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I would love your opinion on my very tricky relationship...

(89 Posts)
Loveday44 Sun 30-Jun-13 08:35:28

My husband and I were together and happy for 11 years, we lived & worked together, travelled lots and were hardly separate. We had 2 beautiful children in the past 3 years... now aged 1 and 3 and everything changed after the 2nd child’s birth.

I had a c section and had a difficult birth so I probably had baby blues which I feel guilty about as my not being my strong capable self probably started things going wrong. We just started living in a new place (we knew it well, but were away from both sides of the family). I wanted to stay closer to my parents for the first year but my husband dislikes them intensely and feels they are too intrusive so I agreed with him and decided to set up a new family life in a new place).

Throughout the first year after our 2nd child was born my husband started to behave in a strange way which may be because I was feeling down and overwhelmed. We work from home and share 2 businesses together. After the birth of my second child he told me he was the man and should do all the work, and as the mother I would do all the childcare & housework. I felt this was a strange approach and not typical of my husband as the business depended on both our skills to succeed and he had been quite helpful and involved with our first child in her first year.

I told him I thought it made more sense if we shared all tasks - children, work and chores more evenly like we always had done eg I work 2 mornings a week and deal with the children every afternoon and he would work 3 mornings and every afternoon and take the girls 2 mornings a week, however he did not think this was the way to go and I was a ”reluctant mother” to suggest this.

I thought I would avoid conflict and agreed to do the majority of the childcare, house chores and kept up with my work in the evening when the children slept. I made new friends, networked in our new pretty village and was happy outside the house (I didn’t enjoy the chores particularly but on with the chores) however at home my husband started getting nasty and I always felt down at home.

The criticism never ceased. Every time I did a shopping spree with both children, it was not big enough, when I cooked dinner it was not varied enough and always boring, if I cleaned the house and did a wash load every day with all the kids dirty clothes I had an “ocd mental illness”, if I allowed the children to watch TV whilst I cooked dinner he would say children should not watch TV and I was not a capable mum but a reluctant mum to allow this.

When the older child started going to preschool, there were rainy cold days when I asked him to keep the baby to avoid going out into the cold and he said I was being a reluctant mum not taking them both and letting him work. Also he said I should stay out of the house for a long as possible so I would roam around swing parks and cafes and go home at 12. He would then say how early it was and I was interrupting him when I opened his office door to say hi. I started staying out at friends houses in the afternoons to give him more peace to work. I did have a tough time juggling the 2 children under 2, doing all the house chores, networking in our new community, finding out about the schools, etc but I was happy and positive and happy outside the house. Every time I would get criticised and therefore I would feel down.

We saw a counsellor to try and help our relationship but I did not discuss my husband’s attitude, instead we blamed me and the difficult birth, so we focussed on this in our sessions-which did not really help. I never mentioned his mental and physical abusive nature my husband had. I am not sure why. Maybe it was because we were always together for the sessions, maybe I did not realise and want to admit there was a problem. So I blamed myself and my PND for the situation and it got worse.

When I was really feeling low and approached my husband and discussed topics he did not want to discuss he would sometimes hit me, put a pillow to my face and verbally abuse me. Everything I did was wrong. He always had an anger problem but because we were happy and never argued in the past 12 years of our relationship it rarely came out previously.

So to avoid confrontation I continued doing most childcare, house work, cooking etc and when the children slept I would do work as he was not doing my tasks in the business and it was beginning to suffer.

12 Months went by like this, until I some good friends I had made over the year began commenting. I slowly opened up and they were quite furious with the situation and apparently I was the opposite of an “incapable, reluctant mum”. I slowly got my confidence back and became strong and I realised the situation could not be right.

Many instances, such as my husband getting very angry with the children and shaking them on 2 occasions, my father visiting, friends commenting and then everything fell into place I realised I wasn’t the only one to blame. I took a 2 week break and went to my parents and felt the best I have in months. I was happy, I travelled easily and dealt with both children easily as I was so used to being alone. I did not realise I was not only living like a single mum but I had been dealing with lots of other criticism on top.

Now my “baby” is soon 2, my husband has accepted his behaviour was completely inappropriate and has started to help and get involved. He still gets angry and loses his temper but is seeing an anger management specialist (I am not sure it is helping as he seemed to be justifying his anger after a session the other day)

We have so much positive history together in the past before the children were born, it seems silly to let it go. I am happy to work on our relationship and we have been trying for 3 months but it feels futile. I know that his “help” and “involvement” is because he feels he should not because he wants to.

Has the relationship ended? Can I ever love him again? Will he ever respect me?

oinkment Sun 30-Jun-13 08:42:46

Yes, the relationship has ended. You and your children are physically in danger from this man.

Why would you want to love a nasty, selfish, violent man who brings nothing good into your life?

No, he will never respect you, especially as long as you let him get away with treating you so horrifically.

