20th February 2016 at 7:23 pm #10040
Hi I’m new to the forum and wanted to share my story (a very long story actually) I feel a bit stupid for posting on here to be honest because I feel like my situation is my own fault and sometimes wonder if I’m just overreacting.
I was in a relationship with an angry and controlling man for a few years. He never physically hurt me, but he messed with my head, emotional abuse I suppose, although it’s only that now I’m beginning to come to terms with what I have actually been through. One minute he was everything I’ve ever wanted from a relationship, so loving, caring and understanding and the next minute he was flipping at me over the smallest thing, like saying something he didn’t agree with, if I forgot to do something or didn’t do it good enough. Or ignoring me for days on end with no explanation even when I begged him to talk to me. I tried my hardest to please him, sometimes I did things I really didn’t want to just because I wanted to make him happy, to get a nice comment or compliment out of him, I feel pathetic. I’ve been out of the relationship completely for quite a few months now, I didn’t realise that I was a victim of abuse untill I broke down during a hospital appointment and the nurse I was speaking with told me that was I was telling her wasn’t normal or healthy. I wasn’t being physically hurt so I didn’t think it was dv. She did a DASH form there and then and I also had to have a psychiatric assessment due to my distress (I was also pregnant at the time) I have a statement from the psychiatrist saying I’m not mentally ill and that my anxiety and panic attacks are down to what I’ve been through/going through. I’ve been attending counselling sessions but have had to have a break due to having my baby and it’s really starting to take its toll on me, especially now things are getting tough. A police worker from dart got in contact a few days later and she was lovely, she gave me a lot of support and advice and she pointed me in the direction of women’s aid. Currently going through court proceedings with my ex over contact of the children. He’s denied every allegation I’ve made against him, and is claiming he’s a great dad and has a great relationship with the children which is also a big fat lie. He has never made an effort with our oldest child – who is still quite young, even when we lived together he was too busy with his own life to make an effort, then he wonders why she screams and won’t be left with him. He thinks he can just click his fingers and get what he wants in regard to contact but he needs to realise children can’t be forced to have a relationship with someone, he has to put the effort in! I’m worried about the outcome of the court hearing, worried his skills of lying and manipulating people will brainwash them into believing him and letting him just take the children when he has no idea of how to look after them. I just want them to be safe and looked after, does that really make me such a bad mum? Throughout the relationship I was controlled – I feel like I don’t know my own mind sometimes and can’t think my own thoughts because there’s no one there to tell me what to do. Isolated – I was always left out of trips out, family dinners, parties, get togethers etc and he would tell people I didn’t want to go or that I didn’t want anything to do with them but would tell me that I wasn’t welcome or hadn’t been invited. He didn’t like any of my friends and always made comments about them and said they didn’t really care about me, which then made me paranoid and I distanced myself away from friends and also certain members of my own family, I felt very alone. He constantly put me down – he would make comments about things I said especially infront of others, saying he didn’t think anyone could actually be that thick and I was putting it on. I wasn’t, just sometimes I can be a little ditsy – I know that. He would shout at me for things all the time and it made me scared to talk. like asking him to slow down when he was driving because I didn’t feel safe, if we were out and I asked to stop somewhere to feed the baby he would get so angry at me, if I was walking too slow he would make comments about how I waddled or my weight. So many times he would storm off and leave me crying in the middle of wherever we was. He took money from me all the time even though I paid all the bills, bought all the food, bought all the baby stuff etc. Even now he refuses to give me any money for the kids because he reckons I’ll spend it on myself! I’ve not spent anything on myself for a very long time because of him. I was never allowed to go anywhere even tho he was out all the time, I think I went out twice in the whole time we were together and even then he said it was fine but I could tell by the way he was looking at me that it wasn’t so I came home early, I just made excuses all the time so I didn’t have to go out because it was easier than having to ask him if I could go. I was always accused of cheating on him or talking to other men, I was either with him, at home with the kids or at work. I never had time to do anything on my own never mind see someone else. He had the password to my phone and social media and if I had a message from a friend he accused me of texting men or he was over my shoulder reading it. I know when I went out of the room he checked my phone so I just stopped texting friends in the end. He had changed the settings on my email so my emails were all forwarded to him too. I also ended up giving up my job because I was struggling to juggle work, jobs at home and the childcare because he refused to help or to contribute. I lost family members, my friends, my social life and my job. Along with that I also lost my ability to think on my own and my voice, because it was just easier for me to stay quiet than say the wrong thing. I always found condoms in his pockets when I was doing the washing, or in his car etc, he would always go out and never come home or reply to my calls and texts, I would be at home going out of my mind with worry thinking