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Proceeding with separation during a 'family crisis'?(14 Posts)
I'm gathering strength in my bid to leave this emotionally abusive relationship (which I have posted about lots over the past 2 years). But. A sibling of H's is desperately ill and back in hospital. Sib (trying not to say too much) has been ill for years and had a drastic operation a year ago, we didn't really think they'd make it through but did, albeit with ongoing issues never fully resolved.
Trouble is, being the manipulative bastard he is, H has used his worry about sib as an 'excuse' to become very self cantered and abusive towards me in the past (I seem to remember posting on the EA thread about when we went up to visit the sib in hospital last year, 4 hour drive, H imagined the car brakes were sticking, said I should have had it fixed as it is 'my' car, and proceeded to drive really fast in the fast lane of the M1 pulling the handbrake up and down, but not letting the button go on IYSWIM, I was terrified) and even now he has been accusing me of not caring about his sib, over the past few years I've bent over backwards to help out but I do get fed up of them using the ongoing illness as an excuse for everything. So I didn't want to jump right up there and 'help' but I've always been caring and sympathetic, I think.
So before sib got ill (sorry fawlty towers fans) - I began the 'I want a divorce' dialog with him which he hasn't accepted, just tells me I'm a vindictive bitch.
But it now looks like all attention will be on sib, might need a trip up there, short term prognosis 50/50, long term will depend on what happens over the weekend, surgery planned for Monday. I in no way want to throw a spanner in the works, for his family who I'm not overly fond of, they have no idea of problems here.
My instinct is to reinforce the 'I'm not happy with our relationship' message but pull back on taking any specific action while this is ongoing. I thought if I put some boundaries in place, ie not travel together, I express willingness to help with family but not ie share a bed with him, I think he sees crisis as a way to manipulate me into supporting him emotionally... and put his needs first as usual. At this point I don't know whether sib will make it through, be ok, not be ok, or have a long complicated time in hospital after the surgery so there will be a different emotional climate depending on the outcome.
Is this realistic, or am I just backtracking when I've just finally moved a tiny step forward? I hope I'm not sounding like I am using this illness as an excuse to back off... I have questioned myself, it would be easy to find a get-out clause at this stage, divorce papers are ready but not served as yet.
I don't think it's realistic and would encourage you to have the courage of your convictions. Other people's lives will go on, for good or ill, regardless of what happens to you. If you delay because of this crisis there will be another crisis around the next corner.... or there will be an event you don't want to spoil for other people, or some anniversary of a crisis. Remember, an emotionally manipulative person will guilt-trip the crap out of anything.
IMHO - because I think bullies deserve zero tolerance or consideration - I'd use the crisis to your advantage, get yourself away and bank on his attention being elsewhere and his guard down.
How long do you think you'll need to wait until the time is right?
If sib is going to recover, this'll take time and then you'll no doubt want a reasonable gap before making the break.
If sib doesn't recover, it'll take time again as you'll want a reasonable gap (which will be a long time) due to bereavement and that's a long piece of string right there.
My mum spilt with my dad years ago. She said she stayed with him for my sake but I honestly think that she wasn't ready and justifying staying until she was ready.
You made the decisions about your future, and the plans need to go ahead.
You cannot be forever putting them off because of other things.
That said, I can see it would be humane to wait the three days until the operation, and then framing the separation in terms of what is actually happening. I think, rather more importantly, it may also help you to be firmer.
Divorce papers are ready? Do you have a place to stay? Can u use the time he is away to get things moved out?
I agree with all of the above posters. Does it matter what anyone else thinks. It sounds like you won't see much of them anyway . Stop putting everyonelse first.
Just, do it.
He will use the sib illness as an excuse anyway so it will most likely drag so start today.
What he did to you in the car was horrible.
Don't put your plans on hold any longer.
I agree with PPs that while this may be bigger than most, there will always be some reason not to do this. I'd stick to your guns. On the plus side, if you leave under these circumstances, things can only get better after that!
It's difficult to see clearly when youre still in the fog of a EA relationship, Have you had any rl support or counselling to help separate his 'wants' from your needs.