Honey you can do so much better away from that horrid man. You are cable, and you and your children deserve better than him.

Januarymadness Sun 30-Jun-13 08:43:56

He is both emotionaly and physically abusive, he has no intention of changing. Why are you putting yourself and your kids through it?

Mixxy Sun 30-Jun-13 08:45:31

The relationship is over. He will never respect you, but you can respect yourself and get out. Could you ever respect HIM again? I couldn't.

Sorry that's blunt, but I think you know this already.

Shakey1500 Sun 30-Jun-13 08:46:58

I know that his “help” and “involvement” is because he feels he should not because he wants to - There's your answer right there.

The relationship has ended on your part and therefore he has lost control and is trying to regain it.

It's not silly to let it go because look at what you are letting go. A possessive, controlling, violent and mentally abusive individual.

You have proved that you can cope perfectly well on your own and he resents that.

You are amazing and brave that you took those steps, just think of the important lesson you are showing your children. And more importantly you feel freer.

Serve him divorce papers, tell him it's years and actions too late.

All the best

FancyPuffin Sun 30-Jun-13 08:47:29

Leaving aside the verbal abuse which is hideous in its own right.

He has hit you, smothered you with a pillow and shaken your babies?

What would I do? Honestly. I would pack what I could carry and take myself and my children as far and as fast as I could away from the cunt.

However, life is never that simple, you have to leave him though, begin by contacted Womens Aid (go to one of your friends houses to make the call) they will advise you.

Never ever leave the children alone with him. You are in danger from his piece of shit.

juneau Sun 30-Jun-13 08:49:26

he would sometimes hit me, put a pillow to my face and verbally abuse me

Do you really want to stay with someone who hits you, tries to suffocate you and verbally abuses you? Do you really want to bring your DC up in a house with a man who can do this to their mother and who has a serious anger problem?

I wouldn't. I know it's hard to contemplate leaving, but you've already proved to yourself that you can cope as a single parent. I think you'd be mad to stay, given everything you said above.

Doha Sun 30-Jun-13 08:49:52

Too little too late. Your relationship with your H is dead and buried but his relationship with the DC's doesn't have to be.
Get a good solicitor and make moves to end the marriage.

juneau Sun 30-Jun-13 08:49:58

Oh yes, and the baby shaking - how could I forget that?

FFS, get out now!

I didn't get very fair in you OP before thinking "Emotional and Verbal Abuse"
Then I learned he had been physically abusive to you, too. And the children.

Get out. Kick him out. Just get away from him.

acrabadabra Sun 30-Jun-13 08:55:17

I agree that you should leave. Or tell him to.
He is, and always has been an abusive man. He has already tried to smother you and has shaken the children. If he was a stranger this could be described as attempted murder.

Reread your OP as if one of your friends wrote it. What would you advise?

I'm sorry but you have to get away from this man.

Yes, this relationship should end. Your husband ticks most of the abusive boxes I have heard about on this forum, from what you say. sad

I assume you were doing things his way until you became a mum, and never had reason to question him. That is why it seems like the abuse only started with motherhood. The isolation from your family started earlier, did it not? If you look carefully, did his attitude not play a part in your baby blues?

ThereGoesTheYear Sun 30-Jun-13 08:57:09

Has he ever tried to hit, smother or shake a client? Or someone who's annoyed him outside the house? I didn't think so. He's not got an anger management problem; he's got a problem where he believes his wife and children are inferior to him. His reaction to justify his anger after a session is one way that shows he can control his anger perfectly, he just doesn't believe he should around his wide and children.

This is no way to live. You sound amazing and capable. Protect yourself and your children and take steps to leave this man. I am agog at the abuse you and your babies have suffered. Speak to women's aid and your HV.

ThereGoesTheYear Sun 30-Jun-13 09:02:25

Your positive history lasted only as long as he had your undivided devotion. He sounds furious that he is no longer the centre of your relationship and that now that you are a mother you have to care for the needs of your children. shaking your babies!
Or perhaps he only now feels like he can treat you like this due to your 'weaker' position now you have children and you'll put up with so much more rather than leave.
He is showing his true colours now.

threefeethighandrising Sun 30-Jun-13 09:05:05

Please call Women's Aid, they give great advice.

0808 2000 247

(Simetimes, they can be quite hard to get through to, but you can leave a message and safe times to call back IIRC, and they will get back to you.)

Hissy Sun 30-Jun-13 09:05:49

Dear god woman, you have been through so much!

It's all utterly incredible, but you've been so worn down by him, you thought he was justified in doing/saying/being so horrendously abusive.

Not one tiny thing you did/thought/said caused this, HE did it. What a horrible, horrible man.

Get legal advice, and extract yourself from this awful creature.

The easiest suggestion may be to look into reporting his physical violence and seeing if he could be removed/invited to leave your home.

Or perhaps you could look into leaving and then applying for an occupation order.

