things you’ve suggested tonight.

    • #118051
      Empoweredhealing
      Participant

      It sounds like you have been severely abused. The moment that the abuse stops (usually by the survivor leaving), is the moment that healing can begin. There will be much sadness and grieving if and when you leave. It will be a different kind of pain. But if you can work through it, let yourself feel the loss, get support from friends/family/therapist, then you can start to build the life of peace and joy that you deserve.

      • #118101
        Pea2020
        Participant

        I’m only just starting to realise the extent of everything that has happened. I’m currently feeling very overwhelmed. I’m having to accept a lot of very painful things at the moment.

        But you’re right, the only way I’m truly going to heal is if I leave.

    • #118057
      Hetty
      Participant

      I hope you’re ok. Waking up to the abuse and still living it is a very difficult thing. My head was a mess when I was in this situation. Keep taking small steps to be free no matter how tiny they are. It’ll help you feel in control and focused. I had to do this for a long time before I got my out and took the leap of faith. Don’t tell him your plans, just get yourself mentally strong with some sort of plan. Of course if he starts to escalate then you must put your safety and the safety of your children first. You don’t have to live like this. Freedom is round the corner x

      • #118126
        Empoweredhealing
        Participant

        Pea2020, you’re already taking the first steps to healing. The first stage of recognizing abuse is “despair”. In this, there is so much pain, confusion and doubt. This is the effect of abuse. The next stage is “Education”. Soak up as much as you can from books (Patricia Evans, Lundy Bancroft), TedTalks and other survivors stories. This will help clear up a lot of the confusion that keep you immobilized in the relationship. Next stage “Awakening”…

    • #118430
      Pea2020
      Participant

      Update on getting out:
      Still not left! He is being pleasant, which has made it harder to leave.
      I know that’s probably what he’s aiming for, if him being pleasant is indeed another tactic.
      Although he is being helpful and pleasant, he did come in and stare at me (detail removed by moderator), whilst saying (detail removed by moderator).
      I didnt like it, because we are essentially living together as separated partners now. I would rather he didn’t come in and do things like that.
      I have been gradually snealong things out of the house and storing them at my mums.
      I cant do much more now, because he will start noticing things are missing.

    • #118431
      Pea2020
      Participant

      Sneaking ***

    • #118437
      KIP.
      Participant

      My ex ignored the fact that we were separated and just carried on like nothing had happened. I think he truly thought I was going nowhere and that just like he’d always done before he could manipulate me round. He got a big wake up call when he couldn’t and that’s when I got hurt. Be careful. Being nice and pleasant is just what people are supposed to do. He doesn’t get extra points for that.

    • #118439
      Hetty
      Participant

      Yes be very careful. I only took things that wouldn’t be noticed and meant the most to me. For example, my son’s memory box, my passport etc. I took a few changes of clothes etc. I got enough out that meant I would have changes of clothes for a few days and things that were irreplaceable. I also took photos of all our important joint documents and then emailed to my work address so he wouldn’t find any photos on my phone. I kept praying for an incident to b**w up which would give me that final push. In the end (thankfully) it was something quite ordinary. I knew I had a place to go to (relatives vacant property) and so I kept waiting for that final push. My final straw was being stonewalled for no reason. I kept asking what I’d done. Of course I was accused of losing my mind. I thought yeah I am, because of you. The next day I got up and thought I can’t take another day, another weekend, another holiday, another Christmas. Stay strong. You don’t have to live like this Xx

    • #118676
      Pea2020
      Participant

      I have got most important things out of the house now.
      I’m leaving with the kids (detail removed by moderator).
      Everything is in place and I’m going to go for it xx

    • #118677
      KIP.
      Participant

      I will be thinking of you and sending you positive thoughts. Try to keep out his way as much as possible this week and don’t let the kids know if possible. You’re absolutely doing the right thing for you and your children. It’s not easy but my only regret is staying as long as I did x

    • #118683
      Lisa
      Main Moderator

      Hi Pea2020

      It sounds like you have done really well with planning ahead and packing important things. I just wanted to say you are doing the right thing. I hope you stay safe and remember you can call the police if you need to.