Bearing in mind, that there's never going to be an opportunity when he won't be an arse about it, there's no time like the present. Postponing the inevitable won't make it any easier, it only exposes you to more of his shit.
Disengage from him, it is the only way that you can be free of his abuse as he's taking advantage of your compassionate nature, by using it as tool to manipulate you. He can only use his siblings illness as a convenient excuse (let's be honest if it wasn't this it would be something else) to continue to manipulate and abuse you, if you let him.
Start the ball rolling, his 'problems' aren't and never were your fault or responsibility.
Thanks all. I am hoping that (if it's appropriate, hospital-wise) that he will go up there on his own. AuntieStella true, I'm glad in a way that we can focus on something besides the divorce issue for a couple of days.
Cog you've said exactly what I've been thinking re timing. I'm keenly watching for bully boy tactics as if he does anything remotely violent towards me I will call police, as he's got previous form (threats not actual violence) that would be it. Interestingly H is all of the sudden a 'medical expert' and told me that he has drafted up an email for me to proofread (his spelling's atrocious) and send to sib's previous surgeon and medical team... I haven't seen it yet but wtf?? What could it possibly be about! And he wants me to participate in bullying (perhaps) the medical team??
It really gets me down that H is always criticising the NHS for 'almost killing' his sib because his original condition wasn't, evidently, diagnosed fast enough. I won't comment on that because it isn't my issue but sometimes these things are legitimately difficult and you don't blame the doctor if something's incurable. I'm originally from the USA and thank my lucky stars to now be a citizen of the UK (that said I'm blessed with good health for the time being, but have had a DC who had the most excellent care via the NHS) but then again, I'm the type to look on the bright side!
Thanks so much for the sage advice I appreciate you all so much.
Thanks pounding and isetan, I've had counselling through WA and I think it's helped me see the issues, but I still cannot seem to kick myself out the door. Interestingly one of H's recent criticisms of me is that I have to 'be told what to do'. Serious LOL! He should have counted his blessings.
Oh and he not only criticises the NHS, but also just about everything else including the council, the state of roads in the UK, public transport, other drivers, the people who collect the bins wrongly (as he doesn't believe in recycling), anything to do with charity, etc., the government and politics (but he's v keen on UKIP). Aargh!
Thanks aussie and dowser, YES I'm actually getting keen on the idea of using this time while he's distracted and we are all thinking about how short/precious life is to just leave. It's obvious that he isn't happy either.
He's away now, I'm home alone, going to sort some things to put into a storage unit I've rented and he doesn't know about of course.
'Correcting' the NHS when he's got no expertise in the field is the hallmark behaviour of an arrogant and self deluded twat. Bullies are often inadequate types who stamp their little feet and shake their little fists at a world where they think everyone else is getting a better deal, more respect, special treatment etc. They want that for themselves but, because they are nasty, cowardly little no marks, they content themselves with lashing out at those they regard as inferior or unable to fight back Animals, women, shop staff, drivers safely trapped in their cars.....
If you have plans to get away and he has a history of aggression, then please do so safely. One day a man like that will disappear up his own arse and that's a spectacle that looks best from a distance....
Yikes cog a very apt description
hoping you don't actually know him, funny that he is such a 'type' when I always thought his tactics were the mark of a rugged individualist, going against the tide because of genius tendencies, etc. all this time I've fed his ego! [stupid face emoticon] To be fair he has been successful in his business (not successful enough and according to him it's all because he didn't go to public school, of course) but I am taking heed of your prediction re: disappearing into his substantial backside, I don't want to be the one who brings him down.. My preference would be that he exits with his backside intact! I know it shouldn't be my concern but not quite at that point. I'm having such a lovely day without him here, I'll bet he's been on the phone all day to his parents telling then what they should be telling the medical team.
Should have been to public school..... ah yes, the inverse snobbery/chip on the shoulder syndrome. Very typical of the arrogant twat type - and yes, they are ten a penny. Don't feel sorry for him will you?
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