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For womankind. Share the Red Flags #2

(115 Posts)
ParsleyTheLioness Wed 14-Nov-12 19:05:24

Time to start a new thread. Original one here
red flags I should have heeded

CharlotteCollinsislost Wed 21-Nov-12 20:31:00

Frizzbonce, that sounds so familiar. My NSDH stops any complaint I raise with him with a curt "Well, as long as I'm always in the wrong, that's what matters."

And the constant little personal comments, putting me down all the time. "You are going to put on some make-up before we get there, aren't you?", laughing at my post-baby tummy and so on. He likes to sleep naked, and will often walk round the house naked for the morning before showering and getting dressed. The dds have taken to copying this behaviour, but one morning he was complaining that they smelled of wee and making personal comments about their weight. In an effort to support them, I pointed out that he didn't always smell great before showering (who does, after all?) and is overweight himself. For the rest of the day, he wandered round with a hurt expression, saying, "Fat and smelly! You said I was fat and smelly!" Did I sink to his level, I wonder? I told him that I didn't mean to upset him, but assumed as he dishes out these comments so easily that they would not bother him...

Shaky - that's so interesting about the compliments given around you but not to you, so to speak. I wonder if NSDH does that. I know he can ostensibly give a big compliment, but wrap up a little criticism inside it. Or a large criticism. Recent example, just before we went out: "Are you wearing that? That's the only thing you've bought recently that I don't like - all the others are really lovely, but that makes you look pregnant."

I find this thread so useful: for 13 years now, I've been forgiving every mean incident and forgetting it - and I've got really good at that, so good that it's really difficult now to bring to mind the things I have cause to complain about, in order to look at the big picture.

Sorry for waffling!

Shaky Wed 21-Nov-12 23:38:16

Oh Charlotte I hope you are not going out with my ex!!!! If I put make up on, he would say, "who have you come as? Coco the clown, I didn't realise it was fancy dress party"

If I didn't wear make up he would say "well who would want you, look at the state of you, you fat cow"

One of his mates looked twice at me on a night out, he said "you could shag him you know", I have never heard anything so menacing, I still don't know how to take it..

Charlotte I used to have a countdown in my head, from the minute he walked through the door to the time of the first insult, it never took long!

I ended it 4 years ago and I have never looked back. I am now blissfully happy with my dp and our ds will be 3 next week.

The more I read on this thread the wider my eyes open. I hope that is the same or others on this thread xxxx thanks

Shaky Fri 23-Nov-12 00:14:09

I have suggested this is made into a book to MNHQ and they are going to put it to their book people and have thanked me for suggesting it!!!!!

I have gone one step further and suggested that if they do make a book could a portion of the profits go to women's aid! I will let you know if they reply x

janelikesjam Fri 23-Nov-12 00:18:40

Fantastic idea, Shaky, could be an amazing book. Kind of shocking too, but strangely common it seems. Also, you couldn't make it up... I remember the "dying for a glass of water" contribution in particular (but so many others also). I remembered it because it felt so shocking but also somewhat normal in this world of upfront (or hidden) EA.

LifeWithoutBuildings Fri 23-Nov-12 01:38:49

I finally left my ex about a year ago, it's taken a while to realise how much of a bastard he really was blush Having read a few pages of the original 'red flags' thread, so much of what everyone says applies to him.

When we met I was 16, he was 25, I'd never so much as kissed anyone before, and he seemed very grown up and experienced.

He smoked an increasing amount of weed throughout the relationship, starting at about £40 worth a week and ending at about £60 worth a day, meaning that we had to scrape together spare pennies (literally) to buy food with. His mum gave him money (about £300-400 a week!) and paid all his bills.

So much sulking! He sulked if I refused sex, even if we'd already had sex more than once that day. He sulked when I went to see my friends, and accused me on numerous occasions in very graphic detail of having an affair with my best friend, who is a straight woman with a boyfriend. He sulked when I went to see my mum, or wanted to talk to her on the phone in a different room. Always wanted to know what I'd been talking about with everybody else I ever spoke to. When we lived together, which we did after being together for six months, he wouldn't let me sit in a different room from him and if I did he'd stomp about slamming doors and sulking.

Always made me feel like I was too boring for him, told me I was "vanilla" because I didn't want to have anal sex or smoke weed.

Showered about once a month and then still expected blow jobs and would sulk if I didn't want to, talking about "resigning himself to a life without blow jobs" hmm

Said he loved me after a month, told me frequently that he'd probably kill himself if it wasn't for me.

Could never drink without being so drunk it was both embarrassing and a bit scary and then passing out.