      You could have a read of this page about safety planning before the weekend; https://www.womensaid.org.uk/the-survivors-handbook/making-a-safety-plan/

      Take care and good luck

      Lisa

    • #118685
      GreenSapphire
      Participant

      Well done Pea!

      Take care and good luck x

      We are all rooting for you x*x

    • #118690
      Hawthorn
      Participant

      Well done Pea,

      Will be keeping everything crossed for you that all goes to plan, dont be afraid to ask for assistance from the police if you need to, they are there to help you.

      You got this. A new start for you and your children in 2021! Hugs xx

    • #118696
      Hetty
      Participant

      Well done Pea. We are rooting for you. I remember leaving with my legs shaking and a thousand thoughts racing through my head but I just kept putting one step in front of the other. Elated to be getting away and absolutely terrified. It’s really important to keep in mind the reasons why you are doing this. One step at a time, one day at a time. Don’t look back xx

    • #118702
      Pea2020
      Participant

      Thank you everyone.

      Ok so I had a change of plan… he knows we are going, he saw me sorting some last bits out. So of course I told him everything, like an idiot probably.

      And now I’m completely thrown, because he is heartbroken, but is also being… reasonable?!

      He says he understands, wants me to have a good life, wants to help me if I need it. Wants to discuss finances.

      Why is he being so nice about it? He has discussed child contact arrangements.
      Says he is (detail removed by moderator) but is not angry. He says (detail removed by moderator), considering the situation.

      I dont know… I mean I’m relieved he wants to be grown up about it all… but I keep inwardly feeling angry too. I’ve spent so long being controlled and abused by him and now he is the calm and reasonable one, who isn’t going to stop me going. He’s even got rid of me on his (detail removed by moderator), which has messed up his money, (detail removed by moderator) now.
      Did I imagine the last few years? Is he really abusive? I thought they were meant to get worse once you were definitely going.

      I’m so confused again.

    • #118703
      KIP.
      Participant

      He’s a liar and manipulator. He knows you very well and knows what to say to get you to change your mind. Youre still there. This is very dangerous for this very reason. My ex went from being all reasonable and agreeing to terms while lying through his teeth. Emptying the bank account and back tracking on everything we had agreed to. My advice is to stick to your plan and leave or leave sooner and don’t tell him. You imagined nothing.

    • #118704
      KIP.
      Participant

      Do not tell him anything about finances. Do not agree to anything. Let a solicitor sort that out once you’re safe. It’s all about control. My ex stopped me from seeing a solicitor by lying to me. He won’t won’t you to involve a solicitor he wants to control this. He knows how to manipulate you and has been doing it for years. Do not trust him.

      • #118772
        Pea2020
        Participant

        Thank you for your good advice. I find it so easy to start trusting him again! He has really been joking me back in by being pragmatic and reasonable about it all.
        I’m going to be really careful and won’t say a thing now.

    • #118707
      Hawthorn
      Participant

      KIP is right Pea. Remember his words mean nothing. He is giving you veiled threats with his “I could be so angry” chat. He is reminding you who is control here; him. What the consequences of disobedience is. He is now trying to control the manner of your leaving, your finances etc.

      You imagined nothing. Notice how easily he can sway you back to his way of thinking and made you tell all your plans, that is a result of the brainwashing he has subjected you to. Not your fault, at all, but something you need to be very aware of. At every interaction he will confuse and manipulate you, make you doubt your reality.

      Tread very carefully now and act like you’re going for an oscar. He is not on your side. You need to trust yourself now, not him. Try to get out ASAP and be very careful. He will be watching you like a hawk watches a mouse.

      You can escape this. You are so brave. Sending you big hugs x*x

      • #118771
        Pea2020
        Participant

        I did feel like he was threatening me with the “(detail removed by Moderator)” line.
        It made me feel angry, because he is again feeling like the victim and not accepting the true reasons why I’m leaving, even if he has said to me he gets why I want to go.

        He’s definitely trying to control me still, he’s just finding different ways to do it in the current circumstances.

