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    • #28390

      Hi All,
      I was wondering if someone could let me know what you think of this: I’ve been with my husband for (detail removed by moderator) years and almost a year ago he physically assaulted me (our then (detail removed by moderator) year-old girl heard the commotion and she still remembers he hit me – luckily she didn’t see, only heard). Before that, in the course of (detail removed by moderator) years he had been abusive, mainly verbally (likes name-calling, swearing), emotionally (sulking, giving me a cold shoulder), physically (throwing things, punching walls & doors, grabbed me by throat several times, pushed me).

      After this assault last year he hasn’t been violent – partly because I reported it to my GP and social services were involved for (detail removed by moderator) (as we have a child). He was really shocked at this and called me a traitor and I think he is more careful because he knows I would report it again.

      I’m doing my best to keep things peaceful – meaning I do not challenge him, I’m very careful of what I say and how I say it etc. Obviously, I’m well aware that this is soul-destroying and unhealthy behaviour and I know that I don’t want to live like this.

      Since he’s not getting his satisfaction with me too much in terms of venting his anger, I think that he’s getting meaner towards our daughter. For example, she did a wee in her pants instead of going to the toilet – he shouted at her using bad language and hit her (she had a bruise on her hip). I wasn’t there as I work full-time (he’s a stay-at-home-dad while I’m a breadwinner – FYI this is not by my choice). When I came home from work, my daughter – normally an extremely lively bundle of sunshine was so sad all evening I couldn’t get a tiny smile out of her, couldn’t get her interested in anything she normally enjoys.

      I was going to confront him but changed my mind as soon as I started – I was talking to him gently but I could sense the tension in him rising as I went on. So I stopped, thinking this is a waste of time – the only thing I’ll achieve will be more stress for my daughter if we start arguing – and the next day I rang Women’s Aid.

      That day I rang WA, the same thing happened, except this time he didn’t shout or hit. He kept singing a mocking song about the little one, about how she stinks and is smelly and etc. My daughter told me that when I came home only to find her very sad again.

      I rang WA and arranged a meeting with (a case worker?) from an organization WA recommended about my options.
      I have wanted to leave him so many times but because he and my daughter also have a very good relationship normally, I’m not sure if I’m not taking it too far.

      He does love her and is very protective of her but on the other hand he’s very controlling and she does things just to please him. I do not like it and I don’t think it’s right. However, is this a good enough reason to separate them and disrupt my girl’s life? She’s just started reception and really loves her school so it breaks my heart to think of taking her away from all that but also it broke my heart seeing her so sad when he treats her like a criminal.

      Also, the assault happened because I mentioned ‘divorce’ and that set him off so leaving would be a logistics nightmare.

      I am really torn. He seems to be nice now but I know that something will come over him again – going in circles.

      I’d be grateful for any opinion.


    • #28478

      Hi Apple
      I think that it is really really wrong of your partner to abuse your little one like that, let alone what he has done to you. Put into context …. if some other grown man did that to your daughter would you accept it? Are you teaching your daughter that it is ok to be abused – setting her up with a distorted view of what a healthy parent/child relationship should be? My story is different because he has never been physically abusive but the shouting, demeaning, name calling and intimidation are there. How we all walk on eggshells around him depending on his mood. I am not out yet but I am getting there. I do know for sure that putting up with it for so long has made me ill and it is a very hard place to be. You and your daughter deserve peace and happiness. Well done for seeking support and advice. Keep posting on here for more support. I am sure others will reply soon with their advice and views. Xx

      • #28542

        Hello Tuppance,

        Thank you for your reply. I’m very glad to hear that you haven’t had physical stuff going on. But shouting, demeaning, name calling and intimidation are bad enough. That can really leave your soul scarred. I have all that – not like everyday – but often enough to make me feel down. And I completely understand when you say it’s making you ill – I feel the same way. My energy is very low and my immune system weakened. Sometimes, when I sense he’s in a dark mood I actually get either a migraine or feel sick in my stomach. Or I can get a stomach tightness and not be able to eat anything. And then of course, my work is affected and also my precious time with my daughter.

        I hope that your condition isn’t anything serious. I believe that this kind of stress can cause an actual illness and that’s one of the reasons I’ve decided to make a move. Life is too short. I’m not letting an ignorant person rob me of that. I sincerely hope that you can find strength and motivation to take care of yourself and make yourself feel better. At least a little bit every day. I’ve actually taken up yoga and even though I do it at home without supervision, it helps a lot. Just like 20 minutes. The trick is to find something that makes you feel nice and do it on good days. (On bad days I’m too down to do it). The point is to make yourself stronger in any way possible when you have an opportunity. I know it sounds silly but I think that it’s so important to keep as healthy as you can, so that you’re strong to do the battle.