something bad had happened. But whenever I confronted him he would tell me I was over reacting and that he loved me or that he was sorry, and I believed him because i loved him. A while ago I found out he had cheated on me and also that the person he had cheated with had reported him to the police and accused him of a sexual assault. It really broke my heart but like an idiot I was there for him, I supported him listened to him and I never once said anything bad about him cheating. The case never went any further because there wasn’t enough evidence and still to this day I don’t know if I believe he didn’t do it or not. I loved him, and for some reason I just put everything to one side and chose to ignore it because sadly I thought being with him and being unhappy was better than being without him. He told me that it was my fault he cheated on me, that I didn’t make him feel loved or wanted enough. Now being out of the relationship I realise how stupid I was to believe the things he said to me. Since splitting up the abuse hasn’t stopped. He’s followed me in his car on occasions causing me to have panic attacks, he drove by my house and my car wasn’t there so he sent text messages repeatedly and rang my phone for 4 hours (with no reply or answer from me) saying I was a sl*g, I was out meeting random men, I was basically a rubbish mum. There are things posted all over social media making out he’s the victim and I’m a horrible person stopping him from seeing his kids (I’m not, he just wants what he wants, not what’s best for the kids. And won’t come to an agreement with me what so ever because it has to be his say, but he has shown to everyone including his own family that he is incapable of meeting their basic needs) he says our youngest child isn’t even his, that he’s going to embarrass me in court and has loads of tricks up his sleeve for the day. And most of the people in the place I live and mutual friends of ours now all believe him and have wrote some nasty things about me. I can’t leave my house alone because of all of this. If I do its for short periods of time or accompanied by a friend or my mum and I get really anxious about it. I feel like I can’t move on because I have to relive it all every single day. I just worry for the safety and wellbeing of the children as well as what the court hearing will have to bring, it’s effecting me all the time. I don’t think I’ve spoke about half of the things I’ve been through on this post but I’ve covered the basics. Hoping speaking with others on here will help me through the tough times ahead. Sorry for the longest post!
20th February 2016 at 7:41 pm #10044Falling SkysParticipant
Well come xx
Nothing is your fault and don’t under estimate what you have been through, abuse is abuse however its delivered. I knew my relationship wasn’t right and it wasn’t till I accidentally let out what I was going though did they point me in the direction of Womans Aid, at first I thought they would tell me it was in my head or my fault of course they never and I became to realise it was out of my control.
Keep posting this site has been my saviour.
20th February 2016 at 7:53 pm #10046
Hi Jelly Bean,
Your ex sounds so spookily like mine. So many similarities. Please don’t underestimate it- that power, control and cruelty is soul-destroying and makes you a wreck.
I managed to get a non-mol ( changed to an undertaking ) for a year by applying to the NCDV. They helped me apply for the injunction. I was asked to give a chronograph of the relationship and I provided proof of his post-separation abuse, such as texts.
It might be worth you asking about it. This year gave me the headspace ordeal with my divorce, and saved my sanity.
Mine too sent cruel and threatening texts and in the end I needed to block him and to ask my mum to be the point of contact.
Gosh- so much is eerily like my ex: getting annoyed that I walked too slowly, intimating that I was less intelligent than him, cruelty to my eldest, making out to Cafcass that he was an ace dad.
One thing I will say, if you are made to embark on a battle with him over the children, is that I went through it all and came out the other side. He tried to make out I was unfit etc but it didn’t work- they agreed I was a loving mother- and whilst they didn’t see him exactly for who he is, he didn’t get away with everything. If he sets a foot wrong, I can go back. I’ve survived: you can too x
20th February 2016 at 7:54 pm #10048
Chronology not chronograph
20th February 2016 at 9:22 pm #10054
Hi falling skys
That’s exactly how I have felt, like I’m going to be told it’s all in my head or I’m over reacting. It’s nice to know I’m not the only one! I didn’t know if to join on here or not, I’ve been contemplating it for a while but I’m glad I have now. Thank you!
Thank you so much for your post! It’s really reassuring to know there are people out there that know how I’m feeling!
My solicitor has spoken to me about a non molestation order, she said to let her know if anything else happens and she will sort it straight away. because it’s all come out in letters between solicitors, he’s obviously caught wind that I’ve told them about what he’s like – he wouldn’t of expected it from me – he’s now denying everything I’ve said and he’s being really careful, I think his solicitor must of warned him and nothing has happened since. The only thing since then is all the posts on social media, making out he’s the victim and I’m a horrible person etc. I had a phone call with cafcass recently and they said that she would raise in court that he be banned from posting anything online about me or the children. It’s happened again since then so I hope that can be arranged when we go to court in a few weeks. The cafcass officer seemed really nice and I came off the phone feeling really positive about it but I’ve read online so many stories about cafcass being 2 faced, I’m petrified of the report! What was your experience of them? I just feel like there’s no light at the end of the tunnel at the min! I’m just drained and exhausted by the whole situation.
