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Thanks again for the replies.
The updates are that I have asked my legal representative to go to court for more time with my Son and he has again told me things as we have been together. When I ask him about going home he says ‘No Mommy sad’ so again I wonder is this something he is picking up on or being told. I can’t stand the idea of a small child being manipulated.
I do still long for my ex but I am dealing with it as best I can – exercise, good company, lots of sleep. There can be dread in the mornings but that passes a few hours into the day.
It’s not easy, but the help of others online makes it all the better.
I have seen a legal expert and I am going to look for more time with my son. I need to forget about her daughter as my ex has turned her completely against me.
I have read a lot about NPD & BPD and it helps me understand things but it is still hard to switch off feelings. But I need to do that.
That said, some of her behaviour does make me laugh and I am starting to look back on her crazy behavior.
I had a similar but different experience.
We were in counselling three years ago. She never asked me to not bring anything up, but when it was brought up, later that night she would mock what I said. For example, I made a point that expressing anger is not always bad, that it can be positive as long as it is not rage & violent. I commented on how I had read a sportman’s autobiography & he had said he would practice at being angry for certain situations. At home, she said to me ‘I can’t believe you compared our love life to that man’.
I saw the same therapist alone and she told me I should not be in a relationship with my (now ex) partner as in her words ‘that lady knows how to push every one of your buttons’. She was correct as in that relationship, I did things I would never have dreamed of doing before, felt anger & frustration like never before and simply felt I could never be myself as being me seemed to be so wrong in my ex’s eyes. And strangely, I feel tonnes of guilt for things that happened and I don’t know why.
Now, my husband would go to therapy, but I used to call it holding court for him. He was very charming, and would actually lie to the therapist. Thankfully, they eventually saw through it. We would be walking in to a joint session (after he’d previously been in one solo) and he’d stop me in the parking lot to say something like “don’t bring up xyz because I told the therapist that I fixed it”. Something he hadn’t done. If I protested, I was a bad wife because I wasn’t supportive of him, and was trying to embarrass him.
I’m on the other side of this at the moment. I feel like I have been abused by my ex really badly (physically, financially, emotionally etc) and she claims I abused her also. I feel like she never takes responsibility for problems and she would not attend counselling, when I was ready to, without a problem. I have no problem with anyone hearing about our relationship and telling me if I was wrong, or if I potentially abused situations. I want to learn and grow as a person.
I am feeling tremendous guilt also. Friends & family say not to, that I am finally free. I completely understand where you are coming from. I’m trying to work through this guilt in counselling but it is very difficult. Part of me has a vision for how I want my future to look, a nice down to earth lady with less emphasis on looks and more on personality. But even thinking like that wracks me with guilt when I think of my ex probably struggling financially, emotionally and even though she physically assaulted me and her daughter a number of times over a long period of time, I still feel that guilt.
Guilt can be very difficult. Like Anita said, I am trying to discover if that guilt was in me before I met my ex. I just do not know. But I am going to persevere. I need to know. I’m glad you posted this message as it helps me see others have the exact same problem, even after splitting from someone whom they believe is abusive and can do no wrong.
Thank you. You are correct. Even how you mentioned about blaming the abused person. The night she was violent to me, I took evidence of what happened. She subsequently mocked me for ‘being dramatic’ and asked ‘what would the neighbours think?’
I will not try any form of reconciliation. My family have asked if I’d consider reconciling (all hoping ‘no way’) and I have said that her receiving some form of help from a professional, or at least somewhere my concerns can be listened to, is the only way I’d consider this. As it happens she is already online, looking for the next man. Me – just want to heal and look after my little boy before even considering the thoughts of someone else.
Thanks for your replies, I really appreciate them.
Thank You. I have read a lot about parenting, completed courses on parenting & always try to observe others. I agree about the counselling – her not wanting to go looks like she has a lot to hide & she does know that she has problems but will not face up to it.
I am not in a position to suggest anything about her parenting skills any more. The only communication now is around our Son.
I do hope that like you, I go on to meet someone new and enjoy life going forward, but aged 42, meeting someone is going to be difficult. But here’s hoping that it can be done.