        And you are absolutely right about what it is exactly that I’m teaching my daughter – this has been plaguing me most. She’s already adjusting her behaviour so as not to displease him in the slightest. Always seeks his approval. It’s painful to watch. Where will it lead to? To her being submissive to any old fool and erosion of self-confidence. You’re spot on by pointing that out.

        Thank you,

    • #28479
      Main Moderator

      Hi AppleNinja,

      Thank you so much for your brave and honest post and welcome to the forum! I am pleased to see that you have had a supportive reply. You have done absolutely the right thing to speak to Women’s Aid and I hope that your meeting with a case worker goes well. I am sorry to say that your husband is abusing both you and your little girl. He must have hit her very hard to leave a big bruise and now he is taunting and mocking her, both very unacceptable behaviour to anyone, let alone a little girl. It sounds like sadly you may have normalised this behaviour because you have been living with him for so long but his behaviour is wrong and abusive and I think it is brilliant that you are starting to get help. You say that he loves her but he is not displaying this by bullying her and treating her in this way and it is not going to get any better, his abuse will worsen and the damage he does to you and your daughter will too.

      You and your daughter deserve so much to be free from his abuse so please reach out to all the help that you can. We are all here for you as your start to find out your options and hopefully the road to happiness so please keep posting.

      Best wishes,

      Forum Moderator

      • #28548

        Hello Lisa,

        Thank you for your support, it means a lot to hear that I’m not going crazy. Of course, any sensible person in their right mind would see this for what it is. Unfortunately, I was making excuses for him because of his difficult background without a family and because of his previous partner passing away, leaving him with a baby. I felt sorry for him.

        But I cannot tolerate it any longer.

        Sadly, we had another bad episode yesterday. I took a day off work to take my girl to GP for a check-up. As we were getting ready to leave, she had another accident when she didn’t go to the toilet. I scolded her – but not harshly at all. She started panicking and started to cry a bit hysterically so I didn’t go further with telling her off and tried to calm her down, giving her hugs (I know she panicked because she was afraid her dad would hear all this). As I was sorting her out, I went out of the bathroom to get something, and when I returned her dad was there in the bathroom, having taken over, blocking me from getting to her. He was cleaning her and she was crying because he was telling her off now. He was interfering even though I had told him to leave it to me, I’m dealing with it and I had already talked to the little one so no need to tell her off further as she’s already upset. So he ignored everything I said and proceeded to take charge and causing her to cry.

        Then, as we were leaving the house, he grabbed her favourite puppy toy out of her hands, saying she’s not taking it. I said ‘Can you give it back because I promised she can take it to the doctor’s on this occasion? When he refused rudely, I snatched it back and that’s when he started shouting and went all red. He looked exactly like when he assaulted me. I was wondering if he’s going to pounce at me. I could he was making an effort to restrain himself from grabbing me. I know the drill. I can’t even remember the things he was saying because all I could see was the little one standing in the doorway crying and saying ‘Please stop’.

        I wasn’t shouting, I just kept asking him to stop yelling. Eventually he said ‘just go!’

        So we went. When we came back he continued ignoring us and didn’t ask anything about the GP appointment. he was giving us both cold shoulder treatment.

        In the evening he asked me sarcastically if I’d be so generous as to share any information about our daughter’s health.

        This is so hard to deal with, not because of myself, but because of my little girl. So I am grateful for any advice or sharing on this forum.

        Thank you so much,

    • #28486

      Oh sweetie yes you should move out I feel so sad reading your post you and your poor baby please please please can you both get away from that guy he doesn’t love anyone . Love is kind and protecting . he doesn’t know how to love and will not change for you or anyone else .
      You can have a quiet gentle life with you and your lovely baby she has heard a lot and she probably wet herself because he scared her not just wet her self and then he punished her
      You both sound so unsafe , you can be killed easily by being strangled.

      Do not tell him any thing you are thinking about , if you leave do not tell him , do not talk about divorce it is the most dangerous time for Women when they leave.
      So you would need to get all your papers up together with out him knowing.

