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    • #136786
      Thisisthestart
      Participant

      I’m in a long term relationship with children. I’ve known from very early on that a lot of his behaviour isn’t normal but he’s very good at making excuses.
      I’ve finally reached out to womens aid and my local domestic abuse centre for help and everyone including family/friends are telling me he’s very abusive but I still keep thinking am I overreacting!?
      I’ve just been in tears recounting numerous incidents so why do I still feel like I am only picking out the bad things to make it seem worse than it is and it’s not that bad and I am overreacting and only focusing on the bad parts!?
      I am so confused right now! Is this normal? If it was that bad that I should leave would I even be questioning it?
      Hope some of that makes sense. My heads all over the place.

    • #136789
      Gerbil
      Participant

      Hi this is the start
      I think a month ago I was in exactly the same place as you are now.
      I am now a little bit further on with planning to leave. From reading posts on here and reading the Lundy Bancroft book,I have gained so much further insight. Trust your instincts and what your friends are telling you.
      From what you have said, you are not over reacting.
      Take care x

    • #136805
      nbumblebee
      Participant

      Hey and welcome.
      The doubt never ever goes. Its what keeps alot of us in these relationships its so hard.
      You have been told by friends and family and maybe even proffesionals and you also say you know deep down inside things arent right.
      Its hard to trust ourselves and those who arent living our lives.
      My advice is to read, read posts on here read books recommended gain as much knowledge as you can to be able to really understand and really bieve whats going on. Then you will be able to move further along and gain the strength you may need to be able to make decisions needed for you to move foward. Good luck xxxxx

    • #136807
      ISOPeace
      Participant

      Well done for reaching out for help. This is indeed the start.

      Abuse creates a really complex psychological situation, where you’re too scared to leave even though you know things aren’t ok (look up trauma bonds and cognitive dissonance). Your experince is a totally normal human response to abuse. It’s why we stay stuck for so long.

      It can take a long time to see what’s really going on and accept that if you were looking at your relationship from the outside, you would see that no amount of good times can negate the damage caused by the abuse. He has spent years conditioning you to believe you’re overreacting, that it’s your fault, that it’s not a big deal, and you have believed it in order to survive. Try to be kind to yourself. It’s confusing because our abusers keep up frightened and confused in order to keep us stuck. Keep reaching out on here, educate yourself on abuse and do your best to look after yourself. Sending love xxxx

    • #136821
      Thisisthestart
      Participant

      Thank you everyone for reading and taking the time to reply.

      I have been reading a lot on here and also started the Lundy book.

      I have times of absolute certainty that this is not right or healthy. I’ve left before and that was horrendous. Stalking, threats, harassment, he (detail removed by moderator). He ended up being arrested which is to this day still my fault according to him.

      I think what’s the most confusing right now is that he’s changed in some ways. For example, he used to check my phone everyday, he’d read literally every message check every app everything. He doesn’t do that anymore and instead of getting angry when I say anything about leaving him he will instead act like it’s fine. He’ll tell me he’ll pay for the children etc. this past weekend I’ve packed my bags and he’s just being really calm and and accepting and saying he’s sad but if I want to leave it’s up to me and he wont try and get me back this time. It’s so different to what I’m used to it’s making me question if he’s still as bad?

      • #136822
        nbumblebee
        Participant

        This is i believe is all part of the cycle. They act nice calm changed in order to keep you.
        If they see you getting stronger maybe even wanting to leave they will want to keep you where you are so they make out they have changed or want to change just to keep you routed to the spot.
        After weeks of nastiness i am currently having the nice calm time myself its a total mind f**k and its done to un nerve confuse and hurt you in a different way. I could be wrong and some of yhe more clever among us here may be able to help you further with better advice than me but just be aware and be safe xxxx

    • #136985
      wildandfree
      Participant

      Hi

      Your post sound so familiar. That could have been me writing it. I still am confused by my exs behaviour and still cannot reconcile the two sides, and I have been out for a while.

      If you are confused and questioning, then trust your instinct. You say you have children, and the thing that helped me stay committed to my decision, was thinking about my daughter. If she came to me and she had the same marriage as I had, what would I do? And I would move heaven and earth to get her out. You deserve the same.

      Confusion is part of the abuse. If his behaviour feels wrong, it is because it is. Take care and stay safe.

