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Hello,

I feel so stuck. I have been with my husband for almost 18 years. Pretty much most of them have been some form of abuse whether physical or verbal.

I do not know what to do and have no one around. I have 3 children (two teenagers and one8 year old). If it was not for them I would not care what happens and would probably just end it. But I cannot stand the idea of them being left with him.

I do not want to blaim him for everything. He had a hard childhood and we even believe him to be bipolar but he said he will never takes meds for it to supress him. the past couple of years and now months his anger is worse than ever. Dinner just not tasting right will throw him into a rage and plates across the room because "I am not women enough to get it done right". He tells me constantly that he hates me now. That all he ever wanted was for me to love him and I could not. I loved him (and somehow still do) with my whole heart but he has been always about himself. Even womens phone numbers, etc from the start. I think he may have had an affair to two but he wont admit it but he is always accusing me of things so I am sure something happened.

He is always blaiming me telling me that I am a coward because when he has an issue I do not know how to deal with it. It usually ends with me being hit, slapped or punched. I will try and tell him I am sorry, he does not want to hear it, I will explain why something happened, but that is just an excuse to him. Then when he threathens me and I leave the room I am a coward. I told him I was made to be a coward because the one person who I was suppose to think would only love me my whole life, I now fear.

He tells me all the time I should leave, I say i don't want to (I do) because when I did before and tried to, it ended up with me being thrown all over the kitchen and told that I was killing our family. He tells me I just want to stay because I need him and am nothing without him. I make a good weekly check and even though it would be hard I am sure I could make things work for my kids & I.

We have been arguing for one week now because last Monday the spaghetti noodles were a little soggy. Every day last week when I tried to talk to him he would tell me to leave it alone because it will never be better between us and the damage is done. Then this weekend he went off saying I wait until the last minute for everything. Told me he wanted me to start looking for a place. I ended up sleepinging in the living room, next day called a coward again for this. Last night tried talking to him but he said none of it mattered. That all I ever had to do was touch his heart. I explained that it is hard to get the courage up to do this when you have the fear of something hurting you. But of course his hurt goes much further than mine. My heart apparently does not ache.

Well when I got up this morning I found that he had cut up all my clothes in the closet last night, and I mean everything. If it was not for the fact that I had clothes in the washer and dryer I would only of had pajamas today. I just do not know what to do. I can try and face him when he gets home tonight and just deal with my punishment because I have a friend I could stay with but do not want to leave my kids and he is not going to let them go with me at this point. I know my olders one would be ok but my youngest would be so scared and confused without me.

Just scared and confused at this point.
I was married 18 years with 4 kids and I left taking youngest child with me. But I planned my 'departure'. I had gone back to school to finish a degree, got a better job so I could make it on my own,and mostly I got a lawyer to ask what my rights were before I left. But you are in a much more serious situation and you need to leave soon...Something you need to do before you leave is to find and visit a lawyer and please don't make excuses for your husband and don't sugar coat your situation. Find a lawyer that specializes in divorce law and make an appt. and make sure he knows the whole ugly truth and let him guide you in the legal things you need to do to protect your life and your children...you need to take at least the youngest with you. After I got settled he kicked out the rest of the kids so we all ended up together in the end. I would suggest you first contact a shelter as putting your friend in the middle of things might put her life in jeopardy. And also they will guide you in what you need to do...they can protect you until he settles down. Being with a friend does not afford you the safety you will need right off. Call a shelter and see what you need to do or if they even have room at your particular moment of leaving. After you leave(and you do need to leave)don't look back and don't go back no matter how 'nice' he becomes or even how hostile he becomes. He is a dangerous man and I am sure that the shelter if nothing else will give you a cell phone for you to call for help if he catches you in the 'open'. He has already shown you he has lost all sense of reasoning and you will be the next thing he cuts up because when he is in a rage he doesn't have control over his actions and will likely kill you. I know this is alllll very hard to actually put in motion but you are not helping the kids by staying ...nor are you helping your husband. Because you have stayed and allowed him to just 'bounce off the walls' he never got the help he needs. It isn't you that needs marriage counseling(you are long since been at that stage) it is him that needs mental health intervention something that he will not get as long as you are there. You are scared to leave because it is the unknown...believe me people are more than happy/willing to help you ...just let them and you will survive just like the rest of us. Good luck I know exactly how you are feeling.
PREPARE A SAFE ROOM IN YOUR HOUSE:
Install inside locks on a door
Plan barricades
Choose a room with a window
Arrange a signal for help with a neighbor
Have a telephone in that room -- get a cordless phone

FIND A SAFE SHELTER AND KNOW HOW TO GET TO IT:
Call the closest shelter
Arrange to stay with friends or family
Decide whether or not you will take your children with you when you leave

START TALKING TO PEOPLE:
Call the shelter for support
Talk to a lawyer to learn your rights
Make a trustworthy friend
Talk to substance abuse people (substance abuse agency, AA, Al-Anon)

DOCUMENT THE ABUSE:
Keep a journal (make sure it is hidden)
Make copies of your hospital bills
Show injuries to a friend
Make copies of canceled checks for liquor
Make copies of bills for damage to property
Get photos taken of damage to yourself and/or to property
Get medical attention and have it in your medical records

PAPERS YOU SHOULD COPY:
Rent receipts or mortgage payments
Social Services papers
Tax records
Social Security numbers for you and the kids
Utility receipts
Bank statements
Receipts for property you have paid for
Car title and registration

IDENTIFICATION YOU SHOULD HAVE:
Social Security cards
Birth certificates
Driver’s License
Green card
work permit
passport

MONEY:
Start hiding cash for yourself
Open your own bank account
Save pay stubs

KEYS:
Car keys
house keys
safety deposit box keys
post office box keys

PACK A SUITCASE AND HIDE IT:
In a car, under a bed, at a neighbors, at a church, in a public locker, in the garage

WHAT TO PACK:
Shoes, socks, underwear, nightwear, change of clothes, diapers, toothbrush, combs, soap, etc.