        Thank you, not long now and I’ll be out x*x

    • #118708
      GreenSapphire
      Participant

      But you haven’t left Pea. What he is doing is telling you he is giving you his blessing to go, but the thing is that you don’t need his blessing, you were going to go with or without it remember. He’s turned it all around again and basically done a reverse psychology on you so that you won’t leave and even if you do, he has the heads up on the situation to work it in ways that work for him.

      Pea, they are Jekyll and Hyde. They switch to the persona which best suits their angle. As KIP says, if you can go sooner than you’d planned that would be better. It really would be.

      If he only found out today that you were going, how on earth has he had time to change (detail removed by moderator)? It all seems a bit suspect to me. It’s sounds like he is lying or he knew you were going to try to leave and started rolling the ball his end.

      I’m with KIP. For your own safety and sanity do not trust him, do not reveal any more information to him and do not agree to anything financially or about child contact until you’ve left, you’re safe, you have discussed everything with a solicitor/professionals.

    • #118712
      Hetty
      Participant

      I agree. Don’t share plans or make agreements. My first husband had a lot of money taken from an account and put with his mum at the first whiff of me going. I never got that back as they lied and said it was money owed. She’s as vile as he is. He also backtracked on maintenance when he found out I was going into private rented and needed the money. My experience of these men is that whenever they appear to be reasonable they have an ulterior motive. They look out for number 1 only. You have to do the same. Xx

    • #118741
      SeekingPeace
      Participant

      Hi Pea
      Totally agree with all of the above posts. As convincing as their performance is, it is exactly that. They know us inside out so they can say exactly what they know will mess with our minds, make us doubt reality. Do not listen to a word he says.
      My husband also presented himself as extremely reasonable and calm at the time I ended the relationship and left. Like you, I felt so angry.
      Do not trust him or his display of emotions in the slightest. These men are extremely manipulative. They are all the same! It took me a long time to realise that my husband was exactly the same as other abusive men as he spent two years after I confronted him trying to convince me he was not the same as other abusive men, he was going to change, he was fully committed to this change. It was all words. His actions did not match his words and so I finally left with the support of the most amazing domestic abuse service. Stay 💪 You can do this. I agree with others do not discuss a thing further with him. My husband tried to persuade me to sort out finances and child contact informally via an email which threatened a long drawn out, damaging process for me, him and the kids if I did not comply.
      I had already by that stage got a solicitor on board and communicated to him in no uncertain terms why I was not prepared to sort it all out without one.
      I’ve been free for much of this year now and am in the process of sorting out finances via a solicitor.
      I have also made child contact arrangements via my solicitor and would highly recommend this route. Otherwise your husband will continue his abuse and manipulation and constantly attempt to change goal posts. A solicitors letter also means you don’t have to have direct contact with them. In recent weeks I’ve taken the step of going no contact and handing the children over via a third party (he has been told he must not text, phone or email me unless an emergency relating to the children).
      It was a huge step for me but the best thing I could have done as I didnt truly start to clear my mind until I’d done that. I feel like only now am I really on the road to healing and recovery.
      You’ve got this! Sending strength and courage your way x

      • #118773
        Pea2020
        Participant

        Thank you for sharing your experiences with me – he has the ability to confuse me so much, because like you, I confronted him about a year ago about some of his behaviours and the dynamics of our relationship and since then, he has actively changed a lot of his behaviours, so I thought I had got it all wrong, because he had changed! But I’m realising he hasn’t changed, he has just adapted the ways in which he manipulates me and actually has directed some of his more obviously abusive behaviours towards the kids instead.
        After hearing about others experiences on here, I’ve realised how he is pretty much exactly the same as all the other abusive men, even if its hard for me to accept.
        Well done for achieving all that you have this year, I hope your healing and recovery continues to go well.
        I hope I can stay strong x*x

    • #118751
      Eggshells
      Participant

      He is being nice to try and change your mind. He’s trying to prove that he is nice hoping that you will wonder if you imagined it all. The question is, if is able to be that nice and that reasonable, then why has he been so abusive towards you so much of the time? Because he choses how to behave depending on which strings he is trying to pull. If he was genuinely being reasonable then he’d do the right thing and move out so that you don’t have to – easy for him to talk like he’s being reasonable, less easy to actually be reasonable.

