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    • #131345
      Highway61
      Participant

      I don’t really know what I want to ask about today but I felt like I wanted to come to the forum, I know I need some support or just to write things down. Having thought things were settling down in the spring Ive recently come to realise that he has been closing in and again and now I feel like Im – not back to where I was because I couldn’t get up from my chair when I first left – but struggling with my own mind again and losing motivation to leave the house again and getting social anxiety again. I realise now that he has been using contact and child maintenance to stay in contact with me. I realise I gave him too much when I got back because I didn’t want to believe it was abuse and I was scared of accusing him/going to court because I would be told I was wrong and also, I think, there is a part of me that hasn’t wanted to hurt him. He has been saying we need to renegotiate childcare arrangements for (detail removed by moderator) now but also has taken on bank work that ‘will be permanent in the future’. I eventually just said, we can’t sit and wait around your shifts, the kids need consistency and security they dont like (detail removed by moderator). He says he thought we would be friends by now and that Im just too defensive with him, he says the plan Ive come up with is totally selfish and only considerd what I want. Ive had to leave my (detail removed by moderator) because I dont have the head space to study, universal credit have been pressuring me to get work which I think has been a good thing becuase it made me go to the doctors and accept that Im actually not well and the extent of the impact he has had on me. I need to ring a solicitor and seek proper contact arrangements and stop communicating with him – I think I have been trying not to believe it is really abuse and I think Ive been trying to protect him and I cant believe after all this time that Im still in the same place I was two years ago when we first separated. I know what I have to do now but I am scared and very sad.

    • #131348
      KIP.
      Participant

      We were all scared and sad with the realisation that these men simply care nothing about us. They are incapable. They are selfish and the only way to deal with him is zero direct contact which you are now beginning to see. It took me a long time too because I came from a place of my moral compass but sadly he has none. So use a third party for contact and report any unwanted contact to the police. He will push your boundaries until you break time and time again. Zero contact x

    • #131351
      Highway61
      Participant

      thank you KIP and yes, what Ive actually realised is that he uses my own moral compass against me, he sees it as an opportunity and a weakness for him to manipulate. I really appreciate this forum, after my time on here this morning I’m actually not sad, I’m mad! And I feel stronger. I always thought zero contact wasn’t possible because it ‘isn’t best for the kids’ but all it does is give the kids mixed signals and means they are exposed to him manipulating me over and over again. Zero contact it is. Thanks again.

    • #131352
      KIP.
      Participant

      Just take it one day at a time. Kids are resilient and they follow your lead. Just be consistent. They will soon realise how hurt you are by the contact from their father and it also gives them the strength to say no to him when it becomes too much. When dad hurts mum is a good book by Lundy Bancroft x

    • #131358
      Highway61
      Participant

      I’ll have a look at that, thank you

    • #131524
      cakepops
      Participant

      I think many of us with children go through the same. Due to years of DV when we separated I still internalised a lot of the guilt, and my ex used this against me constantly. I hoped he could be a good dad when I wasn’t there, but in reality years later he is still obsessively focused on trying to control me. As he can’t do this directly he does it via the kids, family court, school etc.

      I regret making so many ‘compromises’ for contact and finances. It has left me far far worse off than I should have been, and my children seeing their dad much more than is healthy for them. I think there should be much more help for people making decisions in these circumstances. I had a good solicitor but was bullied into agreeing things I shouldn’t have via mediation.

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