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    • #130251
      SeekingAdvice
      Participant

      Hi Everyone, I am new here and this is my first time ever putting my situation out there on a forum. I really hope someone can advise me.

      I have been married to my husband for (detail removed by moderator), in total we have been together for (detail removed by moderator). We have no kids. When I met him, he was so perfect in my eyes and he made me feel like the luckiest girl in the world. I used to question myself, thinking why me? there so many girls out there that he can be with, why me? He was so charming, romantic, confident and someone that knew very clear what they want in life. I never thought he would treat me badly or be disloyal in anyway as he showed how much respect he had for my parents (detail removed by moderator).

      I was engaged to him for (detail removed by moderator)  we got married. Little did I know how much my life would turn upside down after I got married. From the moment I got married, I was literally crying every day. He would nit-pick at everything I couldn’t do even though I made it clear before marriage about what I could or not do. He used to make a big deal out of me (detail removed by moderator) use to argue on any little thing and I was so confused on why he is being like this and why is he arguing on things that are soooo minor  (detail removed by moderator) dressing a particular way now because I’m married even though before marriage he was fine with what I wore etc.

      During these arguments I would always be the only one trying to make it up to him, he would never apologise or see what he is doing wrong. I would be the one apologising just to make everything fine again. I would say in our marriage he has probably only apologised (detail removed by moderator) times as he never thinks he is wrong. He shows no empathy when we argue, a lot of the times I always end up crying because of the hurtful words he says but when he sees me cry, he just continues with the nasty words and thinks I am just acting.

      During this time, I reached out to one of my boy mate that I knew for a very long time as I didn’t want my family to stress about my situation. My husband told me I wasn’t allowed to talk to boy mates during being engaged, but I had no choice and wanted to get a guy’s perspective on this situation, so I reached out to him. However, as I was vulnerable at that time, this guy mate took the advantage and started taking inappropriately to me, (detail removed by moderator)  One day my husband found these messages and thought I was having an affair which was totally not the case! I just was in desperate need for some advice. Till this day he tortures me about this whenever we have an argument.

      Every single argument that we have turns into something bigger which always ends up him saying nasty things to me like I hate you, (detail removed by moderator)  then it ends up always him threatening me to leave the house or that he will divorce me. He also mentions as a (detail removed by moderator) and threatens me with this thinking that he can get better, and he doesn’t need to be with me. So, he makes me feel like he has given me a life by being married to him because no one else would want me. Literally my marriage has been like that for (detail removed by moderator). We don’t argue as much as what we did at the beginning of the marriage, but I would say we have a big argument over minor things every month and it seems like a vicious cycle repeatedly.
      He has controlled my life in various ways and I listened to him because he made me feel bad about talking to a guy mate and also I wanted this marriage to work – the controls were i.e., has an issue with my speaking to my mum (detail removed by moderator) so I hide and talk to her, has stopped me seeing/having no contact with my family (detail removed by moderator), I can’t go and see my parents a lot so if I wanted to see them (detail removed by moderator)  he would have an issue, I have to have my hair (detail removed by moderator) all the time, I have to have a (detail removed by moderator) I can’t be on social media, if I travel to(detail removed by moderator) work more than usual in one week he would have an issue, doesn’t like me sitting in the(detail removed by moderator) every time I get to work I would have to ring him (detail removed by moderator) to show him I am at work etc.(

      (Detail removed by moderator) I had found out that he was trying to seek another relationship outside of this marriage, and his (detail removed by moderator) . He was flirting with another woman (detail removed by moderator)  and he was even planning on meeting her (detail removed by moderator) but that did not happen because of Covid 19. (Detail removed by moderator) After finding this all out I left the house and we broke up for (detail removed by moderator), somehow, we got back together again and he told me he will change (detail removed by moderator) and saying nasty things to me every time we argue, however he still hasn’t changed. Again, he decided to do the same thing (detail removed by moderator) by reaching out to that same woman (detail removed by moderator). When I confronted him, he said (detail removed by moderator).

