January 29, 2016 at 6:01 am #94168
I have been married for 22 years, got married just out of college. After a year of marriage, he physically hit me. I was young, new in the country, away from my friends and family, I didn’t tell anyone. After that I got intimidated by him and as result just kept taking his controlling nature and verbal abuse. As a result, I was getting depressed, After 8 years, I got pregnant. When my son was 3 years old, I got pregnant again but he hit me during that time on why I got pregnant and was getting angry everyday. I got so scared and afraid that it led me to have an abortion. I got extremely depressed, was on anti-depressant and as a result had a brief affair. At that time I realize what am I doing with my life, so started meditation and therapy.
It took me three years of hard work on myself to realize that I;m in an abusive relationship. So, couple of years ago, I took him to couples therapy, he didn’t like it. He was saying I’m making him a bad person in front of a therapist. I took him to meditation talks, retreat, with kindness told him to control his anger. It got better for a very brief amount of time but then got worse – again blaming me for everything. I kept gathering energy to stand up for my respect. Finally I told him to be separate for 6 months – I am asking this from last 6 months and he is not agreeing to it. Finally I went to a divorce lawyer.
My son is 13 years old, he has hit me also when he was 4 years old and abusive towards him too. So, I’m thinking of giving him final notice to move out in a week otherwise I’ll move out..I feel weak because i have been living so long with these patterns..
Please let me know if I’m doing a right thing..I only worry about my son – divorce at teenage years can be difficult on him but it will give him a message to stand up for yourself..
Please advise..January 29, 2016 at 10:11 am #94204AnonymousGuest
Yes, you are doing the right thing divorcing this man: you are doing the right thing by your son. Your son needs to be protected from his father’s violence, physical and/ or verbal, toward you and toward himself. Your son needs not witness his father abuse you and he needs not be a direct victim. It was never right for your son to be victimized that way. It was not right for your husband to victimize an innocent child and it was not right for you to not protect your son from his father.
Time to do the right thing by your son. Attend to your son, to his emotional state- comfort him and guide him through the process of divorce so he is aware and can learn to assert himself, to protect himself in the future from all kinds of abuses.
If you continue to allow this abuse, you will continue to teach your son to accept abuse in his own life and you will not be teaching him how to effectively assert himself.
And then, of course, you will be doing the right thing by you, yourself. I understand that part of your husband is hurt and afraid from issues of long ago, in his own childhood, and you probably see his hurt and fear and desperation at times, and you may feel empathy for him, but remember at those times where your loyalty should be: with your son, with making it so that your son will not suffer as your husband suffers now. See, if you do the right thing by you and by your son, you will make life better for your son and you.
If you stay with your husband, you will NOT improve your husband and you will continue to damage your son and you.
May courage and strength be with you, and please… do post again. I would like to be there for you as you go through the difficult process of separation and divorce from that man.
anitaJanuary 29, 2016 at 10:54 am #94230MichaelParticipant
DO NOT LET YOUR ABUSER FOOL YOU. GET OUT AND STAY AWAY! YOU ARE NOT WRONG, YOU ARE RIGHT!
Listen to your inner voice again, which you have been made to doubt. No matter how anyone treated you in the past, know that just like anyone else on this planet you are deserving of being acknowledged, validated and treated respectfully – especially by your loved ones. Know that you are deserving of compassion, understanding and unconditional love. Remember that a loving relationship should inspire you, elevate you, progress you and protect you – not the opposite!
IF YOU ARE IN PAIN, IT IS NOT LOVE – Good love exists and it is without pain!
Realise it is not you who is dependent on him, it is him who is dependent on you! He expresses his fears and weakness unhealthily by oppressing and depressing you and by inducing self doubt. IT ISN’T LOVE IT IS FEAR!
In a way – No one will love you more than you can yourself as there can always be a point in time someone other than you will choose selfishly. Be protective of yourself. Also, no one will love your son more than you – so be protective of him too. TAKE NO ABUSE OR OTHER BULL! Tap into your inner lioness. NO ONE SHOULD EVER HIT YOU – IT IS NOT OK, EVER.
I was in a psychologically abusive relationship too, but for a shorter period than you. As the abuser expressed dominance more extremely, my grief and negative hurtful experience were invalidated – as if they were not real. It made it very hard to see this grow into abuse and accept that this was real – never mind standing up to it.
When you stand up for yourself the abuser will tell you that you are wrong, you over-react and may imply you are over sensitive. When you stand up for yourself the abuser might assert you are hurting him or that it is your fault when you react ‘adversely’. The abuser might emotionally blackmail; convincingly express grief, sadness or even guilt. Regardless, the abuser will exploit the fact you self-doubt and that you are no longer listening to you inner voice which has started shouting no no no no no a long time ago… Even after separation the abuser may continue to try to keep control over ‘how you experience’… The abuser will try to keeps the wound open they have created in you, not allowing you to close it.
Stop doubting yourself. You are sane. You are right. Get out and stay away!