I have done the same as you with the phone situation, he’s blocked on mine and is to contact through my mum. Our situations do sound really similar!
I’m glad that you are out the other side of it and especially that he didn’t get away with everything. You sound very brave! I hope to be that brave too x
20th February 2016 at 10:04 pm #10058SavingmyselfParticipant
What you have been through is serious abuse
Get all the help and support you can get
21st February 2016 at 5:28 pm #10129
Thank you for your comment. I’m glad I joined here especially with the court hearing coming up and my counselling not re starting again for a while. X
21st February 2016 at 6:42 pm #10137
Hello and welcome, just wanted to remind you to first of all eat and drink. You must keep yourself healthy as you need strength. I know it sounds basic but without sustenance your mental health slips. Secondly, don’t believe a word that man has ever told you. Absolutely none of this is your fault. You will find yourself feeling guilty. Don’t. It’s not your fault. Your self confidence and self esteem are so low, but with no contact, they will slowly return. I promise, given time, things will get better. It’s a roller coaster. I would encourage you to really enjoy any good days that come your way. There were few in the beginning, but they get more and more. No contact means no head games, no confusing conversations. I can’t stress how important no contact is. Read ‘Living with the Dominator’ by Pat Craven. And keep posting. We will help you through. There really is light at the end of the tunnel🌷🌷
21st February 2016 at 6:44 pm #10138
Forgot to say….. Use the helpline. The number is at the top of the page. Call them when you need advice or just a shoulder x
21st February 2016 at 8:21 pm #10149
Thank you so much for your kind words.
I hope you are right!
I’m struggling at the min with the no contact because he currently comes over on a weekly basis only for a short period of time to see our youngest child as she’s only a few weeks old. Things are being sorted with our oldest for a contact centre but it’s taking a while and the court hearing is coming up soon, so I guess it’s just waiting to see what happens with that!
Once I’m able to have no contact with him completely I think I will be able to start the healing process but as well as that, it’s a constant worry for my babies. X
21st February 2016 at 9:25 pm #10161
When Cafcass first got involved, I was still very traumatised and PTSD stricken. I was very emotional. One Cafcass lady virtually questioned my ability to care for my kids if I was like that.
So I took steps to blot him out of my life. No contact etc- anything to get him out of my face. I took back my power.
I knew I was a good mum. I decided to be strong, factual, my DV leader said I needed to think of emotions as my enemy at this point in time, so I didn’t let my emotions out as I had done before- as I told ladies here before, I aimed to be a graceful Sean, even if paddling like mad beneath the surface.
He tried to discredit me, but Cafcass spike to the kids and concluded I was a loving mum who had just been suffering, but had been proactive in getting help.
Unfortunately, they seemed to be taken in largely by his falsity. My youngest sees him certain days by court order, my eldest has a choice and doesn’t go much.
I think they believed he was abusive to me, as they supported my request for no contact and geographical distance- not that the idiot takes heed of the latter now.
21st February 2016 at 9:25 pm #10162
I mean graceful swan!
21st February 2016 at 11:24 pm #10175
Serenity you inspire me! I would love to take back the power just like you did.
It must of been really hard to keep your emotions in. I’m the type of person that keeps emotions in too much, I bottle things up or push them to one side in my head whilst I’m around others but then I torture myself with the thoughts and struggle to cope with all the emotion. Apart from when I’m around him, I can’t hide it around him and he knows it.
My experience so far with cafcass has been really positive, she seemed so understanding of my concerns – she actually called him a kn*b. The report should come through soon and as much as the call was positive, I’m really worried he will have managed to worm his way into her head. My children are both really young, too young to be spoken too by cafcass. It’s down to me to keep them safe but he is so good at manipulating people to get what he wants x
21st February 2016 at 11:52 pm #10179
Jellybean, log everything. Keep a journal he won’t find and if you can manage and it’s safe to secretly record the abuse. A phone or an iPad. Do you have a third party who can be with him when he’s with the baby so you don’t have to see him?
22nd February 2016 at 1:28 am #10183
Thanks kip. I’ve got a diary I’ve been logging in for a few months now, I’ve wrote hundreds of pages of what happens at every visit and I’ve got saved all the abusive texts and the nasty posts on social media. We tried 3rd party person for the kids but it wasn’t good enough for him. Kids won’t stay with him and get very distressed as they have no relationship due to his lack of effort with them. His problem is he wants what he wants. Not what’s best for them or to go at their pace. I won’t just hand them over because he’s incapable of caring for them and they get so upset (both very young) it’s going to court in a few weeks. He’s determined he’s going to just get them. It’s breaking me but I have to fight for their sake! X
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