Mumsnet has not checked the qualifications of anyone posting here. If you need help urgently, please see our domestic violence webguide and/or relationships webguide, which can point you to expert advice and support.
How do i deal with this?(74 Posts)
I'm writing this on my commute into work after confronting dh yesterday after 6 months of what I thought was very obvious EA. I do think he has depression as his mum has Alzheimers, and he was made redundant in October. He does have a better job to go to starting March though, plus s very good redundancy package.
So because of this I've been trying to keep things low key, not making an issue of small stiff, basically walking on egg shells. After a particularly nasty episode on Sunday though it all came out yesterday. He denies he is depressed and won't go to the doctors (says its humiliating and if only I'd support him more he wouldn't be like this. The thing is the constant criticism and then (when I argue back) the demands to admit I'm wrong, need to acknowledge my own deficiencies are really getting me down. Last week he threw something at me, and a few days later grabbed my arm really roughly as I'd turned away from him during an argument.
Yesterday I told him that he was being abusive and the constant undermining of my feelings and responses to his behaviour were unacceptable. I said if he ever touches me again he's out (and I mean that). I also said he needs to go to the gp, and that I'm not staying in a relationship where I'm being controlled.
I'd thought it would get better getting it all out but its far worse. He's now saying the following: he denies the abuse saying its subjective and that I'm misinterpreting the things he's said/done. That I'm being abusive to him because now I've said all of this he's going to be walking on eggshells talking about stuff in case its abusive. So I'm the controller.
This morning before I left for work he sad he'd rather die than split up, and that I'd spoilt everything by calling him abusive. Final comments were that I'd caused this creating the situations where he lost it and that I'm the one who needs to see a doctor....
I can't talk to anyone in real life, though friends are aware that things aren't great. I just worried now that if it is depression (and I think he does have it) I've now made it a whole lot worse. How do I disentangle EA from depression? Is he right that I've made it worse? Not sure how to cope when I get home. He's at home until March, I work full tine and we have 6 children to give a bit of context.
He is following the abuser's script!! Your fault, the depression's fault, twisting facts to suit his game...
He might be depressed. He is defintely abusive. Being emotionally abusive is not a symptom of depression. He is projecting all blame and responsibility for his actions onto you. He isn't going to admit he is abusive or take any responsibility for his actions. If you look to leave he will become more abusive. You do need help - please contact Women's Aid for advice about getting him away from you and your children. His abuse is clearly escalating.
he denies the abuse saying its subjective and that I'm misinterpreting the things he's said/done. Fine. He can say what he likes, but the fact is that you do not like his behaviour. There is no interpretation, you don't like it, that's a fact; the fact he wants to argue with that is undermining you. Sounds like it's important to him to put you in the wrong. He wants free rein to say and behave as he wants, including throwing things and being aggressively physical with you. (How controlling of you to try to stop him behaving appallingly!)
depression isn't an excuse for his behaviour
Next he we will say that you are actually abusing him. My ex's mantra to anyone who would/will listen - 'kitty is a violent bully'.
Thank you. I think my worry is that if it depression what I've now done has made it worse (he said as much). If EA is additional to, and not part of the depression then that's helpful in that he is accountable for his actions. I'm just feeling really scared about what to do, though I know if the relationship was 'normal' raising issues and concerns would be a positive thing. I'm really worried about the effect this will have on the children (if he goes, or has a total break down). I have no issues with bring on my own. If I'm totally honest its the practicalities of being alone re childcare issues that worry me. Says a lot really!
You need to read the Lundy Bancroft book, 'Why Does He Do That?' if you haven't already. Your eyes will be opened to how typical your partner is
There's also a fred called "The Abusers Profiles" that has loads of excerpts from Lundy's excellent book. It might be a sticky, but even if not, it's in this section and probably not too far from the top. I saw it here just the other day.
I did actually start googling the Lundy book Sunday night, hence the 'discussion' yesterday. The thing that has,really struck home is how he's responded to my accusations. I really thought he would acknowledge at least parts of what he's done (he said the arm grabbing was a 'loving gesture' 😐
I do feel a lot better reading everyone's,advice; I was starting to doubt myself. One consistent theme he warms to is that I need to be more supportive of him, and that I never show any empathy (he links this to my parents not having been very emotionally demonstrative - true). He says he just needs to feel loved and valued, but that's the last response I feel like giving!
I do think he has depression as his mum has Alzheimers
Eh? My mum has Alzheimer's and it has nothing to do with depression.
She has 4 girls and not one of us has ever had depression.
Unless it was early onset, it's not even proven to be hereditary!
So don't be putting that to him as an excuse for his abuse, it's a load of crap!
Call Womens Aid, get some advice and get your exit plan together.
When you say I said if he ever touches me again he's out
What do you mean by this? What did he do?
If he was in anyway physical with you then you need to leave and leave fast!
If he'd rather 'die' then let him carry on. That is what they all say.
When he calls you to tell you about his 'attempt' report it immediately to the police and let the authorities deal with him.
Get away though and do it safely and quickly. Womens Aid can help you with your exit plan!
They always want you to be more supportive. Realistically, you have been over supportive - by almost accepting his excuses for the awful behaviour
Hells I took that statement to mean DH is depressed because his mum is suffering... not that depression is a direct result of a close relative having Alzheimers.
OP - leave. He sounds exactly like my exH - but worse. He needs help. You cannot provide it because "it's all you fault" so you're in a lose / lose situation. You cannot fix him and this is just not right.
Yes, I meant depression linked to diagnosis of Alzheimer's and subsequent issues relating to care homes ands finance.
