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Afraid, unsure what to do.

(31 Posts)
lilybellamay Fri 22-Nov-13 23:54:00

Hello, am new and had a quick glance at the getting started section but I feel so lost at the moment I've just dived in with my request for advice.

I don't really know where to start but here goes... today my partner completely lost it and intimidated, threatened, and possibly damaged (by kicking) the car of a driver who pulled out in front of us. He was in a complete screaming and shouting rage. The other driver had indeed pulled out of a side road when she shouldn't have but it wasn't at great speed and I'm pretty certain we weren't close enough to have been in danger of driving into her. It was a woman and she had at least one young child in the back of the car. This is not completely untypical behaviour from my partner.

I'm afraid because I think I have to do something but I don't know what. I'm afraid because I am scared of him. I am ashamed to admit it as I've probably been in denial for so long (18+ years) but I guess he is emotionally/mentally abusive to me and, although I probably kid myself that I try to protect them, to our children.

I don't know what to do. There were a lot of witnesses to the incident and to be honest I've been expecting a call from the police all evening. Someone must have had enough wits to get the registration number. I still hope that they will come. He's been bound over in the past for a road rage incident and unfortunately I think that might have run out as it was more than three years ago.

In the short term I don't know if I should report it myself, even anonymously? Could I do that? What if the woman hasn't reported it? I can't believe she wouldn't have done because at the very least her car must have been damaged by the force of the kick, aside from the traumatic experience for her and her kid/s.

As for the bigger picture of our relationship I so desperately want to be out of it. He's on meds for depression and in therapy for his drinking. Every time I think there's light at the end of the tunnel and that its going to be better then something like this happens. I think that I shouldn't keep on fooling myself, there's already been too much damage done.

Sorry I realise this post is a bit all over the joint as there is so much back story but my main thoughts this evening are about what I should do about what happened today. A part of me, possibly the part that is under control, is saying I'm over-reacting, being a drama queen? But another part of me feels in shock and horrified by what happened. Horrified for the experience this woman had and horrified for the potential future I have with this person.

YoniMatopoeia Fri 22-Nov-13 23:58:56

I don't think you are over reacting. It sounds like you live your life walking on eggshells and probably so do your DC sad

Whatnext074 Sat 23-Nov-13 00:02:20

I wouldn't advise you to report it anonymously as I would imagine you would find it very hard to deny all knowledge if/when the police came and it sounds like you need to protect yourself until you can get out of this damaging relationship.

bunchoffives Sat 23-Nov-13 00:03:30

That must have been very scary for you to witness and for the poor woman who was on the receiving end. But to be honest I think this incident should be a distraction from the main point for you - how you are going to get out of the relationship.

Practically speaking, are you married and do you own a home? I ask because you may need some legal advice to find out where you stand.

Emotionally, it sounds like you could really do with some support to come up with a leaving plan. Have you considered speaking to a Woman's Aid worker to help you work out how to leave safely?

A word of advice: if you are intimidated or subject to violence ring 999. And do NOT give any indication that you are thinking of leaving. Leaving is the time that women are most at risk from abusive partners.

lilybellamay Sat 23-Nov-13 00:19:00

Thanks for the responses. Bunchoffives (haven't worked out how to tag/reply to individuals yet) we're not married but jointly own the home. I wouldn't have a clue where to go to get advice about this. And yes, the incident is probably something that has brought many years of stuff to a head for me.

bunchoffives Sat 23-Nov-13 00:24:51

If you both have your name on the mortgage then obviously you both get half of any equity. Normally if you are married you'd get to stay in the family home until youngest child has finished their education. Not being married may mean that doesn't apply, I'm not sure. I think you need proper legal advice. Most solicitors do a free first half hour consultation that should give you a good idea of what to expect.

Sometimes I think you get a light bulb moment even after putting up with abuse for years. This seems to be your point of no return? Would you be scared to leave? Do you think you could do it safely? Have you got friends/family that would be supportive?

Loggins Sat 23-Nov-13 00:39:56

Have you told him what you think of his behaviour?

FluffyJumper Sat 23-Nov-13 00:46:37

I wouldn't worry about reporting the incident. You have enough on your plate.

You are not over reacting.

Do you want to stay with him?

lilybellamay Sat 23-Nov-13 00:48:47

Yes, as horrible as the incident today was for the lady concerned, it does feel like a point of no return for me. Not sure about leaving without fear or being able to do it safely yet. I have some family and friends who could potentially be emotionally supportive but that involves telling them about a whole load of stuff I've never told anyone. Difficult steps.

lilybellamay Sat 23-Nov-13 00:51:46

Loggins - no. we haven't talked since it happened. He retreats into a room and doesn't want to talk to anyone. FluffyJumper - no, I don't. Well, I would if he could be a positive supportive father and partner but they seem to be roles he struggles with.

BillyBanter Sat 23-Nov-13 00:55:27

Give Women's Aid a call and talk to them if you can find a safe time to do so.

0808 2000 247

bunchoffives Sat 23-Nov-13 01:01:16

Would you have to tell friends/family everything? Surely if you just said you were unhappy and have decided to part and were scared of his possible reaction, that would be enough?

I wouldn't think confronting him about the incident was a good idea, it might provoke him.

WA would be a very good sounding board for you OP to work out what you are going to do, how and when.

lilybellamay Sat 23-Nov-13 01:04:03

Thank you BillyBanter.

