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      Our Place Has Moved   09/30/2018

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Kcolb

Finally gone

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Kcolb

After almost 19 years of abuse, I finally left about two months ago. I have never been happier and my abuser "just doesn't understand why" because he swears he's a "new person". If I had a dollar for every time I have heard that one, I'd be a millionaire by now! Sometimes I kick myself really hard when I think about how long I allowed it, not for me, but he verbally abused our daughter as well...to the point she has sworn him off. I cannot blame her, but I just hope she doesn't believe that all men are bad. She's 19 and so very picky but I believe that can be a great thing. When she asked why it took me so long, my explanation was and always has stuck...if i were to leave and you had to visit him by yourself, I wouldn't be there to pick up the pieces. I have seen that so many times and couldn't bear that thought. My 17 yr old son doesn't understand at all why I wont just go back and be a family again, even though he had to get between his dad and me quite a few times when he came at me. I'm sure one day he will get it. Anyway, I just wanted to let someone out there know that if you think it's too late to leave, it's not and if you think you can't, you can! My heart is happier and I'm at peace although filing for divorce may cause an uproar, but we will burn that bridge when we get there!:)

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Bennu

I stayed in my marriage as long as I did for the same reason. We sacrificed ourselves for our children as mothers have done forever.  They still suffered and now my daughter has estranged herself from the whole family because she can't deal with the way her father put her in the middle. It would be so much better to go back to when he asked me on that first date, but there are no do overs. We need to make to best of what we have. Good for you for finally leaving. There will be some hard times ahead. Keep your spirits up. It gets better with time.

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lizzibethak

31 years here..............it's never too late.  

My family and his kids have all supported me over the last 2.5 years after I finally divorced at age 65.  My live is peaceful and the only drama in my life is what's on TV!!!

Continue to stay safe and on alert as you prepare for the divorce.....he will most likely show his true person as he tries to shred your reputation.  

 

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Kcolb
20 hours ago, Bennu said:

I stayed in my marriage as long as I did for the same reason. We sacrificed ourselves for our children as mothers have done forever.  They still suffered and now my daughter has estranged herself from the whole family because she can't deal with the way her father put her in the middle. It would be so much better to go back to when he asked me on that first date, but there are no do overs. We need to make to best of what we have. Good for you for finally leaving. There will be some hard times ahead. Keep your spirits up. It gets better with time.

 

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Kcolb

Thank you both for your replies. It helps so much to know there are people out there who have overcome this battle! As you know, sometimes there is an immense loneliness that goes with it and those who have never walked in our shoes could absolutely never get it. Thank you and take care!:)

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AZ-home

Kcolb,

Congratulations for taking what I know is a scary step! You already sound really healthy! I only have one child (a son) and he also defended his dad and thought I was the bad guy for leaving (when he was 19). It's not that he didn't see or acknowledge the verbal/emotional abuse, it's that he bought into his dad saying he's changed. Like you, I had heard that a million times and I also heard him defend his abuse and explain why he felt it was necessary! He didn't WANT to change! He thinks his methods "work." In fact, his dad convinced our son to live with him and 3 years later, they are still living together. At 19, I was powerless to stop him from making his own decisions and I feel very strongly that his dad manipulated him into moving in with him even after our son had moved out with friends.

BUT....

Fast forward 3 years.

Living with his dad has opened his eyes to what I was going through, opened his eyes to his dad's brand of crazy. He (my ex) didn't CHANGE! They can change TEMPORARILY to manipulate people! But everything I read and heard said it doesn't last, and it was TRUE! Sadly, my son had to learn this for himself. For a time he was super mad at me and shut me out of his life. This might be the phase you are in. But very very gradually, he came back. Be patient and don't push your son. Then he started to confide in me how hard it is to live with his dad. He refuses to move in with me because he has been brainwashed by his dad and grandpa that it would make him a "mama's boy." All I can do is be supportive and hope he moves out soon. Since you have two children, let them talk to each other. I found there was no need for me to try to throw his dad under the bus. I just sit back and let him do it himself. Your son is more likely to listen to a peer and since your daughter "gets it," he might listen to her and eventually come to understand. Consider that he may be being manipulated by your husband for now. It sounds like you are out of the FOG (Fear Obligation Guilt) but it might take your son a little longer. And he's scared. Change is hard. He's old enough to sort this out on his own, at his own pace.