Speak to the local police DV team. Speak to your friends, speak to your family, get as many to help you as possible.

Keep posting too, you are most certainly not alone.

Poor you. It does seem as though he is a selfish man who needed a pedestal. He can't cope that he doesn't have it anymore.

It's impossible to predict he would change like this after children. Even though leaving him must seem an impossible journey I think you know you must.

Look at it from my ever practical view point, you can get out, get settled before eldest starts school. Get back nearer your parents. Be amicable because lawyers are only in it for themselves.

The pedestal is yours to behave impeccably on.

I cant believe you and your kids are not allowed in your home. It is sick.

Me and dh also work from home. When he works, he either has to put up with noise, or rent an office elsewhere!

IEM3 Sun 30-Jun-13 09:16:01

Hi Lovely, so sorry to hear your troubles but like the other posts here have said this is serious abuse. I think you know the answer but its just so hard as you have been trying to normalise it. You cant. Its not normal. This could be very dangerous for you and DC. Can you get some time away again at your parents? Contact W A for guidance and see a solicitor. You dont deserve to be treated like this. Take care.

newbiefrugalgal Sun 30-Jun-13 09:17:08

Yep, it's over.
You are strong and can do this on your own!

youarewinning Sun 30-Jun-13 09:38:56

I think deep down you know the answer to your question about salvaging this relationship?

I also think he's ground you down that you don't trust your own instinct and want us, strangers (but luffly ones wink) to confirm your right and that it's ended.

I think you sound far stronger than you feel and very capable. Enjoy your new life with your children.

Distrustinggirlnow Sun 30-Jun-13 10:23:13

Oh you poor thing. I think you know the answer but putting it into practice isn't always that easy is it....

You sound so strong and lovely, I bet your girls adore yousmile

As I read your post I actually got quite angry on your behalf shock
A 'reluctant mum' wtaf is that all about...?

Have you pointed out that he appears to be a 'reluctant husband' or a 'reluctant dad' as once dd2 was born he seemed to want to step away.

I'm no expert but I actually think that blaming your pnd is abusive.

No real advice I'm afraid but supporting you moving forward thanks

YoniBottsBumgina Sun 30-Jun-13 10:27:35

Anger management is actually dangerous rather than helpful with a man like this.

Do you have some way of reading a book without him knowing about it? There's an amazing one called Why Does He Do That: Inside the minds of Angry and Controlling men, it's by Lundy Bancroft. I think it will change your life.

pictish Sun 30-Jun-13 10:29:33

Oh get out! Get out, get out, get out!!
Whoever he was, he certainly isn't any more.
He was quite happy while he was the sole focus of your attentions, but when the balance shifted with the arrival of kids, his true motivation came out. He couldn't get rid of them like he could your family, so he makes sure you dance to his tune despite them.
That's who he is.

Don't waste any more time.

pictish Sun 30-Jun-13 10:32:36

Shaking the kids is dangerous.
He is dangerous.

There is no justification for his actions. No stress, no anger, no depression, no childhood, no nothing!

Anger management is only feeding his sense of entitlement, as you have seen. He comes home with tales of justification.

He is not your problem to fix. You can't fix this.
Run far far away.

MadBusLady Sun 30-Jun-13 10:34:31

Has he ever tried to hit, smother or shake a client? Or someone who's annoyed him outside the house? I didn't think so. He's not got an anger management problem; he's got a problem where he believes his wife and children are inferior to him.


Please think about how scared your children must have been to have an angry full-grown man shaking them. They are not adults, they can't decide to put up with abuse in exchange for whatever you felt you were getting in return. They are trapped, they have no choice. You are the only protection they have.

pictish Sun 30-Jun-13 10:40:53

As the saying goes. He is not abusive because he is angry....he is angry because he is abusive.

In other words...his anger problem does not cause him to behave abusively. Abuse is not the unfortunate symptom of his anger problem.
Rather, he feels entitled to behave angrily, because he is an abusive person.
Anger serves his need to control wonderfully.

pictish Sun 30-Jun-13 10:47:35

The 'reluctant mum' comment was deeply manipulative and poisonous btw.
He is attempting to make you question your abilities. If you are confident as a mother, he will see that as a threat to his control.
He would prefer you remain unsure of yourself. It makes you easier to intimidate.

To put it bluntly. Imho.

Loveday44 Sun 30-Jun-13 11:13:20

pictish, I think you have summed him up! I got goosebumps reading your post ... now I think about it he always criticized my family and friends and without me noticing he pulled me away from them. I began to believe his judgement on them too!

Maybe that is why he has always wanted to live so far away, and to set up an online business together.

I am so scared - I do love him but I am beginning to see a side to him which I never realized was there even though there were some signs.

We were so close, people commented on what an ideal couple and ideal life we had - and we did. which is why I have been finding it so hard to address what was happening.