      After that he promised me that he won’t contact her again, but he has ended up relying back to her (Detail removed by moderator) I found out as she contacted me to let me know.

      I am stuck and I do not know what to do. Is this normal, is this abuse? I feel like this is emotional/verbal abuse. I know that I should leave but something is holding me back and I think it is fear of the future of the unknown. Also, when he is nice, he is really nice, but when he is horrible is it like my worst enemy. How do I get away from someone like this who I feel has such power over me? I am scared that when I end things with him, I would just want him back again even though I know he is not good for me.

    • #130254
      KIP.
      Participant

      The best thing for me was education on abuse. Google the power and control wheel. The cycle of abuse. Cognitive dissonance and take a look at Why Does He Do That by Lundy Bancroft. Abusers destroy our self esteem and confidence and we cling to them for validation. You’re definitely in an abusive relationship and it’s so very common for the abuse to escalate after a major committment like marriage. You won’t win an argument with an abuser. They speak verbal salad which leaves us spinning so don’t try to reason with him. Abusers are also liars so don’t believe a word he says. Keep a journal of his behaviour and don’t let him use religion as an excuse for abuse. There is no excuse. He will simply keep moving the goal posts no matter how hard you try to meet his demands because he simply enjoys abusing you. There is a national domestic abuse helpline which is great and you should ring it for advice and find your local women’s aid too x you need support here. And welcome 🙏

      • #130262
        SeekingAdvice
        Participant

        Thank you so much for replying back. The thing that I struggle to understand is that if he is doing this on purpose and does he know what he is doing or is it something he cant help?

        I have got a journal with the things he has done to to remind me of all the arguments he has had with me.

      • #130276
        KIP.
        Participant

        He absolutely knows what he’s doing. He will abuse you when there are no witnesses so he’s in perfect control plus you’re the only one. It’s intimate partner control. Intimate terrorism. He knows exactly what he’s doing and he knows the harm he’s doing. But he simply doesn’t care. It’s all about him being top dog and having the control and upper hand. They are selfish parasites.

      • #130286
        SeekingAdvice
        Participant

        Sometimes I think am I the problem am I just too soft and let things go so easily?
        Like what if I was a b***h to him would he still do that? Also if I left him will it be the same with the next partner or is it just me?

    • #130255
      KIP.
      Participant

      Welcome to the forum 💕 your not alone x

    • #130259
      Grey Rock
      Participant

      Welcome, and sorry for what brings you here.

      There are many similarities with your experience and mine. And those of so many unfortunately. It is classic coercive control and domestic abuse. I too was put on a pedestal by someone who seemed amazing and charming. That person disappeared and I fell off that pedestal. It was a painful fall.
      Like you I was expected to check in constantly. If I was late or could not call for whatever reason I would be verbally attacked. Awful accusations. If I went to the supermarket and there was a long queue my heart would be pounding as I knew if would mean accusations and then rageful silences (stonewalling) to punish me for those imagined acts. The same if work meetings over-ran. I became very isolated as I never spoke to people socially at work (he would take all my breaks with his calls) and rarely saw friends (that would always lead to rages and more stonewalling). Like you, it became impossible to talk to my mum on the phone privately. He would listen in and interrupt conversations wherever possible. All meaningful conversations happened from my car while commuting. Even reading a book was impossible as he couldn’t deal with me giving anything or anyone attention. I went from a sociable, outgoing woman with lots of hobbies and interests to someone who scuttled from work to home, treading on eggshells, pinning everything on the hopes that the man I fell for might one day resurface. Of course, this never happened. That man wasn’t real. He was an unsustainable act.

      I found strength through Women’s Aid and listening to podcasts by Dr Ramani and similar. At that time I didn’t realize this forum was another option. I wish I’d found it earlier.

