27th June 2020 at 11:57 am #107778
Just been reading the post about Denial – Recovery stages. I’m in Realisation. Lots of you on here have recommended the book Why Does He Do That by Lundy Bancroft. I can see why. I googled and found a free PDF copy online by the way if anyone wants one but will struggle to buy a copy – it was on a website called doc droid.net. Since finishing it I’ve been reflecting on what the children and I experience and lots of the things in the book are present in our family life:
– I was probably vulnerable when we met. He’s a lot older than me and was a lot more sexually experienced.
– He uses pornography.
– He sees females as inferior (my sons are scorned for crying like a girl, they should man-up)
– I have become a servant to him (working, paying bills, cooking, washing, shopping, cleaning, organising gifts for his relatives, childcare, clubs, days out)
– I have provided him money for business ventures but never had any payback.
– His input is limited to occasionally washing up, sorting rubbish, cooking a meal (if I ensure the ingredients are available and it doesn’t take too much effort or time).
– He cannot stand to be disagreed with, if this happens he interrupts, shouts down, slams his fist, belittles, insults me (vile language also in front of kids). If he does these things it is the fault if whoever made him angry.
– He drinks a lot, but claims he doesn’t have a problem.
– He has health problems, and sats I do not support him with them but at the same time doesn’t take them seriously himself (poor diet, no exercise, drinking)
– He shows no interest in me or the kids, unless he wants to for a very short time and on his terms.
I am fed up. I am angry with him for treating us this way. I am angry with myself for not seeing it sooner, for allowing myself and my children to experience this. I’m embarrassed that as an intelligent woman I have to admit this is my reality.
What I read in the Bancroft book has helped me see things for what they are. I have told a few friends of a few occasions of this emotional abuse and aggression. But nobody really knows the true extent of it. I’ve started writing down some past experiences of abusive behaviour to keep as a record/evidence.
I do not want this to be our life any longer. I do not think he will change. I tried the WA live chat earlier but my phone was playing up and I could type when the support worker finally connected.
I am feeling pretty strong and determined to sort this out. How do I tell him that I am no longer prepared to live in this way? What should I have considered/ prepared beforehand?
27th June 2020 at 12:13 pm #107779HeadspinningParticipant
Most people on here suggest you already have an exit strategy and let him know as little as possible until you are out. This is because he will either put in the nice guy a t to Hoover you back in or he will increase the abuse and it becomes the most difficult time. Get some legal advice, speak to support agencies etc.
For me – I didn’t have a grand plan. I knew I was unhappy and on the roller coaster, being blamed going from highs to lows and always struggling to even remember what the argument was about. The end came over a really trivial argument that he escalated to a ridiculous level because instead of shouting back I calmly told him that I knew the real reason for his anger was because I’d visited someone earlier, not because of what I had just done in the house that he was actually shouting at me about. I don’t thing he liked me calling him on it so he escalated, gas lighted, stayed away for a couple of nights, said he would only return if I accepted the blame etc – I called his bluff on it and didn’t back down. He backed himself into a corner and suddenly I was out!!! I was lucky I owned the house I lived in. Yes he tried to hoover me back, yes it almost worked, but hi true colours quickly shone through and this time I persevered with the separation.
So my advice – start planning, but if a chance presents itself unexpectedly While you are making you plan, take it!!
3 steps – visualise your future without him, (where are you, how do you spend your time etc) believe you can get there, (Very important – once you have a positive mindset and belief it’s amazing how opportunities can present the self – you just have to be open to them) then it’s just about creating the plan!!!
27th June 2020 at 12:19 pm #107780HeadspinningParticipant
From a practical point of view, consider your finances – can you squirrel away some money as your emergency fund? What important documents might you need? Passport / drivers licence/ copies of any joint policies / birth certificate? What medications do you need? Can you get an emergency bag ready with basic clothes and toiletries?
Do you need to speak to the police? They can put a red marker against your address if they know you are at risk.
Who is your support network / friends, GP, family, professional support, schools I case he turns up there?
Do you need to tell him face to face or can you just go then write?
Do you need to go at all or can he be the one to go? Legally where do you stand? Are you married or do you co-own the house etc.