Stop engaging and give yourself a lot of time to grow out of this type of induced psychosis before you reengage with this person.
Children do not need abuse and compromised broken adults in their lives – They need safe, stable, healthy love without fear in a protective environment. There is no requirement or reality wherein his father should be present in order to offer your child a positive and nurturing up bringing. You are mighty enough to offer this wealth to him yourself through being the strongest and the best you can be. You can do it, I believe you can!February 22, 2016 at 7:37 am #96747
Thank you for your encouraging reply. I would like to give you an update and yet again ask for how to proceed..
Since I stood up against my husband and gave him ultimatum that we should get separated for 6 months asap,he is very sad and crying for 3 weeks and he told our son that he doesn’t want to move out, he is only doing it as mom wants him to move out.
My husband is asking for another chance desperately and saying that he loves me and wants to save our marriage. he is begging now. Yesterday, my son said please give dad one more chance , he is changing.
I’m very confused, very small part of me wants to give him another chance but another part doesn’t because of all the past..
Thank you yet again for all your help in advance..please adviceFebruary 22, 2016 at 8:50 am #96758AnonymousGuest
If you want to give him a second chance, following him being abusive to you and to your son (!) for so many years, fine- but only in the context of separation, of the two of you not living together. In that context, if you and him want to attend couple therapy, do so. It didn’t work in the past, but IF he had changed, if he is changing, then a good couple therapy should work for him as he is changing, IF he is in the process of changing.
Him being sad means that he feels he is losing something. Obviously the marriage has been good enough for him that he feels loss now. The marriage, including him abusing you, has been good for him (!)- this is why he is sad.
Please do post again… and even though your son wants his father (all boys want their father no matter how abusive!), do keep protecting your son as your top priority. Your son needs to know it is not okay to abuse another, neither is it okay to tolerate abuse.
anitaFebruary 22, 2016 at 2:35 pm #96813AingealParticipant
Everyone above gave wonderful, affirming input. I have one thing to add. You deserve to be treated with love, devotion, kindness, respect and reciprocity. This man has done the opposite. I believe you can have a wonderful furture for you and your son, when you put an end to his torment of you. You will overcome what this did to you.
Much love and hugs to you,
AingealApril 20, 2016 at 8:53 am #102339
My husband is finally moving out in a next few days as last sunday I told him to move out – i can’t stay anymore. He is very upset since then and saying lot of mean things to me – like I’m mentally-ill, I won’t survive – bad things will happen to me, i have big ego etc..
I’m very scared, i’m avoiding him by staying longer in the bathroom ..he is preparing the apartment so will stay for a few more days till he is ready to move out..
I don’t have any close friends in the area whom I can stay with for a few days – please suggest how to survive next few days..and i feel like i am a bad person..Please help!!
– RitaApril 20, 2016 at 9:08 am #102341AnonymousGuest
You are doing the right thing. Be strong. I understand you being afraid and having doubts, but in reality you are doing the right thing. The mean things he tells you are mean and cruel. Living with a mean and cruel man is so very wrong, for you and for your child. His meanness and cruelty are great especially knowing you don’t have friends in the area.
You feel that you are the bad person, but in reality, it is he who is the bad person. Every time you feel that you are the bad person, please think of it as your insane belief, as in having no validity in reality.
When he tells you the mean things he does, his intent is to make you feel that you are the bad person and so, he intends, your doubts will make you obey him.
If I was in your place, I will do anything it takes to no longer live with him. Whatever it takes, short of anything criminal that will put you in prison. Of course, if you stay with him, that will be prison.
So freedom is a worthy pursuit, freedom from abuse.
Do not give in to his attempts, do not show him his manipulation works because then he will do more and more of what he is doing. Be as calm as you can be, aware of what is happening, resolute, not changing your mind.
I don’t know the country you are in, or the area, but if it takes going to a hotel, if you have the money, do that. If you don’t have the money, go to a police station or any kind of shelter until he moves out, I would definitely take my son and a few things and go there, be elsewhere until he leaves.
Please post anytime.
anitaApril 25, 2016 at 8:19 am #102684
I live in US..My husband has moved out this morning but i feel numb, sad and little relieved, feels like a long chapter in my life is over..
We are planning on telling our son tomorrow evening – I do have a question, should I notify my son’s school (guidance counselor) about what’s happening in the house – he is in 8th grade.
RitaApril 25, 2016 at 8:42 am #102686AnonymousGuest
Congratulations! Job well done.
Regarding telling your son’s guidance counselor, I would ask your son if (in addition to talking with you, and he will need a lot of your attention, comforting, mirroring and validating his feelings, all of his feelings) he wants to talk to his guidance counselor.
If your son is familiar with the counselor, he may have a feeling for or against talking to the counselor and as all of your son’s feelings should be listened to, this is one of those feelings. You send your son the message that what he feels, what he wants, what he prefers matter to you a lot, and this is why you are asking him.