I feel I have to do something about it for the children but on the other hand I feel if they grow up without a father (when he does spend time with them he is actually engaging and they enjoy it) it may be worse for them.

Should I give him a chance and accept him and help him address his issues - he may be able to change? Is this naive thinking?

When you have known and loved someone for so long it is too hard to accept anything else!

Hissy Sun 30-Jun-13 11:18:13

He won't change.

Sorry, I wish I could say he will, but he won't.

He will only ever get worse.

There is literally nothing you can do. None of this was ever about you. It's all him.

The ONLY thin sliver of a shred of a chance you have of him changing is if he loses you, the family, and all of his friends/family too as a result of his treatment of you.

Even then, perhaps he'll say sod the lot of em, up sticks and make himself another life.

Have you read Why Does He Do That? By Lundy Bancroft? It'll explain it far better than I can.

LalyRawr Sun 30-Jun-13 11:23:13

Your children would rather grow up without a father then a father who shakes them, hits their mother and attempts to kill her (why else would he put a pillow over your face?) and basically treats them and you as if you are all shit on the bottom of his shoe.

I can pretty much guarantee that.

pictish Sun 30-Jun-13 11:33:22

You can't help him.
He will tell you that you can. He will say you are the only person that can help him even...but all he'd really be doing is turning things around, and shoving them back to you, so his behaviour is somehow your responsibility.
Whether he achieves that by blaming you for his bad behaviour, or by making out you are special and the only person who can help him, it amounts to the same - he deflects responsibility, and therefore feeds his sense of entitlement to behave as he does. It's your fault now.

You can't help him. This can only be a solo mission. You must keep yourself and your children safe in the meanwhile, either way.

Loveday44 Sun 30-Jun-13 11:47:12

hissy, re: his own friends he hasn't got close friends (one or two from school who live away) the rest are all "my" friends who we share and enjoy together. RE: his family I recently informed his family about his behavior as it had all got too much and they behaved as though they were angry with me for telling them and said I was behaving like a victim when he was trying so hard to change (I only told them my side to the story when he started criticizing me to them).

Loveday44 Sun 30-Jun-13 11:51:05

But in everyday life he comes across as charming, intelligent and educated. He is a straight A student. When the kids are calm and he gives them time he is good with them. It is just his nasty streak, anger, control & projection onto me which worry me. He has now accepted his anger is out of order. He has not accepted his control and projection and says I am controlling!

pictish Sun 30-Jun-13 11:56:34

Well, as far as he is concerned, you are controlling!
You have the audacity to question him doing what the fuck he likes! Your role is to do his's not to have an opinion or ideas of your own ffs. How dare you have an opinion on how you are treated? He'll treat you as he sees fit, and do what he wants. You're just trying to stop him from getting his own way! YOU are controlling!

You can't help this man.

pictish Sun 30-Jun-13 11:58:30

Abusers see any challenge to their authority as a personal attack btw.

pictish Sun 30-Jun-13 11:59:59

For example, he will think nothing of speaking to you like shit, and treating you to his temper, but if you should tentaively offer up that it displeases you, he will tell you that you have "started an argument".

Loveday44 Sun 30-Jun-13 12:10:00

I really thought I was to blame until recently.Our older child saying "daddy angry" and "daddy hit mummy" helped me address these issues in the open.

I experienced being at the complete edge. My family and friends all supported me and helped me pull myself back together and just being with the kids made me stronger.

HOWEVER all parents do support their children whatever they do and this is what my husband's parents did. This made the problem worse because each time he spoke to them he felt his behavior was justified [as an aside, his father has issues with his own family, he is divorced now, and his mother is still hurt about the break up so they all have their ways of suggesting to us what we should do].

Unfortunately their intrusions and reaction to our problems is having adverse effects (they are trying to help but come from a very different world, another generation and the advise they give actually hinders any progress). I have asked them to please stay out of it. Unfortunately because they are his only "friends" my husband keeps resorting back to them.

They feel we need counselling and as a result my husband has booked sessions with a Marriage Counselor. We went to 1 session which helped his behavior for a couple of days but I know in my heart of hearts this is not going to change anything.

The only way we can live together is if I am to give in to his controlling ways and accept disrespect. So isn't counselling a waste of time if I respect myself?

Loveday44 Sun 30-Jun-13 12:11:37

pictish you know so much about his behavior - have you experienced similar?

pictish Sun 30-Jun-13 12:15:09

Marriage guidance counselling is never recommended in a situation where abuse is present.
This is because MGC is for mutual problems.
This certainly isn't that. MGC often does more harm than good in an abusive situation, because the abuser is often inadvertantly justified, by the counsellor viewing it as a mutual problem...iyswim?

That's a fact btw. Womens Aid for example, never advocate MGC in an abusive situation.