And I see in your profile that you are a Christian, as am I. Let me warn you. My church was very supportive when we were separated. But once I filed for divorce they pretty much attacked me (it felt like abuse), took away my volunteer position in the church and stated (two different leaders) that they would not support me if I did not go back to him. And they followed through!!! It really rocked my world. But what was happening behind my back was what Bennu said. My soon-to-be-ex was slandering me. I say this as a warning to you. Go on YouTube and search for "Abuse by proxy." Once you cut off your abuser, they recruit storm troopers to do it for them! I even had this happen with female friend narcissists! 

For abusers it's all about "winning"! Winning support! Once my ex gets ahold of people, they no longer want anything to do with me. I have lost MANY friends. I prefer people NOT choose sides. Just stay neutral and stay friends with both of us. But he operates differently! He goes for the win! It took a while for the rumor mill to trickle down to me but eventually I learned of the very detailed lies he was telling everyone! No WONDER they attacked me! He looked my pastor in the eye while we were separated and called me a Proverbs 31 woman. That's NOT what he called me once I filed for divorce! LOL! And he adds SO many DETAILS (names and places) that people believe him.

I have since learned that people tend to believe the first story they hear. The church leaders heard his slander first. And apparently he convinced them to keep it a secret because they wouldn't even TELL me what he told them so I had no way to defend myself. I just had to....let it happen. A church I served in my whole adult life, turned their back on me in my time of need! He barely even attended! I know not every church would do this. But it has taken me a while to realize that it was the lies of my ex that caused this fiasco. When the time comes for you to file, he may stalk you and he WILL slander you! What you might tell people is, "this (abuse) is why I'm divorcing. I don't have an alcohol problem, a drug problem, a gambling problem, another man, etc etc. If you hear anything other than this, it's a lie." Get your story out first. 

I had someone ask me "You didn't KNOW he would do that?" NO! I never dreamed he would stoop to that level! He LIED to our church leaders! No I didn't think he would do that! AND...to my face he just got done telling me I was the love of his life and he wanted me back and to flip the script so quickly, no, I didn't know he would do that. But real abusers need to PUNISH you! AND they need to WIN. They will PUNISH you in what you love most (your kids) and want to WIN over the things you love most (your kids, your job, your family, your church etc etc). You already sense it's going to be bad. Your senses are correct. Trust your senses. 

And look up Lauren Daigle's new song (on YouTube) called Rescue. I love this song! God rescued me from my abusive marriage and he rescued you too. I didn't have the strength to do it on my own. I had tried. I am a stronger Christian now. MUCH stronger! I was so broken in my marriage I couldn't even pray! My former church has a LOT to learn about abuse and abusers and divorce and unconditional love and, and, and...

I am happy to report that I found a church that I love and that supports me. I love my new church and my new life! Like you, I have SO much peace now! Everyone can see the difference in my whole attitude. The old me is back! 

It makes me sad that this is the last week for this board. 

 

 

 

 

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Kcolb

Thank you so much for this feedback AZ-home. My church is slowly pushing me out with their stares and so-called friends telling me I'm wrong when clearly,he committed adultery on several occasions as well as abused his family. I dont understand their thought process as both of those are biblical reasons for divorce. Sadly, I will likely have to leave the praise and worship team that I've been so blessed to be a part of for two years because I'm sure he will continue to attend and I just couldn't.  Thank you again for your support and I too am saddened by the board leaving! Your success gives me great hope!! Take care:)

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AZ-home
15 hours ago, Kcolb said:

 and so-called friends telling me I'm wrong when clearly,he committed adultery on several occasions as well as abused his family. I dont understand their thought process as both of those are biblical reasons for divorce. Sadly, I will likely have to leave the praise and worship team that I've been so blessed to be a part of for two years because I'm sure he will continue to attend and I just couldn't. 

My church took the stance that the ONLY grounds for biblical divorce was adultery and I had no proof of that (THEN! I do now! lol) I was told over and over if it wasn't adultery, then, work it out! These people have no idea what they are talking about. I think I could handle adultery if he treated me well! That's why SO MANY marriages stay together through adultery. Because there is still love and good times! Abuse is SOOO much worse than adultery, IMO. And it was in a Christian divorce care class that I learned that abuse is also grounds for divorce. I had been told I was breaking the marriage covenant if I divorce for anything other than adultery. I learned that he broke the marriage convenant long ago when he didn't love and cherish and protect me. I found myself having to protect myself from HIM. 