27th June 2020 at 12:34 pm #107781
Thanks headspinning. I think I will be ok financially but I do need to know where I stand with the house (joint mortgage) and legally what my options are. I would like him to be the one to leave but I can’t see that being easy to convince. He isn’t violent (so far) and I feel like I would prefer to have the calm conversation first and see how it goes. Part of thinks I’m building this up into more of a drama than it needs to be. But then I think am I just being naive?
27th June 2020 at 1:20 pm #107784
Flo3er my situation is so like yours and we seem to be at the same stage . He has told me to leave with the kids on numerous occasions but I pay most the mortgage and don’t see why it should be me to leave when it’s him causing the aggro. He said the other day that I’m the one driving him away and will end up lonely 😔
He’s had a few days of being nice and I thought he may have realised he was being unreasonable but no !
27th June 2020 at 1:24 pm #107785
WeepingWillow. Same, it doesn’t seem fair that we are the ones to have the hassle and upheaval of leaving when they are they issue and we pay the bills. I guess that’s the next job on the list. To see if I can make leave .
27th June 2020 at 2:13 pm #107790BeautifuldayParticipant
I just read your post and think I am in the same stage too, realisation! I would highly recommend the book healing from Hidden abuse I found it very very good and I could relate to so many things!! Im in a similar situation with a mortgage and house and would rather he left to be honest or of there was a way I could buy him out, but then part of me thinks stop having attachment to the house and just leave and go to my Mothers ,I’m so torn I’ve found that since being with him I find it hard to make decisions , I get attached to things also like belongings and the home. I was never like this before . Stay strong lovely you are not alone xx
27th June 2020 at 3:26 pm #107801
Yes, it’s difficult to weigh up what’s more important. If it comes to it I guess I would have to leave and sort it out legally but I’d like to exhaust the alternatives for staying put first.
27th June 2020 at 5:29 pm #107827
Sorry I hadn’t finished last post, he came on from work ranting about me and the kids doing nothing and being useless. To make things worse the washing machine broke this morning so of course I’ve done something to it, I’m trying to wind him up on purpose and drive him away but I’ll be the one who ends up alone – can’t possibly have just broke itself can it .
Anyway , I’ve completely forgot what I was saying In the first place other than hope we both find the stength to get us and our kids away from this .
Stay safe xx
27th June 2020 at 5:32 pm #107829
Beautiful day I’m the same I can’t make a decision about the most basic thing these days and hoard like mad. I have all the kids stuff I can’t part with and my parents both passed away and I have to sort the house out and struggling 😞 xx
27th June 2020 at 9:58 pm #107859NeedtomoveonParticipant
Many of these describe my husband of (detail removed by Moderator) years perfectly. I have just had what started as a lovely evening turn sour very quickly, he was swearing and shouting at our (detail removed by Moderator) yr old daughter because she could’nt describe (detail removed by Moderator). She has lots of mental health problems and he says she’s the one destroying our family, not him. He’s always telling me she’s a t**t, makeup looks like a w***e etc etc. The way he speaks about our children is disgusting. He calls our autistic son a d*CK and an idiot regularly. I’m writing this knowing how wrong it is, why haven’t I got the courage to leave. It breaks my heart when our son says it’s not Dad’s fault, he can’t control his anger. They all know that it’s not ok to be spoken to like they are because I tell them but my daughter’s can’t understand why I’m still with him. I don’t know how to make the decision to go. I know my son won’t understand, he idolises his dad no matter what he does. Why do I let myself get taken in over and over again?
27th June 2020 at 10:15 pm #107863Wants To HelpParticipant
@needtomoveon, hello there 🙂
That amount of years to be with someone, brainwashed by them, dominated by them is a HUGE amount of time to be with someone. For many years you may have sadly ‘normalised’ this behaviour and now you are in the REALISATION stage but got a bit stuck as to where to go from here. These are life changing decisions we are making, it’s quite likely you have spent more of your life with this man than without him. However, it is NEVER too late to leave and make a life changing decision.