PACK YOUR MOST TREASURED POSSESSIONS
(your abuser knows what to destroy to hurt you):
Wedding pictures, jewelry, love letters, children’s favorite toys, children’s pictures, other valued possessions

OTHER THINGS TO DO

* Pack an address book with your most important addresses and phone numbers.
* If you have long hair, get it cut so that it cannot be grabbed.
* Hide everything in the house that could be used as a weapon against you.
* If you find that you must leave, try to leave while your abuser is away from the home or ask the police to help
you get out– don’t worry about being fair or giving him the benefit of the doubt– PROTECT YOURSELF


SAFETY DURING AN EXPLOSIVE EVENT

* GO TO AN AREA THAT HAS AN EXIT
* Not a bathroom (near hard surfaces), kitchen (near knives), or near weapons.
* STAY IN A ROOM WITH A PHONE
* Call 911, a friend or a neighbor, if possible. Inform them if there are weapons in the home.
* PROTECT YOURSELF Keep as much distance between yourself and your abuser.
* KNOW YOUR ESCAPE ROUTES Practice how to get out of your home safely prior to an incident. Visualize your
escape route. When an incident occurs use your escape route.
* DEVISE A CODE WORD OR SIGNAL Tell your children, grandchildren or neighbors so you can communicate to
them that you need the police or that it is time to leave.
* TRUST YOUR JUDGEMENT Consider anything that you feel will keep you safe and give you time to figure out
what to do next. Sometimes it is best to flee and sometimes it is best to placate the abuser– anything that
works to protect yourself and the children.


If you cannot take your children with you, DO NOT assume you will lose custody because of abandonment. Leaving
because of abuse is legitimate. It is important to contact an attorney about your parental rights as soon as
possible. If you fear your children are in danger, contact Social Services or the police.

SAFETY IN YOUR HOME
(If your abuser does not live with you)

* UPGRADE YOUR SECURITY SYSTEM Change the locks on doors and windows as soon as possible. Consider a
security service, window bars, better lighting, smoke detectors and fire extinguishers.
* HAVE A SAFETY PLAN Teach your children or grandchildren how to call the police or someone they can trust.
Have a secret code word that you and your children agree on– to communicate trouble and for the people who
are allowed to pick the children up.
* CHANGE YOUR PHONE NUMBER Screen your calls if you have an answering machine or caller ID. Save all
messages with threats or that violate any orders.
* TALK TO NEIGHBORS AND LANDLORD Inform them that your abuser no longer lives with you and that they
should call police if they see the abuser near your home.
* GET LEGAL ADVICE Find a lawyer knowledgeable about domestic violence to explore custody, visitation and
divorce provisions that protect you and the children. Discuss getting a restraining order as an option.


SAFETY AND YOUR CHILDREN

* TELL SCHOOLS AND CHILDCARE Let them know who has permission to pick up the children and give them
your code word. Discuss with them other special provisions to protect you and your children. Provide a picture
of the abuser if possible.
* EXCHANGE CHILDREN IN A SAFE PLACE Find a safe place to exchange the children for visitation.
Hi everyone,

Sorry it has taken me so long to get back. having internet problems at work again.

The weekend was surprisingly well. I came home to find a email card that was sent to me by him. Surprising since he does not really do this. Then we decided we would not really do anything that night because our daughter was babysitting up the road and we wanted to be home for the boys and in case she needed help. so we picked a movie on cable and we watched. Sat he took me out for seafood.

We actually did very well, until last night. We went shopping for presents and he is the type that takes his time but rushes everyone else so we usually forget something. He was complaining just a little about how he wanted to get xmas shopping done. Next thing I know going into the next store, he tells me he is not as stupid as I think. I asked him what he was talking about and he said he seen me checking out some guy in the store. And just because that guy was fit does not mean anything, he could be also if he was not unhappy. I told him I had no idea what he was talking about. The only guy I recall is the older man at the door that gave me a return sticker. he said he knows it is normal too but was being disrespectful to him since all he is doing is trying hard with me.

On a serious note, I have no idea what he is talking about. I make it a point to not look at anyone when we are out because of his insecurities with this. All night, well before bed, I kept telling him he was wrong and this was crazy. i have no desire to look at anyone else. He thinks it is funny that I somehow forget I do this, or just lie to him about it. It stresses me so much. Other than a few words said, we went to bed.

This morning we really did not talk much. I tried to talk to him a little but it was not going anywhere. When my son called him this morning to say hi (he does every morning before school) I asked him if he had a minute. He said not really and this was classical that I wanted to talk over the phone and not in person. He said it is not about what I do but what I do after it to clear it up. I thought talking was trying to fix it but apparently they are just excuses and me thinking about myself.

On the other hand, I am just trying to get through the holidays and trying to figure this all out. I have searched the shelters in the area. Maybe I am crazy but I just want to do it on my own. A shelter is only going to protect me so long. I really think after he gets over the beginning of it he will just look for someone else why he is tormenting me. Once he finds them, he will move on. That is how he is, until they dump his a** and then it will be my problem again. Just too many issues with the kids and all and health to be doing that. Me leaving before xmas will be a cause for a big fight because that means I ruined our family for xmas.

I have been reading about this BPD thing and I really do think he has it. Never heard of it before but man it sounds so much like him, and even to the point where they bring up the past when something happens. he always says I never do enough for him or show my love.

Anyway, we are all ok and hanging in there. thanks for looking out for me.





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