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Retrospectively recognising ex as EA

(9 Posts)
changechangechange Fri 10-May-13 20:35:18

Through counselling for PND and night-feed trawling of the MN Relationships topics, I've had to admit to myself that my ex was emotionally and verbally abusive for at least 3yrs of our 5yr relationship. We split up almost 3yrs ago (my choice, v v difficult breakup). He has since become seriously involved in another (long distance) rship. I have had a brief but enjoyable relationship (also my decision to split) and am now a LP (my choice, ex is not father).

While I was pg ex made contact, wanting to establish a friendship. I agreed, pretty much entirely in order to avoid grief (this was a major feature of the last year or so of our rship plus a year afterwards- me just doing what he wanted because I couldn't cope with the browbeating I got for voicing my own needs). If I had ever taken the time to really think about things and see the toxic rship for what it was, I would never have wanted to be in touch, but I hid from it all- too painful to touch.

Now, I feel still afraid of consequences of 'de-friending' from ex. I am too overwhelmed by everything else in my life, I cannot cope with the possibility of months and months of constant abuse by text, phone, email etc again. Our contact is v v sporadic - have seen him I think 4x in last 2yrs. And friends on sodding fb. I think it might be easier to just maintain this contact, reactively, rather than go through the possible drama of cutting connections. Is that ok, or is that still a weird victim mindset?

I am still feeling a little shell-shocked by the realisation of just how awful that relationship and its aftermath was for me.

changechangechange Fri 10-May-13 20:36:50

I don't even know what I'm asking. Permission to stay in touch? Permission to excommunicate? Acknowledgement that this bad thing happened to me? I'm scared to put much detail as I'm so afraid of being identified, which is silly really, the odds are tiny beyond belief.

CherryMonster Fri 10-May-13 21:32:04

sounds like you need to block him, change your phone numbers and email and not give him any way to contact you at all.

Lweji Fri 10-May-13 21:41:01

It's entirely up to you.
You don't have to be friends and you don't have to cut contact.

If you don't want contact you can change your contact details and/or block him, and tell him you'll go to the police if he keeps trying to browbeat you into contact.

If he's not making himself a nuisance and you're happy for him to be on fb, it's ok too.

2013go Fri 10-May-13 21:43:57

I totally agree with cherrymonster - be rid!!
and I'm also, selfishly, a little intrigued- my very abusive ex was friends with two of his exes and I always thought this kind of vindicated him- ie, it must just be me bringing out the worst in him, as he can't have been like that with anyone else if they were still his friends.....

changechangechange Fri 10-May-13 22:01:23

Thanks for replies. He's not making himself a nuisance at all, I just feel a bit ick in the light of what I have realised now. And he might go quietly. I don't really know what I want -have been so well conditioned out of that!- apart from that I really don't want any aggro. Even if I changed my number, email etc (which I really don't want to do), he knows where I live. Not that I think he'd turn up being violent or anything, but it's just me and DS and I don't want the worry.

2013go - that hadn't occurred to me. sad I do feel very self-conscious though of my friends -the ones who saw what a rough time I had leaving him- noticing him on my fb, altho they prob haven't!

skaboy Fri 10-May-13 23:22:55

Yes it happens from both genders and it affects everything from decisions made when splitting up (I always back down) and routine stuff like who does the washing or deals with the kids when things are difficult (its always expected that you have to do it and if you don't there will be hell to pay).

Stay strong smile

CogitoErgoSometimes Sat 11-May-13 07:53:02

"Is that ok, or is that still a weird victim mindset?"

It's a fairly normal victim mindset post an emotionally abusive relationship. If you've been subjected to someone who uses bullying and manipulation you will have been 'trained' by this behaviour to tiptoe around them and feel it's your responsibility to keep them sweet. Of course, it really isn't.

changechangechange Sat 11-May-13 18:41:05

So do you think that it is ever possible to have an equal, respectful (prob not close) friendship with someone who was once an abusive partner?
Apart from I suppose I don't want to- I don't see why, I've plenty of other friends and I've moved so far on- so it's a friendship only one person wants- it will always be about me placating him, because if I stopped placating I'd be cutting contact. confused

I feel defeated all over again, realising that even now I am still dealing with his shit. Eurgh.

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