ThereGoesTheYear Sun 30-Jun-13 12:25:05

Accepting him is telling him you accept his behaviour. So it will continue, and probably escalate. Shaking a baby is incredibly dangerous. Would you allow nursery staff to treat your DC like this? Even if they played with them sometimes? Or would you report to police and remove the children from their care?
No one is saying they wouldn't see their father regularly - even if you wanted that - but they wouldn't grow up thinking this is what a marriage looks like.

LadyLapsang Sun 30-Jun-13 12:27:37

Loveday, please read Lundy Bancroft and don't go to relationship counselling with him. I get the feeling you are not in the UK - am I right?

My advice is start to prepare yourself emotionally and practically for leaving. Make sure you have the children's passports and your own, if you don't already have your own bank accounts start to get a running away fund together, photocopy details of bank balances, assets etc. and get them out of your home. Don't tell him any of this, even when he seems really loving.

Please take care, when you end an abusive relationship like this you are at your most vulnerable when you take steps to leave. I would also look into his likely contact with the children when you leave. I would be really, really worried about a man like this having unsupervised access to the children. If you are in the UK there are contact centres and in some cases abusive fathers can be prevented from having contact.

Please get help from professionals that deal with abusive situations like this - Women's Aid in the UK - & do take care.

ThereGoesTheYear Sun 30-Jun-13 12:28:24

Relate won't counsel you if they know that there has been abuse. This is for very good reasons. I know from bitter experience that even if you try MGC the power imbalance means that you will focus on 'your issues' and not address his. This further reinforces his sense that the problem lies with you and the abuse gets worse.

unobtanium Sun 30-Jun-13 13:56:05

Oh dear, Loveday, a terrible situation and I am very sorry for the hole your relationship has descended into.

It seems you've been very strong so far -- that strength will stand you in good stead now I am sure. I have no experience or expertise but wanted to give you my support and best wishes...

onefewernow Sun 30-Jun-13 14:32:50

You are still on an abusive relationship and you need to get out.

Control is abuse.

By the way, he wanted you away from family so he could control you more effectively.

Loveday44 Sun 30-Jun-13 14:35:15

onefewernow you are right - I only realize this now. Do you think he is aware of this?

Loveday44 Sun 30-Jun-13 14:36:02

thanks for all your answers and support - it has made me stronger... I wish I had posted before x

Hissy Sun 30-Jun-13 14:45:58

If you accept his treatment of you today, to keep the peace today.

What will you have to accept tomorrow?

Because the control he has of you is a drug to him, he'll never be satisfied.

Seeing his parents actually hinder your position is precisely why he keeps going back to them.

Their réaction is typical. They made him. They created that monster.

When your child says 'Daddy angry, Daddy hit Mummy' you know it's game over.

The only way to stop this IS to leave.

IF it shocks him enough to take you seriously, who knows, he could seek help, he could resolve to stop controlling you. and flocks of pigs will be performing aerial acrobatics over your house

Protect yourself, protect your children,

springytats Sun 30-Jun-13 15:21:47

Yes, it's over.

Please contact Womens Aid to plan getting out of the relationship. Leaving is the most vulnerable time for victims, so please be sure to get a plan together, with their support. women's Aid 0808 2000 247 (24/7 support line - best to call between 7pm and 7am as lines are busy during the day, sadly). They will support you in all ways - practically, emotionally, legally.

Charming, educated - abusers are often these (especially charming). Mine was.

the first major red flag was that he 'detests' your parents. He has isolated you.

Read the Lundy Bancroft book - Why Does He Do That? Inside the minds of angry and controlling men.

Womens Aid will also point you in the direction of the Freedom Programme which is a fantastic course. As you are forced to spend so much time outside the home, you'll have plenty of time to attend the course - click the Search button, middle top row, to find a course near you (if you are in the UK. If not, you can do it online, but attending a course is better because you meet other women in similar relationships).

If you can't get out for you, get out for your kids. You MUST get out of this relationship as soon as possible. He is a frightening and dangerous man.

springytats Sun 30-Jun-13 15:24:00

HIde your internet history.

springytats Sun 30-Jun-13 15:25:37

Delete your internet history, rather. Sorry x

HenWithAttitude Sun 30-Jun-13 15:29:57

Do your children a favour and leave. They deserve to grow up in a happy home.

antimatter Sun 30-Jun-13 15:33:02

I really thought I was to blame until recently.Our older child saying "daddy angry" and "daddy hit mummy" helped me address these issues in the open.
so it is embedded in your DC memories
do you want this to become a constant part of their childhood?

you said - we have been trying for 3 months but it feels futile.

when did your child mentioned the hitting?
when did your H hit you last?

Loveday44 Sun 30-Jun-13 16:58:04

I was hit last 4 weeks ago with a broom as I was bent down clearing the floor - I had just returned back after a couple of weeks break. The truth is DH was trying hard and I couldn't find any love to return so he was frustrated. I couldn't click back to the sweet loving wife I once was. The hitting hasn't happened since. He is still trying hard as I am close to leaving and he knows this but it still feels unreal.