Sadly, what you are saying is a reflection of the comments that my family & friends are all saying. Members of her own family have told me she is damaged, they have told me stories of things she did when she was young (threatening a niece with a weapon & verbally/physically abusing a cousin) and I too wonder what has made me see her in such a positive light. A couple of things – probably my own self esteem has been so low that someone gorgeous chasing me was a novelty. Also, we have been through a number of pregnancies (I mentioned what happened to the first above) and the first time I saw that tiny heartbeat on a screen, something inside me changed forever. It is like I feel locked in to her.
I am receiving counselling and the counsellor has worked to date on removing the guilt I feel. I feel like I let that unborn baby down, like I haven’t been a good person for a long time. I know that staying away and giving our little boy everything I can is the best for him. But already, she is claiming I left the relationship, when after she was violent, I made three attempts to keep us together. I think the fact that in a row after she was violent to me, I told her that she has been abusive to us at different times, this made her give me my marching orders. It was almost like she had been unmasked and even during one of the three attempts to fix things, when I said how it is totally unacceptable to drag her daughter into rows, she looked at me, went for a smoke and returned, as though she needed to calm.
There are two sides to every story and if she were here, she would rattle off a litany of things about me inside 5 minutes. But they are things nobody else says. For example, if I came in from work and kissed her & our son, if I didn’t speak for 30 seconds then she would say ‘You’re in a bad mood aren’t you?’. I would smile and say no, but the accusation would be repeated five or six times and then yes I would be unhappy.
The night she hit her daughter, I let myself down. She claimed it was squabbling, but it was a full on chop into the face causing blood to appear. I looked on, stunned, paralysed by fear. If I told anyone, who would believe me? My family would, but apart from that? With regards to my Son, seeing her hold him, walk around raging with him and seeing him cry while in her arms, I can’t get that out of my head. And if she meets someone else, the pattern begins again, 6 months honeymoon phase, then just as he starts school, boom, disagreements.
I take my responsibility for the upheavel caused to her daughter. I have apologised to the girl and made her promises, but her Mother did not allow me to keep them. I have seen this girl crying outside school, unable to go in due to stress and in my opinion that stress came from her mother. She told me several times ‘she just doesn’t understand’ and I have seen on plenty of occasions how the girl was left to fend for herself after a chaotic row and mudslinging. Sometimes all they want is a hug and to be comforted and that is not what they get at home.
Yes, it hurts and yes I am weak.
I am from Ireland 🙂 Close enough.
My parents both did what they could too. All these years on, my Mother still sees herself as relatively blameless for the rows. I listen, but don’t agree with her. I can remember both having good & bad points. For example, my Dad bought an item that he would use to make extra money for years. When he bought it, my mum described it as ‘his new toy’. I think back now & see that as very disrespectful. He used to make false allegations against her from the time they were going out together. In a lot of ways both were very immature (they were both 20 when I was conceived). But like you say, they did their best with the tools they had.
I am doing the best I can now, but my little boy is 3. I have to face challenges as he grows up. His mother has many more years of experience than me as a parent but I am not sure it is all good. For example, she has had long term relationships with 4 men including her daughter’s Dad since her 16 year old was born. Is everyone else wrong in that case? The girl has had no stability and when my ex recently raised that point in a row, I had enough courage to speak up & say that a lot of the instability was before I came into her life and she carried on with the instability with me. I am not blameless, but there has been one common denominator.
What I was trying to do was provide a stable family environment for us all to live. But my ex seemed to go from being extremely happy to raging & violent in the space of a couple of hours. My guess would be that the instability has continued even though I am no longer there.
I think I am just like any other parent, I just put emphasis on smiling, being gentle, encouraging him to talk, be himself and be proud of who and what he is. I don’t think his sister has had those luxuries and boy did I want her to as she is a lovely young girl, with a lot of good points. Sadly, if someone is focusing on the 10 bad things you do per day and ignoring the 90 great things you do, that affects people and they start to think themselves unworthy of love or respect. I hope my Son will never feel like that, he is too important.
Thank You Inky.
After writing the original post, some things that happened in the big row that split us up six weeks ago have come back to me. She said things like:
‘You have no witnesses here’
‘You abused our son’ (this accusation literally made me want to cry)
‘I will be coming after the highest maintenance amount possible’
‘You are financially the meanest person I’ve ever met’ (I had handed over a lot of money, when I confided in others how much, they were shocked).
