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    • #136652
      AstraVw
      Participant

      Hi there, so I’m new here.
      It’s been a fair few years since the relationship ended. And I still blame myself. Me and my ex were together for a little while, had one child together. It was my first serious relationship. Within the first year the controlling behaviours started, I didn’t see it at the time. He made me feel guilty when Id go see my mum or friends. He grabbed me by my hair angrily one time during an argument, so I drove down to my mums and just told her we argued. That was the first time I lied about our relationship to my mum.
      Then over the years he was aggressive and intimidating, only during arguments. Grabbing me by my throat, throwing a can at the side of my face/ear, slapping me across the face. But all these things only happened when we argued. So is that abuse? As he says the arguments only started because of me. And if I didn’t start the arguments then he wouldn’t have hurt me. I know it sounds stupid but he made me feel like this horrible person. Like I was crazy. Would tell me I said things, that I definitely don’t remember saying. But Id doubt myself cause my memory can be awful. After we split he threatened me saying he had recorded our arguments and that he would send them to my family and friends and to the police to try and get custody of our child. Years later. That still haunts me as I worry he still has them. I feel guilty for the times I stuck up for myself and kicked him away from me. Does that make me abusive as well? As I only did it to defend myself.
      Sorry for the long post. I don’t even know why I am posting this but I feel better for putting it out there.
      Thanks for reading, if u got this far.

    • #136669
      Lisa
      Main Moderator

      Hi AstraVw,

      First, welcome to the forum. I hope you find this a safe and supportive place to be.
      Abusers often will make the other feel as if they are going ‘crazy’; this is a common tactic and it means they do not have to take responsibility for their own behaviour. Try not to worry about his threats of going to police. You did nothing wrong. Reacting to abuse is much different than perpetrating it.
      It’s good to know you managed to find the strength and insight to leave the relationship, as no doubt the cycle of abuse would of continued and your sense of self would have only worsened.
      You have clearly come a long way, however, it may be useful for you to be able to talk these complex feelings through to get more closure and perspective on what you experienced.
      The Freedom Programme is an 11 or 12 week rolling programme which provides information about male violence to women. This programme identifies the tactics abusers use, the beliefs held by abusers, and the effects that domestic abuse can have on women and children. The Freedom Programme is for women who have experience of domestic abuse, be it in their personal or professional lives. You can start the programme at any time, and you can attend as many or as few sessions as you choose. Each session is entirely confidential, and you can contribute as much, or as little, of your own thoughts and experiences as you like. Many women find this a very useful support group as it is available to women whether they are experiencing current or past abuse. The Freedom Programme is run in many locations across the UK.
      You could try calling Supportline who offer confidential emotional support by telephone, email and post. They work with callers to develop healthy, positive coping strategies, an inner feeling of strength and increased self-esteem to encourage healing, recovery and moving forward with life. They also keep details of counsellors, agencies and support groups throughout the UK. They cover a wide range of issues, including domestic abuse. They can also refer locally. You can contact them on 01708 765200 or visit their website at http://www.supportline.org.uk.
      Regarding any concerns you may have about child contact; The Coram Children’s Legal Centre provide free legal resources with advice and information on all aspects of family, child and education law, including relationship breakdown; parental disputes, duties of children’s services; child protection. They can be contacted on 0300 330 5480 (8am-6pm, Mon-Fri). Rights of Women are ideal too on this subject.
      I hope this is useful.
      All the best,

      Lisa

    • #136745
      AstraVw
      Participant

      Thankyou so much for your response. It means so much. Thankyou for your advice, I have contacted freedom and awaiting a response 🙂
      The first mediation meeting is very soon and I’m so nervous!

      This forum is amazing, it makes me feel like I’m not alone.

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