    • #118769
      Pea2020
      Participant

      Thank you everyone, your support and advice has been amazing and is really keeping me going at the moment.
      I’m so easily pulled back in with him… he knows we are separating, but I still found myself in a position with him where he was trying to initiate sex still… and I managed to get away with that one, but still accepted him massaging my shoulder!
      I’ve also ended up spending loads of money on a (detail removed by Moderator) for him, to replace the one I’m taking, because he asked me to. I also found myself accepting to take the baby from him on his days with the kids, whenever he wanted me to, if he felt like he couldn’t cope!! I realised what I was doing after a few minutes and tried to put a boundary down with it. I will try and avoid conversations with him till I move out.

    • #118802
      Hawthorn
      Participant

      You’re doing great Pea, so close now. Freedom is within your grasp. Although it seems hard to imagine now he will use contact with the children to continue to abuse and attempt to control you. Take some time and space for yourself when you get out, he will be trying to railroad you into his way of doing things and his timeline. Remember you dance to your own tune now, not his. You decide the timeline for sorting things out, not him. He has forced his wife and children out of their home through his own deplorable actions, it is not up to him when and how he sees his children. Engage a solicitor asap to get a contact agreement drawn up or to discuss safeguarding of your children if necessary. Continue to document all his behaviour, he is still invading your personal space trying to initiate sex etc when you have told him you are not interested.

      Continue to be very careful and try to escape asap. This is a dangerous time, no matter how reasonable he may currently “appear” to be.

      Really rooting for you, sending big hugs. You got this xx

      • #118834
        Pea2020
        Participant

        Yes I think he definitely doing that- he’s trying to make everything happen on his terms and control it all still.
        I clearly am still cloudy in my thinking, because I still want to be fair to him and I think I still feel as though this is all my fault somehow…
        I do need to keep reminding myself that this is all happening because of the things that he has done.
        I will try and get a solicitor ASAP.
        I won’t trust him, even though I keep getting sucked in by him currently seeming understanding.
        It will be such a relief once I’m gone.

        Thank you for your encouragement xx

    • #118803
      KIP.
      Participant

      This is really dangerous. In his mind nothing has changed. He still thinks he can manipulate you. Trash any boundaries you try to put up. Anything you agree to now he will throw back in your face. Just do and say what you have to until you’re out and safe. My ex went through all the motions of being reasonable then slowly built up and snapped. He was direct and just asked outright if we could still have sex. Entitled delusional behaviour.

      • #118813
        Pea2020
        Participant

        Its so entitled isn’t it… the other day he asked me outright if we could keep having sex, even after I left. Then last night he kept staring at me and I found it creepy and then he tried to initiate sex with me. He told me he can’t help it because he still finds me sexually attractive!!
        He also told me what he is currently telling People, when telling them I’ve left him. He said he’s telling everyone “the truth” and that he is “taking the blame for all of it” and according to him, the truth is that he “didnt pay enough attention” during our relationship and now I’ve gone because of it.
        No mention of any of the abuse… he was basically telling me what he has decided the truth is and was instructing me to go along with it, because that is the story he is already telling people. Seeming noble by taking the blame for it all, but actually not acknowledging any of the real issues st all.
        I’m just trying to stay safe at the mo, I will be more assertive about it all once I’ve left the house.
        He is definitely manipulating me still, although I’m starting to wise up to it a bit.

      • #118814
        KIP.
        Participant

        Yes he absolutely will be minimising it to anyone who will listen, this is where they get their story in first. I once read that abusers don’t have a problem with their anger they have a problem with ours. When I became angry and stared telling people about his abuse he was furious. He was busy painting himself out as the victim in all this. Getting his children on his side with his lies. While I was the one trying to keep a lid on it all. They actually seem to convince themselves of their own lies but this won’t placate him indefinitely. Soon it will dawn on him that you’re really separating and that will infuriate him and he will want to punish you beyond belief to convince himself but also everyone else that you deserve it. Sick men.

      • #118815
        KIP.
        Participant

        He actually expected me to lie to my solicitor 🙄

    • #118806
      Eggshells
      Participant

      It doesn’t really matter what you said about he children Pea, non of it is binding. Say and do whatever you need to get through this safely.

