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Sweettea76

Indecision and fear of unkown

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Sweettea76

I have come here in hopes of finding people who may understand my situation. People close to me say "just leave". It's not that simple. Or I would have already. There are days I wish he'd just beat me, so leaving would be easier. (I question myself after distance from an episode of his rage, and wonder if I over reacted or contributed somehow....even though the rational part of me knows better)

In a nutshell, this is my story....

I met my husband in 1999. He was so different from the guys I had dated who were plagued by alcoholism, emotional problems, joblessness, etc. He had a steady job, a home. He was responsible and we got along well. I'll admit it was boring compared to the bad boys I usually dated, but I was at a point in my life where I just wanted to grow up, have a real relationship. I thought it was meant to be meeting him. We dated a few months before I basically moved in. Within a month or so I got pregnant. He decided we needed to get married right away so I could have health insurance. I was still reeling from the fact I was pregnant(a year before I'd miscarried). I didn't think it out too much, I loved him, we were going to start a family. He was doing the right thing. Someone actually wanted to spend their life with me. I didn't want to lose that, so we got married the next day in a civil ceremony. I look back and feel bad for the naive me, the one who just wanted to be loved. I should've seen the red flags. He joked constantly about how he would domesticated me, like he was breaking a wild horse. He didn't introduce me to people, he didn't want my friends around. He tossed my wedding ring at me from across the kitchen, in front of my father while saying "here, don't say I never gave you nothing". I think now that maybe he never did love me, rather Ive just held so tightly to the nuclear family white picket fence fantasy I couldn't admit that to myself before now.

*Fast forward*

I am a stay at home mom of 3 girls (high school, middle school, and preschool). I've been married 17 years. I realized a long time ago that he is emotionally and verbally abusive. I have tried everything I could. Made doctors appointments, scheduled therapy and counseling for him at his request, which he never attended. I spent a long time trying to figure out his triggers and eliminate them. I about killed myself with exhaustion trying to be and do everything. It was hard, Rocky and at times I felt totally alone. But I thought several years back we'd gotten through the problems. We'd argue and whatnot, but it seemed like things had stabilized.

2012 I got pregnant. With our 3rd child. By my husband. It was the hardest 9 months of my life. He turned into the worst version of his angry self I'd ever known. I tricked him, I trapped him. I cheated on him, he said. He was angry and wanted me to have an abortion, he'd never get to retire if I didn't. (He was 42 at the time). I put a lot of thought into what to do. I ultimately decided that I'd never forgive myself if I let him coerce me into an abortion I didn't want to have. The threats and tempers went on. He broke my car purposefully once so I couldn't leave. He ripped the phones out of the walls with enough force to fray the wiring. I called the police several times, but because he hadn't physically hurt me, they'd ask him to leave and cool off. He would of course say no, it's his house. I would then be told I should find somewhere to go with my kids and being pregnant. I felt so trapped.

Luckily he was sent out of town by his employer for a few months. It was a relief. It was hard because I was so very pregnant and had never been without him before in our marriage. But what sweet relief to be out of the daily battle with him. When the baby came though, he was at my side begging forgiveness, promising everything, saying how wrong he was, crying saying he loved his babies and me and we had to fix this, he'd fix himself for us. I chose to believe him, to try and save my family.

He did change, for a while. I was happy to have peace at home. Have a father and husband around. I tried to be more sexual, to allow him to see that side of me again. It seemed like sex was the only thing that got his interest. My self esteem rose during this period, I felt attractive, smart, capable....but it seemed like the more confident I felt, the more problems we had. But things were ok for a while. Liveable. Until early this year.

But by this Mothers day I had to call 911, he was arrested. He threatened to hit me with a heavy stone bowl, and shoved me across the kitchen to get my phone so I wouldn't record his behavior while he screamed and yelled and terrorized our family. He was leaving the next day, for 2 months so I figured I'd have time to breathe, figure out what to do. Nothing has come of his charges yet. And Of course life is complicated, my sewer backed up and flooded my lower level shortly after he left. I had to be in contact with him because his name is in everything. I was not able to sign checks, speak to the mortgage company, etc. Fast forward to July, finally have the insurance settled and he comes home for a week to help fix the house. I was worried about him coming home, but told myself it would be fine. It wasn't. By mid week he was in such a rage I panicked. I knew I couldn't call the police again, (I think him being arrested traumatized my children more than what he did) and he was still mad at me for that, I "set him up" and it was my fault he was arrested in May. I couldn't fight back, or defend myself because it escalates him. I tried to walk away. He chased me, he took my keys, he tried to take my phone. I refused to look at him or say anything other than stop. It infuriated him, I was sure this was it, this was the night he finally crosses the line into physical injury. My high school daughter stepped in, tried to talk to him. I couldn't stop her, she'd had enough. It didn't matter, he continued to scream at her all the things he couldn't get me to react to. His big one this time was how I got him arrested and how bad a mother I am. His words are so vile and full of hatred. His eyes turn into black shark eyes, and there's no stopping his anger.I felt powerless. After his eruptions he acts like nothing happened, although he will get mad if I haven't completely let it all go. If I don't feel like sex after the things he says and does, he gets mad and says I'm mistreating him. He blames me for his behavior, and expects me to not be upset or offended by his behavior. If I bring it up, try to talk about it he gets mad and says I'm " starting my bull@#$% again" if I'm quiet and disengaged, he yells "why can't you just let it go?".

