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What were the red flags you missed?

(60 Posts)
ferriswheel Sat 13-May-17 23:26:41

I'm purposefully not posting in relationships because its late on a Saturday night and I'm in need of your wisdom. My stbxh moves out this week leaving me on my own with three very young children.

Whilst it is clear to me my marriage has to be over I can't stop going over and over and over and over how it was when it was good, and how much he changed when we became parents.

I guess there were red flags at the start. I just don't understand why I didn't flag them up.

1. He played computer games too, too much.

2. He didn't take days off work.

3. He always chose what we watched on tele.

Go and make me feel better. Wgat were yours?

barrygetamoveonplease Sat 13-May-17 23:31:46

1 He hit me before we got married. That's what I thought men did to their wives so I didn't notice it was a red flag.

2 He would insist on sex, in ways I didn't want, at times I didn't want. Particularly if I was ready for a night out, so wherever we went I always felt messed with and not as pristine as when I'd left the house.

3 Our lives had to be geared to meeting his needs.

Those were different times, and all the above were commonplace.

PutTheBunnyBackInTheBox Sat 13-May-17 23:41:42

Getting pissed everytime he drank. I didn't realise it was a red flag as I did the same. I'm not an alcoholic so I didn't think he was either. I was wrong.

PutTheBunnyBackInTheBox Sat 13-May-17 23:47:22

Oh and flowers for you OP. I'm a sp of 3, you can do it.

ohdeaeyme Sat 13-May-17 23:49:23

i didnt make the connectiom between being violent at work being a big red flag for potential at home

Craftylittlething Sat 13-May-17 23:51:45

It's so much easier doing it on your own when you don't have to walk on eggshells. My red flags were always walking on egg shells, I have a completely different life and now live with a man who treats me with love and kindness and respect. Go well

LittleWingSoul Sat 13-May-17 23:56:03

Everything Barry said applied to me.

OP good luck in this new chapter of your life. A year from now you'll be a whole new you! flowers

sailorcherries Sat 13-May-17 23:59:20

With one ex:
1. He cheated on his ex but it was her fault.
2. If I wanted alone time after an argument he didn't care and would try to barge in.
3. All plans had to suit him.

He did not take the break up well.

With another ex:
1. He was constantly in and out of relationships because, apparently, every single woman couldn't cope with him being a single dad (more like they weren't welcomed by his family and his DDs maternal family, they didn't want anyone else there - as they often made clear to me).
2. Everything had to be dropped for him and his DD, but never the other way around (in line buying tickets for the cinema for me and DS while his DD was at her grans, recieve a phone call as DD didn't like her dress for the party and then go balistic when I wouldn't come home from the cinema to open the house despite him being at the gym).
3. Allowing his DD to treat my family like shit with no repercussions but my DS wasn't allowed to say no to his family.

Thankfully DS was too young to remember this and we eventually got out. Both himself and his family have decided my treatment of his DD was neglectful, despite dropping everything for them and having a nervous break down as a result of trying my hardest, and they only reciprocated with their treatment of my DS.

EmilyBiscuit Sun 14-May-17 00:01:28

1) Punching the wall when he was angry at me quite early on. I thought it was okay cos he hadn't hit me.
2) Avoiding my family. It made me feel bad for going and leaving him alone so I slowly stopped going.
3) Jealousy. I thought it was sweet that he thought I was good looking enough to attract other people's attention. But he got so upset I eventually just stopped going out with friends.

ohdeaeyme Sun 14-May-17 00:02:17

crafty is right. i ended up with a 26 month old and a 3 month old when i got rid... far easier on my own than with him

Justanothernameonthepage Sun 14-May-17 00:03:24

He made no effort with my friends, but expected me to spend time with his.
He consistently used small white lies with everyone, even if was against evidence if it put him in a good light/made his life slightly easier.
He never helped around the house.
Anything I was interested in was dismissed but his hobbies and interests required me to show interest.
I was constantly expected to put myself second.
He told me how I should feel/react to everything - and if I didn't react in line with his expectations, then it was evidence of how I was wrong/broken.
The night we broke up, (he gave me an ultimatum where I had to agree to marry him or break up, and I had enough distance to realise it would be the worst thing I could do), I cried my eyes out but at the same time felt that a huge weight had been lifted. 4 years later I was marrying a man who loved and respected me.

AntagonyAunt Sun 14-May-17 00:03:52

One was him staring at one of our fish in the tank when it was ill and on it's way out.
He looked amused.

HunterofStars Sun 14-May-17 00:04:10

Mine were:

1. Having everything geared to his needs. We always had to watch whatever film he wanted. I rarely got to watch a film that I wanted. When I did once, he moaned about it afterwards. We were listening to music once and there was a song I liked playing and he went la, la, la, la loudly over it because he didn't want to listen to it and made damn sure I couldn't.

2. Followed me up the High Street when I was out shopping alone.

3. He always hated it whenever I wore trousers and sent me a letter once to say the next time we went out together, I had to wear more revealing dresses so I looked sexier and attractive. hmm

Good luck with this new chapter in your life, OP. You won't recognise yourself in a year's time. flowers wine.

AntiGrinch Sun 14-May-17 00:04:42

Good luck OP. Everything will be great.

your red flags sent a shiver down my spine because they're similar to mine.

- always controlling what is on telly
- hours spent online on the internet - not gaming or porn, just an internet addiction that was more important than any of us

Today for the first time I had a click moment about what it was, that was present even in his very early behaviour when he was quite into me and in many ways being very nice. From very early on, he viewed me more as a resource than as a person. He had an idea about what role a woman would play in his life that was essentially to make his life better. He was asking me to do small things for him from very early days. Not outrageous things. But I look back now and realise he never asks his friends for favours - or offers them. He isn't a guy who is always fixing someone's bike / asking someone to help him in the garden. He is very self contained EXCEPT when he gets a woman, and then from day 1, he is asking her to do stuff for him.

