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angry at myself that I let x get to me still

(5 Posts)
Letsmakecookies Sat 08-Dec-12 11:29:26

Self-indulgent rant really, with no purpose.

I am so fed up with manipulative, nonsense messages from x (of 9 months) about how I am 'misbehaving'. I know he won't let go because he needs to try and control me, and I am still finding it hard to detach from what he says after years of an emotionally unhealthy marriage.

His latest trick is threatening lawyers because of my 'whims' (like not giving 24h notice of being in a out of signal area at his given daily phone call to the children), or not letting him talk to two children under 6 past 2100 at night. Not answering one of his 3 calls at 8 am, because I was in the shower (not expected time to call, usually happens at his set time night). Not having seen his children for 15 weeks now, because I can't afford to drive them to him as he gives me no financial help (yes CSA involved). etc etc etc.

I am so absolutely fed up. I want to do what is best for my children. But this means I still have this abusive man in my life, I hear his voice nearly every day when he calls our children and it takes me back to the painful feelings I had during our marriage, I still get controlling abusive messages, he is dragging out the divorce, he does nothing to help me with the children either physically or financially. It would be easier to get rid of a tape worm.

So any tips from anyone on detaching and moving on. How do other people do it? I have tried therapy, talking to my GP, talking to my HV. I feel like I am in groundhog day some days, emotionally.

DoubleYew Sat 08-Dec-12 15:07:42

Aside from his contact phonecall which must be at a set time, email only for arrangements etc. Get caller id on phone and calmly say, "Please email instead, I'm hanging up now." Such a relief!

Why can't he come to see the children?

Family Mediation can be a trial with someone this manipulative, however, you might be able to have a one on one session to set out a stretgy for contact, check what you are offering is reasonable etc. Also are you in touch with Women's Aid, it is great to have someone to talk to who knows this type of behaviour and can reassure you that you are doing the right things no matter what he says.

Keep copies of all the abusive messages and a "twatdiary" of when he is being unreasonable. Helps to get it out of your system.

Letsmakecookies Sat 08-Dec-12 18:37:40

Thank you, doubleyew.

We do have a set time of calling every evening, but it seems he doesn't like that (he quite liked sending many emails/texts to arrange ad hoc times as he was in control, but after 200 emails and probably at least that many texts over 6 months I needed that to end as my nerves were fraught). I think one of his problems is that the children are young and haven't seen him for 4 months so there is little talking when he calls, and more often than not now after the initial hello they hang up on him after telling him they don't want to talk.

I think he hasn't seen them to prove a point for the most part. He left, moved home with his parents 100 miles away, leaving us with nothing so I had no choice but to give up the expensive rental (or find another 600£ a month on top of big bills) and move to be near my family- where I have support (180 miles the other direction).

So he is angry with me. He has lost 2 very well paying jobs in 6 months, which is totally his own fault (the jobs are still there), and claims he can't be expected to drive to us to see/collect his children either on weekends or half-terms/holidays. I cannot take them to him as he is demanding, I literally can't afford the petrol, and in any case my lawyer advised me not to. Every penny I have goes on food and clothes for the children, with no maintenance. He has the family car, and has been abroad 3 times in this time.

I did talk to the HV for a long time a bit ago and she suggested women's aid to me too. I guess I am a little ostrich-head in the ground, as I feel safer where I am now and am hiding rather than deal with things. But it is good advice.

DoubleYew Sat 08-Dec-12 20:58:14

He sounds an arse. No maintenance and he can't come and see them for erm no good reason. What does he think other parents who don't live with their children do?

Women's aid are very helpful, I have found, they won't push you to do anything, just let you vent at them about how you are being treated. Seems your lawyer is sensible, which is good, only just got one myself and I don't know what she is like yet.

For the sake of the children, although I can see why you might not want to, Skype is supposed to be more successful than phonecalls for younger ones. He can read them a story, see them drawing etc.

Take care of youself - it is exhausting looking after small children plus money worries plus an idiot in the background.

Letsmakecookies Sun 09-Dec-12 08:57:32

He thinks that at the done thing is for the mother to take on all responsibility - financial, emotional, physical, to raise the children, and to get no support. Then it is the mother's duty to be fair and equal and share responsibility for taking the children to see dad, when it suits him. Whether it can be afforded or not either energy or money-wise. He doesn't believe in putting himself out.

Rationalising it is impossible, he is indeed an arse. But one that is clinging on like a limpet who fights every boundary.

Skype has been suggested, but every time it comes into conversation I ask him to take responsibility for telling me when he wants to do that, so I can set it up. He seems to think this is me controlling him.

I am exhausted. I have the most wonderful family helping, but it is still me as the only adult responsible for two little children even if I am a lot less lonely now. (Just having another adult give me a hug makes me want to cry with relief). I think being so emotionally and physically tired just makes it so much harder to clearly put into context in my own mind what is a reasonable emotional reaction to him, and to detach, and most difficult move on and live life.

I have a lovely lawyer, very experienced and a lady I have known since I was in my early teens. I will seriously think about giving women's aid a call. It is so hard in my mind to classify his behaviour as abuse, as it was so normal and expected. But I just have to try and remember situations I found myself in and how I felt about it, while we were still married. But how do you do that without hating yourself?

Thank you for letting me vent. Feeling better, I find the more and more I talk about how I feel (whether online or in RL) the more grown up I feel my responses are and the more detached. It really does help.

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