It is 6 weeks since we parted & I am staying with relatives, so getting my own accommodation sorted out soon, will be a priority.
I tried to bring up her mood & views on life as far back as 2010 and she wouldn’t hear of it. I remember asking her if she was depressed, was there something I could help her with and if I made her unhappy and her reply to all three was no. I recall being so confused and disappointed driving away from her house one day, that she refused to think anything may be up or need help and then receiving an SMS from her asking if I wanted to go out that night. I was able to accept that behaviour then, but now there is a little boy who is depending on both of us and I don’t have any faith in her at all. As an example, when he was 18 months, he was in my care and started becoming very hot. I took him to the doctor, they checked him out and said he was ok, but when she heard, she hit the roof. She said I should have phoned her first. Maybe so, but given how far away I lived, my first priority was him and I made no apology for having him seen to.
I have read so much about NPD & BPD that I think she has both but I’m not qualified to say she has. If she did as you said and sought help, I’d be with her every step of the way and would help to see her through it all, but as she refuses to accept responsibility and is violent towards people in her house, all I can do is fight for as much time with him as possible I guess and try to be the best Dad possible to him. He’s worth any effort 🙂
I think this is a superb topic and I admire the honesty from the original poster.
My own parents rowed openly in front of my two siblings & I. I had this memory locked away of the three of us on the landing upstairs and a hell of a row raging below. As the row moved towards completion and our tears were subsiding, the three of us were whispering & we were looking through a book with a fox. Anything to escape the madness really. We didn’t say it but the three of us heard silence below, then one of us made a joke about the fox and we were laughing, happy, like POW soldiers in a camp.
Fast forward to my own family & the lady I have a son with was a single mother when I met her. I believe she has BPD/NPD. I spent 8 years with her on & off. I think her mother was not ‘there’ for her when she was a child herself and her father lived in another country to earn money. She told me they marched her out the door at 18 and she had to fend for herself. By 22 she was a mother herself, ditched the father of her child and had a series of broken relationships. Our was fiery, I could never work out why there were so many rows, but I am more aware now.
I have observed her as a parent many times. She has hit her daughter, said horrible nasty things to her. She can be short with our son even though he is 3. I went completely in the other direction. I am probably so aware of my own childhood that I don’t like him seeing any kind of violence, want him to have the best life possible & my way of dealing with his poor behaviour is to slow down & kneel down with him & talk to him. I regularly kiss him, hold him close to my heart (I think a child feels that connection) and try t obuild his self esteem up by saying ‘good boy’ or ‘well done’ if he does tasks like put rubbish in the bin, or is nice to people.
The original poster was extremely honest & I understand how tired a parent can feel. I no longer live with my son, but when I did, it was a lot of work. I never complained about it, but you know that might not be good as venting is good sometimes. My ex vented about everything, but I believe that is more about her suspected personality disorder than being a single parent.
It’s not easy, but I think when you have problematic parents you can go two ways – follow the example they set, or go completely in the other direction. My Dad hit me a couple of times. He was often short tempered and said things that made me feel small. But I love him and admire all he has done for me (college education when he was earning small cash) as has my mum. My Mum sometimes told me what my dad was saying to her in rows & for a 12 year old that was devastating. But you know, it has made me realise that I don’t want that for my son and I want him to be smiling and happy any time he is with me. I correct him, but less vehemently than his Mum. Are either of us right or wrong? No, just different methods I guess and how you were brought up affects how you bring up your kids.
A great topic, Trisha I admire your honesty & bravery.
I will start a new topic. Going by the laws in Ireland, I am doing well to have the time with him that I have had, but given his age and that I’ve lived with him for close to 1/3 of his life, I might be able to get more time through court. However the fight is gone out of me to go that route again. I still love his mum very much and as I say to everyone I speak to on this, you are all only hearing my side of the story, not hers. I had asked her to go to counselling after she was violent to me, she refused saying we would be going to discuss her anger issues. Definitely not – if she had points to raise on me, I wanted to listen. I had no plan on giving up on her or the family after 8 years.