I didn't notice because back then I had a lot of friends who did favours for each other. only gradually I got isolated and realised this wasn't the same thing at all.

He flips when I ask him to do things. One night soon after we moved into this house there were a million things to do. After unpacking boxes and doing stuff all day, in the evening I started hemming curtains so we could put some up at the front and get some privacy. after dinner (cooked by me) I started sewing and didn't stop for hours. I asked for a drink and he was furious and flounced off in a rage. he hadn't done anything like the amount of work I had done on the house and while I was still working at 10pm he couldn't bear to get me a drink and thought I was well out of order to ask for one.

It's subtle when someone treats you as a resource. Sometimes they are asking for a small thing that isn't at all in itself unacceptable. But it's the bigger picture that shows you who they ask of what, and what it means about him, that, for instance, he will ask very easily for coffee and never make one for you.

That's my main one.

SheWhoMustNotBeTamed Sun 14-May-17 00:05:51

1. If I disagreed he'd cry / complain so O felt I was being nasty.

2. Sec almost always was coach and therefore

3. If I wanted to stop he wouldn't. This was such a problem that when I was with DH who was then DP and it was one of the first times having sex I asked him to stop as was uncomfortable as needed the loo. He stopped and it made me cry. Relief? Confusion? I don't know.

4. Everything that annoyed him had him have a physical reaction. I got a slight bit of male attention? He'd go to hit that person. We had an argument? He'd punch the wall etc.

As I was 16/17 I thought thT was normal.

Cottoncandy22 Sun 14-May-17 00:07:00

Not an ex h but an old bf back in the day.

Spying on me - phone, computer, when I was out with friends or colleagues

Doing odd things for fun, such as beeping and waving at total strangers from the car just to laugh at their look of puzzlement and polite wave back response (control freak)

Jealous as hell. My saying "thank you" to a barman was "flirting" and he left me in the club/pub in a rage without telling me so it would took me ages and lots of searching to realise he'd left and gone home, with the only key.

Locking me out.

Sending gifts/flowers without a name, early days. This sounds romantic but it was his way of checking if I was in touch with anyone else who might also send me flowers etc, obviously if there was I would not have mentioned receiving anything to him. Took me a while to work that one out.

There's loads more. He was very charming when he wasn't being like that.

Justanothernameonthepage Sun 14-May-17 00:07:27

But it wasn't till a couple of years later I realised that it had been an abusive relationship. I minimised everything so deeply that I have a lot of sympathy with people who find themselves trapped. Why does he do that is a great book to help you identify different types of abusers

HunterofStars Sun 14-May-17 00:07:43

Oh and he was nasty to me when we first met at 13. I also remember at school, we had to do some arm linking exercise related to swimming and he deliberately grabbed my arm before another boy could. He would always be in my personal space and he had a ferocious temper too.

I've since learnt that a man with anger issues isn't to be trusted.

Napoliforte Sun 14-May-17 00:08:21

I'm watching a friend deliberately ignore massive red flags with her boyfriend. They include:

Having never had a live-in relationship. He's in his 50s.

Telling her that he has mentally "written off" her kids

Telling her that her children remind him that she was married before

Drinking TONS, often way more than anyone else there

Being a huge woman-objectifying sexist "but it's just a laugh"

It's like she has been struck blind. And is terrified of being alone so this oxygen thief will do.sad

Napoliforte Sun 14-May-17 00:10:51

For me, a weird, imbalanced relationship with their mother is a big red flag, whether that be abject hatred or idolising. Both are terrible.

emochild Sun 14-May-17 00:11:40

Mine were tricky -as it was mainly him being too nice

We worked at the same place but not always the same shift -he'd finish several hours before me but drive back to pick me up and drop me home -even if we had no plans

He'd persuade me to cancel plans with friends to spend time with him because he was desperate to see me and really wanted to be with me

He's always be the one that went to the bar and would order me drinks I hadn't asked for because he thought I'd like them

He looked after me -so the expectation was I looked after him which I was never quite good enough at

SheWhoMustNotBeTamed Sun 14-May-17 00:11:58

Oh and some morbid, disturbing lines of thoughts.

"You know if you feed someone to a pig, they won't find anythin."

"Just imagine someone jumping right in front of this train."

As he 'hates' me now I'm glad I don't see him. Honestly think he's a psychopath.

So glad DH is different. smile

SheWhoMustNotBeTamed Sun 14-May-17 00:13:03

YY nap think Freud was right with that one.

AddALemon Sun 14-May-17 00:13:23

He drank most nights,
He punched doors when we first got together (which later turned to being physically violent with me)
Everything was centered round him and his awful family, at one point I was working at an extra curriculum club for free so his niece could go (his sisters way of saying thankyou was to call me a fat cow... I wasn't)
He never wanted my ds, I got pregnant young he blocked it out and I don't think he ever read ds a night time story or got up with him when he was ill in the night
His uncle called him 'me, myself and i' now I know why

Being a single parent is bloody hard but just over a year later I'm at peace with myself, ds is happier. I still get upset about that connection couples have (even tonight I had a cry because I had nobody to talk to about eurovision blush) but its a damn lot easier than having blazing rows every night and ds growing up thinking that was normal

RhodaBorrocks Sun 14-May-17 00:16:00


- He gaslighted me from very early on.
- He would not allow me to have emotions - any emotion was me being 'hysterical'.
- He accused me of cheating.
- He would play break up songs to me.
- He guilted me into giving him money.

First boyfriend:

- Threatened suicide if I broke up with him.
- Pressurised me into losing my virginity.

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