Told me he hated all my friends and the 'scene' they were in, once said the words "I think about you having fun with your friends and it makes me feel sick", would accuse me of "always going out" when we lived together and I was going to see my friend once a week.

Never hit me but would often throw things at the walls/throw things (like clothes) at me/ follow me round our tiny flat shouting, once kicking in the bathroom door that I'd locked to get away from him.

Accused me of laughing at him every time we argued, until eventually I did start laughing during arguments in a horrible nervous sort of way, then would tell me I went out of my way to make him feel like shit. Also, his response to every argument was "I guess I'm just a cunt".

After we broke up, he spent a few weeks alternately calling me a cunt and telling me I should get psychiatric help because I'd made up problems in the relationships that weren't there. Recently sent me an email to tell me "I've been thinking, and all the reasons why we broke up were your fault" hmm and "I'm not going to let you treat me like shit anymore".

Well, that was quite long, but cathartic grin

kickassangel Fri 23-Nov-12 02:14:19

I think this may be a subtle one, feel free to weigh in and give your opinions. Talking about friend X and I said how her mum just takes over and she totally defers to her mum rather than standing up to her. Eg asks mum what temp to roast potatoes on, even though she knows, let's her mum decide which dishes to use for serving food.

I said I couldn't do that and would tell my mum to let me handle the kitchen stuff myself. I was told that I shouldn't argue with my parents, it's much easier just to give in and that X's way of behaviour was different than mine and how he thought I should behave.

When I said that that would just lead to emotional abuse if you never stand up for yourself, he scoffed and said that's not abuse in a really derisory way.

It felt very much like he was saying I should never stand up for myself

Frizzbonce Fri 23-Nov-12 10:37:06

LifeWithoutBuildings His mum gave him £300 - £400 a week????!!!!!

Oh the undermining - the little barbed remarks and snide comments that bit by bit eat away at your self esteem.

I hope that Mumsnet does bring out a book on Big Red Flags - I remember reading some awful NSPCC statistic on the numbers of teenage girls who said they had been 'coerced' into sex when they didn't want it or didn't even know they were in abusive relationships. Just think how those rates could be cut if they had a great book to refer to and could check out his behaviour on the Knob-o-meter.

Does he criticise you and then say it's 'for your own good'? KNOB ALERT.

TisILeclerc Fri 23-Nov-12 10:53:55

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

fuzzpig Fri 23-Nov-12 10:54:26

I had a fling in college with someone who I now see would have been an abusive man, and I am so glad I got out early.

He told some really headfucking lies. One of the first times we spoke on the phone, he told me about his little boy and his ex. It was all very plausible. Then he laughed and said he'd made it up. I have no idea why he made that up.

The other weird one. I knew early on about his porn habit, I wasn't too bothered by it as it was just a fling. However. One time I stayed at his house, he knew I was on my period (very heavy), and was obviously a while in the bathroom sorting myself out. When I returned to his room he was still looking at the computer, and he smirked and said "that was interesting". He then proceeded to tell me all about a hidden camera in the bathroom, that he'd seen everything, blood, tampon etc. He really had me believing it for several minutes - felt like an eternity of humiliation - until he admitted he'd made it up.

I can't believe I didn't see how messed up that is, why would somebody take such pleasure in telling total headfuck lies?!

ATourchOfInsanity Fri 23-Nov-12 15:27:39

One of the last comments my ex made to me before we split was "what happened to the beautiful,sassy and strong woman I met in London?". I told him he had broken me, then quickly wished I hadn't given him the satisfaction.
Why they insist on running you into the ground, taking away all that they were attracted to and then feel able to blame you for falling into their trap just shows how warped these men can be. They easily move on to a new victim and the cycle starts again.

Shaky Fri 23-Nov-12 20:15:34

fuzzpig that's awful, a proper headfuck shock

I have had an email back from MNHQ and they think its a great idea and have passed it on to their book people. They will let me know if they decide to go ahead! grin

ParsleyTheLioness Fri 23-Nov-12 20:34:41

Not too comfortable with this actually. I realise that this stuff remains under ownership of MN. Not why I started the thread...will have to give it some thought. This was discussed at length on Thread 1 shaky, were you there?

jaffacake2 Fri 23-Nov-12 20:48:37

It has only been over the past 2 years of dating that I have realised the longterm effects of having been in a physically and emotionally abusive marriage for 23 yrs. We divorced 13 yrs ago when he left me with 2 small children to go with younger woman to USA.
When I started dating the car broke down and I just froze. New BF was horrified that I thought he may hit me,which is what happened in that situation with ex H on many occassions. Also if he slightly raised his voice I would freeze again anticipating a slap. Emotionally and sexually was quite an eye opener with someone new.
It is sad to think that even though I divorced 13 yrs ago,that behaviour is still deep inside me with the same fears.
Trying hard to move on but very difficult to trust a man again.