One story I was told by a DA Support worker was about a lady in her 80’s who lived in Australia and went to a refuge there. She was one of the oldest victims they’d ever taken in and her final ‘boundary of unacceptable behaviour’ or ‘red line moment’ was when her elderly husband found his beloved dog dead on the porch one morning and instead of burying it he threw its body under the house. She said “he loved that dog so much, but if that’s how he treated it after it died then God knows what he’ll do with me when I’m gone.”
So, it doesn’t matter how long you have been with someone, there comes a time when we acknowledge ‘enough’ and there is still some life left in us to be used up for enjoyment and peace instead of unhappiness and living on edge. The support is out there, it’s waiting for you. You just need to grab those lifelines on offer and hold on tight. You can pull yourself free from that deep, dark hole of abuse and change the lives for the better for you and your children.
27th June 2020 at 10:32 pm #107870
Needtomoveon , I feel
The same (detail removed by Moderator) years and I spent so much time making excuses for him and blaming muself. Think it’s hearing him talk to the kids how he does that’s made me wake up, but I know despite everything my kids love their dad , suppose it’s all they’ve ever known, it’s all I’ve known since being a teen and I just don’t know what to do anymore. When my husband had a row with our teen he said he was going to divorce me and my son practically begged him not to. Broke my heart xx
28th June 2020 at 9:59 am #107899
Gosh, reading all these latest replies is tough. We are all struggling. Sending love and strength to you all.
WeepingWillow I hope you’re having a better day today. Broken washing machines are a massive drag!
I think as much as I don’t want the upheaval and upset of a separation for the children. I am trying to think about how much better life would be for them if they didn’t have the negativity and belittling and ridicule that comes with the love of their dad.
I have to say that having read the Lundy Bancroft book I am much more aware of his behaviours and am not led into that cycle of it being twisted round to defending myself. (detail removed by Moderator) I spoke to my husband about how unhappy I am about things and that they need to change. His reply was to say they won’t change, so I asked if he was then happy to carry on as we are. He doesn’t seem happy generally. He said he most certainly was not happy so I asked him why? What is it that makes him so unhappy? He said that there was no point telling me that because I don’t listen to him and I don’t care. I replied that I do, I’m listening now. He said maybe I will tell you some time. I asked when. He said sometime. I said so I have to wait indefinitely for you to have this conversation? He said yes. I said you think that is fair and reasonable? He said yes. I said ok. And we went to bed.
I know I stayed calm although he said I was rude and I you used the F word. I told him I definitely did not and asked him if that was really something he was bothered about? Also how can saying that I think your behaviour is unacceptable be rude? He said totally unacceptable is what you said. I acknowledged that was probably the case but still don’t see how it is any anyway rude?!
And I know why he would not tell me what he is unhappy about. It’s because it put me on the hook for the blame without any chance of defending myself.
Well I’m not standing for it. I have decided I will be perfectly civil and pleasant but I will call him out on his behaviour and I will investigate my position when it comes to the finances and legal stuff.
Stay strong ladies, we can do this. I’m sure there are bad days ahead but we all deserve to be treated better than we are. X
28th June 2020 at 10:58 am #107914BraelynnParticipant
What a little bully he is here. It’s like dealing with a bratty child isn’t it? Geesssh and like we took them to raise or what? Uh no, we didn’t… He’s just trying to be in control. You can’t even have a conversation with someone like that. And he’s avoiding what “he” is actually doing at any given time and slapping you down about everything. Oh I remember well… And I got to the point of trying the bit about standing up for myself and then it was like, nope, not doing the round the tree thing anymore either. I’d say a little bit but very little while I made my plan of escape. I just decided not to even give him any more energy that I absolutely had to. Would use it all for myself. I didn’t need to be the one that did all the understanding, the trying to communicate, carrying his load all the time for his end of our relationship so I just dropped it on the floor. He could pick it up if he cared to but he didn’t and that was it for me. I just let it lay there then. They get so used to us sweeping up after them, propping them up, etc. but once all that stops and you bring that energy into you and for you – big difference. They can whine all they want to about it but sorry for your loss and all that but you should have cared a long time ago and during all this time when you could clearly see how unhappy I was and you did nothing. That’s very telling and I see it for what it is now and I’m done.
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