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Where do I go? What do I do?

(28 Posts)
StranglyLittleKitten Sun 09-Oct-11 01:48:11

We're not married. He owns the house. He has the job and the money. We don't even have a joint account. My name is not on the deeds. I have no money to leave. He says he will not let me take DD if I go. I am "allowed" to go, but I can't take her. I can't provide for her anyway as he earns the money and owns the house. I can't leave without her. Where would we live if I left? I am penniless. I just don't know what to do. 250 miles away from any family.

Others must have been here before? There must be a way out?

Justlostitwithhim Sun 09-Oct-11 02:46:30

Don't know too much about this, except that you are her mother and courts very frequently decide in the mother's favour. Legally, you can take her. You have parental responsibility. Ring Women's Aid and CAB. They will help you.

izzywhizzyletsgetbusy Sun 09-Oct-11 03:40:49

Is he abusive? How long have you been living with him and how old is your dd?

Are you in contact with your family? Will they be willing to accomodate you and dd temporarily while you sort out accomodation/benefits/work/childcare and child support which is legally obliged to provide and which can be extracted from him by the Child Support Agency.

How much will it cost for you to get home? Do you have a family member who will be willing to book and pay for a train/coach ticket for you online so that you can print it off and travel?

He says he will not let me take DD if I go He's talking bullshit. He cannot stop you taking your dd with you when you leave. If he tries, simply call the police. But to avoid her being witness to an unpleasant scene, plan to leave when he is out the house.

Please come back to your post, or give the Women's Aid 24hr helpline a call on 0808 2000 247. They can advise you, provide temporary accomodation, help you with claims for benefits, and get you relocated close to family members (if that is what you would prefer).

izzywhizzyletsgetbusy Sun 09-Oct-11 03:42:27

'which is legally obliged' - missing word; should read 'which he is legally obliged' etc.

ShroudOfHamsters Sun 09-Oct-11 06:37:38

Oh yes you can take her with you, and there's not a damn thing he can do about it. Once you do leave, he'll also be obliged to support her financially.

Will your family help you get out of this situation and could you go and stay with them? If so, get in touch and let them know and start making plans to get yourself out of there.

Things you need to think about: have you contributed in any financial way to the house that can be proven? If so, try and get that proof - have you paid towards the mortgage etc.? Over the next few days, while he is out, get copies of as much paperwork as you can. Although you're not married, it will be useful to have copies of bank account details etc. Can you get access to any cash that you can withdraw just before you leave? Can you have a reason to have an amount withdrawn from the joint account - e.g. a bill that needs paying - which you can then take with you?

You need to take with you all your own and your DD's paperwork - birth certificates, passports etc. Also, take anything personal to you - photos especially, they can't be replaced. Anything of sentimental value that you can carry. Clothes etc. can be replaced easily, so don't worry too much about those - just a few changes each and anything valuable/useful. Get details of his employment to send to the CSA.

Also, get in touch with Womens' Aid. You are being financially abused - you are being kept without access to your JOINT money (yes, it's joint - he does the work outside the home, you do the work in it- so you both contribute - the money he earns is FAMILY money, it's NOT his). Ask them how you can make it known that this is your situation and the reason you are leaving - they may advise you to get in touch with the local domestic violence unit, for example, who could give you advice on how to leave him safely. Having a record of this is useful when it comes to access and custody issues. You are your DD's carer and there will be no question that she will stay with you - but if he tries to take you to court, it will be very useful to have a record of the fact that you left and moved away because of his financial abuse.

Finally, don't make the mistake of listening to his threats. They're classic, what every nasty piece of work says to make a frightened partner stay. If you left tomorrow and he went to the police, they'd tell him where to go if he tried to 'report' you or get them to 'bring you back'. He's got no right to make you live with him, and as you are your DD's main carer, he'd have a tough court battle to get anywhere with more than the minimum access, especially if there's a record of his threats against you and his nasty behaviour. And if he turned up in your home town or wherever you moved to, he'd be removed sharpish by the police and you could then get an injunction against him (not a wise move on his part if he did want regular access to his daughter).

Don't be afraid. He has no power here - all you need to do is walk out the door. Get in touch with family if they can help, if not, Womens' Aid. Good luck.