      Please stay strong and safe.
      GR

      • #130261
        SeekingAdvice
        Participant

        Thank you so much for replying to my post. I can so relate to your experience! I would tell my husband what time I will be back but if I am slightly late for whatever reason my heart would be beating fast incase he starts thinking and making assumptions about where I was or what I was doing to be late.

        Even with my communication with my mum, it was always on the way home from work that was the only time I would be able to communicate to her in private!

        I have seen some of Dr Ramani videos in the past, I will watch more. I am guessing you left your partner? If so any tips on how you made that move to leave your partner? Because I am scared that if I do leave, will I be strong enough to not go back! Thanks x

    • #130266
      Grey Rock
      Participant

      I left a number of times. It was only on the (detail removed by moderator) that I stayed away. That was when I’d discovered Dr Ramani and followed all her advice. I studied as if for an exam and was ready and prepared for his onslaught. The suicide threats. The attempts to financially sabotage. The smear campaign. The threats (to me and anyone who appeared to be supporting me). The love bombing. The insults. Swinging from ‘reasonable’ (act) to rages. Incessant texting.

      Prior to leaving I had gradually got any important paperwork and overnight essentials stowed away outside of the house. I was ready to block his number and change all my passwords to any accounts (never presume they won’t know them). I was still ill-prepared as he woke up one morning raging (probably been drinking overnight but I don’t know that for certain)  (detail removed by moderator). He was raging and I took the opportunity to flee gladly. I was scared and had nowhere to go. Initially I slept on a family members sofa. I only had the clothes I managed to grab while he was ranting. I then found a room to rent (detail removed by moderator)  (very quickly thankfully). I ended up having to relocate a number of times. He was arrested and charged, and there is now a restraining order in place.

      I won’t lie. It wasn’t easy. It’s been a rough couple of years. But it was worth leaning into that fear. I felt like id truly lost myself living in that house with him. I can now go dancing, meet a friend, talk on the phone, read a book, choose my own tv programs, decide for myself when it’s bedtime, lock the bathroom door if I like, have a peaceful lunch break, and not be in fear of being ten minutes late. All perfectly reasonable expectations as an adult. But all things that seemed a dim and distant memory while I was with my ex. Yes, they do pull some affection out of the bag sometimes, and it’s such a relief when they’re just ‘normal nice’ that we end up pathetically grateful for those moments and they become our holy grail. But those moments aren’t worth losing our liberty for. And that make-believe shining and adoring prince who wooed us never comes back.

      I chose Grey Rock as my name on here as this has been vital for my success in staying away. He is a great talker and can wear me down or break me if I listen to him. So. I stay no contact and if he ever does manage to get messages to me or call me on other numbers and get through as has happened in the past, I am as responsive and interesting as a boring old grey rock. This seems to have worked (so far) but I stay vigilant and prepared. I have an app on my phone that I ensure is activated when I might be vulnerable at any point. This is called Hollie Guard. It’s free and connects to the police and chosen contact if you put a code in, fall or shake the phone (depending on what you choose in the settings).

      It’s scary to think about the risks and challenges of leaving to devise a escape plan. Women’s Aid can help with this and it’s worth getting them on board as they have so much experience, and sometimes when you feel like you’re losing your mind it’s good to have someone to talk to about things without worrying about upsetting friends or family.

      It is scary, but it is worth every bit of the pain and upset. I lost lots of stuff and my hone (well it was his house but you know what I mean). But you can’t put a price on liberty and freedom, let alone the sanity and self-respect I lost while I was with him.

      Take care.
      GR

    • #130294
      Lisa
      Main Moderator

      Hi SeekingAdvice

      You did really well to post about your situation. I can see that KIP and Grey Rock have given really supportive replies.

      What you have described is domestic abuse, your partner is controlling and emotionally abusive, he puts you down and is not supportive, you don’t deserve to be treated like this. He takes no responsibility for his own abusive behaviour, and it’s unfair that you have to apologise as you have done nothing wrong. He has isolated you away from any support which must be very upsetting for you, you should be able to speak to your family whenever you want to.