Tweasels Sun 30-Jun-13 17:10:23

Oh my goodness.

Please don't think any of this is normal or acceptable.

You need to get out. Those good times mean nothing, all the times he is nice to you is part of the control.

Your children are NOT better in this situation. He will hurt one or both of them. Don't take that risk.

Take your children and go flowers

springytats Sun 30-Jun-13 17:14:23

oh God... sad sad sad

Do try to see that the way it is, Loveday . Try to see it impartially.

You are normalising the violence as it has become 'everyday' in a way - do you see that? He has normalised it and has forced you to normalise it. It goes that: he is struggling with anger, but trying; so he can't help being violent. But he's trying! At least he's trying! You just have to put up with the violence because he is trying. And that is the most important thing. Apparently.

It isn't, Loveday . The most important thing is that he is never violent, regardless what is going on his life. There is never an excuse for violence.

I hate to think of you bent down doing menial work like a skivvy and him beating you while you're down there. (and DON'T think I'm hamming it up - because that's exactly what happened sad )

...all because you 'weren't loving enough'

he is a monster. Please don't let him know you're considering leaving. Imo it is really important you don't let him know, but that you just go once you have formulated a plan.

Loveday44 Sun 30-Jun-13 17:18:46

He is doing an anger management course of 5 sessions with one of the most expert authors on the topic. He is having his second session tomorrow - maybe this will help now he has admitted to it.

Swallowingmywords Sun 30-Jun-13 17:24:16

This has really shocked me, and I am not easily shocked. He hit you with a broom handle when you were crouching on the floor? And your child saw?
Yes, it is over and you have to get out immediately.

Chottie Sun 30-Jun-13 17:26:54

Please, please leave for your safety and that of your children.......

MissStrawberry Sun 30-Jun-13 17:34:36

Your relationship is not tricky. It is dangerous, abusive and the complete opposite of what you and your children should have in your life.

He will never change. Not ever.

You need to say those words out loud and accept them. More importantly you need to get out or get him out. Great that he's doing something about his anger, but its too late to save the relationship. But you know what? That's good. The relationship was never even or equal or healthy if he had to be the centre of attention and resented the change when you had kids. You will never get the relationship you want and deserve from him. Not ever.

YoniBottsBumgina Sun 30-Jun-13 17:47:47

I think he would have moved away from your family consciously but it probably wouldn't be because he consciously thought "Aha if I take Loveday away from her support then I can abuse her more easily!" It was probably, if anything, that he thought you were getting ideas from them which were making his life difficult and hence the move seemed helpful from his POV.

I don't want you to think that we are painting a picture of your H as some kind of cartoon-character evil monster, because real abusers don't look like that at all. It is a rare abuser who is fuelled just by their own pleasure in seeing others' pain - it's much more likely that he just sees you in a whole category of your own, either because he sees all women as in this category, or because you are his wife, he feels that you have chosen this role and if you are not performing it correctly then that is your fault.

Men like this tend to see women as something like an adult child who needs guidance, or an employee where he is the "head" of the household, or similar to the way you or I might see a pet - loved and cherished and absolutely part of the family, looked after well and treated with respect, but you wouldn't serve them food at the table with the humans or allow them to interrupt something important you were doing to demand a walk/food at not their usual time. Basically, he hasn't seen you as an equal since the birth of your second child. Perhaps he never did - or did only in a business context, but not once the "wifework" became so much of a strain that he considered it was a full job for one person rather than something to be approached equally. It is this "fair inequality" in his head which enables him to abuse you without feeling that he is doing anything wrong, if ever he does feel guilty or express regret, it's only because he feels like he went too far - he doesn't feel that it was wrong in the first place.

Does that make sense at all? It's also why you won't be able to make him change sad because he sees that he is right and he is above you, how could he ever then take your opinion as higher than his own? Even if someone outside of the relationship was to point out to him how wrong he is being he probably would dismiss them as not understanding the dynamics of your particular relationship or just not listen because this kind of thinking is so ingrained in him that it has probably been there for a very long time and it is just a solid fact to him. A husband's role is X, a wife's role is Y. And he is always right in his own head to steer you back towards that when you have "forgotten".

You are right you will never be able to be happily in this relationship unless you totally submit to his idea of what you should be - and that is mutually exclusive with you being happy. So the only way to be happy, in the long term, is to not be in the relationship.

maras2 Sun 30-Jun-13 17:47:54

He doesn't need anger management,he needs a fucking prison cell.He's beaten you and shaken your babies.No more excuses please.Go to the people who love you and get this pathetic excuse of a man out of your lives.Just leave before the violence escalates.I'm not prone to over egging situations but I fear for the lives of you and the children.

Hissy Sun 30-Jun-13 17:56:52

He doesn't need anger management. He can manage his anger just fine.

You need a man and a van, or an occupation order.

