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    • #121120

      I married young – (removed by moderator) years ago now, first started showing signs after marriage then got worse after our first baby ((removed by moderator) years ago)
      I ran a successful business which struggled when I wasn’t there to run it with Concentrating on my new baby. Argument to start up and he threw water on my face (removed by moderator), threw the (removed by moderator) out of the window and general got angry- normally I would be in such shock every time I would just cry. ( he smokes w**d) I would then go quite on him for a while and then come around to making him feel better which would in turn make me feel better and loved. ( he’s not affectionate) only when comes to sex. Which this also makes me feel I have to give it to him so show him that I love him, most of the time I feel I don’t want to. I have so much to explain but I do feel that I’m causing the drama – even though I’m not a dramatic person – I don’t like to argue so won’t bring things up if I don’t want to cause a debate, I’m not great at talking, I’m not a articulate person. He likes to talk and talk and talk especially about the past and what I did wrong and how it hurt him, I think I just blanked him or said I didn’t do it like that or I didn’t mean to hurt you- I feel that could I be the abusive one – giving him the silent treatment, he says things in a manner he believes is true but I get confused and I think it can’t be like that – is it me? Please tell me it can’t me? Am I to blame for the marriage breakdown? What am I doing wrong? Am I so blinkered to my own world?
      I am a mummy of 3, gorgeous children, polite and kind – this is a busy job – I don’t work but I (removed by moderator), keep a good home, don’t spend much on myself. I though dinner parties before COVID.
      He picks on our middle child a bit – as she’s the one who when she’s angry is really angry, tears up her home work and throws things, he shouts and swears at her ( awful words) just like he does and did to me. She stands up to him gives him the flight he’s after, She’s putting on weight over lockdown and he’s calling her out on it. She was angry the other day and he can’t handle it and pinned her down on the floor, this is what happens I come along and ask him to get off her I will deal with it ( meaning holding her and cuddling her and asking her what’s wrong) he said and always says get off and don’t under mind me. He then verbally attacks me in front of all the children – they cry and he continues. This time and the only time I told him he was a (removed by moderator) ( said it so quietly- he then shouted it out to let the children know what I had said) (removed by moderator) have gone by, I have apologised in a note to him to say sorry for saying that – I’m still waiting for his apology. I’ve not really spoken to him – just reading on here is this the silent treatment? Am I the one that is making him feel sad?
      I don’t want him in my live but I feel the need to stay to keep the family together – to not have that broken home ? I’m so confused and appreciate any help and tell me straight?
      These are just a few time there are other times he’s acted out, always blames me. He’s so polite and would do anything for anybody outside the home. He’s seen as such a great guy. I’ve tried to support him but I’m just not good enough for his needs and wants. He told me yesterday he’s so sad and unhappy and I make him so sad and that most of the time he has to hold back hold his tongue as I do things he doesn’t like, he says I don’t listen ( I don’t think I do) he said he’s been unhappy most of the (removed by moderator) years of married life.

    • #121144

      Hi there,

      Just wanted to come on and show you some support.
      None of what’s been happening is your fault. Abusers never ever take accountability for their own actions. This is why they say things like “look you’re winding me up” when my ex would punch stuff he’d say “look you’re making me flip” These are grown adults who simply want to go round doing and saying what they like and never ever have any repercussions. My ex always said he had an anger problem. I believed him and made allowances for his behaviour but he would be shouting swearing at me then open the front door and see our neighbour and be charming happy and polite. These people CAN control their tempers otherwise they’d be horrible to everyone. There’s a reason your husband is seen to be this great guy by everyone, because he can control himself around them. He just chooses not to around you and your children. You do not need to stay in a home that is unhappy, not for any of your sakes. I’m sure your children would rather have a mum that was separated from their dad but was happy than a mum and dad together but miserable. X

    • #121147

      You’re confused because of the abuse. That’s what happens. We are blamed for everything and gaslighted into doubting our own reality. Abusers keep us trapped in the FOG of Fear, Obligation and Guilt. He is abusing you and your children. He is doing deliberately and it is NOT your fault. He would treat any partner he had like this. Abusers have no interest in an equal partnership, they want a subservient slave to meet all their needs, never question their authority and be a dustbin for all their toxic emotions. He behaves himself outside the house but abuses his wife and children; he is perfectly in control. His behaviour is calculated to intimidate you and your children into submission
      He cares only about power and control.