      We don’t often hear that a perpetrator will change, it sounds like he just says this but as you know, he still continues to be abusive. It can be confusing when he is nice, but this is all part of the cycle of abuse.

      You deserve so much better, there is support you can access to help you feel strong enough to leave. You can find your local domestic abuse service here which would be a good place to start: https://www.womensaid.org.uk/domestic-abuse-directory/

      Take care and keep posting, we are all here for you.

      Lisa

    • #130331
      Camel
      Participant

      Hi SeekingAdvice

      Welcome to the forum 🙂

      It won’t feel like it but the ‘real’ you is still there inside. You are not weak. You are not to blame.

      I don’t think it matters whether or not abusers know what they’re doing. What matters is that WE know. It’s pointless trying to understand their motives. We need to spend less time thinking about them and more time considering ourselves.

      Abuse creeps up on us. If it was all there to see from the start we wouldn’t get past the first date. But abusers always look great at the beginning. We should probably walk away the first time they make us cry. But we don’t. For some reason we’re consumed by it all. We’re already unhappy yet terrified he’ll leave. They’re insanely jealous while cheating on us, and still we ‘work’ on the relationship. I don’t know why we allow them to isolate us. Why we follow their ridiculous rules. Why we put up with the drama and pointless arguments, until we can’t think straight, feel crazy.

      We need to understand that we have been manipulated and lied to. We can’t blame ourselves. We tell the truth and assume they do too. It’s not easy to accept that the nice guy we fell in love with was just an act.

      • #130537
        SeekingAdvice
        Participant

        Thank you for replying. This spot on!

        I always hoped that he will change and till this day is behaviour hasn’t whenever he is annoyed with something. Every little argument always ends up being so much more bigger and extreme than you can think off and I wonder to myself its such a minor thing why is he over reacting.

    • #130332
      Camel
      Participant

      You say that when he’s nice he’s really nice. This is the power he has over you. He drip feeds you niceness to keep you on the hook. Probably what you think of as ‘really nice’ is simply ‘not nasty.’ Write down what he does or doesn’t do when he’s nice.

      Kind and loving behaviour should be the norm. Feeling happy and content should be the norm too.

    • #130358
      Grey Rock
      Participant

      Hi Seeking Advice. Sorry, I only just saw your message. I don’t always spot those on this site for some reason. I’ve responded now.

      Hope you’re okay and finding some serenity in the madness today xx

    • #130569
      Eyesopening
      Participant

      Hi,
      Gosh I can completely relate with how you are feeling, and with many but not all of his behaviors. Its definitely abuse. He is controlling you in so many ways. For me my journey to leave was by really researching about abuse, reading books, watching YouTube, journaling, reading/posting posts on here and reaching out to WA & local DA services and slowly to family and friends. Slowly, as you learn, your eyes will start opening, you will see him for what he really is and the situation. The trauma bond is what keeps us stuck, I tried to leave 4 times, 5th times i was successful. Slowly gain your support network, don’t let him isolate you because then you are even more dependent on him.
      Keeping a journal is so important. Trust yourself, get back in touch with family and friends and don’t stay isolated, start telling them as much as you feel able to, their support and love will give you the strength you need. But I would only tell people you 100% trust. Many people do not understand abuse, but people who love you will try to understand.
      Get back intouch with yourself, and what you want, try not to think about him and what he’s done all the time, i know, its harder said then done. Make a plan, and stick to it. It’s scary, I wish i didn’t waste so much time leaving and going back. I think if i reached out for more support it would of been quicker. But its definitely a journey, be patient with yourself, don’t ever be hard on yourself, you are reacting completely normally for someone living in this situation. I was the same, I thought, if only I stood up to him. But that wasn’t the problem, I entered the relationship standing up to him and he wore me down. There is nothing you can or could have done to prevent this.
      All the best, this is the start of your journey to freedom. x*x

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