      In the unlikely event that he makes any offers to make the separation easier for you, you can bet your bottom dollar he won’t honour his word so you certainly don’t need to.

      Remember, this split is his fault, not yours. If had wasn’t abusive you could stay safely in your own home. You are leaving as a direct result of his behaviour towards you and your children. You don’t owe him anything.

    • #118902
      Pea2020
      Participant

      Update:
      We’re out.
      I cant believe it!
      He has been continuing to be “reasonable and supportive” and pretty much couldn’t wait to get rid of me in the end. He went on a sudden clearing out spree and put all my stuff by the front door.
      I’m now getting loads of stressed messages from him, worrying about how he is going to look after 3 kids on his own.

      I’m not letting my guard down, but I’m glad that I could leave the house in the end with it being pretty uneventful.

    • #118903
      Hetty
      Participant

      Well done Pea. You did it. Freedom and peace this way ❤️
      Well there’s a surprise, worrying about how he’s going to cope when you and the children have had all this upheaval. I had messages about his kids missing my pet. Nothing about my child having to leave his home.
      Be prepared for potential begging and pleading when reality sets in. I spent every minute researching and educating myself. Literally ever time panic or doubt set in, I read over my posts on here, reached out for support or watched YouTube videos about domestic abuse. The trauma bond is very strong.
      Right now let yourself be. However you feel is fine. Know that better days are to come. Be proud ❤️

    • #118904
      GreenSapphire
      Participant

      Well done Pea!

      See how strong you are 😀 Stronger than you believed yourself to be!

      Can you switch your phone to silent for tonight and just let yourself breathe and enjoy your new space with your kids? They’ll be feeling a bit strange I imagine and so perhaps have tonight together and deal with his moans and groans tomorrow… he’s not the priority here, you and the children are x

    • #118906
      KIP.
      Participant

      Still being selfish to the core. Please block his number for tonight and give yourself some breathing space. You absolutely did the right thing. It was beginning to escalate to a very dangerous place. Putting your stuff at the door is him wanting confrontation. I still don’t think he ever believed you would go. That took real guts. Now it’s you and the kids that must come first. He will beg and plead and offer all sorts of things to hook you back in. Please don’t fall for any of them. Draw a line to where you want to be and stick to that line. So if it’s getting him out the house and you back in safely. Or getting somewhere new for you all. Whatever you choose keep focussed on that. For tonight just try to relax a little and get some sleep x

    • #118907
      Hawthorn
      Participant

      Oh Pea really well done, you should be so proud of yourself😃

      I’m so delighted you and the children are out safely. Great advice from the ladies above, take some space for yourself now. You will have moments when you think it’s all in your head and like Hetty said, reading your posts, list and educating yourself will give you clarity when you need it. Whatever you feel, you feel.

      And now enjoy feeling free!! And powerful. It’s your life and you’re taking it back. What a great start to the new year for you xx

    • #118913
      SeekingPeace
      Participant

      So glad to hear you’re out Pea! I know how big a step it is. You are stepping into freedom now!
      I found it really hard immediately after I left because he continued to try to convince me we shouldn’t give up on our marriage.
      It helped me immensely to look back at my previous journal entries so I wouldn’t forget the awful things he said and did during the course of our relationship. It also helped me hugely doing the Freedom Programme by Pat Craven via zoom with other survivors. As well as that I found reading posts on this forum almost daily helped keep me in reality and not get confused and doubt reality when he pulled out his “Oscar winning performances” and tried to have me think that we could have an amicable, successful co-parenting relationship. That simply isn’t possible with abusive men but I did wobble at times, wondering if I was making situation worse by keeping him out of my house, involving a solicitor to sort out our separation etc
      You have done the right thing for you and your children. I am so so relieved to hear you are out! You will never regret this decision (though he will try his very best to make you think you should and will regret it!).
      Here’s to the start of your journey towards freedom 2021 ❤