FluffyJumper Sat 23-Nov-13 01:04:37

How do you think he would react if you told him you wanted to separate?

lilybellamay Sat 23-Nov-13 01:09:50

Thanks also bunchoffives, will look into the WA thing. Think I probably thought they were there for more obvious physical abuse.

bunchoffives Sat 23-Nov-13 01:17:48

At least you should have a quiet weekend if he follows the standard pattern of abusers. A violent outburst is normally followed by being on 'best behaviour' for a few days.

Don't forget to clear your history if he has access to your internet.

Keep posting for support Lily, there's always someone awake on here. It's like the tardis of sleep grin

BillyBanter Sat 23-Nov-13 01:18:46

No, not just for that. They are there for you, lily.

Hissy Sat 23-Nov-13 08:53:54

Oh good grief lily, yes, WA is there for you.

This is the turning point, this is the last straw and you do have to get him out of your house.

You have to be safe. It's potentially possible that you can leave, report his abuse of you, and the road rage attack and then apply for an occupation order.

If the police do come, get them to take you to a safe place and cooperate fully, request the DV team.

Call WA when you can, they can advise you confidentially.

wontletmesignin Sat 23-Nov-13 10:11:09

I agree with the others on WA.
I also agree that it seems you are walking on eggshells.

Myex was very much like your oh when in the car. He had shouted at a woman in asda car park (very,very loudly) because she looked at him funny. I had never felt so ashamed!

I would tell womens aid everything. They are great. They will help you see the things that you feel are wrong, are actully wrong. As im guessing you second guess yourself a lot!

I would make plans to leave also. Or plans for him to leave.
If you feel threatened in any way, at any point then dial 999.

Most importantly, listen to yourself. Dont get sucked back in by the nicey nice fella that is bound to come. As someone else stated, they usually go calm after a rage.

I am sorry to hear that you are going through this. I know how hard it is. It does seem that you have had enough now.

Stay strong! Ring WA and keep posting xx

MrsWilliamBodie Sat 23-Nov-13 11:05:00

The abusiveness of their behaviour is a lot clearer when you see it directed at someone else, isn't it?

That was my turning point too.

Take care.

myroomisatip Sat 23-Nov-13 11:10:56

Definitely contact Womens Aid and also, go to the CAB and get a free session with a solicitor.

Like another poster said, be very careful that he does not latch on to the fact that you want/intend to leave.

You could also chat with your local Domestic Violence unit at the police station, I have found them very supportive in the past.

I hope you can get out of this situation for the sake of your children. I didn't do it soon enough and will regret that forever sad

Lweji Sat 23-Nov-13 11:25:27

Definitely contact WA, and note the government definition of domestic violence and abuse, below. It's not only beatings that can be reported to police and can give you legal aid.

The cross-government definition of domestic violence and abuse is:
any incident or pattern of incidents of controlling, coercive, threatening behaviour, violence or abuse between those aged 16 or over who are, or have been, intimate partners or family members regardless of gender or sexuality. The abuse can encompass, but is not limited to:
psychological
physical
sexual
financial
emotional

Lweji Sat 23-Nov-13 11:35:45

Also consider contacting the Centre for Domestic Viiolence http://www.ncdv.org.uk/ if you need a fast injunction, particularly if you want to stay at the house.

For the rest, you can get free initial consultations with a solicitor and see if you can get legal aid to get the right to stay at the family home until the children are grown up, at least.

Lweji Sat 23-Nov-13 11:37:45

Ups, wrong link www.ncdv.org.uk/

Loggins Sat 23-Nov-13 12:05:07

How are you today Lily?

lilybellamay Sun 24-Nov-13 01:34:35

Hello again. Just wanted to say thank you for the posts of support that I have read tonight and also for the advice. Someone said about a pattern and a quiet few days of 'best' behaviour? Today has been like that and this is the sort of thing that always gave me hope in the past that it was going to be different this time. I have the WA helpline number posted above and I want to phone it but I haven't done so yet. Its actually quite hard to do, I hope you understand.

Whatnext074 Sun 24-Nov-13 01:39:25

Look after yourself lily and call them when you are ready, we can advise you on here but we don't live your life and it's up to you if/when you call WA. You will get good advice on here though.

Hope you have had a quiet day.

whitsernam Sun 24-Nov-13 01:44:15

It seems to me you'd be wise to get information from WA and CAB while things are quiet, so you can think at a time that is not some big emergency. Then make a plan and start taking steps to get away and stay safe. Definitely easier to say than to do, but lots of us have done it, and you will get lots of hand-holding and advice here, even thanks and cheers to help you through. Also, you do have to get through the tough parts (getting away to stay safe) to get the reward of the peace and positivity that come afterward. So do make the calls.... Soon.

Whatnext074 Sun 24-Nov-13 01:57:25

May have given the wrong message OP, I do think you should call but I understand you need to be ready to.

Hissy Sun 24-Nov-13 08:40:31

We know how hard it is to phone.

WA are used to 'us' phoning up and sobbing!

Please make this a real goal of yours, to call them to get support, to get help and advice and to get to safety.

Keep talking to us please, we'll be able to tell you if we see more warning signs, and help you spot them. Remember this is a pattern, and the 'nice' bit gets rarer and shorter the longer this goes on. Eventually you won't evem remember 'nice'. sad let's get you strong and safe and away before that happens eh?

You have a narrow window where things are calm, it would be best if you do use this time to your best advantage and make plans while you're not terrified and panicked.

This is a serious situation. He is dangerous and you and your family are at risk. You need to work to find the strength to take that first step to freedom.

Ok? (((hug))) you can do this.

Loggins Sun 24-Nov-13 10:39:55

It's just a chat Lily, you can tell them as much or as little as you want.
I hope you have a peaceful day.

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