In terms of leaving, It's him I'd want to be leaving not me ideally as have 6 young children and no family support. Obviously if the abuse is physical again I would have no choice as to leave for my (and their) immediate safety.
Posting this because it can help you to identify other abuses and power imbalances and behaviour that you might not have picked up on.
The problem with saying if he is physical again he is out is that once he has done it once, he has tested the waters and you have not walked. So it ramps up.
What was the nasty episode on Sunday?
Doreen, Sunday went as follows. Dh said he had a virus and was feeling under the weather. Toddlers wake at 5.45am as per usual and I get up and go downstairs (no problem with this as he did seem ill). Have a lot to do, so get stuck in to kitchen, getting uniforms washed etc. Lunch done and cleared up, then ironing done. Take 2 of the 6 to café for an ice cream (dh still in bed).
He does come down midafternoon and starts to do prep on computer for new job which starts March. Again, no problem with this. Do tea, start to prep bags etc for nursery/school, do baths, bedtimes. Main aim to sit down and watch Deutchland 83 at 9pm. Succeed!
Knackered by 10pm so say goodnight to dh and head upstairs. He then comes up as I'm reading in bed and starts to criticise me for watching a tv programme rather than coming and talking to him - that this should be my primary concern and not what's on the tv. I try and rationalise that I was knackered and that I had been looking forward all day to the episode. He just kept saying that this just shows how little he means to me. I genuinely didn't think that by watching the programme as was simultaneously discounting his feelings - he knows it's a series I'm 'into'.
So that wasn't very positive, and he picked it up again Monday morning hence the row.
Aw poor bunny. Of course if he wants to spend time with you all he has to do is to get the fuck up at a decent time and pitch into the family household work.
What does he add to this life of yours exactly?
If he has depression then he has to go to the doctors. If not, he needs to engage in a family life or ship out.
Don't get involved in any nonsense around making you feel guilty for having a life. His decision not to engage and stay in bed, you carry on and reflect that his choices are his choices and if he doesn't like it, he can always walk out the door.
If he touches you again, please call the police immediately.
He's exercising his 'right', to keep you in a state of fear, obligation and control. And he's succeeding isn't he?
He's a bully.
He is waiting for you to back down and re-connect. At the same time he won't take any responsibility and refuses to see anyone. As for getting physical, what did he throw at you? I am pretty sure that you can tell the difference between an affectionate grab and a bullying grip.
You called him out on his actions. It's not worsened anything - he is digging his heels in.
I was wondering how he treats the children, when he isn't staying out of their way. Is the bad temper and thoughtlessness all aimed at you? You worry about what will happen if things deteriorate but it sounds as if he's already sinking. Are the children blissfully unaware?
If there's little respect it's no good you trying to hold this together.
A friend in a not dissimilar situation (several stressful events and awful atmosphere) once remarked it seems greedy or selfish to say, "I miss feeling cherished!" But isn't that sort of extra consideration what we deserve from our spouse?
So he got to lay in bed most of the day.
Then not partake at in any family activities.
Left everything to you with 6 kids.
Then you get 1 hour to yourself to chill out and that's NOT OK!?
Fuck that for a game of soldiers.
Donkeys, he threw a bag of guinea pig food at me bizarrely! I was waiting for a lift from a friend to go to a surprise 50th and he was late back from a trip out. I'd rung to see where he was as it was time to leave and when I opened the door he threw it at my face. The time-keeping thing is a biggie. When he has to be back so I can leave the house for an appointment he will often be a few minutes late which makes me super anxious.
I sense he's waiting for me to back down but I'm not going to do that. I'm not going to deny the hurt his comments have caused me, and I am aware that the older dcs (younger too I'm sure) will be picking up on the atmosphere. dd2 already whispers in hushed tones if she's been asked out with friends as she knows he gets cross when the children spend their pocket money rather than saving it.
This thread has been so useful in confirming to me that it's not all in my head. I am a strong person and will be won't be bullied into denying the effect he has had on me. A bit worried about going home tonight but I've got to get through this now.
If he doesn't want them to spend their pocket money then why give it to them?
Why not just put it into an account every week/month?
They are kids with money - they will want to spend it.
He's sounds worse and worse the more you write.
I think you are already a fantastic single parent. He is only a hindrance and a drain on your energy. He has very clear passive-aggressive traits.
Oh yes, the passive-aggressive thing is very obvious.
I am starting to plan. I currently don't drive but have got some money coming my way that I'm going to use for lessons. Dh not happy as he says I'll get fat (I'm 8 stone) and that my personality means I'll be at greater risk than other motorists (I'm very good at climbing and abseiling, translating as I'm a risk taker). He says he'll worry about my safety. I of course know this is all total bollocks and is about control.
If I could drive I'd be able to drop the kids at nursery/school before heading off to work (I currently leave house 6.30am to commute by train, a 5 hr round trip door to door) which would ease my worries about coping with childcare alone.
Is it ok if I post later about how he reacts when I get home? I'm worrying about that. He usually texts or rings but he hasn't. I'm resisting ringing up to see if he's ok! My hunch is he'll be in bed when I get home anyway.
You sound a very "sorted out" person. OTH your husband sounds awful - depression does not equal being controlling ( i have depression).
Don't let yourself be manipulated by him, you know what he did and how he acted. Hope your return home is as OK as it can be in the circumstances.
Join the discussion
Registering is free, easy, and means you can join in the discussion, get discounts, win prizes and lots more.Register now
Already registered with Mumsnet? Log in to leave your comment or alternatively, sign in with Facebook or Google.
Please login first.