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Separating from controlling H... who is stalling about telling the dcs

(58 Posts)
CharlotteCollinsismovingon Wed 20-Mar-13 03:58:11

Thanks in large part to the support and patience of some wonderful people on MN, I am coming to terms with the fact that my H of over ten years is EA. And probably narcissistic, too or a good liar or perhaps I'm just gullible: he doesn't seem to have any empathy, or internal self, or memory of the nastiest things he has said.

Anyway, ten days ago I told him that I want us to separate. After initial shock and upset, and a few days away to start processing, he has come back and is drowning me in words. On the surface, he is accepting it and very, very reasonable, but (thanks to my MN training!) I'm suspicious. Already he has got me talking for hours about the things that he did - and 24 hours later, the justifications and rewriting of history have begun. Did me no good, in any case: he still "doesn't understand," although he is "broken" and "devastated" that he has unintentionally hurt me... (Part of me does feel guilty for my suspiciousness!)

And (to get to the most immediate problem) he still seem to be trying to control the process in his usual ways. From being almost totally uninvolved with the dcs, he has morphed into Superdad and wants to stay at home looking after them while I go back to work. Or split the care 50:50 at least and both not work, since I don't want to return to work for another year. He is more likely than not to lose his job in around two months and is unlikely to find another one round here, so is talking about how I hold all the cards - if I refuse to move, he can't find work, because he has to stay near to see the dcs regularly.

Because of all this uncertainty in the future, and his inability to understand why I've made the decision to separate, he doesn't want us to tell the dcs yet (he naturally wants us to tell them together). Maybe, despite his hope that we can do all this amicably and informally suits him, I need to get myself a solicitor.

I'm starting to wonder if I should just tell the dcs myself when he's away next week - is this a really bad idea?

CharlotteCollinsismovingon Sat 23-Mar-13 23:25:20

Well, today I told the dcs. Immediate loud tears from dd1 and dd2; an awful first 5 minutes in which I thoroughly regretted everything.

And since then, they have gradually realised that for the most part, it'll be life as normal for them: Daddy not around, living with Mummy, school, friends, life - just now, when Daddy's around there's a chance he'll be more attentive to them than before...

Phew. Just glad to have it over with - and with that initial reaction, so glad H wasn't here too, as I think that's all he'd've talked about and tried to recreate for a long time. Thanks for your support, lovely people. thanks

TisILeclerc Sat 23-Mar-13 23:27:31

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

CharlotteCollinsismovingon Sat 23-Mar-13 23:49:07

Thanks, Leclerc. Their first (second and third) question was "why?" Didn't see it coming at all. Why would they? It's all they've ever known, and he comes across as so reasonable.

I told them he doesn't treat me as I want to be treated. That's ok, isn't it? I mean, I feel uncomfortable saying, "It's all his fault!" which is basically what I did say... but how else to phrase it, really?

ponygirlcurtis Sun 24-Mar-13 10:56:48

So glad you've done it and it went ok Charlotte. ((hugs))

Anniegetyourgun Sun 24-Mar-13 11:08:30

XH got the news in first with our divorce. He told them I was leaving them all to go and live in Sweden with a younger man. They, er, weren't that happy about it. Took them ages to work out which one of us was lying through their rotten teeth, poor souls.

SolidGoldBrass Sun 24-Mar-13 11:42:42

Also, when the man you are leaving is a shit, it's actually better to tell the DC by yourself, and get in first so that he doesn't have the opportunity to tell them lies. Once you have assured them that they are loved, that their lives will not change much etc then any crap he comes out with will make him look stupid - and you can just tell them that 'Daddy's being a bit silly' if he does say anything troublesome. Remember it's OK to 'undermine' an abusive parent. You don't have to show loyalty to someone who isn't reasonable.

postmanpatscat Sun 24-Mar-13 11:50:35

SGB, it's good to hear that, I've had to undermine by abusive ex many times in the last three years. At least now the girls are in their teens they see him as he is.

Charlotte, wishing you all the best. I had to be the bearer of bad news too (he wouldn't tell them because it was my decision to split, and he wouldn't tell anyone else either) and it sounds like you did the right thing.

minkembra Sun 24-Mar-13 21:12:35


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