    • #137024
      Medusa
      Participant

      Hi Thisisthestart,

      When you say you focus on the bad parts is that your own observation or his? That’s exactly what my husband was saying to me when I started to address episodes of verbal abuse popping up throughout our whole relationship. The issue is that if you trust someone to catch you when you fall and that person will catch you 9 times out of 10 then you will still worry every time you fall. As a result it impacts you all the time.

      Recent change in behavior is probably just a way to maintain control. I am still in denial in a similar situation.

      Take care! X

      • #137103
        Thisisthestart
        Participant

        I think he has belittled my opinion and minimised his actions for so long I am doing it by default.
        I think I am seeing him as two different people. All my feelings of guilt are aimed at the nice man and the rational part of me knows the bad side doesn’t make up for any of it so it’s like a constant internal battle for me!
        Talking about it openly is definitely the best thing I have ever done because the more times I say it out loud and friends and family are validating it, the more I believe it myself and see it for what it is. And more things are coming to light that I never even saw before which spurs me on to leave and find a better life that I now know I deserve.

        I keep thinking should I give him the benefit of the doubt when I leave and allow him access to the children and not hide my whereabouts but I know from past experience what he is capable of so I am coming to terms with the fact that I need to take drastic measures to protect myself and my children from his unpredictable behaviour and that is because of him! I am not overreacting!

        I am so glad I have opened my eyes to all the things that have been happening some of which I didn’t even see. I never had this feeling last time I left that I don’t actually like who he is anymore and that is a huge step for me.

        It’s so so hard to open up but it is the best thing I have ever done and I am so grateful I have a good support network. And reading on here and talking to you all who completely understand was the first step I took and I’m so glad I did. You are all amazing!!

      • #137135
        nbumblebee
        Participant

        @Thisisthestart you are amazing. Keep hold of that strength and inner belief they will carry you through days to come.
        Keep talking reading and learning and keep those beside you close. Sending you much love and support keep going girl, you got this 💪

      • #137146
        Thisisthestart
        Participant

        @nbumblebee thank you!!

    • #137133
      Medusa
      Participant

      You sound strong right now Thisisthestart. That’s your moment. I really hope it all goes well.
      I just looked back at some notes and messages and realised that I spent pretty much all of -21 having exhausting discussions with my husband about behavior and how it makes me feel. At least I have seen a good change in his relationship with our children. It was worth it just for that. If it was just me I’d be long gone. He won’t let me go though, which has made me realised that his values haven’t changed, he’s always right. When I oppose I get some kind of diagnosis or explanation for my behavior. The ‘you lost me, I do not want to be with you anymore’ message is not being validated or heard. I am HIS wife and he can tell me how to feel. That’s what has made me realise that he was not just angry and insecure, he is abusive.

      In your case it seems so obvious to me that your partner is abusive and you have every right to leave but it is still hard for me to look at myself that way. Although I have started the journey and am sure I’ll get there in the end.

      X

      • #137147
        Thisisthestart
        Participant

        @Medusa hi! Thank you for your kind words!
        It is the hardest thing I’ve ever had to accept and to be honest I don’t think I have fully accepted all of it yet but I’m not in a place I can deal with it properly yet.

        I’m glad there have been some changes that I hope has made life a little better for you and your children. A big factor for me was noticing that my children were picking up on things and I do not ever want them to think this is normal or acceptable especially because they are all boys.

        I hope you find yourself in a good place where you can decided what you want for yourself and be able to act on it.

    • #137136
      Eggshells
      Participant

      Hi Thisisthestart

      He won’t have changed. This is an act. When I first told my ex that I was leaving him he was so adult about it. He told me all sorts of things that he would do to make it easier for me and the boys. He was trying to show me how much he’d changed.

      By that point I no longer had any feelings for him at all, so I left anyway.

      At that point, he dropped the act and the real him returned with a vengeance as he raged, harassed and did everything he could to destroy me.

      Your partner might be ok when you first leave but I’m fairly confident that once he understands that you really have left for good, the real him will swiftly re-emerge.

      At the moment he’s messing with your head. It’s classic abuse.

      • #137149
        Thisisthestart
        Participant

        @Eggshells
        Hi, I think this is definitely the case with him. I don’t believe he thinks I’ll actually go through with leaving at all so when it happens he will be furious. He was awful last time I left, much much worse than any time we were together so I am doing my best to brace myself for it.
        The façade has slipped a few times already and I haven’t even gone yet!
        I hope things are better for you now?

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