You need to get out, there is no other option. I'm sorry.

MadBusLady Sun 30-Jun-13 18:47:35

Loveday You're not listening.

Anger management is not his problem.

He hits you because he CHOOSES to.

How do we know that? Because he doesn't hit anyone else. He functions in society. He is not a loose cannon kicking off at everyone and everything, constantly getting into trouble with colleagues, friends, family, the police... THAT is what an anger management problem looks like.

You said yourself, he comes across as charming, intelligent and educated to the outside world.

He CAN help himself, because he usually does.

He wants to hit you.

antimatter Sun 30-Jun-13 19:32:52

also - he doesn't want you to go, because he needs you to be there as he uses you, he needs you to vent his anger or frustration on

ChangingWoman Sun 30-Jun-13 20:29:41

I clicked on your thread expecting it to be about awkward in-laws, difficult teenage step-children, or something else in the general "tricky relationship" category.

After reading, I'm left frightened for you and your children. The behaviour of your H is utterly cruel, abusive and criminal.

You've probably been inside this bubble for so long that you can't see what it looks like from the outside. As PPs have already said, it isn't a "tricky relationship", it's far beyond that. If a friend of mine told me this story, I'd offer anything I could to help them get away before they or one of the DCs was badly hurt.

Definitely not an anger management issue. During our marriage, I was sometimes so angry with exH that I'm surprised my heart didn't burst with it but I've never laid a finger on him, never mind beaten him with a broom while he lay on the floor clutching a child. This isn't how normal adults deal with their anger.

Please, please listen to the wise women in this forum and find a way out of this for all your sakes.

lazarusb Sun 30-Jun-13 20:35:07

Read your posts back and imagine if your sister or friend had written it. What would you feel? What would you tell her? Would you be frightened for her?

I've been in your shoes. I can tell you I moved from love to contempt to feeling nothing for my ex. Towards the end if he attacked me I didn't actually care if he killed me or not...and I had a 5 year old ds. Please don't let yourself get to that. I'm many years on, very happy. It feels like it happened to someone else now.

Please end this, as safely as you can. There is a lot of support out there, use it. You and your tiny children have to come first.

springytats Sun 30-Jun-13 23:51:05

It is immaterial that the counsellor is 'the expert in the field' (how typical of an abuser that only 'the best' will do! There are endless anger management counsellors/specialists, they all do pretty much the same job).

Anger is not his core problem; his beliefs about you, and women and children in general, are his core problem.

Does he hit your customers when they don't pay? Does he hit a policeman who pulls him over for speeding? Does he hit anybody at all, or only you and his children.

Loveday44 Mon 08-Jul-13 21:47:48

who can I phone for support?

Guiltypleasures001 Mon 08-Jul-13 22:04:15

999 asap

Loveday44 Mon 08-Jul-13 22:06:24

My parents came over to help as we took a short break (it did not help us get at all close). It was beautiful to come back and see how my 2 children were loving the harmonious environment and heartbreaking at the same time. As soon as my parents left, he verbally attacked me and went on and on and on. I asked him to be quiet in front of the children. He then started writing madly to his parents for their support which I am sure they gave him. He then locked himself in his room all afternoon until I settled back in, did all the clearing, unpacking, washing, dinners etc as soon as the kids were asleep and I was ready to talk without them hearing and approached him he said I was attacking him. So apparently it is ok to argue in front of the kids but then he says we must go through a third party to discuss any issues I want to.

TimeofChange Mon 08-Jul-13 22:08:14

Wise MN women help Loveday please.

Loveday are you in the UK?

YoniBottsBumgina Mon 08-Jul-13 22:19:20

You can call women's aid at any time (if in UK). The number is 0808 2000 247.

They will listen if you just want to rant.
They will not judge or tell you what to do.
They will believe you and they will understand.

If you are at crisis point and need to leave they will help you make a plan, they will find you and your children a safe place to stay.
If you don't want to take action yet that is fine too - theywill plisten and support.
If you don't know what to do for rhw best they can give you advice - but only if you ask for it.

They can offer every kind of help and support and they believe that all kinds of support are important. You are important.

Val007 Mon 08-Jul-13 22:19:52

Next time he may kill you... Or worse still, kill one of your children...
These people never change. Of course he can manage his anger - otherwise he would not be sweet when you are on the verge of leaving. He will stop trying as soon as you are back to agreeing with him.

Please, take your kids and go to your parents' NOW!

YoniBottsBumgina Mon 08-Jul-13 22:27:04

What do you want to happen now, ideally?

Who owns the property or whose name is on the tenancy of your home?

Loveday44 Tue 09-Jul-13 07:31:18

everything is shared, our property, our business, our accounts (we also have personal ones) but it is very complex.

Loveday44 Tue 09-Jul-13 07:37:58

ideally I want him to understand all I have been through because of his controlling nature, understand it, say sorry and mean it and change his attitude and start a new slate.