StranglyLittleKitten Sun 09-Oct-11 09:44:52

Thank you so, so much for your messages. I'm on on my phone rather than my computer and will write in more detail later. Everything has gone horribly wrong and he has reduced me to a sobbing mess hiding in the bedroom as we have people staying.

He is not violent with me but it's all about him. He needs time out to do his exercise but when I need time out to prepare for a launch party (I have started a daft little party plan to try and make a bit of cash) I am shot down in flames because he wants us to go for a walk as a family. Today is the only chance I get for some child free time to prepare, he could easily take her for an hour or two but I now feel ridiculous and selfish to even think I can make a go of things. "I can't believe you'd rather do that than spend family time together". Yet he constantly leaves me and DD alone to go and pursue his interests.

He goes overseas in 6 days for 3 weeks. I'm not even bothered. In fact I can't wait sad

PhilipJFry Sun 09-Oct-11 10:01:46

You can leave. YOU CAN. He can't force you to leave behind your daughter and you don't have to stay in this situation. Since you've already started to think about this then you have a month until he returns from his trip to sort out what you want to do, get in contact with various organisations and enact a plan. Is your family supportive and trustworthy? Could you tell them what's happening and get their help for somewhere to stay?

togetherwehaveitall Sun 09-Oct-11 10:35:08

Listen folks, there aren't that many refuge places available!!! 'Just contact women's aid' is not enough advice. And refuges have to balance up risk - advertise a space and the phones go mad, and cases like this one, where she basically needs housing, will be balanced up against women with injuries.

The fact is, women need their own money.

slartybartfast Sun 09-Oct-11 10:38:06

but do you need to leave him?

StranglyLittleKitten Sun 09-Oct-11 11:06:42

I don't "need" to leave him. I am not in any danger but I am very, very unhappy. I cannot possibly take a place in a refuge over someone who is in physical danger. This is the problem, I need to sort myself out somewhere to go, but I have no money to start up and he will oppose me all the way. (He made all this very clear in an argument last year.)

This morning's incident is just the latest in a string of incidents.

He makes it very difficult for me to get access to any money, I have to ask and present my case and it always boils down to "you earn the money but I gave up my career to have DD, so it's family money." Then he either gives me money begrudgingly or lends it to me and I have to pay him back when I get paid. I work a very part time job and have about £100 spare a month after bills, which goes on nappies, clothes for DD, food, toddler groups etc, so borrowing money to then pay it back to him means I am constantly in deficit. Childcare would cancel any wages I earned if I were to go full time which is why I have to work around his hours, but very difficult to do as he is overseas often.

I understand that times are hard for everyone but he has just had a long weekend abroad pursuing one of his hobbies while I stayed at home with DD. Our family holiday this year has been cancelled due to his work schedule.

Earlier this week I had an accident in the car (a lady drove into me when I had DD in the car, not my fault and is being taken care of by her insurance) and I was a bit shaken - but all I got was how much of a pain in the arse it was to have to sort it out, when all I actually wanted was a cuddle.

He is so cold to me - sees me crying, makes no attempt to comfort me, speaks to me like an employee. Spends all his extra time pursuing his hobbies and exercise, doesn't take my silly little jobs seriously, his life takes priority over mine (invited out for toddler group Mums drinks but he had decided to meet his friend after work for drinks so I couldn't go), no sex since I was pregnant with DD, she is now 2.

And now made to feel selfish and ridiculous for thinking I could make a go of the party plan.

I feel like a burden and a needy pain in the arse. We are way above the threshold for tax credits as he earns a lot and he gets the child benefit paid to him as he saves it in DD's bank account for the future (which he set up for her and I have no access to).

My family is 250 miles away, not particularly close, my mum is in a one-bedroomed flat, I don't have contact with my Dad. That's about it really!

Would I be able to get help renting a flat or would they see it as I left willingly so don't get any benefits?

(Bit calmer now, he has gone out for his walk.)

slartybartfast Sun 09-Oct-11 11:09:49

for a start the child benefit SHould go to you. i am sure that was one of the purposes of Child benefit. because of men like this.
you can call the child benefit office and change it to your account.

other than that i am sorry i dont know, sad

have a word or two with him. sort out how you need money, get a job

buzzskeleton Sun 09-Oct-11 11:56:08

The child benefit should legally go to the primary carer. Phone up & get it changed.