Listen to the song "No Longer Slaves". 

And basically they were telling both of us, "we will support you if it's adultery" and I think he saw how he could "win" their support. So he played that card, even though it was SO far from the truth. I never had so much as an emotional affair. I couldn't have been any more faithful to a man. To me, this was just more proof of what a rotten person he is. As in: See Exhibit M.

Well meaning church friends tried to convince me to go back and try again (after more than 2 decades of trying). One even gave me an example of a friend who divorced an abusive man but after much therapy she was remarrying him. Well, that's HER story. You can't force or manipulate me into making the same choice as someone else because each person's experience is different. I, personally, think she is a fool to remarry him but each person gets to choose what's best for them. People assume you are making a huge mistake! They have NO idea what goes on in your house and you can even explain it to them and they still won't understand the hurt involved until they live it. My aunt came to me and told me, when I was separated, that it was a shame we weren't under the same roof. But she has a very healthy marriage with love and mutual respect and they work out conflicts. For her marriage, it WOULD be a shame! But I told her I felt like I just got out of prison and I was free for the first time. I gave her an earful of some of the things that had been going on and her eyes got huge. I think she was shocked at what I had been through. Even while separated, when it was just me and him and no one was around watching, he would act like toddler! As in, we would see ea other for 2 HOURS a week and he chose to spend those 2 hours being a &*(#@ to me. They had NO IDEA what was going on! Then he would tell others about our "date" and tell dog-face lies about what happened to make me out to be horrible! Or him a saint! These people don't know they are being told lies. Argh! Suffice it to say, they have NO IDEA of the multi layers of dysfunction going on! It's private. It's real. And I know it and that's all that matters!

The pastor tried to counsel us and told a story of how he and his wife had to work out a disagreement about how bright they like the rooms of their house, the lighting. He went into great detail of how they worked that out. :blink: That's when I realized he as NO CLUE what my house is like! He thinks THESE are they kinds of things we can't work out??????!!!!! Good grief! And let me just say, the pastor's wife came to church one Sunday with a black eye! I'm not the only one who saw it! She said she fell out of the van. Mmm hmmm. You fell on your eye socket? Or maybe....she turned all the lights on and opened the curtains! IDK. The church leaders SURE DID take my ex's side! It occurred to me that maybe they are abusive, too, and hate to see the wife leave her abuser for fear it could happen to them! Just sayin'. 

It was the physical symptoms of anxiety when I was around my husband or thought I would see him that finally gave me confidence in my decision. 

So own your truth! Realize that they don't understand what it's REALLY like to live with abuse. Let him have this church and you go find a new one. I am SOOO happy with my new church! Because I had attended the other church my whole life, I didn't really know what other churches are like! I wasn't thriving in my former church. I was just "doing my duty to God" and trying to serve Him. But now I look forward to Sundays. If I miss it, I literally listen to it later on YouTube! I am in one of many praise teams this new church has so I don't perform every Sunday but it was enough to make new friends. When I talk to people from my former church, they all say they don't enjoy church. They just go out of obligation. How sad. I found it does't have to be that way. I would have never thrived as a Christian, had I stayed at the other church. The grass IS greener. 

My regret is that, by me making a big announcement to the church leaders of my decision to divorce, and I was actually asking them to support him because he didn't have Christian role models once I go. But I opened the door for their commentary, or criticism, which took me years to recover from. He had told them I was the adulterer so they felt justified to let me have it. They were his ultimate "flying monkeys."  He bragged to others of how they attacked me. He was proud of himself. My suggestion to you is to just, fade away. Go quietly. They have already shown their over interest in your life. Be careful. I was not in a strong place at that time to tolerate the strong criticism of others. It was the death blow for me emotionally. They don't realize it. They mean well. But they are clueless of what we are experiencing. They could hurt you further. 

I do recommend another church's divorce care program. You don't have to be divorced yet to go. 

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Tazplu

Hi Kcolb,

i hope you are moving to the new site as well & welcome! I tried posting something there & maybe I'm doing something wrong as I couldn't get it to work.

i could have written your story - I also stated as long as I only because I didn't want either my son or daughter to ever have to go visit their Dad without me there to run interference. I would rather have stayed as long as I did than have left them unattended with him. I stayed in a mentally and emotionally abusuve marriage for almost 28 years, so I feel your pain.

Hope we can talk more.

Tazplu

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