Hes back at work now, but the last things we heard from him before he left were how horrible I am as a wife and mother, how I can't take care of anything, and how he's going to find someone else to raise his children. And a multitude of vulgar names directed at me, as he aimed to shame me on every level he could in front of our children. He has made zero effort to contact us in the past 2 weeks since he left.

Keep in mind, there is no trigger. There is no proceeding argument.These rages come out of the blue. And usually have nothing to do with what he's actually screaming about. And he always feels justified. "It's the only way I listen to him".

Hes scheduled to come home for my daughter's birthday in a month. She wants him here. I dont. I've told him I cannot have him ruin another day, much less an important one. I've asked if he wants to visit he please stay with his family. I don't know what else to do.

I want this to end. I am a shell of what I used to be, what I can be. I want to show my daughter's that this isn't ok. The problem is I am scared.

The unknown is scarier than the blowups from him. If it was just me I'd go, be gone. But my children don't want to lose their home, their neighbors, their school. I don't want to take everything away from them. I can't support them myself, we barely get by with one household. I have no degree or experience/skills. I don't want to make the children sacrifice because of him, because of me. I don't know what to do and I'm floundering. I know what I should to do, but I'm so scared of how ugly it will get. I am frozen in self doubt, fear, guilt, and confusion.

Has anyone else been through this, with older children. Whos entire lives will be upended if you left? Who don't know the depth of what you go through, yet you can't explain to them all the details either? Who just want dad to love them and want mom to be happy, but be together?

Anyone else afraid if you do leave, you will find out you really are the failure he's convinced you of? Anyone else conveniently "forget" the bad things and focus on the good, trying so hard to get the good back? Anyone else so mad at what he says and does, but feel sorry for him too? Not want to hurt him, the way he hurts you? Anyone else go through every single emotion multiple times a day?

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Bennu

I am so sorry. Yes, I have felt those things. Your story is sadly familiar. I'm out but not divorced yet.

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Vampydoll

I am so sorry for what you are going through. It is hell on earth and even though I don't have children, I understand completely, I wish I had the answers for you. I don't even have them myself.

I can't even leave. He stands in front of the door and cries. Tells me he will change but he never does. And I know he won't. I hate this life. I wish I were dead most of the time.

I really ask God all the time "what did I do to deserve this behavior?" I have no idea why we have to go through this. I wish I had some good advise for you. Maybe we can work this out with all the members and find some answers.

I wish you some peace in your life. That's all I want. Peace and quiet

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Sunnyhiker

There is nothing to save here, and you really need to exit this relationship before he harms you. Your children are seeing his horrible role modelling and will think that's OK or expected in their relationships, so you are not helping them by staying.

I would change the locks, call an attorney and file for a divorce immediately. If he comes home and makes a scene because the locks are changed, call the police.

Men who display violence like this are the ones who kill their wives. Often wives are killed the first time the husband turns physical towards them, so you won't have a few incidents of hits as a warning.

I did go through a divorce with older children, and I stayed in the home so their lives weren't disrupted. You have a lot more rights and resources than you realize. In most states, because you are married everything acquired during the marriage is half yours whether you are the one working or whether your name is on the title.

Can you call an attorney for a consultation today and let us know what s/he says?

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Sunnyhiker

I had to call 911, he was arrested. He threatened to hit me with a heavy stone bowl, and shoved me across the kitchen to get my phone so I wouldn't record his behavior while he screamed and yelled and terrorized our family.

...

By mid week he was in such a rage I panicked. I knew I couldn't call the police again, (I think him being arrested traumatized my children more than what he did) and he was still mad at me for that, I "set him up" and it was my fault he was arrested in May. I couldn't fight back, or defend myself because it escalates him. I tried to walk away. He chased me, he took my keys, he tried to take my phone. I refused to look at him or say anything other than stop. It infuriated him, I was sure this was it, this was the night he finally crosses the line into physical injury. My high school daughter stepped in, tried to talk to him. I couldn't stop her, she'd had enough. It didn't matter, he continued to scream at her all the things he couldn't get me to react to. His big one this time was how I got him arrested and how bad a mother I am. His words are so vile and full of hatred. His eyes turn into black shark eyes, and there's no stopping his anger.I felt powerless.

Were you able to get any of the first incident on tape?

Will your daughter tell the truth if the police ask her about the second incident?

Do you have any of his rages on tape anywhere?

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Bennu

I would change the locks, call an attorney and file for a divorce immediately. If he comes home and makes a scene because the locks are changed, call the police.

See if this is legal first. It isn't in my state. The police would tell you that you have to let him in.

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Sunnyhiker

Has anyone else been through this, with older children. Whos entire lives will be upended if you left? Who don't know the depth of what you go through, yet you can't explain to them all the details either? Who just want dad to love them and want mom to be happy, but be together?