You will shortly have three blissful free weeks to get yourself sorted. Talk to CAB, get yourself some money together (can your mum help at all?)

If I were you, during those 3 weeks, I'd get a ticket/load up the car and go back with your dd to where your mum lives. Your mum can put you up for a short while, and you can look for somewhere to rent. You'd get housing benefit and so forth, and when you get a job, tax credits. He'd also be expected to pay child support. You will be entitled to benefits - it's not like leaving a job and not being entitled to the dole for a while - a relationship breakdown is a perfectly legitimate reason to become in need of support.

He's emotionally and financially abusive. Do please take this opportunity to get the hell out.

DontGoCurly Sun 09-Oct-11 12:18:11

I work a very part time job and have about £100 spare a month after bills, which goes on nappies, clothes for DD, food, toddler groups etc, so borrowing money to then pay it back to him means I am constantly in deficit

So doesn't he pay anything twords nappies, food, clothes etc for your DD ?

StranglyLittleKitten Sun 09-Oct-11 13:39:37

He pays for a big shop once a month and anything extra is picked up by me when I pop to the shops. So fresh stuff, milk, fruit, etc and extra nappies. He doesn't give me the money for anything over and above the monthly shop.

It's all kicked off again, he is trying to make me apologise for the way I am acting because it's all my fault, I am fully to blame. He has done nothing wrong, never said a bad word to me, always fully supported me and apparently I always do this when he has friends to stay. (I don't!!!!)

He has now gone out to the pub for his lunch with DD and his friends we have staying. When are they going to go home?

ImperialBlether Sun 09-Oct-11 14:03:43

Is he in the services? If so, I think there's someone there you can talk to about this.

StranglyLittleKitten Sun 09-Oct-11 14:06:44

No, he's not in the services.

AttilaTheMeerkat Sun 09-Oct-11 14:29:54

Hi kitten,

re your comment:-

I don't "need" to leave him. I am not in any danger but I am very, very unhappy. I cannot possibly take a place in a refuge over someone who is in physical danger. This is the problem, I need to sort myself out somewhere to go, but I have no money to start up and he will oppose me all the way. (He made all this very clear in an argument last year.)

This is precisely why you should be leaving him actually; the guy wants you on his ball and chain by keeping you as his emotional and financial prisoner to use and abuse. You have an opportunity coming up because he is away (what does this bloke do btw?) for three weeks. Use that time wisely and make plans to leave him and with your DD.

Please talk to Womens Aid; they can and will help you here with planning an escape. Such men do not let go of their victim easily but it is possible to leave an abusive relationship.

If you stay he will utterly destroy any self worth and esteem you have left.
This is no relationship model for your DD to follow and when she's older he will start on her as well. She will learn from you both how relationships are conducted; she could well learn damaging lessons from both of you if you stay within this and ultimately end up in an abusive relationship yourself.

I would also recommend the Freedom programme run by Womens Aid for you as such abusive men can take years to recover from.

nothaunted Sun 09-Oct-11 14:45:09

Financial abuse is abuse and it is soul destroying, so emotional abuse. You are his prisoner in lots of ways. Do talk to women's Aid, do look up abuse and financial abuse. Can you also talk to HV and GP - they are likely to have seen it all before and can put you in touch with services too. He is treating you like a slave.
Party plan sounds a good idea but if you have to rely on him to do things, then you are allowing him to play his power games. What is his parents' relationship like btw? It may have some bearing on how he is behaving but is no excuse.
Keep low, keep calm and use the week he is still here to plan, then be ready to spring into action and be off before he returns from his business trip. Any queries ask here and also on legal board. What a complete sod and sorry excuse for a partner and father not to buy his DD's nappies and pay for playgroups etc.

HerScaryness Sun 09-Oct-11 15:59:56

In 6 days time, you have 3 weeks without him. 3 Weeks to get advice, get yourself to the benefits people and to tell them what is going on. they can get the benefits back into your name.

he won't be here to challenge you. you have time to get yourself out of this. Does he have a credit card to leave you in case there is any problem while he is away? 'you are sure you won't need it, but just in case'

We can help you plan for this. You have time and plenty of it to do this properly. hang on in there.

keep posting

DontGoCurly Sun 09-Oct-11 16:13:31

I definitely think this is financial and emotional abuse. What sort of visitors are they that stay despite the woman hiding in the bathroom and a bad atmosphere. My abusive ex ALWAYS picked times when people visited to kick off, it's textbook stuff done to keep you downtrodden and miserable.