      You are not breaking the family up if you decide to leave him. He broke it the first time he chose to abuse you. Dont carry his shame for him. Please reach out to Womens Aid and keep posting here. You need and deserve help and support whatever you decide to do. Do not confront him, he is a violent, dangerous man and he knows what he is doing is wrong- otherwise he’d be doing it in public. He wont change so dont waste your breath on him. Reach out to your GP, family, friends and mind yourself xx

      • #121188

        Hi thank you for your message, yes I am confused – I want to see the good in him, when he’s playful and fun, but I think that’s when he’s on the w**d. I want to be hopeful he will keep the good side of him around and depress the not so good ie the shouting and swearing, it only happened every few months now, is this just a married couple with (detail removed by moderator) children? People do have arguments?
        I do feel though the arguments turn on me … calling me all sorts and blaming me for my family- his favourite at the moment saying is .. he says this to our children – “(detail removed by moderator)” why would he say that when I’m most definitely not! Just because I call him out on what I think is wrong ( to swear ) in front of them stop calling me and then (detail removed by moderator).
        he has a nice side an good side but when he’s angry he’s a monster. I know it’s not right but is it? Is this a married couples life?

        My parents arnt like this- I never saw my dad get angry with me or my mum ( they are still together) they have there little bickers but not what I’ve seen with my husband- my sister too – her marriage is kind. I don’t see others I hear about husbands and wives arguments but I never know the full as it’s behind closed doors. Am I in a toxic relationship or is it just he’s unhappy I can’t seem to make him happy and it’s done? I want to believe it can work but 2 separations and a non mol – I’m I just so blinkered? So stupid? To think I should carry on or is this just a case of I need to hear him out and try harder to love and care for him?

      • #121193

        You are not stupid. You are being abused. There are always good times in an abusive relationship, it is part of the cycle to keep us trapped. If he was awful all the time you would have left years ago. He is just nice enough for just long enough to keep stringing you along. Google the cycle of abuse, I think you will recognize the pattern in your own relationship. Keep a private journal of incidents, it will help you to see the pattern and bring you out of the fog.

        It is so painful to acknowledge that what we are experiencing is abuse. That our intimate partner is deliberately treating us so horribly. But that is what is happening to you and you children. It is not your fault or your responsibility. He abuses you because he wants to. He will not change. This awful behaviour gets him what he wants; to be the all powerful king of his castle. No matter what you do it will make no difference-he wants you to fail and to burn yourself out trying to love him just the right way to make him a better person.

        Couples argue but what you describe is not arguments between between equal partners but abusive episodes between abuser and victim. It’s not like your parents or sisters marriage because they are not married to an abuser. Sadly you are. Read back your posts; he is verbally, emotionally and physically abusing you and you family. Your poor daughter pinned to the floor by her father! What a monster he is. That is the real him. Not the mask of niceness he wears. If a stranger had done what he did to your daughter he would have been arrested. That he is her father makes it worse.

        His actions are not your fault or your responsibility. I will say again- he will not change. Please reach out to womens aid, they wont make you do anything but will give you some much needed clarity and support.

        Keep posting. Sending hugs xx

    • #121150
      Main Moderator

      Hi Bolder,

      Welcome to the forum, I can see you have just started posting here.
      You have already received some particularly useful advice to hopefully provide insight and perspective on your situation. You are not creating drama nor are you the cause of his on-going ‘sadness’. He is very emotionally and psychologically manipulative; most all controlling abusers are. Like it has been mentioned, he is totally capable of being the ‘nice guy’, he is just choosing not to whenever it suits him.
      So, try and prioritise on you and your children’s needs at this point. Get as much support and advice as possible so you can get some clarity on how to move forward. Find your local domestic abuse service here. This is a good place to start with exploring your options and talking to professionals who will understand what you are going through and validate this for you.
      I hope you continue to use this forum as a place of support. Do let us know how you get on.
      All the best,


      • #121192

        Just want to add to my last reply, I just want to make it better, to hug it out – I can’t stand this tension between us even though he doesn’t seem to want to hold me.

      • #121194

        He is deliberately creating that tension and withholding physical affection to make you feel that you are the one to blame for his actions and it is your responsibility to fix the tension. How you are feeling is normal and is part of the push-pull abusers use to keep us confused and trapped. It is further proof of his emotional abuse and psychological manipulation. It’s so awful and my heart goes out to you. Leave him to his sulking, it is not your fault. Sending a virtual hug xx

      • #121209

        Thinking – I’m the one that sulks and goes quite and can’t talk, he then attaches himself more to the children and try’s to act all nice as pie- so it makes me think could it be me? Could this be me manipulating the situation? Me making him feel bad and sad? He says I’m passive aggressive.. could I be the one that’s in the wrong?

      • #121220

        He attacks and abuses you and you have the natural reaction of shutting down
        He is gaslighting you (google gaslighting if you’re not familiar with the term) by minimising the abuse; pretending to be all nicey-nice while you are still traumatised and trying to process the abusive incident, he’s pretending nothing happened, so why should you even be upset? Its crazy-making manipulation on his part designed to make you question yourself and doubt your reality.

        He (detail removed by moderator), screams verbal abuse at you all and then plays nice? He is the manipulative abuser here, not you. You are blaming yourself for everything because has brainwashed you into believing that. He has been feeding you lies but when its repeated so often (and they are sooo convincing) we start to believe it. None of this is your fault.