    • #118914
      gettingtired
      Participant

      I’m so happy for you! January 1st too, what a wonderful start. I’m sure it may be a rocky road but I’ve no doubt in my mind you and your children are going to so much happier. I would have a celebratory drink for you but I don’t drink alcohol 😹 Please keep us updated. I do really hope I’m not too much further behind you in getting out too. Your strength and the other ladies on here is inspiring. Take care x*x

    • #118919
      Eggshells
      Participant

      Wow, well done Pea, I’m so pleased for you. What a journey you’ve had so far and what an amazing woman you are to get yourself through it! Big hugs. xx

    • #118920
      KIP.
      Participant

      Hi Pea, how are you this morning? Try to maintain zero contact as you’re still extremely vulnerable. Do you have someone who will act as a go between? Someone to facilitate communication when you’re ready. Whatever you do now he’s going to disrupt. My advice is to talk to a solicitor and make sure you’re the resident parent. Otherwise he can refuse to had back the children. He sounds like to sort of man that will do this just because he knows how painful it would be for you. They will want to punish us and we don’t see it coming because they hide behind this mask of being ‘reasonable’ which they never were or we wouldn’t be in this position x

    • #118921
      GreenSapphire
      Participant

      Yep KIP is right, the final time I left he behaved almost exactly like your now ex partner did Pea. He was offering to pack up all my things for me and drive them to me off his own back and free of charge. I had moved a few hours drive away. What he wouldn’t do was easily allow me to go and pick them up, he was refusing me access to collect my belongings. I wanted to scream! It was all nicey nice as if it was a normal relationship that had a normal end and not the abusive relationship it really was. And that’s what he told me he thought it was and that is what he told everyone else what it was, that the break-up had been mutual. He even told me he’d told his ex, who is the mother of his children we had broken up due to his work stresses. These men are liars! They are difficult about everything but will play a different card to anyone else who they think is watching or they can get on their side.

      x

    • #118969
      Pea2020
      Participant

      Thank you everyone for your well wishes and great advice!

      I’m ok today. The kids are currently excited because they are at my mum’s.
      I think I’m feeling a mixture of being overwhelmed, relief, excitement, sadness and terrible guilt.

      I keep swinging from one emotion to another!
      He keeps messaging me saying all the things he wants to help me with, that he wants to help as much as possible, that he wants to be a part of my life. Things like he trusts me more than anyone, so I will be his emergency contact forever etc.

      Thank god I wrote a list, because otherwise I would seriously be doubting myself right now.

      Kip, you are probably right and I should get a solicitor ASAP. He has already used the children to punish me in some way, multiple times these past couple of weeks.

      Greensapphire, I’m sorry that he did that to you! My husband is already controlling the narrative of my exit and telling people it was mutual, initiated by me and that it was all his fault because he “didnt pay enough attention”.

      Thank you again, everyone, you have all been so supportive and I honestly don’t think I’d be at my mum’s right now of it wasn’t for you all.

      X*x

    • #118972
      Eggshells
      Participant

      Dear Pea2020,

      So glad that you and the kids are getting on ok.

      It is very normal to go on this rollercoaster of emotion. It may last quite a while but hopefully it will feel less intense as time passes.

      Please try blocking him on your phone; you have enough emotions swimming through you at without having to deal with his texts too. In the past, some women have suggested doing it gradually e.g maybe block him for an hour, then a couple of hours etc. However, if you feel confident enough to just block him for good, please do. Your Mum might be willing to act as a go between to arrange access to the children when you get to that stage. For now, it would be good to keep him out of your life as much as possible to give you and your children time to adjust.

    • #118978
      Eggshells
      Participant

      Just read the post titled “Awake with anxiety – he’s messaged me”. There is a really informative post by Empoweredhealing. What she has said might be really useful info for you. xx

    • #118981
      KIP.
      Participant

      Empoweredhealing
      Participant
      I remember reading a study where the researchers asked abuse survivors what made them go back to their abusive partners. And they charted out that there are 3 distinct phases. The first phase is after an episode of abuse. The woman is in shock, pain and anger. Her resolve is strong and she separates from the abuser. The second phase is when the abuser starts telling her his sob story. This is when he profess his undying love, minimize the abuse and blame his behavior on depression/anxiety/stress/bad childhood etc…This is the phase when the woman starts feeling sorry for him. This is when he reminds her of the good times in the relationship and how it could be that way again. She’s in so much pain from the separation and it feels so good to hear that. The last phase is she goes back to him and the cycle starts again.
      In order to leave abuse for good, the survivor has to get through the 2nd phase. It’s very very hard to do. Some survivor gets through it by blocking the abuser so she’s not exposed to his self pity/lies. As you have mentioned, what he’s doing is part of the cycle of abuse. Please stay strong and continue to reach out for support.