Hey, he hasn't a hope of getting your daughter OP if he works away from home so much and yes I agree with the others. Get those benefits for your daughter changed into your name for a start.

Defninitely agree with use the three weeks to make a plan to get out of there.

HerScaryness Sun 09-Oct-11 16:30:21

OP, they all do this. to everyone outside, he is the model of a good partner, his image is without blemish. to them he may even talk wondrous things about you.

My X did.

This is so that in the event you leave him he thinks this will remove all sympathy for you. thing is, your story is true, his is lies. This is designed to make you look ungrateful. The truth always wins. Everyone will soon see your story checks out, his doesn't

Fact is, because you are not married, you ARE in a much weaker position than if you weren't wrt maintenance and division of assets. But weaker doens't mean hopeless.

You will use the next 6 days to set appointments with CAB and benefits people, when he's gone you must go into turbo. you must get as much info and advice as you can.

Can you look at see what benefits you may be entitled to?

livingonthedge Sun 09-Oct-11 16:31:16

how is the monthly shop done? Could you add more to it (bread and milk will freeze, get frozen veg) so that he ends up paying for more and also get cash back on it (so you have more cash to keep)? That way maybe you could save a bit of money so that you can leave eventually.

garlicScaresVampires Sun 09-Oct-11 16:48:38

Try to get the login for all of the bank, credit card and mortgage accounts. You're going to have to be clever and devious - it may go against the grain, but he's effectively keeping you in bonded slavery so the moral gloves are off.

Play wounded. Let him think he's winning, but take care not to overdo it or he'll get nervous.

Do you think he's "appointed" people to keep tabs on you whilst he's away?

StranglyLittleKitten Mon 10-Oct-11 07:06:55

I think I have managed to smooth things over until the weekend when he goes away.

Put me on trial in the kitchen last night saying I have crossed a line and taken the piss and he will not have the piss taken out of him. That I do it every time he has friends to stay - this time my feet were really sore, I wanted a bottle of water for the train home and I wanted to actually get on the train home rather than wait for the next train - next train is a shorter travel time but the trains were buggered and no guarantee it'd go as scheduled and I didn't want the babysitter to be there all night - last time I kicked off because I had a feeling they'd want to go to the pub, offrered to sort a babysitter, DP wasn't willing, but of course when Saturday night came around he decided he wanted to "show them the pub" with me babysitting.

Then he quoted the time he'd had friends to stay before but couldn't tell me what I'd done, but said I'd done something (!).

I gave an example of when my friend came to stay (hadn't seen her for 27 years!) we went to the pub and he'd always said he was happy to "babysit" (pub is two minutes away), my phone was on silent in my bag, lost track of time as food took ages to come and we didn't finish eating until 10.30 - only had three glasses of wine all night but at midnight had tons of missed calls from him telling me I'd better get myself home right now, what did I think I was doing, we'd have to write Sunday off now, - but of course I wasn't allowed to bring that up as it was irrelevant. My friend thought he was a complete arse and now only offers to come and stay when he's away.

After shouting at me in the kitchen and not letting me speak or put across my case while he accused and threatened (not violent threats) for 15 minutes I kind of apologised "I'm sorry the things I do make you so angry and I'm sorry my party plan job interferes with the things you want us to do as a family, the reason I took it on is so I wouldn't have to keep asking you for money" (fingers crossed behind my back), not what I wanted to do but it will make things bearable until Saturday and then I'll have nearly three weeks on my own with DD.

And then after all that he said can I not arrange party plan stuff for Thursdays or some weekends as that's the night he meets his hobby club. Which is, of course, more important than me making money. So basically he's scuppered this for me before I even begin as any money I make will be spent on babysitters as Thursdays and weekends are my busiest times.

I'm exhausted and spent.

StranglyLittleKitten Mon 10-Oct-11 07:12:36

Oh, and I am taking the piss in the way his ex wife took the piss. She left him after 18 months of marriage 14 years ago and NOBODY will ever take the piss like that again. But I am coming seriously close to her standards.

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