        Does he ever take responsibility for anything that he does, or is it always your fault? Or the children’s fault, or stress at work..
        It’s all excuses. He is an adult and is responsible for his own actions. He chooses to behave this way. He is in control. It is not your fault or your responsibility. You cant fix or change him no matter what you do. Could you get out for a walk and phone womens aid? They will help and support you xx

      • #121208

        Thank you for your words – it really helps to hear this. Thank you x*x

      • #121328

        Hi again,

        The things he says seem to get to me every time, thinking it’s me , is it me? He says it didn’t start off with him yelling shouting and swearing, am I missing something as it was a build up that I didn’t see or hear? Am I not listening to him?
        He’s very quite at the moment , I’m wondering what he’s concocting.

      • #121335

        Every time you discuss the abuse with him you give him the opportunity to manipulate and confuse you. He will never admit fault or take responsibility. He will always twist things to make you believe you are at fault and to blame for everything in the relationship. He has been conditioning you to believe this for years and knows exactly what buttons to press. You are not to blame nor are you responsible for HIS actions. Keep a secret journal of the incidents so you can keep yourself in reality and tell him nothing. Your silence is your power. Take it back xx

      • #121774

        Hi Hawthorn,

        I’m worried now and i don’t know who to call.
        My husband has gone on the war path today totally upset the whole family all children crying but really went for my (detail removed by moderator) child as she stands up to him.
        Called her a (detail removed by moderator), said to them all your mother and I are getting a divorce then you can go (detail removed  by moderator), to my daughter he said I will (detail removed by moderator) so you don’t have to come and stay, she’s only (detail removed by moderator) bless her x
        I ask him to go to take a.walk to stop this they are children – it’s now not just verbal abuse to me it’s now on the children – he’s a verbally abusive drug addict father – ( we are not struggling on the money front) but how can he do this what kind of man is he … wicked just wicked to do this to my children and me. I have asked him to go and stay with his parents but he won’t leave. My other two children won’t leave with me, what do I do? I’m scared and I don’t want to call the police as the children will blame me, oh my god I’m so weak and stupid. What kind of mother am I to let this happen. I know it’s just words but my daughter is so messed up, she’s started hitting her little brother saying it’s his fault we didn’t leave today because he would come with me. I’m so sad.

      • #121775

        Hello, sorry it sounds like you’ve all had an awful day. Are you able to give the National abuse helpline a call? They won’t tell you what to do but they’ll talk you through options and offer support/advice xx

      • #121782

        Hi Bodler,

        You are not weak or stupid. You are being abused. And yes he is also abusing your children. It’s not just words, it is child abuse. Your children are that; children. You are the adult here and responsible for them. They are also being abused and dont know what to do, that’s why they’re saying they dont want to leave or want their father to leave. He is their abuser, as he is yours, and they are also struggling to think straight because of the FOG of abuse; the Fear, Obligation and Guilt.

        You need to reach out to your local womens aid and have them support you with an order to get him out of the house or find you a place in refuge. I would also recommend phoning the police, the can speak to the domestic abuse team on 101. I know you dont want to get him in trouble but this is not about him, or you any more. This about your children. As the sane, non-abusive adult in this situation it is your responsibility to protect them. Not to protect your abuser. I understand how difficult it is to be strong for yourself- so find the strength to be strong for them. For your children. Children who grow up in abusive households often become abused or abusers themselves. Your children are internalizing his abusive behaviour as normal. You need to show them it is not. That no one needs to tolerate abuse.

        You all deserve so soo much better than this. This situation is NOT your fault, the blame lies with your abuser, but it is your responsibility to get yourself and children away from this abuser. He is no father or partner- he is a tormentor and jailer.

        Reach out; womens aid/GP/police/family/friends.
        There is support for you to escape this situation, you dont have to do it alone. Reach out. Sending strength and a big hug xx

    • #121153

      My heart breaks for your children, especially your daughter. Children are the true innocent victims in all of this.
      We see the result of childhood abuse in the dysfunctional adults in our lives all the time. Your children need to be protected from this abuse. YOU need to be protected from this abuse.
      Unfortunately, as the more responsible and mentally healthy parent in this situation, it falls on you to get to a safe place for all of you.
      And no, this was NEVER your fault!