It could be that the counselor is competent and it could be that he/she is not. So if your son doesn’t have a definite reluctance to talk to that particular counselor, I would meet the counselor myself before my son does, so to learn what kind of service… or disservice he/she can provide your son.
Please post anytime during this sensitive time. I will reply to you every time and will be glad to. Again, my hat is off to you.
anitaApril 25, 2016 at 10:40 am #102696
Thanks..I don’t know if I would call it a job well done as right now I feel like i’m in a shock, even though this is what I wanted but when it happened , I don’t know what to feel..Even though he was of no help, I do feel alone..I feel like I have to do everything on my own and whether I’ll be able to handle it..
More than anything right now I am very much concerned about my son..I wanted this to happen so if I have that strong reaction, not sure how my son will take the news..April 25, 2016 at 11:41 am #102704AnonymousGuest
The job well done that I congratulated you for is that your husband moved out this morning and you made it happen!
Of course it doesn’t feel good and if it did feel good, the good feeling wouldn’t have lasted because there is so much work to do. But it certainly an excellent first step.
There are all kinds of discomfort: there is the discomfort of living with an abusive man, being trapped in a bad relationship, watching your son gets hurt, and there is the discomfort of living alone and having to tell your son about his father’s move as well as help him through the process while you need comfort as well.
Your husband moved out, if only that felt wonderful and “problem solves”- but you are on your way to problem solved, one step at a time. When I wrote “be strong” I meant that indeed there is more to do, lots more. So relax best you can into the new situation and be prepared for the long road in front of you. Be kind and gentle with yourself and with your son. One step at a time.
If you expect all to be well fast, such an expectation will bring you and your son harm. It is and will be slow but incredible progress and improvement in your life will happen, over time.
Tell your son his father moved out because he was abusive (tell him/ remind him specifically how) and that you are protecting him and you from his abuse. And ask and listen to his feelings and thoughts. When he asks something and you don’t have the answer, tell him you don’t and that you will think about the answer and get back to him later. You are welcome of course, to post here for my input. When you feel overwhelmed, when talking with your son, tell him honestly you are overwhelmed and need time to take this in. Let him know you love him, be it with a smile, a gesture.
Don’t cry and fall apart in front of him. He needs to see a strong mother. But don’t fake a smile or pretend to be happy. Express your distress to him in such a way that it will not overwhelm him, so he knows you are having a difficult time but you are able and will be able to handle it.
anitaApril 26, 2016 at 8:53 am #102780AnonymousGuest
I wonder about you, how you are feeling, how you are functioning. How your kids are. ???
anitaApril 26, 2016 at 9:07 am #102781
Thanks Anita..Thank you so much for your concern..He still has not completely moved out, he just took one old air mattress with him yesterday morning when I was at work ( I thought he took more stuff) , he came back in the evening to get more stuff (just a little more).
Then this morning he texted me, first said I couldn’t sleep well, can i come back for a week then move out with all the furniture? I felt bad and said ok but then he again started talking mean – at that moment I said if you talk like this please no need to come. Then he got really upset and start saying more mean stuff followed by give me another chance, why am I doing this? You are throwing away, making a mistake and so on..Lets’ go out for a dinner and so on..I am not replying to his text anymore..
I know he is in pain especially he cannot control anymore and it’s difficult for him to handle that feeling but it’s not my responsibility- it’s his doing that he doesn’t want to open up with his friends and doesn’t believe in therapy (I gave those suggestions)..
please suggest what to do? I’m not very assertive person and i think i’m pushing him away but he always comes back with you are bad, wrong . give me another chance – makes me doubtful..
To be very honest, I DON’T WANT TO BE WITH HIM..
I don’t even know if he is coming tonight or not..April 26, 2016 at 12:38 pm #102789AnonymousGuest
Him moving out is the right thing to be done. But it being the right thing for you and the kids doesn’t change the fact that you are afraid, afraid of all these changes and the unknown future. The fact that you are afraid and doubtful does not mean him moving out is the wrong thing, it only means you are afraid.
If he didn’t move out, you and the children would suffer. If he moved out, you still suffer. You have a choice between two kind of suffering. If he stays it will be one kind with no hope for a better future. If he moves out you will suffer but there will be hope for a better future.
Have faith that this is the right thing and endure this fear and suffering with the faith that the future will be better for his leaving.
Don’t give in to him and to your fear. When you gave in to him about staying another week, his reaction: say mean things to you.
See the difference between you and him? When you are afraid- you give in to him. When he is afraid- he says mean things to you.
You are very clear: “I don’t want to be with him.” I have no doubt this is true. You are also afraid. It is a big challenge to do what is right even though you are afraid. If you follow through regardless of your fear, you will build courage and be a stronger woman for it.
Follow through in spite of the fear. Once you act strong and assertive with him even though you are afraid, following acts of courage like that, you will be amazed. You will realize: I didn’t know I could do that! It will build in you confidence in your own power. And such a confidence will work miracles in your life. Seize this opportunity!