Shaky Fri 23-Nov-12 21:12:33

Oh Parsley I'm sorry if I have made you feel uncomfortable.

I was on the other thread but came to it very late on, at 800 messages ish. I didn't see that discussion. I do completely appreciate that everyone has posted their very personal stories on here, possibly the first time they have been expressed openly. I know a lot of what I posted I have never told anyone in real life.

I just thought that if I knew then what I know now, I wouldn't have wasted 6 years with a complete twunt. My thinking was, that if we could spread the word and help people recognise the red flags, we could save some women from the hurt, pain and humiliation that every single poster on these threads has suffered.

Parsley I'm sorry, thanks

LittleMissStroppy Fri 23-Nov-12 21:29:53

I'm a single mom, I've been by myself for awhile and I like being alone...with occassional flings.

I get lonely sometimes and I wish I had a man to share my life with - I come on here and read things like this - and it terrifies me, the thought of having a relationship. You women are strong, all what you have gone through and overcome. It makes my situation pale in comparison.

You got out of these awful situations and are not broken. I wish I had a tiny bit of your strenght to see me through mine...and come out stronger.

Much respect, Ladies, and thank you for sharing.

ParsleyTheLioness Fri 23-Nov-12 21:40:34

Shakey I always wanted the thread to help:that's why I started it. I have suggested to MN that perhaps a book needs to have user names removed, or other way of preserving anonymity. I have been stalked online by STBXH so he would recognise the situations, and I am sure I'm not alone in this.

I did suggest that Pinning the thread would be a way of making it more helpful, but that wasn't possible.

Littlemiss you can do it too...I have got more sense/braver with age...

ParsleyTheLioness Fri 23-Nov-12 21:41:36

shakey looks like we both just want the best outcome...

Shaky Fri 23-Nov-12 22:06:26

Parsley I totally agree about having the usernames removed.

It was just an idea and I didn't know it had been discussed before.

ParsleyTheLioness Fri 23-Nov-12 22:11:25

Maybe proceeds to go to Womens Aid/Refuge?

janelikesjam Fri 23-Nov-12 22:34:23

I still think something like this would be an incredible book. Nothing ever has been written like I have seen in these threads. Though I moan about internet and technology - I think this is one instance of the internet working in women's favour re. shared knowledge and insight.

However, I agree that as well as names being changed, some other aspects of anonymity might need to be preserved (and I don't know what the legal position is here either). Perhaps the publishers could write to individual contributors to check?

I think any publisher/editor who gets this to do this would be very lucky. The power of the individual writing speaks for itself, and doesn't need much more to be done IMO. Maybe just an introduction and a way of organising it.

janelikesjam Fri 23-Nov-12 22:36:05

I notice that for alot of women here their relationships were worst when they were youngest and got better by middle-age, whereas mine was the complete reverse.

Shaky Fri 23-Nov-12 23:07:26

I did suggest that £1 for every copy sold went to women's aid.

We would help to educate women so they were less likely to need women's aid and donating to them at the same time.

Again, I am very sorry if I have made anyone uncomfortable with the suggestion and I presume HQ would ask for consent before using anyone's story. However, that is just an assumption.

ParsleyTheLioness Sat 24-Nov-12 12:56:10

Thought they might have contacted me, as I started it, but not happened yet. I appreciate I don't have the copyright...

ParsleyTheLioness Sat 24-Nov-12 12:56:48

Stop apologising Shaky...I have put the voodoo away now!

kickassangel Sat 24-Nov-12 14:45:11

In the past when mn have done books, they've asked for contributions on a dedicated thread, not just pulled things from existing threads, so any info on these threads would stay here, not be used.

My concern would be that anecdotal comments about this may not be as helpful as we wished. It is quite a serious subject and if it didn't actively help someone, it could cause harm. Red flags can be so subtle that it's hard to tell if they are or not. Sometimes the same action can be two completely different things.

e.g. a dp who offers to pick you up at the end of a night out. It could be a loving caring partner wanting to save you a taxi fare, or a controlling bastard who wants to make sure that you're home by a certain time and not talking to any men.

People can be very confused and lacking in the courage to really name and shame the behaviour they're suffering they're under. Anecdotes from others can help, or just make the situation worse.

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