      • #121350

        Hi Hawthorn, thank you you are so helpful and making this all sound like sense to me. It’s just why can’t I see this? Why am I wanting to be hopeful that we could make it better! Although it’s always me making it better trying to be caring towards him making sure he feels cared for, I’ve often wondered why he never Apologises for his actions or words and then denies it? Strange? Why can’t he see this himeself? Why wouldn’t he want to keep family Harmony in the home? Why does he smoke so much w**d? – it’s all to escape it. He’s the one who hats not happy so why does he want to stay? Why do I want to stay?
        I’ve been to IDAS a couple of times years ago and they told me they don’t change – I’ve been to IDAS 6 times last year and again said the same in a different way. WHY can’t I see what’s happening. I’ve read the books – why do I want to keep trying? I don’t even love him. It’s just, it must be that I just don’t want the children in a broken home. What I s also don’t like – and I shouldn’t care what people think but I don’t like that his friends and some of my friends don’t know exactly what he’s like and what abuse I have been through over the years. They think he’s a top guy. Who should I go and see professionally – IDAS again ? Councillor again – who best ? My family are such a support and so kind but I don’t want to bother them as they have heard it all before. Thank you for taking the time to read and respond to my other messages x*x

      • #121351

        Our brains know how dangerous it is to leave, we delude ourselves that while we remain in the relationship we have some element of control over the abusers behaviour. We become experts at anticipating their wants and needs to avoid an explosion. If we leave we lose that illusion of control. And it is an illusion. He is the one in control here, he has made sure of it.

        He doesn’t leave because things are just as he wants them. He has power and control over the whole household. He stays for the same reason he abuses you and the children and why he smokes w**d; because he enjoys it and feels completely entitled to do it. He will never admit fault or change his behaviour because he doesn’t believe there’s anything wrong with it.
        These men dont change because it’s not a behaviour problem, it’s a core belief problem. And he is now teaching your daughters those beliefs. That abuse is how a man treats his partner and children. He has broken this home, not you. He has escalated from abusing you in front of the children (child abuse) to actively perpetrating abuse against his children. He is a monster.
        When we lose hope of changing them or ourselves in order to fix the relationship it means we have to do something about it, and the only option is to leave. That is terrifying so it is no surprise you are struggling with it. Your brain is spinning in circles trying to come up with any other option.
        Please get back in touch with IDAS, it takes on average 7 attempts to leave an abusive relationship so dont feel you cant keep going back. They are there to support you. You have a kind family, that’s great! Reach back out to them too. And keep posting here, you need and deserve support.
        I know you said you’d read all the books, but maybe read them again? You have been subjected to horrendous brainwashing and abuse also affects our concentration. Why Does he Do That (Lundy Bancroft) is available to read for free online. To understand why you’re thinking as you are try How he Gets inside her head by Don Hennessey.
        Take care and keep posting xx

    • #121155

      Hello, I’m so sorry to hear about what you and your children are experiencing. He sounds like a real nasty bully.
      Please know that none if it is yours (or the childrens) fault.
      I’m sure you’ll notice similar behaviour if you read other posts on the forum. Although abusers may use slightly different tactics, they all have the same goal which is power and control.
      Keep posting on here if you need to, it’s a great support just speaking to others who understand 💞

    • #121157

      Just to add to what others have said, don’t confuse you going quiet to what we talk about on here when our abusers stonewall us. You retreating into yourself and being quiet and distant to protect yourself from his drama and endless talk talk talk is not the same as him using silent treatment to unsettle, control and punish you.
      I retreated from my ex. I stopped replying to his rants when I was at work, I’d lock myself in another room and put my fingers in my ears. But this was protection mode. I just wanted him to stop. Then I’d enjoy the peace of him not talking to me because he wouldn’t be pestering me. Xx

    • #121166

      Thank you everyone for your comments, it means a great deal to me to hear these. Thank you. Xx

    • #121191

      Hi Bodler I’m so sorry you and your kids are enduring this. It’s domestic abuse and child abuse. He is creating the confusion with his switches of behaviour to keep you off kilter- he knows what he is doing. Read Lundy Bancroft why does he do that. Reach out for support – services will help you get out and get your children to safety – your children need you to act to protect them. This is him just him you have done nothing wrong.

    • #121202

      Hi there, I’m sorry to hear about how things are for you. As others have said it is absolutely not your fault. I would strongly recommend reading up on abuse to understand your situation better. The Lundy Bancroft book mentioned is great. Someone on this forum also recommended How he gets into her head by Don Hennessy. I’ve only read a little but it was very interesting to read that survivors are often not previous victims of abuse. He says that abusers carefully select partners (e.g. someone with a giving nature, who puts others first) and carefully manipulate them so that by the time you know what’s happening you’re totally sucked in. The abuser may not be doing this consciously. I took from this that we were unlucky to meet abusers but there are lots of other people out there in happy relationships who might have ended up in abusive ones if they had been unlucky. It’s so easy to think there’s something wrong with me, other people wouldn’t have stayed. But they will never know unless they were in this position.

      There is nothing wrong with you. Yes you have healing to do but there is nothing wrong with you. The abuse is all about him. The abuse is intended to keep you confused and trapped but by posting here you’ve already taken a step to seeing what’s really happening. Sending love xxxx

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