    • #118983
      GreenSapphire
      Participant

      ‘He keeps messaging me saying all the things he wants to help me with, that he wants to help as much as possible, that he wants to be a part of my life. Things like he trusts me more than anyone, so I will be his emergency contact forever etc.’

      If you look at this you will see that it’s all about him. Again. It’s always about them. What they want. What’s best for them. Again, it’s always under the guise of being helpful, reasonable, nice, decent, normal.

      What it actually is Pea, is him still attempting to get his hooks into you. Thank-you for your empathy, I shared my experience of leaving my then partner because he took a similar tack. All nicey nice and looking like he was a decent, reasonable and normal person. And they can be, when it suits them. But they are two people – Doctor Jekyll and Mr Hyde. At the moment you are experiencing Doctor Jekyll, its enough to make you think you had it all wrong and you’ve left a good, loving and decent husband for no reason. Truth is though, he won’t be able to keep it up because in him lurks a monster and you’ve seen and witnessed that monster firsthand. It’s why you’ve left x

      You’re doing great! If you can start now to block his number and contact, this would be best x

    • #118997
      Hawthorn
      Participant

      Hi Pea,

      You’re doing so well, one hour at a time of needs be right now. It is an emotional rollercoaster after leaving. The emotions come in waves. The waves will be big at the moment, big peaks where you feel relief, joy, empowerment…and deep troughs where you feel guilty, sad, angry. And quickly, you might cycle rapidly between one feeling and the next. Be very gentle with yourself and know that this is normal and all part of the healing process. Try to avoid making any big decisions when you’re at the peak or trough of any given emotion. With time the seas will settle and calm.

      Try to focus on yourself and how you’re feeling rather than on him and how he might be feeling. This is your time now. Eat, sleep and try to get some fresh air. Enjoy the space to enjoy the time with your children without the spectre of his abuse looming over you.

      Remember the guilt is a tool of control he wields over you. When you feel guilty, reframe it as positive confirmation that you are doing something good for yourself and your children, rather than feeling bad because youve made a choice that he doesnt like. Read your list and keep posting and educating yourself about abuse.

      You’ve got this. Big hugs x*x

    • #119163
      Pea2020
      Participant

      Thank you all.
      You all are really keeping me in the reality.
      The info about the 3 different phases has been really helpful too. I can recognise each one completely.

      I turned my phone off for a day and I felt the most free I’ve ever felt.
      I slept really well that night. The kids seem so chill too.

      He has messaged me again today, telling me how much shame and sorrow he is feeling and that he is missing us all lots.

      I keep reading my list.

    • #119174
      KIP.
      Participant

      He wasn’t ashamed or sorry when he was abusing you and your children. He’s only sorry he has no one to abuse. Again it’s all about him. Pity party. Don’t fall for it x enjoy the peace and use this time to heal and get stronger x

    • #119624
      Pea2020
      Participant

      Yes it is all about him, even when he’s acting like it’s all about me or the children.

      It’s been strange living at my mums.
      No one looking over my shoulder, not feeling like I have to report back to anyone.
      Feeling safe to sleep.

      I’ve been on a high this past week I think, but I’m starting to dip again now. The anxiety is creeping back.

    • #119626
      KIP.
      Participant

      I was euphoric for about two weeks than the post traumatic stress kicked in. When our brain starts to feel safe it begins to process the trauma and that’s when you need to reach out to your GP and to a therapist. Keep building that support bubble round you with women’s aid. This forum. Family and friends that understand. Your GP. Find a good therapist or ask for a referral from your GP. Check out local charities. Women’s aid can offer support to your children too. They also offer The Freedom Programme.

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