Lweji Tue 09-Jul-13 07:45:35

I have only read this now, and was shocked.

He hit you with a broom when you were down because you weren't your usual loving self when he returned?

LEAVE NOW, with the children.
Leave when he's not in or make sure you have people around (the police, preferably)

And report him to the police.

Seriously forget about him changing.

Your children have witnessed and been victims of his violence and abuse.

Lweji Tue 09-Jul-13 07:54:49

If it helps, I left with DS to go shopping.
I had my bag with me, and went to my sister's and then the police.
The rest was sorted out later.

DS had not witnessed it yet. ExH was the one dropping hints to DS about me calling the police on him.
ExH had "just" pinned me on the floor, pushed the sides of my face with his fists and slapped me once.
Then he made threats that included DS.

He has a criminal case going on (he went back to the uk, as we were abroad) and hasn't seen DS unsupervised for 2 years.

Just make sure you are all safe!

He can snap at any time. sad

Januarymadness Tue 09-Jul-13 07:57:26

He wont change because he doesnt want to. He doesnt see the need, why would he? because you will put up with it all.

You and your children are more important than money.

Lweji Tue 09-Jul-13 08:00:22

ExH hasn't changed.

He's calmed down a bit because (when I finally) I've taken no shit and no prisoners.

Yours won't change while you hope he will, because he still controls you.

As you said, it's his nature. It takes very hard work to change our natures.
Even if he does eventually, you and your children should not be in danger in the meantime.

Lweji Tue 09-Jul-13 08:05:05

He knows what you have been through. He enjoys it.
Be clear about it.

And the finances can be made simple.
Get a solicitor on the case.

Let him have the bigger business if it helps.

Just be safe.

RalphGnu Tue 09-Jul-13 08:05:46

I'm so sorry for everything you've been through. You sound like a fantastic, loving mother and a great person. You and your children deserve better than this. The thought of having to move on and leave behind your marriage is terrifying, but I think you must do it and I think you know that.

It's just too dangerous for you and your precious children to do otherwise, I'm afraid. Your husband sounds like a danger to you all.

It's sad when a marriage ends, but you and your children deserve a happy life, where you're not in fear or treading on eggshells all the time. A marriage needs the complete commitment of both parties, with love and respect on both sides.

I have seen many threads on MN now with a depressingly similar story to yours; I've seen these same women find a happier life following the fabulous advice received. I'm confident you will be a success story too. I wish you all the very best.

fabulousfoxgloves Tue 09-Jul-13 08:28:16

He knows. He was there. He put you in the position of having to go through everything.

Contact Women's Aid, the police, supportive family, in safety and leave. Everything can be sorted with legal advice from a place of safety.

You are a good caring person and mother. None of this is your fault. But it is not fixable. Protect yourself and dcs and leave.

tumbletumble Tue 09-Jul-13 10:44:41

Loveday this is truly one of the most shocking threads I have ever read on MN. Can you go to your parents? Take the children and go. Please.

Darling, you must stop holding out for anger management to improve his behaviour. As has been said already upthread he does not have an anger management problem. He has not lashed out at work, at your friends, at people who irritate him in the supermarket. He is only lashing out at you and your children. People with genuine anger management problems cannot pick and choose who they lose their temper with. It just happens.

Your husband is CHOOSING to hurt you, he is being careful to do so in private, to a woman and small children whom he knows cannot defend themselves. It is calculated abuse.

Anger management will not help this man. My ex was a calculated abuser, he was made by the police to attend anger management courses. He came home after completing this, threw me to the ground and said "now I know exactly how to make you press my buttons".

You must not wait for this to get better. It won't. You have a supportive family despite this man's best efforts, let them help you get away and rebuild your life and your confidence. I promise you it is worth it. I cannot tell you how wonderful that feeling of freedom is! Listen to these wise ladies, grab what you need for your children and yourself and go when it is safe to do so. You're not on your own love.

fromparistoberlin Tue 09-Jul-13 13:01:39


I am so sorry, I dont often say this but I do think he a seriously abusive man, and that long term you (and kids) will be better and happier away, too many things you say alarm me

I agree with others, its NOT anger management, as only you and the kids get it in the neck

He has got himself into a paradigm thats it 100% OK to treat you and the kids like shit

and its not easy

as a starter for ten, can you get some good counselling for yourself? To keep you sane, space to vent, and most important to get you STRONG and ASSERTIVE

you are going to need to be firm in your convictions, and actually quite strategic here, for example

start a diary
record abuse, seriously get a recorder and start to record his rants
get yourself legally informed

you CAN do this, but as with any project some planning and effort to get you strong is well worth it

this is going to be a tough project, but the law is on your side

good luck

and KEEP speaking with your friends, please. they are outraged for you, rightly so

Jux Tue 09-Jul-13 14:49:54

Oh. My. God.

Leave now. You are not safe. Your children are not safe.

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