Anyone else afraid if you do leave, you will find out you really are the failure he's convinced you of? Anyone else conveniently "forget" the bad things and focus on the good, trying so hard to get the good back? Anyone else so mad at what he says and does, but feel sorry for him too? Not want to hurt him, the way he hurts you? Anyone else go through every single emotion multiple times a day?

This is the fog you are in due to the abuse. It won't take long until after you are out of the abuse that you'll be able to start thinking straight again.

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Sweettea76

I do have video of him yelling and calling me names, then charging me and shoving me across the room. Even with that I was unable to get the emergency order of protection the next day, was told to find somewhere to go until he left for work.

We borrowed money and went to a hotel.

I did speak to a lawyer who suggests trying again at getting an order of protection before his next visit. And divorce.

I understand about the dangers. And I know divorce would make him go crazy. I would need an order of protection before I file.

I'm just terrified of taking that first step. Of what happens after he is served. Of what I tell the kids. Of how he reacts.

I know what I need to do. It's like standing at the top of a cliff, knowing u need to jump but being frozen, unable to.

My brain keeps playing little tricks on me, flashing back the happy bits. But the sad thing is there are so few, and they're not that happy anyway.

You are right about the fog! And I know until I act on any of this it won't go away.

Thank you for responding to my post! I've read every book that's been suggested on this site, viewed every video on the subject I could find. I've tried local resources, before my daughter was born. I left there not knowing more than before I went.

I think sometimes because you aren't being physically hurt, you arent given as much priority. But what I fear is when he does get physical, he won't be able to stop and he will kill me. (I don't think I've admitted that to myself fully, my brain tricks me into thinking I'm over reacting).

Just having this forum as a sounding board, and for support has helped me already. Thank you!!!

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Sunnyhiker

Yes, the protective order is a great idea. So you took the video to the police station and they wouldn't act on it?

Can you call a domestic violence hotline in your area so you can better understand your local legal options/processes? They may be able to assist you in getting a protective order based on the video. They already have connections set up for this.

Do you have a family member who can be with you when he gets home or for the several days after he is served?

I can assure you that although the first step is the hardest step to take in the journey to rid yourself of this situation, once you take it you'll ask yourself what took you so long!

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Sunnyhiker

I think sometimes because you aren't being physically hurt, you arent given as much priority. But what I fear is when he does get physical, he won't be able to stop and he will kill me. (I don't think I've admitted that to myself fully, my brain tricks me into thinking I'm over reacting).

Your fears are WELL founded. Do you have a way to protect yourself when he does get physical?

It sounds like he has already crossed that boundary once. Since there were no consequences, he will cross it easier/quicker next time.

Also, I would have a VAR (voice activated recorder) hidden and on when he is around so you have more evidence of his atrocious behavior.

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Sunnyhiker

What you tell the kids is:

"I am concerned for my and your safety when your dad is here, so I need him to leave. Men who behave like your dad often kill their wives when they snap and I don't want to be killed, nor do I want you to witness something like that."

Your kids already have a sense of this. They know something is not right, but they are in the same fog you are.

I had older kids when we went through a divorce, and their dad wasn't physical like your situation is, but they still understood. They didn't like it, but they understood.

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Bennu

I know what I need to do. It's like standing at the top of a cliff, knowing u need to jump but being frozen, unable to.

That's how I felt too. It was really hard not knowing what was at the bottom of that cliff. The women here assured me that it would be good, but it was still very frightening. I did it though and it was worth it.

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sleepyhead

Yes.  I am there and ready to take the leap...with the help of a few counseling sessions first. Part of me wishes I took the plunge while living in the house, but I left and hoped we could be amicable.  2 1/2 years later it's not happening.  New threats and compiled threats still paralyze me.

We know what to do, but it's fear.  needing someone to hold our hand the entire time is needed.  I totally get you.  I wish I could be that person for you - i can do it for anyone else.  I have done it for others.  I can't do it for myself.  Everyone says - just file already!!!!! I CAN'T!!!!!!! he will knock down my door and call and text and freak out and i need security sitting with me 24 hours a day until he lands himself in jail for his freak out.  Then my security detail may leave. I chuckle a little but that's how I feel.  Unfortunately I don't have a security person.  A RO will not help me, he already told me it'll mean nothing to him.

The last few days I keep thinking maybe I'm making this all up and it's not that bad...then HIS good friend who is a female (i think she now sees his true colors since I finally filled her in on all this in July and she's now seen his texts to me and then sees what he tells her about a situation) is like "NO, you 're not making this up. He won't change you need to end this. it won't be easy. but you have to be ready to do it".  So I understand your feelings totally.  Head in the sand, maybe it'll get better. No. You have to be ready to just tackle the mess. We will always find a reason not to, but look back a year ago - why didn't we do it then?! No reason. You just need the support. A hand to hold yours and stand next to you to keep you strong and accountable and consistent. That's how i feel anyways. And we seems to have similar feelings on this all.

I hope you're doing well.

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