      Please don’t let him be alone with your baby she is being abused she is so young and can’t protect her self she needs her Mummy to get help to protect her . Please use all the help you can to get you both away from this angry man
      You will both be so happy in peace and calm , it what you and your precious baby deserves
      you are in the right place now we will all on here have your back and support you. Stay close to this forum as much as you can as there is so much support from women who have had similar relationships as yours .
      Big Hugs x*x

    • #28517

      Hi Apple I hope you are okay
      Hugs x*x

      • #28549

        Hello Savingmyself,

        Thank you for your kind words.
        As I wrote earlier I was making excuses for him because of his difficult background when he had no family and because of his previous partner passing away, leaving him with a baby.

        Unfortunately, I cannot be with her as I work full-time and he is a stay-at-home-dad. However, she’s just started reception school so she spends most of her day there. And I spend all evenings and weekends with her.

        I’m not telling him anything and I’m secretly plotting the great escape. Although I’ve no idea how I’ll survive.

        I take lots of comfort from your assurance of peace and calm – just to see those word helps enormously.

        So yes, I am okay (not great) but okay and better than a few days ago, being in the company of kind people on this forum.

        Many thanks,

    • #28521

      Hi Apple. “Luckily she didn’t see it, only heard”. You are completely minimising the abuse which is what victims do. Please make an exit plan before it’s too late for you both. Take all the help offered X she heard domestic violence, how devastating for a child. Save yourself x

      • #28552

        Hi KIP,

        Yes, totally guilty of minimising and having become a pushover. How? How did that happen?

        He didn’t start on my daughter until only recently – (detail removed by moderator). Prior to that he was controlling towards her and kind of on her case all the time. I hated it then, but now it seems it’s becoming more frequent and more intense. At this rate, I’m not sure if I will have enough time to form a proper exit plan. I do have a few things ready (documentation and passports, a bag with basic stuff, make a grab a laptop and a few toys; and I have a place to stay for a few days – at friends’ house) but other than that I may have to just make a leap in the unknown.

        Thank you loads,

    • #28540

      Hello everyone!

      Thank you all for your replies. I was so surprised and touched by your responses. I am really really grateful to hear from you all.

      But the most surprising thing is that I have let this happen. I used to be strong and had clear views on what’s wrong and right. I always used to think – I don’t understand these women who get abused. Why don’t they just leave? What’s wrong with them? – well, now I know. If I’ve learnt anything from this, it’s humbleness and understanding toward others. It really can happen to anyone and it can creep up on you in most inconspicuous ways. And it’s so hard to get out of. You just don’t know what’s hit you.

      And yes, I am completely guilty of minimising his behaviour. I can totally see it from my writing. I guess this is because (at least in my case) you know that this person also has good things about him. He is caring and generous and he does look after our daughter. It’s clear to me what the situation is and what the right thing is to do (to leave). But at the same time I’m finding it difficult – having to change someone’s life.

      If I leave he will be quite alone. His almost adult daughter, whom he had with his previous partner, ran away some time ago. She had lived with us and she was the reason I never left him. She always begged me not to go and I didn’t have the heart to leave her (her mother had passed away when she was a baby). She ran away because he had made her feel like a criminal and outcast and she was scared of him (although he would deny all of this). I tried to help her as much as I could but I’m afraid that the damage had already been done before I came to live with them.

      He prides himself for being a great dad and when I challenge him on his parenting methods (extremely gently) he acts as great injustice has been done to him. Him being the great expert in child-rearing.

      I’m curious to know: do these people actually believe they are in the right? Do they genuinely not understand what impact they have on other people? Or do you think they are well aware of what they’re doing?

    • #28555

      Hi there, they know exactly what they are doing. What happened to his first daughter will happen to yours. They just don’t change. He is not your responsibility however, your daughter is. These men wear a mask. The real him is a nasty selfish self serving individual. The ‘nice’ him comes along to keep you hooked in. Read ‘Living with the Dominator’ by Pat Craven. If you leave with your daughter, yes you would be changing her life. But changing it for the better. Abuse only gets worse over time. You need to look after you because he’s proved he cannot. Google ‘cycle of abuse’. This caring person you see is not real. It’s an act designed to keep you. These men are most dangerous when you leave them. Then you will see the real him when he’s losing control so do this secretly X

      • #28567

        Hi KIP,

        Thank you.
        I’ll get the book. You are right on every account, I can see it. I’ve started making arrangements. Will be applying for alternative housing and I’ve started looking at storage for hire so that I can sneak things out while waiting for the accommodation.

        Thank you for your reassuring words regarding changing my daughter’s life. In this situation it can really strengthen the resolve. x

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