1st August 2020 at 8:21 pm #111395
I’ve been out with my kids a little while. We actually have our home still.
Been having regular contact, nothing legal in place
He’s very much still using the cycle of nice and nasty with me and it’s taking its toll.
I’m so so tired and so stressed. The kids were really hard work today and I found myself being shouty and cross and I cried and ended up feeling that I’m just like him.
I’m so confused. I’m raring to go one minute then angry and sad another.
Ridiculously pathetic and lonely whilst also never wanting to be near a man again.
I just think maybe I’m not coping as well as I thought? Or maybe now the adrenaline is calm it’s just sinking in? I don’t know but I’ve been awful today I feel so bad. Not mean exactly but they ran rings around me and I was either crying or shouting.
Most people here think I must just be happy now but I’m finding things really hard
1st August 2020 at 9:13 pm #111399iliketeaParticipant
Hi, you’re ok, I’m exactly the same, and children 24/7 are exhausting, and its been a long year. I cant remember if you just did lockdown with him and them too, if so, even longer. Kids are playing up for sure, and this is ALL kids, not just ours. All the children we know are being a nightmare, its not even age related, they all are. So number 1, this is hard with kids at the best of times, and Covid is not the best of times. Number 2, You are totally normal. It would be worrying if you weren’t having a roller coaster of emotions. Im no expert and just going on how I feel and what I feel Im experiencing.
1. We are so used to living in chaos and having an overload of cortisol to help with the constant fight or flight anxiety we have lived for however long – this means that when it goes our body and mind will have a period of adjustment – its is used to going up down up down up down down down, all the b****y time. Solution? Well for the moment I’m going for treats, and then exercise, in that order! and sleep, lots of sleep, where possible.
2. The contact with the ex and children and you – can you get this more supervised, via a third party, or via court? So you dont have to have contact with him? Ive been experiencing this too. I think its because they have no other way of exerting power and control, so its now via the kids. To get to you. Can they have contact in any way which means you dont have to have any contact with him?
3. Shouting at children – putting my hand up to that one too! I read something last night, I think it was on the NSPCC website about how to manage talking to them and parenting post abuse. I’ll try and look it up and find it. It basically said that its ok to lose your rag sometimes, just make sure the children know why and always apologise. So they understand the cause and affect of behaviour. And the making up/saying sorry part of moods and being cross, basically articulating everything and explaining everything and modelling everything that your ex never did, and won’t be doing with them now. The NSPCC said it in a better way than I just have, but does that make sense?
4. You’re doing fine. This wasn’t going to be easy, managing the transition and the new normal, especially during covid, the summer, the heat, and no school. But do you basically feel better? I know I do. My heart has stopped racing. My headaches have gone. Its quiet, and the days are calm, whole days with no strange circular arguments over nothing…
Stay strong, I’ll try and find the link. Or google. “Parenting post abuse” I think thats what I put in.
1st August 2020 at 9:44 pm #111409
Thankyou yes I would like to read that.
I’m very glad you are also out and feeling better 🙂
In general yes it took a little while to sink in after refuge that we were home and it was actually happening how I’d hoped but I definitely am glad and know I’ve done the right thing.
Very true that COVID hasn’t helped, it’s a strange time for everyone.
I did crawl into bed with them both and explain a bit, they are so great bless them and they know it’s all a bit different right now.
I’m not sure about the third party thing yet, I’m considering it but I’m just reluctant to put the children through even more change.
I’ve been so hectic trying to redecorate and have fun with them and juggle everything I haven’t had time to digest properly I think.
And sleep is escaping me! Every few days I have a night of no sleep because I can’t turn my brain off.
I feel less of a mess now that I know it’s not just me.
Thank you x
2nd August 2020 at 4:06 am #111425Soulsearcher18Participant
Oh my goodness, big breath and take a step back.
You said most people here think you must just be happy- When I hear of any woman who actually gets out safe I would be first to jump up and shout hooray because they are out and that is such a massive step
Then the hard work really start right? Everyone’s situation is different in how they manage to get out but it’s a massive upheaval whatever the case for ourselves and the children. Though we may have been in awful situations, that was our ‘normal’ for the longest time and our children’s. It’s a major period of adjustment and it takes time and it most certainly is not perfect. But you know what? To hell with f*****g perfect because I am a human and humans are not perfect. I am not an automaton. I make mistakes, all the time but I try my best and I try to be honest and up front with my little ones and talk with them about feelings and emotions in a way they can understand.
Don’t ever feel that getting out is the magic step and everything should be just perfect and rosy- no way. It’s massive hard work to recover yourself and to support your children too. Not least when you have to continue to manage the relationship between your perpetrator and your children’s relationship with him. Bearing in mind this is the time he is going to be most unbearable because he’s lost control and will be doing everything he can to regain it in some way.
I know that it’s meant to be easier because you’re not living with them anymore but sometimes it sure doesn’t feel like that. I do wonder though if to some extent I am forgetting how bad it really was when I was living in it because I’ve definitely had to move on from that quick in order to deal with everything moving forward and actually trying to think back and revisit that time is very, very challenging. So, yes- being out and dealing with his constant tactics is draining and impacts on the anxiety and depression but I do have an escape and choices. Far more than I ever did. The really bad experiences come from when I let him in too much. If I keep contact minimal, if I remember to recognise his behaviour and tactics and see his actions for what they are and deal with them in a ‘zero/minimal contact’ way, I regain control and it is more manageable.
I know he has got you feeling stressed out and clattered your mind so that you can’t think about the third party option but I really think that sitting down with someone and spending some time agreeing a plan and strategies of how to manage contact and as a result- managing him and his tactics may help you.
I know summer holidays are a hectic time though and so possibly not easy to do this right now.
Iliketea gave you great advice there and summer hols and the last few months are generally a busy and potentially stressful time for a lot of parents.
I would say though, with everything you have been through and with it being such early days- do make sure that you have a network of support that you can access to help you to manage everything that is going on. This could be regular GP appointments to check in and catch up on progress, regular local domestic abuse support, speaking to the 24hr DA helpline, or even Samaritans if you just need to offload- I know I needed to contact the local DA helpline a few times in the early days. Do see if there is any support out there for childcare if you’d be interested in this- may be worth checking out with Health Visitor and DA worker to see if there is any funding. It’s ok to need to take a break, though appreciate things are a bit more complicated at the moment with Covid and not all facilities being open. Do take advantage of local family information services and parenting teams to see what activities and services are available for support, especially over the summer. Also, if you feel you would benefit, consider putting your name down for counselling lists as there are usually wait times and by the time it comes up- you may feel more ready for it. I hope you don’t mind me suggesting these ideas, I’m not saying that you need them, they are just things that have helped me and ideas that might help.
I also find following gentle parenting and responsive parenting pages on social media useful as reminders of what I want to achieve.
You are not alone in your struggle.
2nd August 2020 at 7:40 am #111428
2nd August 2020 at 10:50 am #111443
2nd August 2020 at 4:59 pm #111468Soulsearcher18Participant
Ah, I’m really pleased that my post helped you two. The original post helped me too, to know that I’m not alone and the struggle is real but the positive in this is that we are all here reflecting, asking questions and seeking support and info to be the best we can be- not perfect though- that doesn’t exist. I’m good with real though, I can do that. xx
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