She also accused me of sexually assaulting our son. She did so in front of her daughter. She withdrew the claim 2 weeks later and she has no problem giving me weekend/overnight time with him. I love him so much. I yearn for us to be a family. But when one person is driven to physically assault the other and make false accusations, serious questions need to be asked. Hence, I am not socialising at all, spending a lot of time on forums, looking for answers.
I thank you all for reading.
I am Sean. I recently split with the mother of my Son after 8 years of an on/off relationship. I feel like I put a lot into the relationship and in the end she was violent to me and claimed I ended the relationship. In reality, I left the house as I was afraid of her. When I went back to try to fix the relationship, she would not reconcile.
I have gone from seeing my Son daily, to a few hours a week. It is a massive re-adjustment. Since he was born 2.5 years ago, almost everything else in life took a back seat. The day I saw him first, I didn’t feel a lot but the day after, I woke with these amazing feelings of love, respect, wanting to take care of him and give him the best life I can. I wanted to be with his mother more & more then and she has pushed me away. I found and find that very difficult.
I’m here just to get a different perspective on life. I live in Ireland and since my Son was born I don’t do a lot outside of my time with him. I guess it would be great to get ideas here and opinions and move my life forward. As I am only 42, I am young enough to meet someone new and maybe have a family with them, but it feels like the past is a millstone around my neck. I’ve taken on a lot of guilt from the relationship over the years and I’d dearly love to move away from that and to live life again.
Thanks for listening,
I am new to this forum and I have some experience with this. My ex partner used to say things to her daughter, very similarly to what was being said to you. I have questioned if my ex had Borderline personality disorder or Narcissistic personality disorder. I am not qualified to diagnose or judge that so I will say no more on that topic.
But I used to see how it was draining my stepdaughter to hear ‘after all I do for you’. The girl just wanted to be a teenager, meet her friends, live. She wasn’t concerned with how her Mum does chores around the house and she wasn’t into guessing what needed to be done next. instead, I would urge my ex to make a list of things for her daughter to do, then give her the freedom to do them her way.
I used to do things like you, bite my tongue etc, so did my stepdaughter. My ex would keep going, it was like arrows landing on the person she was talking to, until me or my stepdaughter would snap. Then one of us would say something and it would be all out war. I really hate the dismissive/mocking tactics.
It is not healthy. I tried to talk to my ex about things but it didn’t work. I didn’t think she was a bad person, I loved her to bits, but when she would go into this ‘nobody does anything for me’ mode, it was hard to take as I felt I’d done a lot for her. If I listed the things I did, she would then say ‘you keep bringing up money etc’ and I was only doing so to defend myself. In the end it became draining.
I know how you feel. I hope my post has helped.
I am new to this forum and am going through similar. I split with my partner 6 weeks ago. She is 40, I am 42. In the end, she was violent towards me and I left the house after a violent incident. We have a 3 year old son together and she has another girl aged 16. My son was upset about the row and he was crying when he saw me in distress.
Unlike you, I have deleted her on whatsapp and I do not have any of her social media account details. But like you, my mind wanders. On Sunday, I was thinking about her a lot and if she was out meeting people. In the 7 years I know her, her behaviour has been questionable. There have been 4-5 incidents of violence, A lot of emotional abuse and it has laden me down with guilt. After rows, more often than not I’d be blamed and she would rarely say sorry.
I can’t give you a lot of advice, but I do know how you are feeling and I know it is probably killing you. I’m afraid to go out in case I meet my ex with someone else, or that she might be drunk and say things (she threatened this before). I am listening to everything people are saying to me though about being good to myself, giving myself time and breathing space and moving on. In general I agree with what everyone has written here and their advice is sound. But I need to take that advice myself.
I just want you to know someone else knows how you are feeling and how it is affecting you. Despite some poor treatment, I still love this woman, but I am in counselling trying to work out how or why I love her when she has treated me very poorly at times. Is it self esteem issues on my part? Am I scared of being alone? Maybe. I do crave a family, but what good is that family if she reserves the right to hit people in the house and cause huge upset? (She has hit two of us in the house).
I too am hoping for better days ahead, but for now, it is tough, I am taking it literally one day at a time & I think I will never love like that again. But I thought that way before and I did fall in love again. So fingers crossed.
Hopefully, by posting here, it is helping you.